Do violent video games cause violent crime?

With millions of copies of violent games like Grand Theft Auto and Halo, should there not be an epidemic of violence, if there is a direct causal link between violence and video games? Are kids slowly but surely giving into the violence of the the game and will they/we start committing violent crimes?
Fingers have also been pointed at certain genres of music and films which portray violence in an easily accessible and 'glamorous' light.
The question is: are video games, music and films which show violent content leading to an increase in violence and crime in the real world, especially amongst the youth?


All the No points:


Do violent video games cause violent crime?
Please cast your vote after you've read the arguments.
You can also add to the debate by leaving your comment at the end of the page.
(26%) (74%)


Do violent video games cause violent crime?
Yes because...

Columbine

Two superior-minded grammar-correcting high-school students splayed bullets all over their classmates in a video-game style shootout. Disasters like Columbine resulting from gamer-competence are existential proof that video-games are a recipe for disaster. We are teaching our children to be violent by exposing their impressionable minds to dangerous graphic nonsense.Take away something you're addicted to and withdrawal symptoms occur. [[http://thelede.blogs.nytimes.com/2007/07/05/tieing-columbine-to-video-games/]]

Most video games are not educational. Most video-games feed a natural blood-lust to select and destroy. Children are taught that winning is everything whatever the cost.

Save/spare our children.[[http://www.debatewise.org/debates/1322-does-mobile-innovations-negatively-affect-young-people#point_6470_headline]]

No because...

"Games teach one the patience and buffoonery of loss. You learn that you win some and you lose some. And that at the end of the day it is just/only a game.

Columbine was tragic but an example of a few abnormal occurrences. To stop eating because somebody choked on a meal and died, is not logical" [[http://www.debatewise.org/debates/1322-does-mobile-innovations-negatively-affect-young-people#point_6470_headline]]
Addiction to anything is detrimental to one's health and being. It's not exposure to violence but overexposure, period.
You have too much to drink, you will have liver problems.
Too much sugar will give you diabetes. Too much fruit/vegetables will give you vitaminosis...

And who can put it better than Ginny? Video games, arouse the carnal instinct to fight,grow and reach to a place beyond yourself that you would never, otherwise have had the rage to reach out for, let alone get in finale. [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6YRCrh92wnc&feature=related]]

Do violent video games cause violent crime?
Yes because...

Withdrawal, lack of exercise(low endorphin release), loneliness etc etc

"Young children by becoming addicted or playing these games constantly withdraw from society,they become more shy and less aware of true reality ,they live in a 'fantasy video game-like' land, by not enteracting with other kids they become less aware of what and who they are suppose to be like,and unconsiously perceive things differently and falsely...they become less inclined to study and focus on technology which is a constantly drawing factor."- [[http://www.debatewise.org/debates/1322-does-mobile-innovations-negatively-affect-young-people#point_6406_headline]]

Socially retarded behavior incited by self-imposed social exclusion; is an image every movie around the 'American psycho'-genre exploits. There is a truth to it, being depressed or a loner doesn't make you a murderer but many many murderers are depressed loners to begin with. Video games may create an unnatural attachment with fellow players, enthusiastically discussing video game missions to kill; can lead to planning real crimes. The sense of achievement derived from owning a game, is akin to patting yourself on the back for beating the game or killing the bad guys. Celebrating such negative skills should be frowned upon in a civilized time.

No because...

Think for a minute, and take a look at all of the online games and games that have multiplayer capability. In fact, take a look at these links: http://www.physorg.com/news5758.html
http://www.pbs.org/kcts/videogamerevolution/impact/myths.html
http://learningames.wordpress.com/2011/04/05/are-studies-related-to-video-games-and-violence-biased/
http://www.science20.com/news_releases/video_games_and_violence_are_studies_biased
http://videogames.procon.org/
http://www.gamepolitics.com/2008/04/12/comparing-violent-crime-to-violent-game-releases
http://videogames.procon.org/sourcefiles/Olson.pdf
http://www.theesa.com/facts/violence.asp
http://www.tamiu.edu/~cferguson/VideoGames.html
http://www.geek.com/forums/topic/violent-video-games-do-not-cause-violent-people
http://www.upgradereality.com/video-game-violence
http://www.video-games-for-healthy-living.com/5-reasons-to-let-your-kids-play-video-games.htm

Nadia999

If I had a child, I would let him/her play computer games as I believe it includes some important advantages also. There are some online strategy games which would help them think, plan and decide. For example Rush Hour or Reversi (Othello). In Rush Hour they need to find the obstacles and try to solve them one by one. If adults teach them to do the same in life, computers are a chance for us. They attrack our children's attention. I am an English Teacher and let my students do their homework on computer, I send them their homework as a text message. We cannot turn a blind eye to this fact: They love technology. We cannot seperate them from technology's innovations.

The fact that these children became addicted means they were outcasts to begin with.

Secondly, when I played video-games/Atari/Sega/play-station/X-box, I had people to play/compete with. Most games of this sort are competitive and do anything but isolate young ones. Getting the latest gaming console/device only 'adds' to a child's popularity.

Technically this is a 'no point' and 'withdraw' is a yes point.This calls for a traditional game: 'swap' :P

Competition is the core of a global capitalist society, if kids are not going to learn to adjust to and impose each other's superiority from video games, they'll learn from somewhere. Life is a repetitious infinitely looped struggle, the fights you fight today are the fights you fight tomorrow; sometimes you're up and sometime you're down. If video games are a mechanism that help young people cope with the Darwinism of our Hobbesian zeitgeist then good.

Do violent video games cause violent crime?
Yes because...

the more you see killing, the higher possibility you are going to kill some one.

the more you see killing, the higher possibility you are going to kill some one.

No because...

OK, this is an extremely weak argument. Just because you see killing dose not make it more likely to kill someone. I, an avid gamer, who plays many hours of games a week, and I hardly even feel the slightest incline to go out and even punch someone. It all depends on family history and how you have been effected by the people around you.Also it can depend on your mental condition

Do violent video games cause violent crime?
Yes because...

I think it does

In my opinion violent video games do cause crime because I have heard news that there was a guy that was playing Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 and he ran away from home. It was caused because he was playing Call of Duty when he was on Xbox live. He was missing for 2 weeks and his parents didn’t check up on him or cared about him. 2 weeks later they found the child dead in the forest. But I do think that it only accrues to different types of children. So I do think that violent video game cause crime.

No because...

Wow like 90% of the kids play CoD. Have any of them become serial killers? After what i know serial killers haven't been playing much violent games, maybe if you don't play violent games you become violent?

" In my opinion you become violent by drinking water. All the murders I ever heard about have been drinking water. " Pretty much the same logic...

BTW in your story the kid haven't done anything wrong... But his parents that doesn't seem to have been playing violent games have ensured that their son died. If there weren't horrible at parenting the kid could still been alive and saved... Actually his parents are criminals that didn't report earlier and get their own son killed.

Do violent video games cause violent crime?
Yes because...

Before the video games were invented, there was no such things as war and homicides

Seriously look at World War 1 and 2. And look at countries that don't have video games like Somalia... Somalia have pirates, and no laws because everyone is killing each other in that shit country. BTW you should be worrying about countries where people that are able to buy guns in their store. Guns kill, video games don't!

For some reason i can't make a nay point...

No because...

Your forgeting about before tellevisions were made so this is years before computer games, the romans they came started a war and conquered, battle of hastings, before violent games were made

Do violent video games cause violent crime?
Yes because...

Youths are impressionable

Young people are influenced by everything and have less experience so a violent video game with no consequences could have adverse affects on their actions in real life.

For instance gta (grand theft auto) in 1999 columbine young kids were influenced by guns and knives there were two young boys shot over 10 kids in the cafatirea and then shot them selves.Even though some people have enough power to just play the game some people like to follow and become like the characters.

No because...

It is absurd to think that something as transient as music or a game could affect a youths life to such an extent. We should stop looking for a scapegoat and give children support from the family in terms of love and proper role models and the government in terms of education.

If children are affected by everything then how are children afected by music such as venetian snares whose music is breakcore.

If children are affected by everything then can you imagine in 1992 when mortal kombat arrived. I dont remember trying to fireball my teacher or send electric through my mates head to make him explode.

Another example is the ads, video games from japan such as samurai etc which are very famous for their violence
However, the crime rate at that time was not increasing. In fact, it decreased

Furthermore, violent video games aren't molding violent people, it is the violent and troubled people that are drawn to the games. If someone plays grand theft auto for hours then shoots a cop, that person would probably have hurt someone anyway. Is it worse because that person is a cop? No! A cop's life is worth no more then any other person out there, no matter what the circumstances.

A small minority may be influenced by violence in video games but this does not warrant banning violent video games outright. It warrants better parenting and education and healthcare systems.

Regarding the ( Grand Theft Auto ) argument and it relating to Columbine, the two teenagers were indeed fans of violent video-games, but GTA was not mentioned by the media, the game that was mentioned was DOOM 3, where the media claimed that it was there that the two teens created a level to imitate Columbine so they could plan their shooting, but this claim was later debunked when it was learned that they ( the two teens ) did not initially plan to go inside of the school.

Do violent video games cause violent crime?
Yes because...

Gun/knife Crime

With knife and gun crime escalating along with the escalating popularity of brutal video games, music and action films, surely there must be a link between the two.

No because...

A point has been made that violence has always existed, that it is human nature. The producers of big money media are just realising what an untapped area of the human psyche could be made profitable.
Our interest in crime is why there are such games, music and films, NOT the other way round.

Look at the army. When we've had speakers in school they always come across as being in the army is a good thing even on TV the adverts for being in the army. I wonder how many of the people who joined the army as a results of speakers or Tv would follow a video game

There is no way that someone would walk out of their house after plying GTA and robbing a police car and running over people then the car blowing up after a certain amount of time. The chances are very minute.

In addition, there doesn't necessarily have to be a link between the two. This is a case of potential correlation, not causality. Just because they are both climbing, you cannot logically say that they are related.

Do violent video games cause violent crime?
Yes because...

Realism

The apparent realism in games today makes users mix reality and fantasy.
Music affects people because they can relate to it, if violence goes hand in hand with this then it can make change the way people think

No because...

As soon as the person stops watching the film, playing the game or listening to the music then this feeling disappears. It is an unreasonable claim with no evidence.
It is also difficult to assume that realism plays a part when it is largely in the hands of a controller with buttons that need to be pressed. Reality is far removed when you need to press the 'x' button in order to pull out a weapon.

And despite realistc graphics, video game worlds are far from realistic. AI has never been very good. Usually the player is much stronger than the typical enemy he fights. Serious negative consequences for things like murder rarely exist. Even getting yourself killed is rarely the setback it is in real life. Overall, they present challenges to be beaten rather than a believable representation of the real world

Do violent video games cause violent crime?
Yes because...

Parents are responsible for raising their kids correctly.

For one, the parents do not have to buy the game.
and when they do sometime they don't look at the ratings of them games.they could accidentally end up buying a 5 year old a really violent game.children are like sponges they absorb what they see, causing them to put it into actions.

No because...

The parents have a responsibility to their children, to help them understand the difference between fiction and the real world. It sounds like a simple distinction, but if not established the boundaries of acceptable behaviour break down, especially during puberty when there is an increased urge to perform risky behaviours.

f parents dont look at the safety ratings of games, movies or the PA warning on CDs, then they are not being aa responsible adult. It is not the creators fault or the medias fault that the parent was lazy, ignorant and/or careless to buy something for their OWN child. Whos in the wrong? The media, or the parent neglecting whats right and wrong for their child?

Do violent video games cause violent crime?
Yes because...

The violence in games isn't represented negatively, but instead shown to be rewarded

Crimes committed in games like 'Grand Theft Auto IV' are rewarded by monetary gain. On many occasions, the greater the crime committed, the more money is given out. Due to the way such violence is glamourised (murders accompanied by witty catchphrases etc) there is little to suggest that such actions are in any way criticised. In cases where individuals are not well-enough informed (or morally-minded) to see the ills of violent behaviour, games like this merely enforce their notion that it is an acceptable way to act.

No because...

GTA is only one type of game.

There are many games that are not like this at all. Many RPGs such as the Ultima series have a morality system that discourages random killing and stealing, if only because the town guards kill you. Other games, such as Baroque, have situations in which the flow of the plot is seriously changed or negatively affected by killing the wrong individual or by killing a character where there is another option. Most characters in RPGs at some point have to question their actions, make a moral decision or mourn the loss of their fallen.

Do violent video games cause violent crime?
Yes because...

Kids can think for themselves, and parents refuse to step in.

Although the games may be impressionable among most youth, they can think for themselves. They know the difference between right and wrong. It's their actions afterward is what causes all of the violence. It's also a parents fault. They let the child become addicted to the game by not letting them get away from the game, thus getting them so addicted to the game that they most likely lose all trace of reality and think the game actually is reality! Everything is dangerous these days, and we do have a right to try and escape once in a while, but that doesn't mean that we can go so far deep into a fantasy world that we totally lose focus on what is real and what is fake. The games become so real that people think that it's how the world works, but it's not!!

No because...

Escape from reality is important for sanity. All humans do it, it doesn't have to be using games. Reality is pretty nasty, worse than most games because at least you're strong enough in the game to deal with it, and people need a break from it. Reality causes far more violence than games do.

Do violent video games cause violent crime?
Yes because...

Both experimental and non-experimental research have shown that violent video games damage young people.

Both experimental and non-experimental research have shown that violent video games damage young people playing them in both the short and long term, leading to criminal and anti-social behaviour. Exposure to violent video games causes aggressive thoughts and feelings. It also creates unwanted psychological arousal and belief in a ‘scary world’, especially among young children. This is particularly significant as video game graphics develop to become ever more realistic. The effects of violent video games are even worse than those of films and TV because of the interactive element that exists in video games. In addition, most video games are played alone, whereas cinema and television are usually a social experience, allowing social pressures to filter the experience of violence upon the viewer.

No because...

Many researchers (Ask, 1999; Funk, 1993, 1995; Provenzo, 1991) conclude that there is no causal link between violent video games and aggressive behaviour. Other influences, such as social environment, family background and peer pressure cause aggressive behaviour. Additionally, even if video games might create violent thoughts, according to researchers there is no reason for these thoughts to display themselves in action more than the aggressive thoughts caused by frustration in non-violent video games, or by the fast pace of action films (rather than their content). The small number of people who would be affected by such aggressive thoughts are people who probably already are habitually violent.

Do violent video games cause violent crime?
Yes because...

Violent video games do not only affect individuals but also society as a whole.

Violent video games do not only affect individuals but also society as a whole. The sole purpose of a player in these games is to be an aggressor. The heartlessness in these games and joy of killing innocent people create a desensitization and disinhibition to violence that can ultimately lead to a more violent society. They are also a very selfish, lonely form of entertainment which undermines the structure of an ordered, interdependent society.

No because...

Society has decided to embrace violent video games, which as a result are very profitable. These games are written for adults, rather than children, and the ratings system warns of any violent content. In a modern world, the role of protecting young people should lie with responsible parents who know their kids best and take an active interest in their leisure time, discouraging or barring them from unsuitable activities. In this case, there is not enough justification for governments to intervene in people's leisure time.

Do violent video games cause violent crime?
Yes because...

The primary role of a government is to protect its citizens from damaging themselves and society as a whole.

The primary role of a government is to protect its citizens from damaging themselves and society as a whole. There is accordingly a great deal of precedent for a law restricting the use of violent video games. It is considered acceptable for governments to restrict the sale of dangerous things such as alcohol and tobacco to minors or even to enforce movie ratings or the use of seatbelts.

No because...

Not only is it wrong for the government to take censorship-like steps against violent video games but it is also impossible to do so effectively. Violent video games will still be available on the internet and, in fact, by restricting the sale of violent video games the government will push would-be users to illegal downloading programs and therefore to an increasingly prevalent black market.

Do violent video games cause violent crime?
Yes because...

Modern video games cannot be fairly compared to traditional childhood play.

Modern video games cannot be fairly compared to traditional childhood play. Computer gaming is a largely solo experience, with none of the team play involved in games of war, cowboys, etc. Playing alone also makes it easier for the boundaries between fantasy and reality to become blurred, especially with the highly realistic graphics possible with modern technology. In any case, civilisation is about taming our base instincts, not celebrating the worst parts of human nature.

No because...

Video games are a useful outlet for childhood aggression. Play violence has always been a natural part of growing up, especially for boys. In the past it was considered normal for young people to act out violent fantasies in harmless way, for example with toy guns in games of cops and robbers, cowboys and indians, war, pirates, etc. These games were often inspired by films, television or comic books and magazines, just as computer games commonly are today. Now that these traditional activities are frowned upon and 'enlightened' parents prevent children from having toy guns, aggressive play has simply moved indoors, on to the computer screen instead. Suppressing these natural instincts is not only pointless, it is probably more dangerous to remove yet another harmless outlet for aggression from the young.

Do violent video games cause violent crime?
Yes because...

I think there are a bunch of already existing debates on this. They basically mention Columbine, soldiers with mental problems and some hormone released while playing games that makes people more aggressive social recluses. Countered by video games require intelligence, give kids a reason to hang out (most have at least two consoles) and how cases of extreme violence are rare but can be attributed to other factors that reportedly instigate violence as well.
[[http://debatewise.org/debates/320-violent-video-games-music-and-films-are-resulting-in-an-increase-of-violent-behaviour-and-crimes-in-the-real-world]] [[http://debatewise.org/debates/872-are-video-games-promoting-violence]] [[http://www.debatewise.org/debates/1322-does-mobile-innovations-negatively-affect-young-people]]

Obviously gamers and video game producers, support their proliferation, they're addicts and money-makers: Please cite unbiased sources next time.

Do violent video games cause violent crime?
No because...

No games influence their players

If games influenced us, we all would have been tennis players when Pong was out, munching ghosts when Pacman was popular and jumping around after mushrooms dressed as plumbers when the Mario Brothers were on our screens for the first time.

I strongly agree that video games do not influence players, because I play violent video games like Splinter Cell and Street Fighter 4 for about 2-4 hours daily, and I am one of the most mildest kids in my school. Just read these links if you want proof that the cause of violent video games cause violence is a myth (Be sure to read the tamiu.edu link. Cold hard proof).:
http://www.physorg.com/news5758.html
http://www.pbs.org/kcts/videogamerevolution/impact/myths.html
http://learningames.wordpress.com/2011/04/05/are-studies-related-to-video-games-and-violence-biased/
http://www.science20.com/news_releases/video_games_and_violence_are_studies_biased
http://videogames.procon.org/
http://www.gamepolitics.com/2008/04/12/comparing-violent-crime-to-violent-game-releases
http://videogames.procon.org/sourcefiles/Olson.pdf
http://www.theesa.com/facts/violence.asp
http://www.tamiu.edu/~cferguson/VideoGames.html
http://www.geek.com/forums/topic/violent-video-games-do-not-cause-violent-people
http://www.upgradereality.com/video-game-violence
http://www.video-games-for-healthy-living.com/5-reasons-to-let-your-kids-play-video-games.html

Yes because...

There's a difference between influence/effect and mind-control/indoctrination. Though the gap can be and is bridged all too easily and frequently.
Studies have revealed [[http://arstechnica.com/science/news/2010/04/unreal-hormones-males-treat-games-as-social-competitions.ars]] [[http://www.killology.com/gitarticle.htm]] [[http://www.askdrsears.com/html/10/T101200.asp]] the dangers of hype hormones, the release of which is induced by viewing violence, too much exposure also desensitizes players to acts of violence, this can lead to mild to severe mental and physiological problems. [[http://www.impotence-guide.com/psychological-impotence.html]] [[http://www.patient.co.uk/health/Psychosomatic-Disorders.htm]] [[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Placebo]] [[http://childrenshospitalblog.org/are-violent-games-more-damaging-for-children-with-a-central-auditory-processing-disorder/]] [[http://www.positivechoices.com/category/tags/violent-media-use]] [[http://www.healthmonitor.com/news/violent-media-can-desensitize-minds-young-males]] [[http://www.media-awareness.ca/english/issues/violence/effects_media_violence.cfm]] Violent game exposure causes, at the very least a bullying aggressive personality with a self-damaging hyper-competitive blood lust.

The idea that mere 'influence' would make us 'experts' is questionable, at best. However, the adverse effects of violent media are known without doubt. Please read/watch 'Prozac nation' if you're still confused about a significant rise in mental problems among young people in parallel with the popularity of violent media and loosening censorship laws. [[http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0236640/]] [[http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0QWM_Kni6l0]]

Do violent video games cause violent crime?
No because...

It is the opposite way round.

People with violent tendencies are drawn to exceptionally violent games because the games satisfy their craving for violence. That's why so much violence is included in the games in the first place - because there is a very large market for these kind of games. If there were no violent games, all that would happen is these people would find some other media and the games companies would go bankrupt.

Yes because...

all i am saying is kid in the usa killed his parents for taking his copy of halo away

Do violent video games cause violent crime?
No because...

There are far larger contributing factors to violent crime.

There might be some cases of people mimicking violent scenes in video games, but even in these cases, the people obviously have psychological problems that are far deeper than anything that can be caused by a media they won't even have been introduced to until later in their life. There are so many more important factors in violent crime - poverty, drugs, political corruption leading to lawlessness etc. that video games are trivial.

Yes because...
Do violent video games cause violent crime?
No because...

There has always been violence

violence has always existed in the world. One can argue it's been bloodier and merciless for a long time before video games were even invented.

Similar to the argument " Gun/Knife crime " just because the two are on the rise this does not mean that they are directly related.

Yes because...

The fact that it is on the rise especially amongst youths is an indication that the two are linked.

Do violent video games cause violent crime?
No because...

Incorrect scapegoat

We are focusing on the wrong aspects. The problem lies in the upbringing of the person who committed the crime whether it be in the home or in the community.

Responsibility lies with parents - many people play these games and do not conduct themselves violently - the difference is in their upbringing.

So do we live our ives thinking that bugs bunny exists? Parents really do need to not only explain to their kid the difference between entertainment and real life/ fake and reality, but they also need to pay attention to the labels that explain the appropriate age group to play it.

Yes because...

However it still affects people and is part of the problem and shouldn't be ignored.

Addition
If the other sides emphasizes more on the parents responsibility. Then it is clear to us that there are certain danger posed by this whoever says yes is gay

Do violent video games cause violent crime?
No because...

Rate of violence has been steadily dropping as violent games are being released

This website
(http://www.ojp.usdoj.gov/bjs/glance/tables/viortrdtab.htm) shows a steady decrease in violence from 1973 to 2005 in the United States.

Surely if violent games were the basis of violent crimes, the numbers would have increased?

If other factors were present when violence went down, then it stands to reason that the same factors would be there when violence went up. They didn't just disappear.

Yes because...

There could be many other factors which account for the drop in crime, more police, better community relations, or even - if Freakonomics is to be believed - not as many boys born to low-income single mothers.

Do violent video games cause violent crime?
No because...

violent video games never put anyone in physical danger

violent video games never put anyone in physical or mental danger there harmless fun besides if parents didn't want there child playing violent video games they wouldn't get them in the first place

you said yourself the problem is the parents. Stop blaming the media. I grew up plying said "violent" video games and watching "violent" movies and even wrestling. Listening to "violent" music. Im not a violent person, or an angry person. I was always told the difference between "entertainment" and "reality". The Root cause is the parnets lack of teahing. If you do not eliminate the root cause, you do not eliminate the problem.

Yes because...
Do violent video games cause violent crime?
No because...

'Violence' is a blurry concept and could lead to banning good games.

What does 'violence' mean? Are Sonic and Mario too violent? If an overweight plumber or a hedgehog the size of a person tried to jump on my head from a great height I would be seriously hurt. And yet Mario and Sonic are great classics that would ruin the video game industry if they were banned. If a game is good, the joy it brings to its fans worldwide will greatly outweigh the minority of people stupid enough to emulate the violent scenes in it.

Yes because...




Do violent video games cause violent crime?

What do you think?
(26%) (74%)

Continue the Debate - Leave a Comment

2 Comments on "Do violent video games cause violent crime?"

brandie

I don’t think it s the video games I think its what happens to the person before they take their anger or whatever out on the video games. the video games just help the person get their frustration out on. if they do something that is so violent its iilegal, it is not the video games that make them violent, its them!

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Debates > Do violent video games cause violent crime?