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What's in a Game?: Regulation of Violent Video Games and the First Amendment: Hearing Before the Subcommittee on the Constitution

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What's in a Game?: Regulation of Violent Video Games and the First Amendment: Hearing Before the Subcommittee on the Constitution

by United States Congress Senate

About this title: Original publisher: Washington: U.S. G.P.O.: For sale by the Supt. of Docs., U.S. G.P.O., 2006. LC Number: KF26 .J8358 2006 OCLC Number: (OCoLC)70911374 Subject: Video games -- Law and legislation -- United States. Excerpt: ... 11 concluding that games would cause aggression over an hour or a week or a year. For that you would need a study that lasted an hour, a week, or a year. I am not sure that you realize that all you have been given are these short studies. They usually last between 10 and 30 minutes, and yet we are all talking about years and life spans. The other big problem is that with a study that short, you might be measuring excitement, not violence. That would be arousal, not aggression. You could effectively get the same effects by having them throw a Frisbee. In fact, when the studies go longer, it is possible that the effects might fade away. We do not have a lot of these long studies, so the jury is really still out, but we do have two studies of one violent game in particular - ' ' Mortal Kombat. ' ' In the first study, the play-ers played for 10 minutes, and there were large effects. In the sec-ond study, the players continued playing for 75 minutes, and the effects were nearly gone. That means there is a very good chance they fade away or were not there in the first place. It is possible that arousal was replaced with boredom or fatigue in those studies. Last year, I published the longest study to date investigating game violence. I had players play a game over a month and not in a laboratory. The average play time in my sample was 56 hours, which is the longest research exposure for a game ever. And after 56 hours, I found nothing. I was surprised - no increases in vio-lence, aggressive cognitions, anything. Let me be clear. I am not suggesting that this study proves that games do not cause violence. A different game, a different sample, different measures might have found something different. I also cannot say what 2 months would do. I ...

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