Coverage of Last Night's Jack Thompson - Gerard Jones Debate

April 3, 2009 -

A reported audience of 200 Bridgewater College students attended last night's video game debate between Jack Thompson and author Gerard Jones. 

So far we have found two local news reports of the showdown.

WHSV-3 offers this account:

Thompson believes that content should be regulated more efficiently, especially toward kids, pointing out the violent aspects of the popular game series "Grand Theft Auto." He says, "The problem is mature and adult video games that are very violent, increasingly pornographic, that are still being sold aggressively to young people. Kids literally process these games in the part of the brain that leads to copy-cat violence."

Jones, however, urged people to view video games in the same ways as movies and television, and hoped gamers would be more open to explain why they love to play. He says, "We hear a lot about the fear of what they might do, what might go wrong, but we hear so little about how these games are obviously fitting in to a sane, healthy life for a lot of normal people."

Meanwhile, Rocktown Weekly has this:

Jack Thompson... says that unlike other media, video games have been shown to affect neurological development in adolescents.

Thompson... says violent games desensitize youths and can train them to carry out massacres in real life, particularly if they have violent or sociopathic tendencies...

 

Thompson pointed out that the military uses video games to train new troops and desensitize them, making them more likely to shoot when it counts. [GP: According to John Stossel of ABC News, this is a self-perpetuating myth*]...

But Jones counters that violence existed in society long before video games came along.

For example, Jones said the gunman in a 1970s school shooting told authorities he was inspired by "Patton," a biographical movie about World War II Gen. George Patton.

"I cannot see our culture, our laws, our entertainment industry trying to adjust to" what mentally ill people might do, Jones said.

Thompson... advocates greater government control over the video game industry, especially in legislation that makes it a crime to sell video games rated "mature" to minors.
 

* Stossel tracked down the origin of the military's supposed use of violent games to desensitize recruits in his 2006 book Myths, Lies and Downright Stupidity.

86 comments

Jack Thompson Debates Game Violence with Author Tonight

April 2, 2009 -

Fresh off his apparently failed attempt to legislate video game sales in Utah, disbarred Miami attorney Jack Thompson will debate the video game violence issue tonight with Gerard Jones, author of Killing Monsters: Why Children Need Fantasy, Super Heroes and Make-Believe Violence.

The debate, which will take place at 7:30 on the campus of Bridgewater College in northwestern Virginia, is free and open to the public. It is unknown whether there will be any local coverage.

GP: Thompson and Jones previously debated in 2007 at a college in Pennsylvania. That debate was marred by a student who behaved rather badly toward Thompson. Such behavior only serves to reinforce negative stereotypes about gamers.

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Has a video game ever made you so mad you broke the controller?:

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MechaTama31I am not proud of this, but I had to select the "multiple times" option. Not for the same game, but I went through several controllers (particularly dreamcast ones. fragile, maybe?)07/09/2014 - 6:52pm
Andrew EisenI'd say breaking a handheld out of anger counts (even if it's just the hinge). Likewise, I'd say busting a keyboard or mouse counts so long as you were playing a game at the time.07/09/2014 - 12:28pm
ConsterAnd since there happened to be (without me realizing) a towel which broke the fall resulting in 'only' a damaged hinge, would that be option 2 or 4?07/09/2014 - 12:23pm
ConsterAbout the most recent poll: since the "controller" for the DS is basically part of the DS, does throwing my DS against the floor because Mario Basketball cheats count?07/09/2014 - 12:22pm
Sleakersaw this on Forbes, thought it was pretty good: http://www.forbes.com/sites/timworstall/2014/06/03/if-comcast-and-time-warner-dont-compete-then-why-shouldnt-they-merge/07/08/2014 - 9:09pm
Adam802the Sun is claiming games are as addictive as herion: http://www.eurogamer.net/articles/2014-07-08-the-real-story-behind-the-suns-gaming-as-addictive-as-heroin-headline07/08/2014 - 6:43pm
ZippyDSMleeIt takes 2-6 days to transferfunds to your bank, it can take up to 30 days for ebay to give you moeny from a sale. But lord to spend it its instant!07/08/2014 - 10:50am
Cheater87http://www.twinfinite.net/2014/07/08/evil-within-receive-gore-mode-dlc-japan/07/08/2014 - 10:00am
MaskedPixelantehttp://www.joystiq.com/2014/07/08/bandai-namco-pulling-tales-of-phantasia-soon-to-be-unusable/ BN is shutting down Tales of Phantasia, and nothing of value will be lost.07/08/2014 - 9:34am
Sleaker3 business days when I've done it in the past.07/08/2014 - 12:54am
MaskedPixelanteOk, thanks.07/07/2014 - 9:12pm
Sora-Chan@MP If I recall correctly, it takes a few days.07/07/2014 - 7:49pm
MaskedPixelanteJust a few hours, it concerned me because I checked my bank account after the purchase was made, and no money appeared to be gone. At least with CC, it changes my credit limit when I purchase something, even if it doesn't process for a few days.07/07/2014 - 2:44pm
E. Zachary KnightNever done one that way, but I know the other way often takes forever and a day. How long have you been waiting?07/07/2014 - 2:28pm
MaskedPixelanteHas anyone ever done a bank-to-Paypal transfer before? How long does it usually take?07/07/2014 - 1:26pm
TheSmokeyViolent video games may actually increase players' sensitivity: study - http://technology.canoe.ca/Gaming/News/2014/06/30/21775831-relaxnews.html07/07/2014 - 12:37pm
E. Zachary KnightIf anyone wants to know, I just launched a Kickstarter campaign for my game Demon's Hex. https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/ezknight/demons-hex-cross-platform-collectible-token-game07/07/2014 - 11:09am
Cheater87Australia to get stricter game regualtion? http://mmgn.com/ps4/news--australia-s-tyrannical-game-censorship-legisl07/05/2014 - 1:53pm
MaskedPixelanteNo, I'm just saying that, were Ubisoft to shut down, the only thing of value lost would be Ubiart.07/05/2014 - 9:38am
SleakerDid ubisoft issue a statement that they weren't doing well or something? Or did I miss a studio closure?07/05/2014 - 12:48am
 

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