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A recent study indicates that video games may be keeping young Americans from committing crime, even when those games are particularly violent. Several laboratory studies and analyses have focused on the possible ways in which exposure to violent video games can increase aggressive impulse in young people. However, a recent study aims to take a broader look at the equation. Specifically, "Understanding the Effects of Violent Video Games on Violent Crime" (Cunningham, Scott, Engelstätter, Benjamin and Ward, Michael R.) takes a look at the idea that people playing video games inside are not outside committing crimes, even if those games are violent and even if there is an increase in aggression.The study ultimately concludes that "violent video games lead to decreases in violent crime". In the study's introduction, the case is laid out in relatively understandable terms: "In this paper, we argue that since laboratory experiments have not examined the time use effects of video games, which incapacitate violent activity by drawing individual gamers into extended gameplay, laboratory studies may be poor predictors of the net effects of violent video games in society. Consequently, they overstate the importance of video game induced aggression as a social cost. We argue that since both aggression and time use are a consequence of playing violent video games, then the policy relevance of violent video game regulation depends critically on the degree to which the one outweighs the other. If, as we find in our study, the time use effect of violent video games reduce crime by more than the aggression effects increase it, then the case for regulatory intervention becomes weaker."The study was quoted in a recent BBC article that discusses 10 possible reasons why the US crime rate has been falling. Thanks to Kotaku for spotting the story. What effect do you think this study should have on lawmakers looking to limit access of violent video games to children? Do you believe a study like this should have any bearing on the soon-to-release ruling from the U.S. Supreme Court on Brown vs. EMA?
Email the author Matt Miller, or follow on Game Informer.
This is what I was thinking.
about time we finally got something to throw Back in their bible-beating faces.
Take that FOX news !
finally a reason so many nuts over here like fps.
Video gaming has now proven (at least in one study) that it can lower the crime rate since video games are usually played indoors. Let's hope more studies can conclude with the same conclusion.
why shoot somebody when you can do it in a video game.
Makes sense.....I guess.
Its true been saying this to my aunts to let my teenagers cousins play all they want when theyre free,( of course attending school first). Because theyre at home and away from drugs and you know wat theyre doing not in the street whit God knows with who and what theyre doing... I was right al along now i can prove it
It's great to see a study that has a positive feed back for games. As to how lawmakers will be effected to this, well I say that's its slapping them in the face with there "video games are bad" campaign. And make them see that video games is a great medium. And the Supreme Court needs to see this, after all its affects crime. Less crime means a better country, and that's great.
Finally, about time someone got proof. Now i'ma go play some GTA, haha.
That's awesome. Although in another study, Gaming is linked to obesity as well.