Study suggests violent video games make teens more violent

video games

A new study suggest that there is a correlation between young teens who play violent video games and a lack of empathy towards others.

The study, which was performed at Brock University in Ontario, looked at roughly 100 students who were either 13 or 14 years old. The research discovered that over 50% played games every day, violent ones were among the majority. They define violent video games as “those where players acted out the killing, maiming, decapitating or mutilating of other human characters,” according to BBC News.

The study learned that many of these games were played for around 1 to 3 hours, and the teenagers that played closer to 1 hour showed no distressing signs, while those that played 3 hours or more showed a deficit in empathy, concern, or trust for other people.

According to the study, “spending too much time within the virtual world of violence may prevent [gamers] from getting involved in different positive social experiences in real life, and in developing a positive sense of what is right and wrong.” In other words, these teens were more likely to commit violent acts than the ones who play less violent games.

Uh oh, all of a sudden the anti-video game legislation we’ve all laughed at may have some teeth. Then again, this is just one study and we all know how studies can be skewed to get the results we want. More research definitely needs to be done. Alternatively, we could say the cold has screwed up the brains of Canadians and this only applies to our friends up north. Yep, I’ll go with the last one.

[via BBC News]

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  • sl0j0n

    Hello, all.
    This ‘study’ may or may not have been performed correctly.
    But its irrelevant in one sense.
    Check out the history of computing, if you don’t already know it.
    Back when each computer had to be programmed individually, there was a saying;
    “GIGO”, which is an acronym that means “Garbage In, Garbage Out”.
    It applies to ‘human’ programming too.
    Its only reasonable, if you put ‘garbage’ into a person, especially a young person, whose brain isn’t mature yet, you’ll get ‘garbage’ out of that person.
    There used to be another saying that applied as well;
    “Be careful what you put into your mind, because you’ll never be able to get it out”.
    Sounds like those ‘old folks’, w/ their ‘old sayings’ knew a thing or two.

    Have a GREAT day, neighbors!

  • Mike S.

    [@Mags] Except this study, to the extent its methodology is correct.

    Is this study any great surprise? Doesn’t it simply go back to the idea of too much of anything?

  • Mags

    Another one? Really???

    ” we all know how studies can be skewed to get the results we want” Agreed!!! So far no one has come up with any real concrete evidence to support their theory one way or the other.

  • The process is called “enculturation” and is a well documented and understood sociological phenomena. It isn’t limited to video games either, we learn all our social skills through absorption from our society, be it TV, RL or games. Someone once said, “The definition of being human changes every ten years.”