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Critically evaluate extant research on videogames, aggression and violent behaviour.

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Introduction

Critically evaluate extant research on videogames, aggression and violent behaviour The media of video and computer games is a phenomenon, which has developed rapidly since its first incarnations of simple graphical games, to today's 3D rendered worlds which players are able to inhabit and explore as they wish. The gaming culture which has followed plays an integral part in contemporary society not just for the youth market but also for many adults, as a gateway to escape their everyday lives and express themselves within a gaming environment. This is the new media format much like television and radio with their introduction into the mainstream, the need to study and explore the implications has attracted scholars, and business's to explore this new media, attempting to understand its effects on contemporary society. The amount of money and time spent by consumers on these game platforms and software has pushed them to the front of the entertainment market place, with several multinational companies vying for market dominance within this expanding industry (Calvert 2002). ...read more.

Middle

Funk doesn't place a total blame on the games however as she draws on research into pre existing problems within the Childs personality developed within the environment and social surrounding which the child has grown up in, stating that playing these games could lead to the increased development of these problems. Dave Grossman, a US military trainer on the realities of war has a much different perspective to the debate on video games and aggression. He states that the continued playing of the game conditions and trains the youthful player into a killing machine, perfectly honed to kill on sight without a thought for the consequences. He develops the argument of Acquired Violence Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AVIDS), liking the disorder to the virus Aids. 'The disease doesn't kill you but simple destroys your immune system' (Grossman). Arguing that the use of violent video games simple desensitises players, trains them to kill (stimulus response) with no thought for the repercussions of their actions. These two studies outline two different ideas on the argument of video games and aggression, but neither conducted first hand testing of the hypothesis of post play aggression. ...read more.

Conclusion

These problems could be rectified by the increased proportion of studies, of by the drawing up of a new study method designed specifically for the examination of video games and not one which has been used to monitor other forms of media and post exposure behaviour. The existing research available on the topic of post play aggression is extremely limited with few pieces able to be seen as complete and giving a total answer to the questions answered. The idea that competitiveness within a game is equally to blame, as violent content needs to be explored as the arousal experienced from winning or losing a competition such as a sports simulation can increase the adrenaline within the body causing an outburst of violence (Fienberg 2002). Similarly the link needs to be addressed that not everyone who plays violent games will go out and kill people and so the link between characteristics innate to the individual are to blame for more severe violent acts and the video games at the moment are being lined up as scapegoats for individuals actions and more research needs to be conducted on the subject. ...read more.

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