Thursday, February 17, 2011

Violence in Video Games

A highly debated topic, violence in video games continues to attract attention. This article on Lazy Gamer opens with the line:
"While we all know that videogame violence doesn’t cause violence in society the mainstream media still love prancing on about this."
It seems the greatest protesters of this idea are gamers themselves. The article goes on to criticize a poor experiment by the Munwha Broadcasting Company in South Korea where they turned off the power at an internet cafe and concluded video games lead to violence after the gamers in the cafe were angered. I have to side with Lazy Gamer when they wrote that this is the stupidest experiment ever.

Source: Lazy Gamer


  1. Hahaha the "experiment" makes me cringe. I would be pissed off too if the power was turned off. This is one of those topics that will never go away. It saddens me that so much effort and interest goes into trivial matters; rather than spending time discussing issues that are (quite frankly) pertinent to everyone.

  2. This is an issue we've discussed a lot in some of my media classes from previous semesters. Here's a link to the blog we created in my Communications Geography class -

    I'll try to find the link to articles that pertain specifically to the issue of violence in gaming! Personally, I think that the issue is fizzling out a bit; we've got much bigger fish to fry these days.

    I might also just be blinded by my perspective as a person who has zero daily interaction with the world of gaming.

  3. Video games are easy to target and less racially driven so they are the easy topic of debate. The amount of fat nerds that kill people is massively dwarfed by the amount of young low income youth that is being tainted by their society. It is easier to blame video games because there is no one person to point the finger at, it is much more politically off the wall to blame the parents, family, friends, or anyone that actually is real.

  4. I am currently taking a class called "Cyber crime Detection and Forensics" and one of the first things we learned is to determine what exactly is cyber crime? Cyber crime has many levels. The first is an obvious crime that deals with physical components/hardware which includes but is not limited to theft of physical components (think of the scenes from the Fast and the Furious movies when they heist a truck full of speakers), murder with physical components used as weapons or even used as motive (if someone stole or broke the iPad you received last Christmas and you managed to seek revenge and break some law because of it).

    The next level is all digital. Hacking into bank, corporate and/or government databases to phish passwords and other important encrypted keys, sending out malicious spyware to purposely destroy other people's digital property, setting up spam farms, etc.

    Why do I bring up the topic of cyber crime? Because using video games as an excuse to promote violence is just masking the real reasons behind cyber crimes. People steal, kill and commit heinous crimes everywhere and it is usually always for the same reasons: jealousy, money, power, or having psycho-social problems. Just because a video game is involved does not root the cause of the crime towards the violent nature of some games.

    A perfect candidate to examine this case is a 16-year old boy from Southern Philadelphia confessed to murdering his mother after first stating that she had just "confiscated his PlayStation". The media went insane and used this case to say "it is the video games' fault that caused this boy to murder his mother!" When he finally confessed in court, he explained what had really happened and he stated that he had stolen a laptop from school and was caught. He had received punishment from school and like any regular parent, the mother was upset with her son and when they came home from school they argued. While he was suspended, the arguing got to the point where the mother decided to confiscate his PlayStation to teach him a moral lesson, a typical grounding. His case was that of a normal cyber crime (stealing physical property) which later involved the confiscation of a video game console. Video games did not take his mother's life away, his psychoses most likely did.

    Article on the boy's case (warning: detail is strong) in case anyone would like to read it:

  5. As a teacher I can say that parents like to point the finger at everyone but themselves. Taking responsibility is not something parents (especially SES) have an easy time doing.