More Studies On Game Violence Needed, Jack Thompson Not So Bad?

More Studies On Game Violence Needed, Jack Thompson Not So Bad?

lap_gun_top.jpgWith the recent university shooting in the States, mainstream media once again has something to throw in the face of gaming, specifically the link between violent behaviour and electronic entertainment. Does it matter if the analyses are tainted with half-truths? Nope!

With all this controversy humming in the air, Atomic decided to have a word with Dr Guy Porter, a real-live professional in the matters of research, science and game violence.

From the article:

Large and well-designed studies have shown that childhood exposure to TV / film violence predicts subsequent aggressive behaviour in adulthood … These studies are widely regarded as the most convincing form of evidence for establishing a link between media violence and aggression. However, such studies do not yet exist for video games.

The interview goes on to cover Jack Thompson and game addiction. While recently we’ve heard much on the former, the latter seems to have dropped down a few rungs on the ladder of important issues.But first, Jack Thompson:

Jack Thompson is also against children being exposed to the sexual content in certain video games and is an advocate for correct classification and parental supervision. So he is not all bad.

However, I think that directly linking video games to school shootings is overlooking other more important factors – such as mental illness or psychopathy in those who commit the crimes as well as access to guns.

As for game addiction, Dr Porter is currently running a study on gamers and their playing habits to define what exactly constitutes an addiction.

The end of the interview has the good doctor admitting he used to play Ultima IV back in the day, and currently enjoys the odd whirl of a flight sim.

In short – the local angle plus a topical issue equals a good read.

Interview: Dr Guy Porter on violence and addiction in games [Atomic MPC]


  • Ah, but I never said that video games are the SOLE cause of mass killings. They are part of the chain of causation. People need to actually read the lawsuits I file and actually watch the interviews I do rather than bleating on as if they were sheep who can’t comprehend. Games can be part of the causal chain of events, not the entire the chain, ever. Oh, dig this:

    Immediate News Release – Feb. 24, 2008

    Best Buy Hit with Video Game Sting

    Miami attorney and anti-violent video game activist Jack Thompson today at 3:14 pm Eastern conducted a successful sting on major video game retailer Best Buy at its Dadeland Store #557 in Miami, Florida.

    Best Buy claims that it has a stringent policy NOT to sell Mature-rated video games to anyone under 17 years of age. Two years ago when Thompson filed a lawsuit against Best Buy to stop its sale of Mature games to minors, Best Buy settled the suit by agreeing to henceforth check the age ID of anyone appearing to be 21 or younger, and the major retailer has made a big p.r. push since of its age ID policy.

    It is all a lie.

    Best Buy’s clerk named “Iris” sold the ESRB “Mature”-rated Counter-Strike to a 15-year-old boy without even asking him for his ID. This is the third time Thompson has done a sting on this very same Best Buy store. Thompson’s son bought Grand Theft Auto: Vice City in this same store when he was 10 years old.

    The Mature game sold to the 15-year-old is significant. It is the same game on which the Northern Illinois killer trained himself to kill two weeks ago. Counter-Strike was also the murder simulator that trained the author of the Virginia Tech and Erfurt, Germany school massacres—the two bloodiest school killings in world history.

    Best Buy knows this. No responsible retailer in America should be selling any Mature games to kids and certainly not Counter-Strike.

    Brain scan studies at Harvard, Indiana, and Michigan State Universities show that violent video games are processed in a different part of the brain than in adults, and it is the sector that leads to copycat violent behavior. Best Buy and the rest of the video game industry know this. They don’t care. They are making too much money selling adult entertainment to kids.

    Thompson warned Best Buy’s general counsel and Director Elliot Kaplan of Minneapolis last week that Best Buy was still selling Mature video games, including Counter-Strike, to underage kids on-line at Mr. Kaplan did not respond.

    Go to Best Buy’s web site and click on “Responsibility” and see the streaming video of Best Buy’s COO and President Brian Dunn pledge that what happened today in Miami won’t happen at Best Buy stores.

    It is all a lie.

    Thompson three months ago filed a new lawsuit against Best Buy in Miami-Dade Circuit Court alleging that Best Buy was, despite its agreement with Thompson and despite Best Buy’s promises to American parents, was still selling Mature games to underage kids in violation of federal and state “Fraudulent and Deceptive Trade Practices” Acts. This sting today is proof positive that Thompson is correct.

    Contact Jack Thompson for more information

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