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Video games not linked to violent behavior, study shows

Written by James Delahunty @ 22 Jul 2020 9:31

Video games not linked to violent behavior, study shows

A meta-analysis of research going back over a decades shows that playing video games does not lead to violent behavior.
The meta-analysis (examining a bulk of pre-existing research to draw conclusions) covered more than 28 separate studies dating back to 2008 probing for links between aggressive behavior and video games and was led by Aaron Drummond of New Zealand's Massey University.

The researchers acknowledge that the bundled research does show a positive correlation between gaming and aggression, but the effect is so little as to fail to meet the criteria even as a "small effect". Furthermore, the study found that there is no accumulative effect from smaller changes in temperament after gaming sessions over the long term.

"The current research is unable to support the hypothesis that violent video games have a meaningful long-term predictive impact on youth aggression," the report said.

The history of the video games industry has been shadowed by suspicions or even outright assertions that games are dangerous and can promote violent behavior, even being blamed for horrific events like mass shootings on occasion.

The Massey University analysis found that about a quarter of the examined studies into the link between video games and real-world violence found a small positive correlation between the two, while the others could show no overall conclusion. One study published in 2011 reportedly found a negative correlation.

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