Violent Video Games and How They Negatively Affect Young Men

Subject: Sociology
Pages: 4
Words: 848
Reading time:
4 min
Study level: College

The rise of technologies impacts all spheres of human activity and promotes critical changes. Today, people work, learn, and spend their free time using multiple devices and enjoying limitless access to information or many communication opportunities. However, along with numerous benefits, there are still some risks linked to this process. For instance, the evolution of technologies triggered the creation of new, more realistic, and complex video games, demanding more time from players and providing them with lifelike images. Their popularity and fast spread created the basis for discussion about the influence video games have on people. There are various perspectives on the problem; however, young men can suffer from increased aggression, wrong ideas of rivalry, and health issues cultivated by violent video games.

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One of the central factors leading to the increased topicality of this problem for men is time. The relevant statistics show that men averagely play eight hours per week, while women play only 6.28 hours (Markey and Ferguson 34). Moreover, 23% of all males play 12 hours and more, compared to 16% of females (Markey and Ferguson 34). A more significant amount of time spent in virtual worlds means that this cohort experiences a more substantial influence of video games and is more exposed to risks associated with extended plays (Markey and Ferguson 34). For this reason, men are more likely to suffer from traditional gamers’ problems, such as headaches, hypertension, and lack of mobility (Mustafaoğlu et al. 15). However, along with these well-known aspects, some additional issues should be given attention.

Most violent video games contain the competitive element making them more addictive and rewarding at the same time. For men with their traditionally powerful and stereotypical attitudes to rivalry, it becomes one of the central factors preconditioning changes in their behaviors. For instance, Dowsett and Jackson are sure that violence in games is not a major problem, as men can distinguish it from reality and think critically (22). Instead, they state that competition rather than violence is the main factor triggering aggressive behaviors and preconditioning negative impacts on men (Dowsett and Jackson 22). Under these conditions, video games focusing on rivalry, comparison of results via the Internet, and cooperation might serve as the source of adverse effects.

Furthermore, there is a direct correlation between aggression and the inability to complete a mission. Markey and Ferguson support the idea that violence in video games does not trigger inappropriate behaviors; on the contrary, it can help to improve social skills, and stress management and make gamers more morally sensitive (45). Nevertheless, too challenging levels and the inability to pass them affect young men stronger than women and might undermine their self-confidence and cultivate higher aggression rates (Markey and Ferguson 45). For this reason, the focus on competitive elements, statistics, and complex levels can be demotivating for males, make them spend more time at home trying to complete a certain mission, and suffer from adverse effects accumulated during their gaming sessions.

The academic field is another area studied regarding the increased time spent by young people on video games. Adžić et al. say that students with high academic achievements have almost equal time distribution between video games and learning activities. They still managed to have high grades and succeed (100412). However, it demanded them better planning skills and effort to maintain balance. From this perspective, video games severed as a tool to refresh and cope with stress. From another perspective, the alteration in this proportion and heavy gaming can precondition the complete disregard of existing academic tasks and failure to achieve existing goals (Przybylski and Weinstein 14). For this reason, it is vital to control the area to avoid deterioration.

Finally, young men can experience development and health problems because of video games. Mustafaoğlu et al. state that heavy gamers might suffer from multiple adverse effects, such as physical inactivity, obesity, poor sleep habits, insufficient sleep quality, lack of communication, and musculoskeletal problems (13). The appropriate development is vital for this category as it creates the basis for their further successes. Under these conditions, the inability to manage game addiction or select proper gaming patterns might promote adverse outcomes for the health of young males and undermine their chances for a better quality of life (Mustafaoğlu et al. 15). For this reason, it is critical to avoid the extra use of technologies in this category.

Altogether, video games can be viewed as a new trend in contemporary society. Their growing popularity triggered multiple discussions about the effects they have on people. Although researchers state that violent games do not promote aggression, there are still some risks. Young men can be impacted by the competitive element and acquire aggressive patterns. Moreover, they can suffer from false representations of rivalry, inability to attain success in a game, or deterioration of their health. These factors show a need for additional research in the given sphere to ensure that all effects are outlined and considered. Young men should be aware of this information and plan their activities to ensure no harm is done to other vital spheres of their lives.

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Works Cited

Adžić, Slobodan, et al. “The Impact of Video Games on Students’ Educational Outcomes.” Entertainment Computing, vol. 38, 2021, p. 100412.

Dowsett, Andre, and Mervyn Jackson. “The Effect of Violence and Competition Within Video Games on Aggression.” Computers in Human Behavior, vol. 99, 2019, pp. 22-27.

Markey, Patrick M., and Christopher J. Ferguson. Moral Combat: Why the War on Violent Video Games is Wrong. BenBella Books, Inc., 2017.

Mustafaoğlu, Rüstem, et al. “The Negative Effects of Digital Technology Usage on Children’s Development and Health.” Addicta: The Turkish Journal on addictions, vol. 5, no. 2, 2018, pp. 13-21.

Przybylski, Andrew K., and Netta Weinstein. “Violent Video Game Engagement is Not Associated with Adolescents’ Aggressive Behaviour: Evidence from a Registered Report.” Royal Society Open Science, vol. 6, no. 2, 2019, pp. 1-16.