ESA calls out Iowa games addiction research

By Patrick Garratt, Monday, 27 April 2009 20:22 GMT


ESA boss Mike Gallagher has challenged an Iowa State University study that claimed up to 8.5 percent of game-playing American youths aged 8-18 show multiple signs of behavioral addiction.

“As you are likely aware, such a sample is not truly representative of a national population group,” Gallagher said in a letter to Psychological Science’s Dr Robert Kail, who’s publication is to run the study’s findings in an upcoming issue.

“Thus the results cannot be projected onto the broader population of children in this country. And the sampling error of plus or minus 3% that Dr. Gentile cited in the study is also meaningless.”

Gallagher’s letter also notes that Dr Gentile, the scientist behind the paper, later conceded in press interviews that he was unaware his study sampling was not based on a random probability sampling.

“We accept Dr. Gentile’s admission of error at face value, although it is hard to understand how a researcher would base a scientific study upon an assumption about the nature of the group he was studying,” said Gallagher.

You tell ’em, Mike. Lots more words on Gamasutra.

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Iowa State University

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