Hello everyone. This is my first blog and I'm excited to write about an issue I've been pondering for quite some time.
Influence of video games on children and the news and angry lawyers blaming games for inappropriate content.
I got the idea to write about this after watching the trailer for Spencer Haplin's Moral Kombat (yes, Moral instead of Mortal) which has been conveniently embedded into the blog. For those who do not know about this video it is an 80 minute interview and discussion on video games influences on crime and violence and it is yet to have an announced release date.
So anyway, onto my opinion and rant on the subject.
It amazes me how these experts treat the gaming industry like a giant How to video distributer rather than just another form of media and entertainment.
First of all, an immersive game does not change your perception of reality at all. It just helps you feel like and relate to the character. This is the same immersion found in a second person written book (with lines like you walk over to the cabinet and take the cup holder) or realistic movies. Now ask yourself, when you read a book and something happens in that book, do you literally stand up and reenact that event because you think it is happening in real life? No, you continue reading because obviously you know that whatever is going on in the story is just words on paper. Relating that to video games, nobody is going to actually attempt to commit a crime based on what they have seen in fictional stories.
I'm not saying incidents related to violence in video games is not possible or has never happened before, all I am saying is that people who do these actions have much larger scale mental issues and are the ones who need to be kept away; not the video games. If someone managed to learn how to fly an air plane into the World Trade Center just because of Flight Simulator (this is just a rumor so don't get on my case about it) then isn't it just as possible that if Flight Simulator was banned then they would learn how to fly from a different source of media? Are there not movies, books, articles, and online pages that would just as well teach you how to control air craft vehicles?
What I'm mainly saying is that video games aren't the problem with violent children and terrible media influences because there's much more of these influences in other forms of entertainment that people like Jack Thompson seem to blame less than the games themselves. They assume that because video games are what interest kids the most and are the most immersive form of main stream than that automatically means we, as gamers, learn far too much from them and should cut back on such content.
Out of all the serial killers, burgles, rapists, prostitutes, aggressive drivers, etc. how many different influences do you think each one of them were exposed to before entering a life of crime? Chances are video games are one of the least recorded reasons for such world wide problems.
So let me ask you something: If a kid is troubled enough to grow up and commit a mass murder due to video games, do you really think that video games are the ONLY reason he/she would do such a thing? No, and anyone who argues against this is trying too hard. The gamer would have to have a lot of other reasons to do such a thing such as terrible parenting (the most obvious one assuming the kid even has parents), abuse as a child, desperation, insanity, revenge, etc. that would completely overshadow the fact that he saw Niko kill an old lady with a shotgun in Grand Theft Auto 4.
This would mean that you can try ban violent games all you want but people like that will still have those other huge reasons that will cause them to do just as much damage to the world and themselves. Nothing you can do about that and blaming video games for the matter is a pathetic cop out that proves your ignorance and stubbornness more than it helps solve anything.
Thanks for reading and I hope you look forward to my next blog (assuming I ever make one),