[SLIDE1] Children’s exposure to violent video gaming should be heavily monitored
[SLIDE 2](all the sources I use are all trying to find the effects of violent video games on children and teenagers)
[SLIDE 3]I’m personally interested in this topic because my younger brother spends long hours every day glued to the x-box.
[SLIDE4] There was an incident in America recently which made all our news station, where a student came to school with knives and stabbed other students on a mental breakdown rampage. The assistant principal had to tackle the student to the ground. 22 people were hurt and 2 are in critical conditions. Alex Hribal was taken into custody. Being charged as an adult, Alex faces four counts of attempted homicide and 21 counts of aggravated assault.
My brother seemed desensitised to the reality of this incident and it incensed me. He is 16 now, and is heavily influenced by video games like, Battlefield 3, COD and GTA. He is not fazed by violence, and I believe video games shouldn’t be this influential.
Computer and video games have come a long way since the days of [SLIDE5] Pac-Man and Frogger, and so have those who play them. Today's video games are played by people of all ages and backgrounds. Parents need to become increasingly involved in making sure that the games their children play are age-appropriate.
Of course it doesn’t take research to know that violent video games are bad for young people to see, let alone interact with. Like all forms of media and entertainment, certain video games can send messages that we may find morally questionable. Exposure to violence in video games influences the development of moral reasoning, because violence is not only presented as acceptable, but is also justified and rewarded. People love modern games because of the colours, the realism of the animations, the interactivity, with the game and other gamers, and the rewards of winning. As we all know, the best way to learn is when the person is having fun at the same time. [SLIDE6] But do we want kids in this world who enjoy learning 50 different ways to separate a man’s’ head from his torso. Do we want kids who get rewarded each time they beat a cab driver half to death and then steal the car to gain bonus points?
Spending too much time within the virtual world of violence contribute to prevent gamers from getting involved in different positive social experiences in real life, and in developing a positive sense of what is right and wrong. This is where kids need to be taught to read between the lines. And how to recognise the difference between what is acceptable in the game world, and what is acceptable in the real world. We often forget that we should be cautious; we need to know how to recognise the motives and agendas that are hiding right beneath the surface of these games, and we need to teach our students, kids and siblings this too.
But will education be enough for youth to cut down on game time?
[SLIDE 7] University in Belgium found that ‘teenagers who spend hours playing video games may have a similar brain structure to gambling addicts.’
[SLIDE 8] Brain scans of 14-year-olds that play frequently showed a larger ‘reward centre’ and increased amounts of the ‘feel-good’ chemical dopamine of those who played for less than 9 hours per week. Yet they produced even more, of both adrenaline and dopamine, when they were on a losing streak, this is the effect seen in pathological gambling addicts, [SLIDE 9] which is also what seems to be preventing them from stopping even if they’re losing.
[SLIDE 10] Jo Frost’s experiment, also known as Super-nanny UK, wished to prove the desensitization of children on her show. She gathered 40 boys, and had 20 play a football game and 20 play a FPS. She then showed them a clip of a particularly violent news story, monitoring their heart rate. The heart rates of the boys who had played the football game increased more than the heart rates of those who played the