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Study shows Video Games and Television doesn't harm kids developmental processes.

Last posted Nov 22, 2013 at 10:56AM EST. Added Nov 21, 2013 at 01:20AM EST
13 posts from 10 users


A study of 11,000 Kids over the course of 10 years has debunked the myth that TV and Video Games causes brain developmental issues in children. Not a single one of them where affected by games or media of any type. Feel free to slap this study in the faces of whoever makes the “Media causes Real World Violence” ever again. We can now safely say “if somebody blames video games, it’s safer to assume they where messed up in the head in the first place.”

Not that this will stop the media from blaming video games for violence issues. ’Merica still needs something to Demonize ya know.

Last edited Nov 21, 2013 at 01:31AM EST

Let’s see.

One study, although published in a reputable journal, isn’t enough to sway my opinion on anything. That being said, this study seems well-done.

However, this study is reporting correlative predictions only, and does not imply causation. There are a few quotes I wish to highlight:

This study found that watching television, videos or DVDs for 3 h or more daily was associated with a small increase in conduct problems between the ages of 5 years and 7 years, after allowing for
other child and family characteristics, including parenting. Findings are in line with other research on younger children aged 2–4 years and older children showing associations between TV exposure and aggressive behaviour and bullying[…].

So, watching more TV is correlated with more behavioural problems.

We did not find associations between electronic games use and conduct problems, which could
reflect the lower exposure to games and/or greater parental restrictions on age-appropriate content for games compared with TV.

This is one of the more important quotes. The news article Natsuru linked completely glossed over the huge qualifying statement here. So, don’t take the news article at face value. And what’s more, this statement pertains only to conduct problems, not any other behavioural or mental issues.

The study highlights the need for more detailed data to explore risks of various forms of screen time, including exposure to screen violence.

A good study will always discuss its limitations, as this one did. The authors readily admit that more information is needed on specific types of TV and games. For example, if a kid watches 5 hours of Sesame Street, it would probably have a different effect than watching 5 hours of Breaking Bad. The same with games; spending 5 hours playing DOOM is surely different than spending 5 hours playing Animal Crossing.

However, the study suggests that a cautionary approach to the heavy use of screen entertainment in young children is justifiable in terms of potential effects on mental wellbeing, particularly conduct problems, in addition to effects on physical health and academic progress shown elsewhere.

And here you have it. Despite not finding correlations between conduct issues and game exposure, the authors are advocating that excessive TV and game exposure, in general, is likely harmful to children. Again, the news article seems to have skipped this completely.

So once again, the media picks up on a scientific study and completely misinterprets the results. Absolutely typical – this is why you should always read the scientific papers and not just the news.

Oh yeah, and Nats’ post is, well, pretty much all wrong (except for the last bit).

Last edited Nov 21, 2013 at 03:05AM EST

opspe is right, but the report is still very welcome as a balancing act against the hordes of media coverage that claims our TV/Video Games are destroying the very moral fibre of our society.

Childrens exposure to media should still be moderated, but we know it’s not killing them either.

The news report itself may be sensational in it’s claims…but then again, so are the news claims that suggest the very opposite.

Fight fire with fire?

Last edited Nov 21, 2013 at 07:28AM EST

Funny thing is that I heard that the way televisions harm children the most in the UK is by television sets falling on children which is now easier due to flat screens being more prone to falling over.

Blue Screen (of Death) wrote:

Ha ha! The gamers were right all along! In your face, conservative media!

I’m pretty sure all news and media sites scapegoat video games, not just Conservative ones. Just saying.

The problems caused in children by television and video games is because parents use their TV to raise their children for them. If every parent actually took time to BE parents, we would see these problems dwindle down to almost nothing.

I think videos games can be addicting which is a case when games can seriously hamper a child. Games should never be used as a form of escape from reality. I used to be addicted to video games myself and it really hampered my abilities to socialize and do school work. Most of my life I was generally considered smart, and scored high on I.Q tests, so I baffled a lot of psychiatrists who had trouble pinpointing the issue I hid very well.

Most people figured I had assburgers or some other light autism that was borderline because I was failing school and and was extremely depressed. I’ve always had my doubts about that, eventually I downgraded the idea to being a schizoid which is often mistaken for assburgers. I’m just anti-social and asshole like, and I hate everyone, except for myself because I am a beautiful butterfly unfolding it’s wing from a cocoon, so go to hell. It’s not like I like MLP or something~

Last edited Nov 22, 2013 at 02:00AM EST

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