Video Gaming Effects on Youths  

Posted by Sue

Note: My first ethics assignment.
(Word Count: 886)

The origin of video gaming stretches out from as early as 1947 with the creation of a device called the Cathode-Ray Tube Amusement Device. It simulates a missile firing at a target using 8 vacuum tubes and contains knobs to adjust the curve and speed of the missile. Small targets were drawn on a simple overlay and placed on the screen because electronic computer graphics are not yet invented during that time. Now, video games are fused with Artificial Intelligence, so that the computer would determine the game player’s pattern of play, learn his strategies and hence, the computer will attempt to defeat the player. Next, the method of interaction between the game and game players has developed dramatically. Now, video games are integrated with controllers equipped with the technology of motion control such as DualShock, which sends a vibration feedback to the game player. In addition, nowadays there are also portable video games that we can fit into our pockets. But as the youths embrace video games as one of their main source of entertainment, I worry about the risks and consequences on their social life and also their health. Sure, playing video games is fun and releases tension and boredom, but it has also its drawbacks.

Hard core gamers would isolate themselves socially from other people, and they could be confused between fantasy and reality due to the real-like gaming experience thanks to the advanced graphics and audio technology, which might cause a change in behaviour. I’d like to emphasis on the likeliness of the gamer to exhibit aggressive behaviour due to the frequent exposure of violence during playing games. These days, video games are usually based on violence, aggression and gender bias. Gender bias, in this context, refers to games usually portray women as weaker characters that are helpless or sexually provocative.

I watched a documentary once, about the relation between violent video games and aggressive behaviour, there were alarming findings made by researchers, that young juveniles commit murders were being driven by video game playing. They seem to lack of compassion and feels that violence is normal. Youngsters who see a lot of violence would see that violence is the most effective way to solve conflict.

I have experienced gaming a lot myself. I used to play PS2 after my SPM exams. I played a game called ‘Need for Speed: Underground 2’ quite heavily and became rather good of playing it that I really wanted to finish the game. And I did after a week of unorganised sleeping time and meal time, that sometimes when I close my eyes, I could see the visuals of car racing that was portrayed in that game. When I finished the entire game, I determined that it is the first and the last time I will be addicted to any video games.

Now, I worry for my younger brother and nephew, who are now addicted to playing games on the computer. I would nag them a lot about using the computer for educational purposes and how games could affect how they behave and that there is no point of playing games that makes mass murdering look cool. There was a case on news about 18-year-old Devin Moore kill people because of a game called ‘Grand Theft Auto’ (GTA) dated June 19, 2005. His attorney said, "What we're saying is that Devin Moore was, in effect, trained to do what he did. He was given a murder simulator.” Murder simulator - that what I would also describe this game, GTA, that both my younger brother and nephew love playing. This game gives people the thought that it is okay to shoot police officers, it is okay to steal and destroy other peoples’ cars and it is okay to pick up a chainsaw and massacre everybody that gets in your way. This game also shows the nightlife of people in Miami, with prostitutes walking about the streets asking people if they want their “service”.

Do we want our future generation to become less humane and corrode them morally by exposing themselves and let them “be” people who deal drugs, steal cars and mass-murder others? Kids nowadays who see people get shot and see blood scattered everywhere don’t feel anything anymore. They have lost their compassion and fear towards violence. They feel that it is normal.
Many other video games have this same effect on other youngsters as well. Parents should mind what their children are viewing and playing. Nowadays there are lots of media that promote aggressiveness being produced and easy to be reached by the mere hands of our youngsters with the existence of the Internet. People who are responsible in producing these materials would do simply anything to sell them. Do they care about our future generations becoming less humane? No is the answer.

That is why parents should set in their mind that not only in video games that there is violence, they should also be cautious on what movies, music and other medias that their children are reading, watching or listening. Let’s face the fact – there are parents who never mind of what their children get their hands on. They must not wait until their children become monsters that they come to their senses. As we all know, prevention is definitely better than curing.

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This entry was posted on Saturday, June 06, 2009 and is filed under , , , . You can leave a response and follow any responses to this entry through the Subscribe to: Post Comments (Atom) .


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