UK Demands Study on Effects of Violent Games on Children

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Published by 11 years ago , last updated 2 months ago

Posted on October 9, 2007, Shawn Sines UK Demands Study on Effects of Violent Games on Children


The UK government has requested evidence for a new study involving the effects of violent video games on children.

Psychologist Tanya Byron is heading the study also designed to examine how to protect children from online material. Although Paul Jackson of the Entertainment and Leisure Software Publishers’ Association has pledged its full cooperation, the games industry’s association is tired of being blamed for the ills of society.

He said the industry was “too often blamed for everything from obesity to youth violence. It is just not true and it’s not appropriate.”

He added: “We are very responsible and keen to ensure that our products are only played by those who they are designed for. We feel quite positively about this review. It’s clear the review is about making sure parents are properly informed about what their youngsters are playing and what they are accessing on the internet.”

It seems that Dr Byron might just be looking at this study with a modicum of objectivity. She has already consulted with the ELSPA and told BBC News 24:

“The study will be about what industry is doing already to protect children and what more could be done to ensure they have a positive experience on the internet and with games.”

At the launch of the review at a school in Barking, Essex, she said:

“Video gaming and the internet themselves are a very positive and important part of children’s and young children’s growing up and learning and development. But it is also about saying where are the risks?”

Veteran game developer Frontier games David Braben asked the question that is on most gamers’ minds these days; why out of all media depicting violence are video games being singled out.

“A review might be useful but it should not just look at one media, especially when media are intersecting,” he said.

“We do tend to be the people who get the blame first at the moment. And that is a tragedy – because this industry is one of the most interesting media.”

via BBC News

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