By Hal Marcovitz
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Additional info for Are Video Games Harmful? (In Controversy)
Freedman: When people see a real act of violence, we hope they will respond with concern and do what they can to stop it. We want them to feel that violence is bad, that people should not commit violence, and that they themselves should never be violent. Most North Americans have witnessed few if any acts of real violence and have not had a chance to be desensitized to it. In contrast, they have witnessed a great many acts of violence in the media. 25 Mental health experts find themselves particularly concerned about the desensitizing effects of video game violence.
All Rights Reserved. 45 The Gamer Widows Soon after her wedding, Sherry Myrow of Toronto, Ontario, discovered her husband’s addiction to playing online games. After enduring months of loneliness while her husband was glued to his computer screen, Myrow decided to do something about it. She established the Web site Gamer Widow, an online forum for wives and husbands in similar situations to vent their frustrations and also share ideas on how to wean their spouses away from the games. Soon after the site went live, it drew some 500 members.
31 young viewers were willing to accept violence as a way of life. Said the study: Violent scenes that children are most likely to model their behavior after are ones in which they identify with the perpetrator of the violence, the perpetrator is rewarded for the violence and in which children perceive the scene as telling about life like it really is. 24 The Desensitizing Effects of Media Violence Not only do mental health experts find that viewers tend to support the perpetrators of TV and movie violence, but many experts also believe that constant exposure to simulated violence desensitizes the viewers to the real thing.