Anytime there is a violent incident in which the perpetrator is a minor, a debate arises over the effect that exposure to violence on media may have had in causing it. Children are increasingly exposed to violence on television, movies and most importantly, by video games. Does such exposure end up having a causal effect by provoking aggressive behavior? While some studies have shown just such a link, there are other studies that have concluded that there is no evidence of a relationship between video games and violence. A research brief by Common Sense Media attempts to highlight such studies and draw meaningful and actionable insights from them.
Research suggests that children, especially boys, who strongly identify with violent characters in the media are more susceptible to the long-term effects of media violence.
A national study of more than 1,000 children aged 6 to 12 found that family conflict was positively associated with violent television viewing and violent electronic game playing.
Not all children who play violent video games will become violent - but there is a greater chance that they will, especially if there are multiple risk factors operating at the same time.
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