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Do violent video games cause behavior problems?
Video games are a mass medium type of recreation that in the recent years have been enjoyed and played by many people from all the age groups. The industry of producing video games has been expanding over the years and it is therefore evident that the number of people playing them is increasing. Video games are very addictive and research has shown that it is difficult for people, who are addicted, to break from the addiction.
On the issue of whether video games cause behavior problems or not, many researchers have split their views. Some of the researches show that video games do cause behavior problems, while others show that video games have no effect on behavior. A statistical research done estimated that about 90% of kids between the ages of 8 to 16 in the U.S spend an average of 13 hours per week (about two hours a day) playing video games. The addiction is stronger among the boys, than the girls (Kutner & Olson 95).
Most of the games produced and enjoyed by many people nowadays are cruel game genres (fighting action, shooters, adventure, and others) and a study done about the effects of these videos has proved that the virtual violence in these games may cause children to be more aggressive in real life. The research was done with the American. and Japanese kids, and the results of the research were that the kids addicted to playing cruel video games were more aggressive than their peers, who did not.
The effect of playing video games on the kid did not come immediately but after some time they started exhibiting physical aggression, such as punching, kicking or getting into fights with other children. The research took into account the level of aggressiveness of the kids before the start of the research. This study can be used to determine the greater effect on the behavior of the kids in the future.
It has not been know,n how exactly violent video games cause an increase in aggressiveness of the people, who are addicted to these games. This is because some people, who are addicted to them, are not aggressive at all, while others, who have even never played them, are very violent and aggressive. It may seem that the effect of playing violent video games may be really big, but in the real sense it has a very tiny effect.
People becoming aggressive after playing violent video games may depend on the personality of the person. For instance, people, who are easily angered, tend to be affected more by violent video games, than people who are not angry. People, who really get angry, are virtually not affected by violent video games, unlike people, who are naturally aggressive. People, who are extremely angry, tend to practice what they see in the video games in real life. Their aggressiveness can grow worse, if they continue to play these games.
Although it is evident that violent video games have an effect on the behavior of the people addicted to them, regulation of the vice has not been effective. Many courts have rejected the proposals to have a regulation in the production and sale of video games. These courts claim that the relationship between violent video games and behavior change is very minimal. There is a lack of substantial evidence, connecting video games with aggressiveness or violence.
On the other hand, many people, who have been interviewed, have said that violent video games do not affect the behavior of the person at all. Most of them claim that they have been playing this type of games and they have never seen any effect on their behavior. Behavior change is a state of mind and a person may choose not follow what is done in the video games in the real life. Additionally, some of the video tricks are too hard to be practiced in the real life. Many people believe that if games cause behavioral problems, there maybe be an underlying issue with the gamer himself, but not with the software (Coon 291).
In conclusion, controlling addiction to video games can be a hard thing but I believe that parents can help in reducing it. The parents can be able to control their children on which video games to play and how much time is spent playing them. The parents can engage the children in more physical activities, instead of letting them spent all their free time playing games. The main challenge of using this approach is that some of the parents are also addicts.
Additionally, the excessive playing of violent video game can be controlled through legislation. For instance, the Supreme Court lately decided to revise a California law that regulates the sale and rental of computer and video games to minors. This move regulates the production of these games and that more violent games would not find their way to the public. This move by the Supreme Court has been opposed by very many people. It is therefore evident that violent video games have an effect on the behavior of people but any approach to minimize the vice is met with numerous challenges.