Children believe games affect their behavior

A study by Ofcom has found that two thirds of surveyed children aged 12-15 claim that videogames affect their behavior more than television or movies. It seems that a lot of kids believe games make them more aggressive.

The survey questioned over 2000 parents and children to find out how the use of technology was changing, and found that the bedrooms of many children are turning into “multi-media centers” with Internet access, digital cameras, mobile phones and more all on tap. Bloody little wankers have it better than I ever did. It also showed that parents fail to regulate their children’s online habits, trusting them to look after themselves. Lovely. 

While a child saying “this makes me aggressive” isn’t exactly crucial scientific evidence, it’s still interesting to see so many children admit it. However, one has to consider what kind of questions were asked and how the children interpreted them — a child who fails a lot in a videogame becomes agitated and throws tantrums (having younger brothers, I know this all too well) so of course they’d find their behavior affected in that respect.

I would be surprised if a child’s interpretation of “do videogames make you aggressive?” was as Leland Yee’s or Jack Thompson’s.

[MaxVest has graciously provided a link to the report. The relevant study is found on page 49.]

Jim Sterling