Fantasy vs. Fiction : The Violent Effects of Gaming

 

downloadDuring this course, we have discussed a lot about  the many different effects of video games. For this assignment, I decided to research the effects of violence in video games. I have always been interested in the effects of video games and violence because I have many young family members who play violent video games and i am curious if this could be affecting them later on in life.

 

Over many periods of time, there has been a lot of controversy about violence in video games and its effects on the young gamers.There’s a clear difference between fantasy and fiction but can young gamers who play  these video games differentiate between the two?  Often times when games are played for a long period of time they have long-term effects on the individual playing the game especially in a game with a high volume of violence. Today’s most popular video games are games with harming, fighting or killing as their main function (Rothmund at el, 2015).  Games like GTA, Call of Duty, or Mortal Combat all a have one thing  in common and that gruesome violence which is the reason they attract such a broad audience.This is not surprising given the average gamer is about 33 years of age. But for children whose parents are not monitoring their gameplay, this can have negative effects on the later on. Children tend to re-enact things they see on tv or the internet so if they are playing a game with violence it is expected that violent things can occur. Previous studies have found there is a link between violence in video and real-life aggression. Whether that link is  negative or positive is still on known. Some believe violent games do have violent effects or children others do not.

Today’s most popular video games are games with harming, fighting or killing as their main function (Rothmund at el, 2015).  Games like GTA, Call of Duty, or Mortal Combat all a have one thing  in common and that gruesome violence which is the reason they attract such a broad audience.This is not surprising given the average gamer is about 33 years of age. But for children whose parents are not monitoring their gameplay, this can have negative effects on the later on. There’s a difference between  television violence and video game violence with the time frame they occur, whereas, tv  violence occurs in brief episodes video games are much more lengthy (Krcmar & Lachlan, 2009). Children tend to re-enact things they see on tv or the internet so if they are playing a game with violence it is expected that violent things can occur. Previous studies have found there is a link between violence in video and real-life aggression. Whether that link is  negative or positive is still on known. Some believe violent games do have violent effects or children others do not.

download-1Researchers found positive relationships between violent game play and aggressive outcome (Eastin,2006).  Often times when playing video games with and high volumes of violence it causes gamers to enact the same violent behaviors later on without realizing they are doing so.

According to BBC News, on whether or not video games make you violent they found that most people who played violent games did not resort to violence. Yet people are still against it. Another study found that violent video games  may have a reverse effect and reduce aggression amongst gamers (Ivory & Kalyanaraman, 2009). Given this, playing violent video games could actually allow people to relieve stress and any anger they have in while playing a game instead of inflicting pain on someone else.

In conclusion, there is not straight answer for whether or not violence in video games really affect real-life aggression. Many studies have looked at this and have come to many different conclusions. In my opinion, I  believe that for children it can influence what they do. As I previously stated children brains are still developing and they act things out that they see as a way of developing. In their mind, they may still think it’s a game if they ever came across a gun in real-life. Given this, children  gameplay of video games should be monitored if they cannot differentiate between fantasy and fiction. As for adults, tey is capable of making their own decisions with knowledge of whats right and whats wrong.

 

References:

http://www.bbc.com/news/technology-33960075

Eastin, M. (2006). Video Game Violence and the female game player: Self- and opponent gender effects on presence and aggressive thoughts. Human Communication Research, 32, 351-372.

Ivory,  J.D, & Kalyanaraman, S. (2009). Vidoe games make people violent- well, maybe not that game: Effects of content and person abstraction on perceptions of violent video games effects and support of censorship. Communication Reports, 22, 1-12.

Krcmar, M., & Lachlan, K. (2009). Aggressive outcomes of video game play: The role of length of play and the mechanisms at work. Media Psychology, 12, 249-267.

Rothmund, T., Gollwitzer, M., Bender, J., & Klimmt, C. (2015). Short-and long-term effects of video game violence on interpersonal trust. Media Psychology,  18, 106-133.

Weber, R., Ritterfeld, U., & Mathiak, K. (2006). Does playing violent video games  induce aggression? Empirical evidence of a functional magnetic resonance imaging study. Media Psychology, 8, 39-60.

 

 

 

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