Games and Aggression Subject of Ongoing Baylor Study

A Baylor University study examining the relationship between violent videogames and aggression is currently underway, but any hopes that positive results for the game industry might emerge are tempered by the study’s lead already proclaiming that, “There’s a definite link between media violence and aggression.”

Dr. Daniel Shafer, Assistant Professor of Communication Studies, wants to find out which games are most likely to cause aggression in players as well as what types of people are most susceptible to becoming  “aggressive and hostile” from playing videogames.

Another angle the study will examine is how multiplayer gaming impacts people. As Dr. Shafer stated, “We wanted to see if competition increased hostility more.”

The doctor would also like to eventually perform another study of online gamers, one that would determine if interactions between players are different online versus playing against other gamers in-person, a question which Baylor Gaming Society Founder Forrest Harington (and anyone who has ever plugged in an Xbox Live headset), already seemed to know the answer to.

Harington said, “I’d say there’s less aggression in a room setting because people are less likely to use profanity and throw stuff around.”

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  1. 0
    janarius says:


    "Currently, the government regulates games by labeling them with a rating, dependent on how violent the game is. Games labeled "mature" are considered the most violent and require a person to be 17 or older to purchase them."

    It’s actually written in that article and no one in the editing process noticed that.

  2. 0
    Mr. Stodern says:

    Exhibit 256 of how NOT to do research: Determining a conclusion before even beginning.

    I love this little bit too:

    Harington said, “I’d say there’s less aggression in a room setting because people are less likely to use profanity and throw stuff around.”

    Hah! If anything I’m more inclined to use profanity because I almost always get a good laugh out of the things I say when I slaughter an enemy. And let’s face it, I like attention sometimes. :)

    I don’t usually throw things in any setting though, even when mad, and his mention of such only further displays his bias.

    This is why opponents of video games will continue to fail in their attacks, why the Supreme Court is going to continue to rule against states that try to implement their dumbass anti-game laws, because they simply can’t put together some real research that even remotely supports their outrageous claims.

    Then again, if they did any real experiments, they would find that their argument is in fact invalid. And they can’t have that. They have their political game to play, which actually has far greater real-world consequences than any GTA or Manhunt.

  3. 0
    Avalongod says:

    Its sad to see a researcher so blatantly discussing his biases at the onset of a study.

    The article linked also claims that government regulates games using ratings stickers and implies it is prohibited for minors to buy M rated games.  Of course no such government regulation *currently* exists…

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