Video gamers virtually violent but socially active, studies

A high number of middle-school youth may be playing violent video games, but that's not a worrisome trend, according to a study just released by Massachusetts General Hospital's Center for Mental Health and Media. The study examined the gaming habits of 1,254 children from two states, focusing on the types of games played and the social facets of gaming. Published in the July issue of Journal of Adolescent Health, this study is the first to ask middle-school youth in detail about the games they play and to analyze how many of those titles are rated M (Mature — meant for ages 17 and up). It found two-thirds of boys and one in four girls played at least one M-rated game "a lot in the past six months."

Video game critics may find ammunition in the study, especially considering the emotional trends it uncovers. It found that many of those playing violent games are playing to vent anger and stress. However, the study's lead author expresses hope that the study's findings will improve the current discourse on violent games. "Violent game play is so common, and youth crime has actually declined, so most kids who play these games occasionally are probably doing fine," says Cheryl K. Olson, ScD, co-director of the Center for Mental Health and Media. "We hope that this study is a first step toward reframing the debate from 'violent games are terrible and destroying society' to 'what types of game content might be harmful to what types of kids, in what situations.' We need to take a fresh look at what types of rules or policies make sense."

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News source: CBC News

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17 Comments

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(shot shot shot)... (jump) (shot) (strife) ... (jump) (shot shot shot) and shout :NOOB FRAGGED!! <-- socially active.

Too bad no one thought to take away the video games from the Nazis. Just think how much violence would have been prevented!

It found that many of those playing violent games are playing to vent anger and stress.

Well duh, it was for me. One time in particular I got mugged at gun point, i ended up sitting in front of Mortal Kombat 3 for house just killing the crap out of the CPU controlled characters doing every violent fatality possible. In fact I used the MK games all through high school to vent my anger, which I had A LOT of. If it wasn't for that outlet, it might not be called pulling a columbine, but named after my school instead. I played those games so much I knew every move, combo, fatality, friendship, pit, babality, animality and every other finisher in all 3 games, and could do most finishers almost instantly.

There's a reason why people who play violent video games are active socially....

You gotta find your victims somehow...

(I'M JUST KIDDING!!! )

And yet, still, no one mentions the fact that these games are not rated for children. And the children still play them.

So, no mention of bad parenting anywhere.

that was my first thought too. Kids are playing M rated games. OK so they aren't that bad in my opinion, but that doesn't change the fact that someone is letting them play the games to begin with.

I completely agree. While I may be extremely violent playing games (when it's needed, of course ;)), I am an extremely kind and courteous person outside of that. I hardly ever lose my temper and I'm a very mellow person, except when it comes to video games. They are my outlet for my emotions and let me cope with everything far better than most people.

gigapixels said,

Sorry, I don't play that game, though I know it's your favorite :)

That wasn't the way I expected this going in.

Pippin666 said,
What does that cheap gfx game have to do with this?

Pip'

:rolleyes: It's a game. And more important, it's a big social network.

I guarantee anyone who loves to pin violence on video games is going to ignore this and all the other studies already conducted that are much like this.

Eis said,
I guarantee anyone who loves to pin violence on video games is going to ignore this and all the other studies already conducted that are much like this.
In fact, they would be right to ignore some random article like this one. Studies should be conducted on people with small and big mental illness.

Pip'