The Australian Gamer found this lovely nugget in the recent filings of the Attorneys General office hearings on starting an R18+ rating for Video Games.
On 30 November 2010 Minister O’Connor released a literature review of research into whether violent computer games and violent behaviour are linked. This review was prepared by the Australian Government Attorney-General’s Department.
All studies cited in organisational and group submissions to the public consultation were considered, as well as additional submissions that contributed significantly to the debate or were released after the consultation period had closed. All studies date from the period 2000 to September 2010.
– There is little evidence that violent video games have a greater impact than other violent media.
– That there is little evidence there is any difference in the effect of VVGs on children, adolescents and young adults
– The possibility that third variables (like aggressive personality, family and peer influence, socio-economic status) are behind the effect has not been well explored.
Significant harmful effects from VVGs have not been persuasively proven or disproven. There is some consensus that VVGs may be harmful to certain populations, such as people with aggressive and psychotic personality traits. Overall, most studies have consistently shown a small statistical effect of VVG exposure on aggressive behaviour, but there are problems with these findings that reduce their policy relevance. Overall, as illustrated in this review, research into the effects of VVGs on aggression is contested and inconclusive.
The whole report is 50 pages long (get your copy here) and adds more evidence that Video Games do not pose the threat that Micheal Atkinson and his ilk propose. This is hopefully one more step towards an official R18+ rating so Australian Adults can play the games they want.
For our previous coverage of the R18+ fight look here.
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