Violent Video Games Linked to Decrease in Prosocial Behaviour: Study

Playing aggressive video games can lead to an increased violent behaviour and decrease in prosocial conduct and empathy, as per a new report.

Researchers said that violent video gaming is connected to increased violent behavior in players. But sufficient evidence doesn’t exists about whether it is linked to criminal violence or misbehavior.

A new American Psychological Association (APA) task force report says, “The research demonstrates a consistent relation between violent video game use and increases in aggressive behaviour, aggressive cognitions and aggressive affect, and decreases in prosocial behaviour, empathy and sensitivity to aggression.”  Mark Appelbaum, the task force’s lead said, “Scientists have investigated the use of violent video games for more than two decades but to date, there is very limited research addressing whether violent video games cause people to commit acts of criminal violence.”

The task force’s report is the first of it’s kind in this field to examine the extent of studies included and to undertake multiple viewpoints for reviewing the study.

“However, the link between violence in video games and increased aggression in players is one of the most studied and best established in the field,” said Appelbaum. “No single risk factor consistently leads a person to act aggressively,” the report said. “Rather, it is the collection of risk factors that tends to lead to violent behavior. The research reviewed here states that violent video game use is one such risk factor,” the report said.

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