Video Games Harmful

By: Tyler Wiwchar
Student #: 7679215
Instructor: Michael Grafton
Word Count: 1,302
Date: October 20th, 2010


In today’s world there are clearly identifiable activities that would be considered harmful to people’s development both physically and mentally such as engaging in additive habits (use of narcotics, gambling, and promiscuity) and risky illegal behaviors (gangs) as examples. Then there are those that are not so clearly defined, recognized or understood such as participation in violent video and computer games. Long term effects when playing violent video or computer games has not been extensively researched and effects are difficult to quantify. What complicates matters are societal influences such as social acceptance to play video and computer games, availability, assessment and rating of graphic content and family structures that may allow for more unsupervised video and computer game use. Therefore it becomes difficult to ascertain how much of an affect violent video and computer games may have.
So why do some consider violent computer and video games harmful to a child’s development? Of the studies that have been conducted the visual depiction of graphic violence such as killing, shooting, stabbing and aggressive behaviors such as threats, and bullying can be linked to aggressive thoughts, actions and physical arousal (Barlett, C.P., Anderson, C.A. & Swing, E.L., 2008 p.377-403). These thoughts and actions are heightened when there is significant showing of blood and obvious rewarding of violent acts. It is felt exposure to these effects can negatively affect a child’s attitude to violence, cause a desensitization to violent acts, cause symptoms of attention deficit disorder and foster aggressive behavior due to lack of personal control and/or goals.
Consequently these negative influences to a child’s development can be a factor to increases in youth crime as what is...