Study: Inappropriate games may give children the wrong message

Tuesday, 5 April 2011 01:16 GMT By Brenna Hillier

Children who lack positive parenting and good relationships with peers may take anti-social messages away from age-inappropriate games, according to a recent study.

Industry Gamers reports the study was published in the latest edition of the Journal of Children and media.

The study polled children of up to and 12 years of age, but many reported playing games rated for ages 15 and over. Results suggest children, and especially boys, who play age-inappropriate violent games may come to believe violent behaviour is of no consequence.

Study author Dr. Edward T. Vieira Jr, communications professor at Simmons College, emphasised that its findings did not suggest games have a direct causal link to violent behaviour.

“Certainly not every child who continues to play violent video games is going to go out and perpetrate a violent act,” he said.

He also made clear that games alone don’t seem to be enough to cause the problem.

“The concern arises when children are taking in this message and there is a convergence of other negative environmental factors at the same time, such as poor parental communication and unhealthy peer relationships.”

Thanks, Go Nintendo.