According to a recent correlation of data from a number of studies, and as reported in The Guardian, there is little evidence that video games have any effect on an individual’s propensity for committing violent acts. This reanalysis of data gathered from some 21,000 young individuals from across the world, failed to find more than “a miniscule positive correlation” in any of the 28 individual studies involved.
In its conclusions, the report states “Thus, current research is unable to support the hypothesis that violent video games have a meaningful long-term predictive impact on youth aggression”. This study, published in the Royal Society Open Science journal, took into account studies dating from as far back as 2008, before aggregating the data contained therein.
Around 25% of these datasets found a small positive correlation between extensive use of video games and aggression in the user, with the majority of the rest finding no connection in either direction and a small minority actually finding it made those involved less likely to exhibit signs of excessive anger.
One particular theory which came under the microscope was accumulation theory, or the idea that each individual game played leads to a slight increase in aggressive tendencies and therefore those who play a lot will see a large effect on their behaviour. There was found to be no basis on which to support this interpretation.
Although many in our community had already come to this conclusion of our own accord, it is nice to see those “without a dog in the fight” backing up this belief with extensive evidence gathering.
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