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Trump Blames Video Games For Violence, Rhode Island Wants To Tax Them

Sigh

Professional cockwomble, Donald Trump, has a radical plan; He wants a ratings system for video games in America to stop children playing violent games.

“We have to look at the Internet, because a lot of bad things are happening to young kids and young minds, and their minds are being formed. And we have to do something about maybe what they’re seeing and how they’re seeing it,” Trump said. “And also video games. I’m hearing more and more people say the level of violence in video games is really shaping young people’s thoughts. And then you go the further step and that’s the movies. You see these movies, they’re so violent and yet a kid is able to see a movie if sex isn’t involved, but killing is involved. Maybe they have to put a rating system for that.”

The United States of America already has a ratings system, the Entertainment Software Rating Board, which was founded in 1994. Games that are rated “M” can only be purchased by those seventeen or older, and “AO” titles can only be purchased by people over the age of eighteen. Movies have also had a rating system for decades.

Scientific studies have not proven any link between violent behaviour and violent video games.

Meanwhile, in the state of Rhode Island, Representative Robert Nardolillo is hoping to bring in new legislation which would add an extra 10% tax to “M” rated video games to fund  “counseling, mental health programs, and other conflict resolution activities.”

“There is evidence that children exposed to violent video games at a young age tend to act more aggressively than those who are not,” said Nardolillo. “This bill would give schools the additional resources needed to help students deal with that aggression in a positive way.”

In 2014 the well respected psychology researcher and Stetson University Professor Christopher Ferguson suggested there is no link, and asked those in power to stop blaming video games.

“Society has a limited amount of resources and attention to devote to the problem of reducing crime,” he stated in his study. “There is a risk that identifying the wrong problem, such as media violence, may distract society from more pressing concerns such as poverty, education and vocational disparities and mental health.

Source: VanityFair / Gamasutra

34 Comments
  1. doug
    Member
    Since: Oct 2008

    And the head of the NRA blamed everything except guns,the kid didn’t walk in to high school and kill loads of people with a copy of call of duty he used a fucking gun.

    Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 12:10.
  2. Crazy_Del
    Member
    Since: Jul 2009

    Donald Trump needs to frigging stand down and be removed as he is a joke from the start. Rating system I blame parents!!! Every time I am in a game shop or even in ASDA I see a parent whose son/daughter are holding a game with a rating of 15 and 18 on them and they were like 10/13 years old.
    I blame social media and Facebook where folks would turn a blind eye.
    I blame movies for violence let’s blame Marvel for Civil War with a 12A which involves violence, language and falling out friendships!
    I blame singers/bands/celebrities for showing too much skin or wearing too little clothing.
    God this frigging Trump and the World Sucks baws!
    RAGE over
    *plays Call of Duty: World War II* take thay Trump pew pew, and that aswell Trump pew pew.
    Jeez!

    Oh and one more thing…. arm the teachers…. really Trump…. Really!!!

    Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 12:12.
    • ron_mcphatty
      Member
      Since: Sep 2008

      Well put mate! And yeah, arm the teachers, when I first read that for the first time in my life I felt physically sick at a news story. I’m so, so, so glad I’m not American, Trump is like the worst hybrid of Darth Vader and David Brent.

      Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 15:13.
      • Andrewww
        Member
        Since: Jan 2010

        I’m pretty speechless here. What an insult for Darth Vader! He might have turned to the dark side (temporarily), but he’s still very far away from being a stupid, paranoid, narcissistic idiot. ;o)

        But I agree with you, it’s simply unbelievable how anyone can seriously suggest such a complete idiocy.

        Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 17:44.
    • ron_mcphatty
      Member
      Since: Sep 2008

      Darth Brent! I’m calling him that from now on :)

      Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 15:13.
      • Crazy_Del
        Member
        Since: Jul 2009

        Ha Darth Brent xD

        Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 16:28.
  3. camdaz
    Member
    Since: May 2009

    Trump has to blame something other than guns for all the violence/shootings as the NRA contributed to his campaign for president to the tune of 21 million dollars.

    There must be something wrong when you can’t drink until you’re 21 but can add to the 350+ million guns owned in America when you’re 16.

    Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 12:40.
    • MrYd
      Member
      Since: Mar 2011

      And Kinder Eggs are banned in the US, with hefty fines for importing them illegally. Because something like 3 kids, ever, have died after choking on the toy. Which is 14 less people than died in 1 incident last week. And an even smaller fraction of the number of people shot since then.

      But sure, guns are fine, chocolate with toys, games with violence, nipples, saying “fuck” on TV, all bad. (That last one is slowly changing though)

      Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 13:05.
      • JR.
        Member
        Since: Apr 2013

        I read somewhere that the issue was more to do with having a plastic or non-edible object inside the chocolate, which FDA regulations currently prohibit.

        There are ridiculous and archaic laws in every county, not just in the US. I’m not sure we can blame Donald Trump for all of them. Although I’m certain his detractors will try.

        I bake/design cakes occasionally and there are certain food colours which are approved in the US but banned for human consumption in the EU. Then there are approved EU colours which are banned for human consumption in the US.

        Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 13:29.
      • MrYd
        Member
        Since: Mar 2011

        It’s apparently any “nonnutritive substance” that doesn’t have “practical functional value”. Which is weird, because I thought the function of the toy in a Kinder Egg was to surprise and delight small children.

        And it seems like the whole reason was legal shenanigans between Mars and Nestle, with one finding an obscure law from the 1930s to try and prevent the other launching a new product in the US.

        And no, nobody’s blaming Trump for a law from the 1930s. It’s just being pointed out that if there is a law from back then that’s still being used to prevent something which has killed less kids than you can count on the fingers of 1 hand after having some sort of horrific accident that caused the loss of fingers, perhaps the fuckwit should do something about something killing many more people every day.

        But no, his lot are against anything the NRA pay them to be against.

        Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 14:14.
      • JR.
        Member
        Since: Apr 2013

        But what can he do that St.Obama and his predecessors couldn’t do before him? They all toe the line. I don’t see why it’s suddenly so outrageous because Trump isn’t forcing change immediately. Besides, Trump could have the cure for cancer and the clowns in congress would oppose it, such is their blind hatred for the man.

        I don’t know if you’ve had a Kinder Surprise recently but I don’t believe for one moment that they’re bringing surprise or delight to anyone. In fact, they should start calling them ‘Kinder Disappointment’. Unless the ‘surprise’ is how disappointing they are? Either way, it seems kinda cruel to me :D

        Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 16:29.
    • camdaz
      Member
      Since: May 2009

      At the time when the florida shootings a BBC news reporter said that it was the 19th shooting in American schools this year, an average of around 3 per week. Shocking.

      Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 14:00.
  4. MrYd
    Member
    Since: Mar 2011

    Top marks for use of the word “cockwomble”. Although for Trump, I prefer “orange-faced shitgibbon”. Just saying.

    Nothing he said there surprises me though. Blame something other than the real problem (presumably game publishers don’t pay as much as the NRA), and then propose a solution that already exists, since it’s easy to take credit for something you don’t have to do. Enough idiots will believe him. That’s why he’s got the job after all.

    Odd to see him mention that weird thing the Americans have where violence is ok, but sex is bad though. Where an accidental nipple is a national scandal, but guns and explosions and death is fine for everyone. Shame his solution appears to be to “maybe violence is a little bit bad, but don’t tell the NRA” rather than “violence might not be suitable for kids, but get all those sexy bits I famously like to grab out”. (Not that I personally find anything Trump might like to grab sexy, but you get the idea)

    I’d say someone needs to shoot the twat, but while that’d be wonderfully ironic, that’d mean he’s replaced by someone worse. Someone more unpleasant but more of a serious politician.

    Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 12:54.
  5. JR.
    Member
    Since: Apr 2013

    Somewhat sensationalised headline but you’ve gotta love how easily DT can wind people up. He’s hilarious.

    “I will direct the Centers for Disease Control to go ahead and study the best ways to reduce it [causes and prevention of gun violence] — and Congress should fund research into the effects that violent video games have on young minds,” – Obama

    I think the bigger issue is poor parenting and people having children, who really shouldn’t be allowed to reproduce. The sooner we introduce licences to have children, the better. It will never happen of course but people shouldn’t have the right to reproduce if they lack the responsibility and the resources to raise them efficiently.

    Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 13:10.
    • Mr.Gorha
      Member
      Since: May 2009

      Who are you to tell someone they can’t have a child? By what rights do you think you or anyone else are entitled to tell me I can’t have a child?

      I’m not being a dick, but that’s got to be the sillyest solution I’ve ever heard.

      I don’t even want to think about how that’d be enforced.

      Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 13:46.
      • JR.
        Member
        Since: Apr 2013

        It’s an uncomfortable topic of discussion – one that is sure to upset a great many people, I have no doubt. And at the risk of sounding like a villain from the pages of a Dan Brown novel, it is a valid solution. If you aren’t a desirable candidate as mandated by the state, you aren’t permitted to have children. It could potentially solve so many issues we face as a species.

        No need to fret. It will never happen in any event. There are far too many of us to implement a scheme effectively on a global scale. Not without wiping the slate clean and starting again from scratch.

        *strokes white cat*

        Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 15:57.
    • Starman
      Member
      Since: Jul 2011

      I’ll take a guess that the kid was bullied, like many school shooters are. But unlike most countries he didn’t have easy access to a gun to get his moment. Guns are the issue here, not parenting or games.

      Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 18:50.
      • JR.
        Member
        Since: Apr 2013

        So you’re saying it’s the parents of the bullies who are at fault because they raised a bunch of a-hole’s? Interesting.

        Maybe it’s toxic school environments?

        Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 19:28.
      • Starman
        Member
        Since: Jul 2011

        No, you totally misunderstood my comment. I’m saying this wouldn’t have happened if guns weren’t so easily accessible. That’s why mass school shootings don’t occur in other countries on the scale they do there.

        Comment posted on 24/02/2018 at 05:50.
  6. KippDynamite
    Member
    Since: Mar 2013

    As a mental health professional with some background in social science research, I think it’s worth pointing out that there is, in fact, research supporting the idea that violent video games cause children to be violent – however, I’ve read much of this research and have found it poorly conducted, and the conclusions of the papers are highly debatable. Most of my issues are that there are methodological flaws that make the research results flawed and, ultimately, useless. A lot of the rationale is based on the work of Alfred Bandura (who did a lot of legit research and isn’t an idiot). In one famous experiment he punched a toy clown in front of children and then told them to play with it; when they punched the clown he concluded that children will mimic what they see. This is true and is well-supported, but it’s also much more complex than that. For example, most kids are explicitly told NOT to hit people and they can also tell the difference between toys and living things (and that particular toy clown is designed to be hit). Also, as they grow they are increasingly able to tell the difference between fantasy and reality.

    So it’s not out of nowhere that people claim research supports the idea of violent games causing violence. However, I think there are numerous flaws with the methodology in most of those studies (that are too numerous to address here). As an example, I recall reading a study where 700 married male gamers were analysed for their level of conflict with their spouse. There existed conflict with many of them. The conclusion was that gamers were more prone to conflict. That conclusion is absurd for a number of reasons, most notably that they weren’t compared to a control or representative sample – they were the only group studied. You can’t just take a group of people, point and their flaws, and say one causes the other. But amazingly this was published in a peer review journal. The research wasn’t explicitly that poorly done, but if you read between the lines and tried to replicate the study, you’d quickly see how standard methodological safeguards weren’t employed.

    However, meta-analysis has been done on huge bodies of video game research and a conclusion was that most of the studies were poorly done. So at least there is some professional, academic notion that most of it is garbage.

    One decent study showed, interestingly enough, that actual competition was more likely to increase agitation and “potentially” violence. What I mean is, if you’re playing against a person on the couch then that IS a real experience – you are competing against a person right next to you. In other words, playing an intense game of Mario Kart or even pong is apparently far more likely to lead to real-life conflict than is Killzone or COD.

    Like most of what he says, Donald Trump’s remarks are not worth much scrutiny. He and his party (which controls Congress, by the way, and could pass any law they want) are just trying to blame anything but guns on why mass shootings exists.

    Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 17:44.
    • MrYd
      Member
      Since: Mar 2011

      I think what you meant in that first paragraph is that there’s NO research supporting the idea that violent games cause children to be violent, but plenty of research making that claim anyway.

      You can usually spot that sort of research easily. Does it confuse correlation and causation? Did it study a ridiculously tiny number of people? (That’s more often reserved for advertising small print where “clinically proven” means “20 out of 39 women said slapping some of this goo on made them look really sexy, honest”)

      And also “did a newspaper or politician jump on the research, conveniently ignoring any research that says the opposite?”. Often used for food-based research making dodgy claims that something “is good for you, cuts the risk of something incredibly rare by 10%, makes you live longer, have more sex, and doesn’t cause catastrophic diarrhoea”. They never report on the other studies where 85% of men reported “I’ve got cancer, my wife left me, and I’ve just shit myself”.

      Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 18:36.
      • JR.
        Member
        Since: Apr 2013

        Reads like fake news to me :D

        Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 19:29.
      • KippDynamite
        Member
        Since: Mar 2013

        What I’m saying is that if you were to ask a social science researcher to point to a study that concludes that playing violent video games causes children to be violent, they could point you to several dozen peer-reviewed articles. It is a fact that they exist. They were done by various universities and other academics, not think-tanks or marketers. So when people say research supports their claim they aren’t talking nonsense. However, careful scrutiny of the articles reveals major weaknesses.

        As an analogy, there WAS actual research articles supporting that vaccines caused autism. They existed. People were genuinely concerned because peer-reviewed academic studies suggested a link. However, the research was garbage and it was not possible to duplicate the results. So now, in our enlightened state due to additional research, we know those past studies were garbage and there is no link between autism and vaccines.

        I think it will be the same with violence and video games. In the academic world the topic is in transition and it’s becoming more common to find articles refuting the findings of the past.

        I’m very firmly in the camp that video games don’t contribute meaningfully to societal violence, but if you have a serious discussion with someone about it and say no research supports the contrary then it will be easy to prove you wrong. But if you can point out how the studies were flawed then your argument is much more robust.

        Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 23:03.
      • MrYd
        Member
        Since: Mar 2011

        I’m not really disagreeing with you, you’re obviously at least vaguely intelligent and know your stuff.

        But I’d say that there hasn’t been any research supporting the idea. Just some that claims to support it, but which is all very dubious to varying degrees.

        With the autism/MMR vaccine thing, there was research claiming the vaccine caused autism, but it didn’t in any way support that claim because it was all fraudulent crap by an ex-doctor.

        It’s a slightly subtle difference, I guess. But if the headlines had been “a dodgy study makes a claim that vaccines might possibly cause autism” rather than “vaccines can cause autism”, then things might have turned out a bit better in that case. Children might not have died due to not being vaccinated.

        With the gaming/violence issue, as you point out mentioning meta-studies, there’s very probably no link, and definitely nothing that actually supports the idea yet. At best, there may be some correlation between gaming and violence. Maybe more violent people just happen to like violent games? Maybe that’s a good thing having the games available? Better to shoot lots of things in a game than a bunch of kids at a school. The “what if they then move on to real life violence” argument probably falls into the category of “they probably would have done that anyway, and it’s so rare it’d be a silly as banning Kinder Eggs because 3 kids died”.

        The problem of dodgy science making claims it can’t support is probably going to get worse too with the internet giving it so much publicity in a very click-baity way. And given that no scientist, ever, likes to do research that doesn’t come up with the result they expected, that doesn’t help either. Yes, they may sometimes say things like “It’d be much more interesting if the LHC can’t find the Higgs boson” but what they really think is “We’ve been looking for this bloody thing for ages, spent huge amount of money on it, and not finding it is going to mean a whole bunch of extra work trying to come up with more theories about how things work, and we’d rather have a load of papers with our name on about something that turned out right and makes our department look good, especially if we add everyone right down to the cleaner as a co-author and have a Nobel prize we can use to stop all those papers blowing about”.

        Comment posted on 24/02/2018 at 11:00.
  7. dave87fez
    Member
    Since: May 2011

    Well, if TRUMP says it…

    Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 18:46.
  8. Starman
    Member
    Since: Jul 2011

    As usual Trump’s comments are ill informed, untrue, easily disproved and generally a load of bollocks to distract from the real issue. Idiotic twat.

    Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 18:47.
    • ico
      Member
      Since: Aug 2010

      Very strong words but indubitably sound.

      Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 19:08.
    • JR.
      Member
      Since: Apr 2013

      It’s actually quite clever really when you think about it. People keep falling for it again and again. It’s one of the reasons he won the election and will probably win a second term.

      Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 19:45.
      • Starman
        Member
        Since: Jul 2011

        It’s not clever at all. People are talking about how ridiculous his comments are.

        Comment posted on 24/02/2018 at 05:55.
  9. ico
    Member
    Since: Aug 2010

    Firstly I love the word ‘cockwomble’. Had Hillary used that the election campaign could have had a very different result, not to mention more entertaining.
    Secondly, if Trump is a ‘professional’ cockwomble I’d be bloody terrified about the levels of idiocy an amatuer cockwomble could offer (or would an amatuer be less idiotic; it’s like when you want the fridge to be colder, do you turn it up or down… i digress).
    Thirdly, their comments about having a rating system in place would be laughable if the level of ignorance on display wasnt so scary.
    Finally, no, I’m out of ideas such is my exasperation at bigly Don. Sure I won’t be the first to say it but he’s an utter cretin. The clippings from a veruca could offer more insight and skill to running a country than this man.

    Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 19:05.
  10. dalejrfanfreak
    Member
    Since: Oct 2009

    Considering someone made a videogame solely about killing Donald Trump, he might have a point…

    Comment posted on 23/02/2018 at 23:13.