Video games unlikely to cause real-world violence, experts say

however experts say there is actually little evidence to link violent games to real-world violence.

“Games have only become more realistic. The players of games in addition to also violent games have only become more diverse. in addition to also they’re played all around the planet at This specific point,” said Andrew Przybylski, an associate professor at the University of Oxford who studies digital media.

“however the only place where you see This specific kind of narrative still hold any water, in which games in addition to also violence are related to each different, is actually inside United States.”

in which supposed connection has its roots in early research in which seemed to link violent games to aggression in players. A 2015 report through the American Psychological Association, for example, found a “consistent relation between violent video game use in addition to also increases in aggressive behavior, aggressive cognitions in addition to also aggressive affect.”

Though the report said there was insufficient evidence to link in which aggression to criminal violence or delinquency, its findings seemed to support a longstanding sense — in addition to also fear — in which completely new technologies in addition to also on-screen gore could translate into violence on the streets. however in which conclusion, experts argue, isn’t backed by modern research.

completely new studies upend link to aggression

“The general trend here is actually in which society incorporates a concern about completely new technology, parents or policymakers get involved, in addition to also maybe the researchers don’t have much experience with the technology themselves, in addition to also so the first few attempts to study the thing are pretty poorly done,” Przybylski said.

Fact check: Are violent video games connected to mass shootings?

As time has gone on, he said, “the evidence has become pretty clear in which, where there are correlations, the item’s probably because of a third factor.” For example, boys have historically been more likely to play video games, in addition to also they also happen to be more aggressive than girls on average, Przybylski said.

This specific year, he published a study of more than 1,000 British adolescents in which found no link between the time spent playing violent video games in addition to also aggressive behavior. in which’s consistent with different recent research showing little — if any — link between games in addition to also violence.
Researchers at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health published research in July in which looked at meta-analyses of pre-existing studies. The team found in which violent video games may increase aggressive behavior, however “these effects are almost always quite little.”
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in addition to also aggression, Przybylski points out, doesn’t mean somebody will commit a mass shooting. “There’s no doubt when a game is actually actually hard or very frustrating or you lose, you get pissed off.” By creating Tetris more difficult inside lab, for example, his team was able to induce aggressive feelings.

“The question in which you have to ask yourself is actually, do people go out in addition to also do mass shootings after they rage-quit ‘Call of Duty’?” He doesn’t think so — in addition to also points out in which most people don’t usually commit violent acts after losing a game of golf.

Medical groups, in addition to also even the Supreme Court, weigh in

The American Psychological Association has yet to update its policy statement on video games in addition to also aggression, in addition to also different groups, such as the American Academy of Pediatrics, also warn against violent media.

Video games, the academy said in 2016, “should not use human or different living targets or award points for killing, because This specific teaches children to associate pleasure in addition to also success with their ability to cause pain in addition to also suffering to others.” the item found a “significant” link between violent media in general in addition to also aggressive thoughts in addition to also angry feelings.
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however some research suggests in which, instead of predisposing young people toward violence, video games may in fact reduce real-world aggression, allowing people to channel their feelings into gaming consoles instead of different people.

In one 2016 study, researches analyzed crime data in addition to also found in which general societal violence decreased inside weeks after the Discharge of well-liked video games.
Christopher Ferguson, an associate professor in addition to also co-chairman of the Department of Psychology at Stetson University, told CNN last year in which “basically, by keeping young males busy with things they like” — whether the item’s playing sports, collecting stamps or playing first-person shooter video games — “you keep them off the streets in addition to also out of trouble.”
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The Supreme Court has weighed in, too. In 2011, the justices ruled in a 7-2 decision in which video games are protected speech under the First Amendment, an opinion in which cited existing research into aggression.

Justice Antonin Scalia, writing for the court, said in which “psychological studies purporting to show a connection between exposure to violent video games in addition to also harmful effects on children do not prove in which such exposure causes minors to act aggressively.”

He added in which “any demonstrated effects are both little in addition to also indistinguishable through effects produced by different media.”

‘What a shame’ to blame video games, expert says

Though the court’s opinion came eight years ago, current research supports the item. A study published in July looked at more than 3,000 youth in Singapore in addition to also took into account prior levels of aggression in addition to also impulse control. There was no link between violent games in addition to also future aggression, researchers found.

A positive family environment, however, was a “protective factor” in which reduced aggression in addition to also antisocial behaviors. “Thus, public policies in which aim toward strengthening families as well as increase youth impulse control are likely to be more productive than those in which target video games,” the study said.

As for politicians railing against video games inside wake of This specific weekend’s mass shootings, Przybylski said, “what a shame.” in which talk “cheapens a hobby pursued by half of American adults,” he said.

however above all, by blaming video games instead of digging deeper into the root causes of violence, “we reduce the value of the political discourse on the topic, because we’re looking for easy answers instead of facing hard truths.”

CNN’s Susan Scutti contributed to This specific report.

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