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Ban this sick filth? Video games are a hugely popular pastime in Europe. Among young Europeans aged 16-24, fully 80% of young men and 61% of young women say they play games regularly. And, particularly as technology develops and games find a bigger audience, critics argue that gaming can be an important cultural medium, and should be considered as expressive as films, television and literature.

But video games are all about shooting and killing things, right? Well, it’s true that some (in fact, a small minority) of video games contain graphic violence. But there are also violent movies, books and TV shows out there. Is the fear of violent video games yet another moral panic, of the same sort that blames all aspects of pop culture for the disintegration of society? Or is there something specific in the medium of gaming that can make the impact of violence more tactile and ‘real’?

As part of our Debating Europe Schools series, we’ve been taking questions from students from across Europe to policymakers and experts for them to answer.

Curious to know more about violent video games and their impact on the behaviour of children? We’ve put together some facts and figures in the infographic below (click for a bigger version).
violent-video-games

So, what do the experts say? We had a question sent in from Alexter, a 4th year student from the Athneée Royal Victor Horta in Brussels. She wanted to know if there is any evidence that video games make teenagers violent.

To get a response, we put this question to Tom Chatfield, a British author, commentator and designer whose work focuses on games and technology. Here’s what he had to say:

To get another perspective, we also took Alexter’s question to Daphne Bavelier, a cognitive researcher at the University of Geneva, Switzerland. How would she respond?

Finally, we spoke to Christopher Ferguson, an Associate Professor and Chair of Psychology at Stetson University, Florida, who specialises in the psychological effects of violence in video games. How would he describe the current research into video game violence?

Perhaps the evidence that video games make people more aggressive is inconclusive, but is there any evidence that they make people more antisocial? We had a comment sent in by Nando, who was concerned that video games in general (i.e. not just violent games) might harm the development of social skills in children. Is there any evidence  of this?

We asked Christopher Ferguson to respond:

Do violent video games make people more aggressive? Do video games in general harm the development of social skills in children? Or do they improve creativity and help people unwind after a stressful day? Let us know your thoughts and comments in the form below, and we’ll take them to policymakers and experts for their reactions!

IMAGE CREDITS: CC / Flickr – Sam DeLong

 



294 comments Post a commentcomment

What do YOU think?

    • austin

      perfect explanation

  1. nando

    Yes they do! They blunt the senses! They promote the idea that “to solve problems one pulls a gun” or “a few punches”. Especially in young people who are going through their formative years.
    This has been studied by many professionals and the deniers are only those who financially benefit from the “war game business”!

    • Martin

      Yes, children will want to play games more when they start. Dopamine, psychological difference, and many more factor though will contribute to whether or not they become violent. Are they an idiot who believed in fairy tales until they were sixteen? Then they may become more violent. Any teen who can tell the difference will most likely not experience any change mentally.

  2. Nando Aidos

    Yes they do! They blunt the senses! They promote the idea that “to solve problems one pulls a gun” or “a few punches”. Especially in young people who are going through their formative years.
    This has been studied by many professionals and the deniers are only those who financially benefit from the “war game business”!

    • Marcel

      What utter nonsense. Studied by what professionals exactly? Professional religious folks I suppose.

    • Timothy

      Nando pulling a gun out on someone or fighting has been around for many years even before video games made a huge impact in society. If you agree with the comment you just made I can see you would also answer yes to violent TV shows, news, and books. Video games don’t kill people, people kill people. Teenagers back then even fist fought out of school in time. People through ages fought to settle something and also teens and many different people fought. If video games made everyone murderous and crazy the population would shrink. I don’t recommend fighting to settle something.

  3. Tomas Kronas

    Oppressive social and work relations make people aggressive, not video games. Address the real issues.

  4. Christos Mouzeviris

    Not sure if they make them aggressive, but they certainly make them like guns and battles. In some extreme cases, the players become like trained soldiers. Together with Hollywood movies that are also favouring violence and battles or weaponry, it is like a proportion of the population is preconditioned to become marines or soldiers.. And in some countries like USA, in a constant mode of war, this is very beneficial. They have no shortage of people that would love to go out there and shoot out! They are loving it. In other countries though people are taking their compulsion for killing against animals or in some other cases, often again in the USA, they just freak out and go on a rampage killing innocent pupils at schools. America and the rest of the world must understand that investing so heavily in the arms industry and marketing these games, have side effects: the death of innocent people in the hands of disturbed individuals.

    • Mészáros Bálint

      I’ve played violent video games for many long years and still do not think, that violence will solve my problems, nor do I feel any urge to punch or shoot anyone. Nor did it make me like weapons or battles in any way, since I have a proper understanding of what is real and fantasy. And there is a huge difference between thinking about something and acting upon it.
      As an IR major and a wholehearted fan of almost every advanced technological field -weapons included, even without my gaming past- I am still completely aware that violence, is a bad answer to most problems of society and absolutely no answer for anyone’s personal issues. I’ve never been a fight, never want to be and the last thing I want in Europe is another armed conflict.
      As of weapons, despite being interested in the field, I am the one who would opt for even stricter gun laws in Europe. In my opinion live weapons aren’t meant to be available for anyone besides hunters and law-enforcement, maybe only with some extreme exceptions. These aren’t lawless times anymore.
      The US is a unique example in this regard, gun violence and availability are running rampart, because the frontier mentality have stuck, both in minds and laws. The US armed forces, being an important matter of national pride and work opportunity, does contribute this aswell. Just as the shockingly large equalities and gaps in society, which gives way to the birth of many delusional individuals, who might later easily get their hangs on weaponry.
      Fortunately Europe is different in many regards, stricter gun laws, more consolidated societies, easier law-enforcement coverage and a much less pronounced arms culture, does not allow for the thriving of such violence and probably never will. And games won’t change anything on that either.
      We have much more prominent and dangerous issues at hand, with the rise of nationalist extremism, aswell as the immigrant and economic crisis.

  5. Emil Pavlovich

    It depends on the family and education,social environment and self esteem……it’s hard question…..

  6. Nikos Trikilis

    Coupled with violence portrayed in other media it definitely contributes to desensitizing the public toward death, killing, war etc. and ones first reaction when presented or put in such situations definitely becomes skewed. When violence ceases to become shocking it is obscene. In the movie Commando Arnie dispatches 81 people with an array of methods. Your kill count at the end of the level is also 81. News report a suicide bomb attack in Baghdad with 81 dead. And you never blink once.

    • Azar

      You play Sims lot, funny!

  7. Stefano Ciarrocchi

    No, i don’t think so. Mabye it can hurt children because they are to young to understand why they musn’t emulate those games but if you’re more than 16 and you become aggressive just playing a game you probably have your own psychological prombems.

  8. Marijus Stasiulis

    No. Same goes with movies.
    When i was kid i have watched “Rembo 3” and other violent movies, but do i shoot people in the streets?
    Society and bad parenting makes people violent.
    Does ISIS, Boko Haram and Al-Shabab have played lot of violent games or why do they are so violent?
    If you want to ban something, ban religion!
    How that sounds? ;)

  9. Max Berre

    why is this even being debated? Aren’t there published empirical studies on this? Do Japan and Korea (the world’s top gaming nations) have high rates of violent crime?

  10. Erkan Avcı

    Absolutely no. I played Counter-Strike, Half-Life, Age of Empires, Mortal Kombat, Street Fighter etc. for years… But I’m not aggressive person and I don’t show tendency to any violence (physical, psychological etc.) This is a stiuation about character of individuals. What kind of family does person live in? How is her/his friends? Does he/she has religional tendency? So, only video game isn’t enough to state aggressiveness or violence tendency.

  11. Nicolai Nygaard Petersen

    As Mr Avci states, it is more about the context than the games specifically. Considering how many that are playing video games the level of violence should be much higher, should it not?

  12. Bart Vd B

    NO what is far more dangerous: sitting passively staring at a screen looking at commercials, soaps and believing the bullshit from main stream media/news channels

  13. Trond Johannessen

    you don’t need the word “violent” in there. Try to interrupt anyone with a digital device in their hands…

  14. Toni Muñiz

    I was never into video games. I can understand that some can be influenced, but would be from anything else. But I find it amusing that you want to ban violent video games while we live in a world where reality is more violent than fiction. How about we ban the violence in the real world first and then maybe we can hold hands while smelling flowers and ban everything else.

  15. Rudi Špoljarec

    Most probably, but those who are agressive are agressive allready,and they search such games afterwards.

  16. Daniela Marinescu

    No doubt about it! I have the advatage that I’m a woman, so I’ve escaped them… My native agressivity is less pregnant, you know? But there is a clue here. My professional background is for making weapons and I used my knowledge to make bio-medical apparatus, you also know this?

  17. Buj Alex

    physical and psyhical inactivity frustates a person and thus makes it react violent to exterior stimulus…. not videogames !! videogames just come where people can find no other activity !! shure they have an impact on young minds … where games are too realistic, but that is due to lack of education!! videogames understood as videogames(fiction) are the greatest imagination exercise … and should be improuved … !! and introduced in schools as … virtual reality … like sexology, religion and other social factors … mabe … besides virtual reality …. artificial inteligence is a factor as well that should be taken very hard in consideration … another touchy subject …

  18. Lynda Germon

    I don’t think that these games are beneficial to or for anyone, but to each his own… just not in my home !

  19. Rui Duarte

    That’s not really a question of opinion. That’s a job for psichologistas…

  20. Ryan MacDonald

    Haha video games? Right……
    Not the real life war machine that’s been on the news killing for your freedom forever

  21. Larry Sunshine

    It’s only an excuse not to see the real problems that cause violence, like corruption, poverty etc.

  22. Michalis Pillos

    Yes it does but its Americas modern war facility! Any ideas on how to avoid them and still build an advance army to protect our nations then please go ahead and let us know how!

  23. Sylvain Duret

    Stupid politicians and their mistakes makes good citizens agressive =) ! For video games, the problem is in the head of the player.

  24. Dobromir Panchev

    Yes, violent games make people who play then more aggressive and like almost all games, more nervous and frustrated. This exhausts their nerves and ability to judge, not to mention that the only skills you get is to kill. Some of them are no longer able to make the difference between games and reality and do the same things in real life because video games do not show the ugly, scary and devastating nature of war. You get killed, press any key, and here we go again… unlike real life. Once you get kiied in a game, you should not be able to play that game anymore! I think that there should be strict regulations for such games and programmes to encourage the creation of all other types of games. Physical activity in real sports is the answer.

    • Yordan Vasilev

      Yes, that’s right!

  25. Joaquim Duarte

    Of course it does. It doesn’t mean gamers will go out on a rampage after a while, but some, particularly children, might be affected in their perception of reality. It’s like guns, not every owner is likely to shoot someone, however the more people own guns the bigger the odds are that some will misuse it.

  26. Spyros Tsakos

    Many people make the mistake that video games is just an entertainment tool, it is more than that. It is like reading a book, books offer ideas, messages, personal or collective ideas and perspectives of individuals and societies alike as well as entertainment. The video games are a modern version of the book, the only difference is that they rely on a graphical interactive environment, their creators are not only focused on graphics but also on the content of the game, that content offers the core that is more important than its graphics. The hint that consumers haven’t taken yet is that they need to face that content with a critical view(like reading a book or a newspaper) by admiring at the same time(without focusing solely on them) the realistic graphics, a great portion of that content is a reflection of our real world around us and bears some of the ideas or expectations of their creators or in general how they see our world in the present and in the future. Video games can be educative if they offer open ideas and promote critical thinking and universal values in a fairly complex environment(for example some are showing how unfair is a discrimination against race and nationality or against homosexual people by offering the user the choice to proceed with the discrimination or not, showing at the same time the results of that action either in an instant or later in the game, those games are called RPG(Role Playing Games)). Many say that video games are diminish our imagination but that is not true because it can only happen partialy if you solely focus on the graphics, but if you go beyond them, to the content, then by definition you use your imagination. For example let be more specific, the above picture of the post is from Call of Duty Modern Warfare 1(for those who don’t know) lets try to put ourselves in the place and time of the game’s character, how would we feel if we were to face so much shooting and death?, would we shoot an Arab?(in the end the realistic graphics enhance this effect), the creators of this game gives you a hint of the failed foreigh policy of the US as well as the monsters that this produced in the specific area(Middle East) in league with religious extremism(the game shows a version at the beggining of what is known today as the Islamic State and the results of that collition as the creators saw it then(it was publiced in 2007), also later series of the game highlihted the colition of interest between US, Europe and Russia). My point is you can’t ban video games, they offer greativity and jobs to people , what is needed is to introduce critical thinking to their users, for instance I’m in favor for the parents to play with their children video games in order to help them go beyond the graphics or more players to be playing as a team in a game promoting for example teamwork and of course we must highlight the importance of age ratings for the games.

    • Marcel

      Religion is worse. See: Syria, Iraq etc…

  27. Marcel

    Religion makes people agressive. The two worst of them are christianity and islam, two ideologies that have caused more misery, killing, slavery, colonization and oppression of women/gays etc… than all other ideologies combined.

    People who play video games have likely killed less than 1,000 people in world history. The count for religion is north of 200 million.

    In my view, the bible and the quran should be banned as books that promote hatred, slavery and extreme violence against non-believers.

    Please tell me this whole ‘video games are evil’ nonsense from the USA isn’t coming here.

    • Prince du Sang

      Oh you are so original and intelligent! And you think people will just instantly stop instinctual feelings of anger, and hold hands once Christianity and Islam are banned yes? Especially in a world where resources are depleting faster than ever before, and globalisation will turn everything that was once genuine and unique about the human race into a pile of worthless uniformed bilge.

      Are you jealous in people who believe in a metaphysical reality? Where you, yourself only believe in what your useless senses can observe and measure?

      The Bible and the Quran promotes hatred, slavery, extreme violence?!?!, Have you read Mein Kampft?, The Communist Manifesto?, Crime and Punishment?, The Temple of the Golden Pavilion?, The 120 Days of Sodom?, A Clockwork Orange?, On the Origins of Species?

      Your argument is bad. Humanity is the reason for violence, Humanity!, are you implying that people can’t make there own decisions, that they don’t have free will?

    • Marcel

      @PDS
      Why would I be jealous of people who need a fantasy friend to ‘guide’ their lives? I am not jealous, but contemptuous of such people.

      Yes, the bible and the quran specifically and repeatedly promote and glorify enslaving unbelievers, or outright killing them. There are several websites that have listed all the ‘violent’ verses from both of them. Sure, modern day christians and muslims are trying to present sanitized texts and attempt to explain away all the biblical/quranic violence.

      Maybe you can answer me the question: why did Muhammad have an entire tribe of Qurayza jews killed to the last man, woman and child? If you know the answer, you’ll understand why islam has generally speaking always been violent throughout its history. Same for christianity, what was done to the inhabitants of the ‘promised land’ when the ‘chosen people’ were told to go there? Exactly, they were all killed. I’d love you to try and deny it.

      Exactly where in the Communist Manifesto does it specifically glorify mass killing like it does in the bible and quran? And as for Mein Kampf, nazism was a surrogate religion with Hitler as its prophet (self-proclaimed, he referred to himself as such).

      Many people apparently excercise their free will to follow a religion and do the killing that the holy books so warmly advocate. But then again, religion and free will don’t go well together, since religions demand you give up free will and do as the religion commands.

  28. Alex Borg

    The TROIKA and Anglo-Saxon high finance & freemasonry makes people aggressive.

  29. Costin Halaicu

    When I first saw this article, I was going to lash out and defend the gaming environment, to point out how there is no conclusive proof of causation between games (of the violent variety) and tendencies to violence, to describe how we (gamers) are simply victims stereotyping made by people who haven’t got the first clue about the medium, and who’s entire image of gaming is that of the shooter stereotype. But no, I won’t go into that, I find that it’s a trap, and that gaming is being pulled into it because it’s an easy target for the media and the scaremongers that do it. I will instead talk about the good games do. I think people should talk about this as well, talk about how a game like Foldit (a game that presented protein folding as a puzzle) managed to bring together tens of thousands of players, regular people, people like you and me, who ended up solving in 3 weeks a problem that vexed scientists for 10 years (links at the end of the post)! Maybe we should also talk about how MMORPGs bridged cultural gaps, how year after year gaming communities from these games have gathered millions of dollars worth of aid as donations for people far away that they never met. Maybe we should talk how world events such as violence in Ukraine or the Middle East, events that are foreign to someone sitting in their sofa watching the evening news, have turned into a tangible, real human thing, because it affected someone they played with hundreds of kilometers away. We should talk about games like Civilization, teaching the history of the world. The dialog should be about games as an educational, cultural and scientific medium, as well as an art form, as they always have been. Some of my favorite gaming experiences are those when a certain moment in a game changes something about my worldview. In this medium, we cannot simply be spectators to events that unfold. They force us to confront our own actions, and that also forces us to some amount of introspection. And truth be told, every single person that has played videogames for an extended amount of time can relate at least one empathetic experience they had within a game. That is the power that games have, they allow us to be a little bit in someone else’s shoes, to experience something that we would normally never experience in the world. Yet, every single time, the only discussion about videogames is about violence. Even this discussion is misguided, in my opinion. It is absurd to demand an artistic medium to not approach violence. Hatred, violence or anger are a primal part of who we are, and it is absurd to demand for an artistic medium to not approach them. Ask yourselves this: would the World be a better place without movies like the Godfather or Terminator? Would it be a better place without books like the Iliad, or without poems like On Flanders Fields? Obviously not. The question should not be IF an artistic medium should approach violence, but rather if by doing so it touches on something of value or not. I am sure we can point out to videogames that do this in a very, very wrong way, but that can be applied in the same way to films, music or literature. If creations in all these artistic mediums can be assessed for their merits, why can the same standard not be applied for games by the very same people? All in all, different types of entertainment have been pointed at in the past as the bane of children’s education and the reason why the world is speeding to it’s doom, from Elvis Presley’s music to Jazz to comic books, and to be frank, it’s about time this neophobic, frightened attitude stops. The gaming world I grew up with was one in which it didn’t matter if someone was dyslexic, if she was of a different race or different religious belief, what her sexual orientation was, if she was shy, or had a lower socio-economic status; anyone could be received with open arms and be an equal part. I don’t really know any other medium that does that. I think people should take a step back and reassess their knowledge about gaming before lashing out with this tired old argumentation about causal violence in videogames. http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/foldit-gamers-solve-riddle/ http://venturebeat.com/2014/08/31/players-cancer-diagnosis-unites-world-of-warcraft-community/

  30. Gatis Gailitis

    No. It’s a made up idea thsts invented by parents who have alienated kids that have issues. I’ve played hundreds of games in my life and none of them has ever made me think ‘I will knife him/her one day’. Age restriction and limit to how much of their lives your kids spend shooting and yelling at the screen is a different thing. They are there for a reason. Antisocial behaviour comes from addiction and that is parental matter.

    • Marcel

      The irony here is that this whole ‘video games make people agressive’ meme comes from religious people who obviously forgot the texts of their favorite religious book and the history of their favorite religion. No major religion has ever been about peace apart from peace defined as an absence of opposition to religion.

  31. Alexandros Fragkos

    I remember WW2.. It all started with a video game.
    And the war in Vietnam too.
    Not to mention WW1!
    FFS ppl, games doesn’t make the world violent!
    Capitalism does

  32. Tsvetan Borisov

    No. You actually release your anger by killing many virtual ennemies instead of that one that you wanted to in real life.

  33. Giorgos Hatzidakis

    Why, do you believe MUSLIMS, ALBANIANS or GUPSIES do play a lot of VIDEO GAMES??? But they are the most VIOLENT CRIMINALS of ALL!!!

  34. Paul X

    Utter codswallop, this is something dragged up at regular intervals by the sensationalist press.

    Every time some young person goes on a shooting rampage in the US they like to quote that “they spent long hours playing violent video games”

    Well how about the 99.9999% of young people who play violent video games yet don’t go on to murder people?

    A person with psychopathic tendencies is always a risk to others whether they play video games or not

  35. eusebio manuel vestias pecurto

    Brussels should create a tool box for by the end radicalism and violent games video new future generations deserve to be respected with human rights

  36. Christopher Kwadwo Svanefalk

    A poll? Since when is a poll of peoples opinions a valid way of establishing a causal relationship between a pastime and behaviour?

    There is no scientific consensus linking violent video games to higher levels of aggression in either young people or adults. If you even want to consider banning something, then the underpinnings of that ban need to be scientific.

  37. Claudiu Popa

    Stress is making people violent, and stress is caused by a great number of factors…

  38. Carolina Muro Rosa

    I think different people react different ways. This is a question I had to debate academically, and yes some people are more vulnerable to media than others. After carefully considering it and analysing it, I came to the conclusion I do get more aggressive and anxious if exposed to violent games and media in general, it can be seen straight after I finish playing. Some people are incredibly sensitive to visual media.

  39. Juraj Vravko

    Yes violent games are responsibile for 100 000 deaths per day. You are starting to give us dumber and dumber questions srsly…

  40. Ibrahim Uzun

    I don’t have opinion about the games, because I newer had one , but I know the war zone is making people to become violent .

  41. Nando Aidos

    Do violent video games teach one to be calm? To reason in the face of obstacles? Or do they teach to punch and shoot people out?
    Do they teach people to negotiate? Or do they teach to use violence to solve problems?
    Have you thought of people over the age of 25 or are you including children in their formative years? At the age when they need to learn how to deal with adversity? Have you asked teachers, social workers, psychologists and sociologists?
    If you can answer these questions then you may be able to answer the question of causation. Or at least be a step closer to the answer.

  42. Azar

    I wonder this Debate for which side it is, is it a paid Article to increase publicity of Video Games?! the only professionals and statistics knows and report of is the rapid increase sales of video games, on different platforms.weather the game teach violent or Drug abuse. I have been dealing with Game reviewers and many many video game players in my life, I can give this impression about them, ( They are clam, cool, chilled out, Relaxed and Happy from inside from the reward system they are gaining psychologically from video games, let’s be honest they might be little un-social due to the many hours spent alone or with few people around. but BIG Advise for my fellow Games, Don’t Make gaming is the main thing in life or you are lost, but try to make it a hobby in free time while you go do bigger like whatever you think it is big.

  43. Richard Osborne

    people used to play cowboys and idians,….or soldiers and we had cap guns etc,….but we knew it was a game. How does a video game differ except that you’re sitting on your ass rather than running aroud??

  44. Pedro

    People, this is a serious question. My wife started to play farmville on facebook some years ago. She has now left me and become a farmer. And my daughter is constantly breaking all the candies I buy them into pieces.Gamers are known to be one of the most violent kind of people, they start talking about the game with their friends and filling your facebook with game requests. They’re are normally really outgoing and put themselves constantly in harm’s way

  45. Bruno Martins

    Everyone knows it. Its bad those gammes for all of people. Why still exists? These is a bussiness here to many people dies in real live. Just look what appenned in South Carolina!

  46. Artur Marques

    Germany makes ppl violent … Ww1. Ww2 ……. Now the sack of Greece Ireland Portugal ….. Maybe that can be made a game

    • Prince du Sang

      That is because the Germans are the most productive people in Europe, why does everyone else always have to lag behind?

      Now stop crying and get to work!!

  47. Liliana Ramsing

    They should not be on the market!! Violent movies, videos, video games etc. For what good to have them? Satisfied whose needs…?

  48. Kayleigh

    No, I don’t believe this at all. What person have you known to be a serial killer all because of violent games?

  49. Jack Romaniac

    High class psychologists can give you an exact answer. Please stop these social experiments

  50. Breogán Costa

    Yes, as anime and manga’s did in the past, in fact, I had read many manga’s and watch anime during teenager and now I’m writing from a prison, because I’m extremely violent… I kill people everyday, excepting on weekends…
    PS: being ironic

  51. JP Faure

    I don’t buy the “stressful day” bit. Most kids play at anyt ime of the day/week. There’s a clear lowering of our moral threshold. Those who want the real thing join IS… So, yes: shoot’em up “games” are a violent drug…

  52. Max Berre

    Do they make american police officers aggressive? or perhaps mopre racist?

  53. Rožle Kaučič

    Most evidence points to a resounding: NO. Do people who commit violent crimes tend to playing violent videogames? Probaly. They also tend to sleep at night and probably like eating a hamburger from McDonald’s… Do you think those things make them violent?

    • Marcel

      Religion is far worse when it comes to inspiring people to violence. Especially when the ‘holy’ books specifically recommend terrorizing unbelievers.

  54. Adrian Limbidis

    I turn on the TV, i see bombing, blood, gore, and bits and pieces of human bodies rotting and decomposed at the NEWS !

    And you complain about a game?
    Have all the EU’s problems been solved?
    Is Greece solvent? Has Russia left Ukraine alone and returned Crimea?
    Did we turn back all the “refugees” from Italy and Greece that CHEAT their way into the EU’s heartland?

    Oh right, we didn’t.

  55. nando

    Do video games in general harm the development of social skills?
    Can someone explain how sitting in front of a PC screen, at the end of a frustrating day, holding onto a console of some sort, shooting people to solve some game obstacle, is going to develop social skills?

  56. George Titkov

    Games don’t make people aggressive per se, but maybe increase tolerance for violence by desensitization.

  57. Antonio Pinto Caldeira

    Too much violence on media and games tend to lead people to think that violence is normal and reduces empathy for other’s suffering.

  58. Χριστίνα Αμπαρτζάκη

    i don’t play video games but i think it is a loosing of precious time…handcrafting is more productive, anti-stressing and creative. Playing video games could might be expressive of our inner world but why can we be expressive in real life, in real communication? I suspect is made to keep people under a control because they are afraid of real life themselves. Governments could be afraid of citizens want to express themselves and it is like giving a chance to expression that it could be given from the educational system and the common games children used to play in the villages with a few damages for the animals unfortunately.And it is quite worring to excist games you need violence to play and not a mood to understand better perhaps. If we hide the violence and not just talk even in the “air” and alone instead of persist on plaing games then we create a huge vacuum between ourselves and pressing things or persons on us. Dialogue is a better way

  59. Χριστίνα Αμπαρτζάκη

    i don’t play video games but i think it is a loosing of precious time…handcrafting is more productive, anti-stressing and creative. Playing video games could might be expressive of our inner world but why can we be expressive in real life, in real communication? I suspect is made to keep people under a control because they are afraid of real life themselves. Governments could be afraid of citizens want to express themselves and it is like giving a chance to expression that it could be given from the educational system and the common games children used to play in the villages with a few damages for the animals unfortunately.And it is quite worring to excist games you need violence to play and not a mood to understand better perhaps. If we hide the violence and not just talk even in the “air” and alone instead of persist on plaing games then we create a huge vacuum between ourselves and pressing things or persons on us. Dialogue is a better way

  60. Aleksandros Ho Megas

    No. Games cannot make people more violent. On the other hand, governments can; as was proven countless times through out history.

  61. Max Berre

    thats why Japan and Korea are the world’s two most violent nations. right?

  62. Tony Kunnari

    No. Violent social environment makes violent individuals. Games are not ‘violent’ even though violence is portrayed because the game environment is foremost digital through which the social tube / chat is channeled. Social environment is the relations between planetary surface activity i.e. interaction between individual entities. Violence portrayed in the game needs a gamer to activate the digital field of influence and thus if the gamer is violent, then the behaviour shows it in-game toward other gamers. Certain games to certain individuals just bring their social urges to surface and the outcome depends on how well the individual understands existence.

  63. Mads

    There is no scientific evidence that say that Video Games makes one agressive. And when you say video games, I must remind you that there are different genres.

    I been playing Shooting and Action games since I was 5, I will never hurt or become angry over nothing.

    Please think about that you can seperate between fiction and reality. If you can’t seperate these two different thing, then books, movies and tolled stories can also make one agressive. It is how your mind is constructed, and you can teach if what is reality and what is fiction. You may get emotional, both emotions from a medium, is not as real emotion you will experience in real life. E.g. You get sad over a carachter dies in a story, is not the same sadness you will feel if one of your parents dies. If you then can’t seperate these two emotions, then you might have psycological condition you will need to work with.

    Video Games are a new medie after films. Before films made one agrerssive, before that Books where the medium. It is always eassiest to point at something you are not familiar with and give that the blame. Please be rational and research the topic before giving an answer. Seems like there is a huge misleading understanding of the topic.

  64. Higaara Nakamura

    Of course not. Agression is a natural inpulse. Most people wont act on it unless the benefit outweights cost.

  65. Lamborghini P.

    No. They are their parents that don’t educate them that they do it.

  66. Joao Pereira

    I know it is a kinda stupid way to show my point but…:
    Watching TV programs about space makes me an astronaut?

  67. Jude De Froissard

    Maybe..but what is sure ,is that today’s wars look more and more like video games (ex:drone attacks,bombardments. …etc)

  68. Marijus Stasiulis

    When you play “Fifa” on PS and you lose last second, then you might kill opponent!!
    So, yeah, let’s ban football games. You see, that there are football and basketball hooligans. So ban real games first. Also ban boxing. Let’s ban everything.

  69. Marijus Stasiulis

    When you play “Fifa” on PS and you lose last second, then you might kill opponent!!
    So, yeah, let’s ban football games. You see, that there are football and basketball hooligans. So ban real games first. Also ban boxing. Let’s ban everything.

  70. Tony Kunnari

    Digital image cannot become without social interaction. It is the social platform you should be conserned about, not the byproduct that cannot do nor emphasise what is not already there.

    If you don’t want people to bestow violence upon another, make sure they won’t do so in the social realm because it is that realm in which we won’t respawn back. If you try to narrow the social problems in a digital realm, all it affects is the variety of digital content which we also use to educate ourselves.

  71. Richard Osborne

    When I was a kid, we used chase each other round with cap guns……it didn’t make us murderers or more aggressive. It was called ‘play’ .

  72. Ioanna Flouri

    Yes, I believe that, subconsciously, the ones who play these types of games become more aggressive. It is hard to prove this theorem, though, since the only way for a certain 100% proof for it would be the same person to live without playing the games and simultaneously play the games and keep track of the differences. However, having the results out of surveys and “experiments” with random people is enough to expose the effects of violent games. Even if, indeed, they had gotten creative, aggressiveness in their behavior was also extremely obvious. So, some food for thought.. Is creativity worth sacrificing calm behaviors? This is what the question should be rephrased in…

  73. Alex Bell

    Yes violent games, studies have shown, do have an effect on violence. The subconscious mind does not know the difference between what’s on the screen and what isn’t.

  74. Evans Fu

    Studies have been done that answer this question, and it’s a no.
    I’ve played a lot of “violent” video games, and I’m pretty sure I got in LESS trouble because of it.
    It’s a safe and fun way to let anger and frustration out, no real life victims.

    Now, don’t blame kids that are 8 years old and receive games like COD or Alien and then act stupid, because their parents can’t see the age restriction written clearly on the box.
    Also, some people have mental illnesses that predispose them to be easily influenced be it by movies, newspapers or video games.

    If video games are banned, so should violent movies and tv shows.

  75. Nando Aidos

    In what context is a violent video game being used? To defuse accumulated anger? As entertainment? As a proxy to a violent response to some offense?
    To defuse anger? I doubt it defuses anything.
    As entertainment? Poor taste or lack of other activities/tools.
    As a proxy? Because the other guy was bigger? This is dangerous ground!

  76. Thomas Liokos

    Or better, let’s try it out in a more understandable example. Does zombie videogames makes people zombies? For god’s sake.

  77. Bálint Mészáros

    After long years of “violent” gaming, I still haven’t really felt an urge to punch anyone or anything… So, I guess not.

  78. John Osborne

    Instead of playing video games all day they would be far better off getting off their asses and getting a friggin job and contributing something to society

  79. Constantinescu Florin

    Hundred of thousand of illegal imigrants are at the gates of Europe, Putin’s army is in Ukraine, millions of teenagers uses drugs in every second and we debate about PC games.?…

  80. Max Berre

    why do people keep asking this stupid Tipper-Gore-type question? There are published empirical studies about it. Look at the empirical data (which says “no”), and stop asking for my opinion on this every two weeks

  81. Peter Chloupek

    I an 47, playing shooters since 1991 (still playing if I find the time). Hasn’t changed my personality. Relaxing and fun. The answer is clearly NO!

  82. Jorge Machado

    ofc not, make people smarter in strategy and always looking forward thinking “i can shot that woman with my sniper and this wind, easy”

  83. Taker

    Well, technically yes but in reality it’s a no. Just like with everything , too much exposure of something can make you less and less affected by it. Like with porn, drugs, movies. Gamers who play violent games become more and more immune to them, meaning they won’t be shocked by violent scenes and they’ll probably seek games with more violence that the ones they already own. It doesn’t necessarily mean that they will actual perform any sort of violent acts in real life, or that the won’t be affected by them. There’s no evidence to support that.

  84. Diana Ferreira

    It has influence in underating violence effects. May also normalize it and play with the concept that ” the bad ones” have to die. Life does loses its meaning as death is a reward in many video games.

  85. Diana Ferreira

    It has influence in underating violence effects. May also normalize it and play with the concept that ” the bad ones” have to die. Life does loses its meaning as death is a reward in many video games.

  86. Stanislav Christoff

    Ohh come on when you playing violend games your nervous system is exploding most of the time… For example when they kill you you startin feel anger deep in you… So it makes you violent

  87. Benny Santoro

    Can the missions of peace bring stability in war fields with tanks and weapons? This is a question..

  88. Katrin Mpakirtzi

    yes…but worse influense are the movies of violence like Usa …..young people are so aggresive playing Stalone and Heroes with guns in the real life

  89. Szymon Nowicki

    How many times are we going to ask the same question despite it being proven not true over and over again?

  90. Ioanna Geor

    This question can be stated otherwise: do aggressive people tend to play video games? Of course, both questions can be answered with yes

  91. Marco D'Ascoli

    Can the missions of peace bring stability in war fields with tanks and weapons? This is a question..

  92. Bart Vd B

    this discussion again…. plenty of research done on the subject, it’s a NO

  93. Gerasimos Laios

    People who do not play video games should really leave video games alone. It’s that simple. And the answer is a resounding NO.

  94. Jose Pedro Braz

    There are a lot of studies about this subject. People inform yourselves, its a NO… studies actually suggest that video games are benificial. according to Peter Gray Ph.D. it may cause Improvements in basic visual processes, Improvements in attention and vigilance,Improvements in executive functioning, Improvements in job-related skills,

  95. Beate Dunn

    1. “natural born killers” and unstable people : yes 2. small children : approx. 50% yes

  96. Darin Attard

    No – what makes people aggressive, low wages, Islamic jihadism, NATO, unemployment, inequality and illuminati.

  97. Andre Mardaga

    Most video games are made and produced in Asia.
    Not all.
    Lots of players are in Asia.
    Also before video games was there no violence.
    Also before Porn,
    there where a lot of wankers squirting without porn.
    Where are there the most amount of men killing raping torturing right at this moment in time.
    Video games not really included….

  98. Andre Mardaga

    Most video games are made and produced in Asia.
    Not all.
    Lots of players are in Asia.
    Also before video games was there no violence.
    Also before Porn,
    there where a lot of wankers squirting without porn.
    Where are there the most amount of men killing raping torturing right at this moment in time.
    Video games not really included….

  99. Andre Mardaga

    What’s the murder rate in Asian countries. Not much.
    What’s the murder rape or beheading rate in Islamic countries.
    Sharia outlaws music tv video games (sure a good: Call of duty, player will make a good shooter)
    But he in real life is a nerd who spends time alone in room playing video games.
    Yes video games are dangerous in a stupid sissy world….

  100. Non ya

    Kids need to stop playing them games and being violent period.

  101. Ivan Burrows

    .

    Sure do, I played Donkey Kong for years & now wherever I go out I must jump over barrels & beat up gorillas.

    Proof positive that games make you aggressive, but they do keep you fit though..

    Next idiotic question please.

  102. Zbigniew Jankowski

    They influence the social behaviour, but do not make anyone aggressive. If Y look around, then y’ll easily find aggressive people who actually know very little about computers and know nothing about aggressive games played on them.

  103. Peter Castermans

    Nope. Contrary, i think it is just good that they can express it in games instead on streats.
    PS The Punisher and Carmageddon banned in the UK ? Sissies.

  104. Matej Zaggy Zagorc

    No, cheaters and bad connection do :D

    On a serious note, I don’t think so. Maybe in some special cases, but in those cases the problem is the person, not the game. In that case the game would just be a medium, an excuse for their actions. If anything, I find violent games to calm me down since I can be violent without hurting anyone and at the same time relieve anger.

  105. André Alves

    Are we really debating this?
    Bad parenting, real life difficulties, the recurring government oppression. That’s probably what make people aggressive.
    Ps4 sold millions GTA sold millions, I don’t see millions of gamers killing and robing.
    I do see people without educations and values killing and robing. And if it happen to be a gamer. “Ho my god games make peeople aggressive”

  106. Παυλος Χαραλαμπους

    What a idiotic question is that??Do you remember a video game called ”carmaggeedon”?it Was published at 1997 if people copy wat they see in video games were are all those
    Serial killers who whas playing carmaggedon wen they were younger? I don’t see any roadkill’s no Carnegie nothing? Why? How is that possible? All those TV expects are trying to convince as for the opposite are they wrong? Ts ts ts…… A can’t believe it….. :p

  107. pedro gabriel

    ..they sure don´t make them more tender, peaceful and careful with others…

  108. Tobias Jetter

    They have the potential to Do so.
    But so do sports, board-games, watching TV, Facebook discussions,…
    Video Games are Part fun, Part Art.
    Both shouldn’t be banned, but studied, improved and embraced :)
    Peace ✌

  109. Gabriele Mogni

    Violence in movies and games is good, it trains people to look at the world realistically for what it really is, a place full of blood and violence……

  110. Gabriele Mogni

    Still better for people to unleash their frustrations on video games than in the real world….

  111. Matej Mlinarič

    We are not turning into anything different. Its just that is better to face with death and misery in order to avoid it then turn to violence in real world when ever its convenient. Cause whether you like it or not world is far from peaceful. Ignoring that or hiding in your emotional bubble will only harm you more once you are forced to deal with it. Cause there is no real way to avoid it.

  112. Rui Correia

    No, of course not, that’s ridiculous… Who’s asking??? If you’re the so called “political elites”, well, when sh** hits the fan in Europe, consider it as “simulated training” for European youngsters defending their homelands… I’m sure you’ll thank them later!! (or maybe not, if you’re off to Panama, or something…) :-P (again, irony & sarcasm only!)

  113. Joanna van Let

    We didnt have video games 100 years ago but we were slaughtering eachother on battlefields at the time so you tell me

  114. Nuno Ramos

    I’ve played Mario for some time now and everytime a turtle tries to steal a mushroom from me, I kill it. Does that make me violent?

    • BUBBLESdebates

      Ha Ha, No don’t worry im sure Mario wasn’t the type of game they were talking about. Im sure killing a cartoon hasn’t really made you violent though…or has it?

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