The Instigator
debatability
Pro (for)
Winning
11 Points
The Contender
lannan13
Con (against)
Losing
3 Points

In general, violence in video games has not caused real-world violence.

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Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 3 votes the winner is...
debatability
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 6/25/2014 Category: Entertainment
Updated: 2 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 3,895 times Debate No: 57104
Debate Rounds (4)
Comments (15)
Votes (3)

 

debatability

Pro

As lannan13 requested, I have changed the resolution to: In general, violence in video games has not caused real-world violence.

I look forward to a great debate!!

First round is acceptance.
lannan13

Con

I accept and look foward to a good debate.
Debate Round No. 1
debatability

Pro

Observation:
The resolution is about the impact of violence in video games, not about the impact of video games themselves.

What began the controversy:

It is obvious that violence has been a major issue in society today. Events such as the school shooting in Newtown and the bombing of the Boston Marathon have made people begin to wonder what exactly pushed the guilty individuals to commit such atrocities. Many people have concluded that one of the major factors that promotes violence today are video games. Jay Rockfeller is one of the activists against video game violence. Minnesota Post explains that Rockfeller introduced a legislation instructing the National Association of Sciences to investigate the effects of violent video games on children, saying, “People believe that violent video games are no more dangerous to young minds than classic literature or Saturday morning cartoons. Parents, pediatricians, and psychologists know better.” (1) The effects of video games on the minds of young children has been studied for years, and the data quite contradicts Rockfeller’s conclusion.

What really causes violence in teens:
Serious Crimes
Adam Lanza, the gunman from the Sandy Hook shooting, played violent video games regularly. This caused many to believe that this is why he committed his violent crime. However, this was not the case. Eric Huey explains, “
It turns out that delinquent peers, depression, and an abusive family environment account for actual violence incidents…” (2) Obviously, mental disorders would be another thing that promotes such violence. Here we can see that video games did not compel him (or most other school shooters) to commit the crime.
Agression
A common argument against violence in video games is that violence in video games cause agression. This is actually not the case. Carol Pichefsky notes that agression is not caused by violent video games; rather, it is caused by a competitive environment (3). So, a game of MarioKart would be just as likely to result in aggression as a game of Call of Duty. This is not exclusive to video games either, competitive sports and competitive debate (especially on this website) are just as likely to result in aggression. So, it is certianly not the violence in video games that causes such feelings. The last thing I would like to note is that aggression and violence are two different things. Agression is an intention. Violence in an action (4). My opponent showing that video games cause aggression is simply not enough.

The evidence:
If violence in video games have caused violence in the past, it would make sense for the violence rates to go up as video game sales went up. However, just the opposite happened:



We can see that as video game sales go up, violent crime went down. Now, I certianly won't argue that video games caused the violent crime to go down, but this evidence certianly makes mockery of the idea that violence in video games has caused real world violence.

Conclusion
Huey notes (1), "...these games may seem repugnant but they do not harm the human brain or increase the likelihood of violent acts." Through the evidence I have presented, we can see that the violence in video games does not cause real world violence. Thus, I take the pro stance on this resolution.

(1) http://www.minnpost.com...
(2) http://www.sfgate.com...
(3) http://www.sfgate.com...
(4) http://www.goodtherapy.org...#
(5) Chasing the Dream, “The Economist”

On to con...

lannan13

Con

Since my opponent has not defined one key word in this debate I shall.
Violence is the use of physical force to harm someone or damage property. (http://www.merriam-webster.com...)

Contention 1: Studies show they cause violence.

YouGov Effects of Games
We can see by this chart above that people believe that these violent video games cause violence. (http://yougov.co.uk...)

Now you may ask me why does video games cause violence? The answer is simple. It's the media's effectiveness to market products and slogans to a younger audience causing them to practically do what the company wants them to do. Craig Anderson, Professor at Iowa St University lead a research of over 3,000 children and found that children who play violent video games for a short period of time during the week lead to permanent changes in the brain, causing them to become more violent towards other. (http://time.com...) They also found in a study in Singapore that when they did the same study with children between the ages of 8-17 that violence increases over a three year period. They hit, kick, and push a whole lot more. (http://www.foxnews.com...)

In a 2008 study of Grand Theft Childhood, they found that 60% of Middle Schoolers that beat up someone up played at least 1 M rated game compared to the 39% of kids who did not. (Grand Theft Childhood: The Surprising Truth about Violent Video Games and What Parents Can Do, Apr) According to an FBI study done in 2000, they found a link between violent video games and school shootings. (http://videogames.procon.org...)

Con also says that if sales are linked then why are they going down, but let me show you this graph here.


Coincidence? I think not. How can we dwarf an entire continent in both game sales and homicide rates?

I will hand things off to Pro once more.

Debate Round No. 2
debatability

Pro

I'll start out by saying I agree with my opponent's definition. I'll use this round to address each of the studies my opponent has cited in their case.

Survey Study
There are a couple reasons that this study does nothing to prove my opponent's point. Firstly, this is not a study over whether or not video games cause violence. It is a study over whether or not people believe video games cause violence. In the chart my opponent has provided, we can see that more people think video games cause violence than not. This argument can't be taken into account because it is a logical fallacy known as bandwagon. (assuming something is true because many people believe it is) The article linked by my opponent seemed to show that those who play video games are less worried about negative affects. So, it is quite obvious that this article is not actually claiming that violence in video games is harmful. The article ends with this... "It is possible that concerns about games could fade away in much the same way that fears about rock music, comic books, and radio dramas dissolved when these forms of entertainment gained wider acceptance."

Time Study
This study notes that video games (even if played for a short period of time) can cause permanent changes in the brain and aggression. (Note: My opponent says violence, but the article says aggression) I showed in R2 that violence and aggression are not actually the same thing. Aggression is an intention, violence is an action. Moreover, nothing about this study suggests it was the violence in the video games that resulted in the aggression. There is a good chance that the competitive factor so often found in violent video games was what caused such feelings of aggression among the children. American Psychological Association notes (after observing several studies), "More competitive games produced greater levels of aggressive behavior than less competitive games, no matter how much violence was in the games. (1)" Remember, my opponent must prove that violence factor in video games results in real-world violence.

Fox News Study
This study is very similar to the time study, so I'll go ahead and cross-apply what I said earlier. I would like to note that my opponent's source concedes that this study is flawed. The source says, "However, experts not involved with the study say that the research has flaws, and does not add anything meaningful to the debate over whether violent video games increase aggression, which has been a contentious issue."

Grand Theft Childhood
My opponent cites a study that explains how 60% of middle schoolers that beat up someone played at least one M rated video game. I'd like to reference something I said in R2, "It turns out that delinquent peers, depression, and an abusive family environment account for actual violence incidents…" If a middle schooler is beating up their classmates, it is more likely to be because of the reasons I have listed. In order for this study to count, my opponent will need to explain exactly how, in this study, the violence factor of video games is contributing to this violence among kids.

School Shooting Study
Page four of my opponent's source explains that many factors contribute towards school shootings and that not one factor is decisive. Here we can see that violence in video games alone does not cause such shootings to come about. Most likely, other factors are coming into play as I have shown in previous evidence. Just because a shooter plays violent video games doesn't mean that is what caused them to commit such a violent crime. Moreover, this resolution does say "in general." School shootings are very rare. Even if literally every school shooting was a result of violence in video games, this would not be enough to cause me to not fulfill my BoP.

Video Game and Homicide Correlation
This chart compares video game sales in Europe and America, as well as homicide in Europe and America. It important to realize that we don't know exactly what caused this correlation. My opponent has not proved that violence in video games directly have caused this link. This is a logical fallacy known as false cause. Essentially, this correlation could be caused by anything. For example, Europe and the US have different gun control policies, different laws, and different atmospheres. Anything could cause this correlation. In the chart I provided, I was not aiming to show a direct correlation, rather, I was aiming to show that video game sales certainly are not causing violence to go up.

(1) https://www.apa.org...
lannan13

Con

I will be unable to continue this debate as I will be gone Friday-Monday I appologize to Pro.
Debate Round No. 3
debatability

Pro

No problem, thanks for letting me know. If you a rematch later, contact me.

To the voters: Vote pro, but con can have the conduct point due to the graceful concession.
lannan13

Con

I'm sorry once again for the forfeiture here. I thought the debate was going to move faster.
Debate Round No. 4
15 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 10 records.
Posted by lannan13 2 years ago
lannan13
Change to has not.
Posted by MissConception 2 years ago
MissConception
I'll accept??
Posted by Bullish 2 years ago
Bullish
The thing is though, even if it happens only 1% of the time, that's still thousands of cases.
Posted by debatability 2 years ago
debatability
I want the resolution to give each side equal ground.
Posted by Blade-of-Truth 2 years ago
Blade-of-Truth
If you changed it to 'on balance' you'd have a guaranteed win. That way, you can show that such cases where empirical evidence is provided to negate your affirmative statement does not outweigh the percentage of gamers in the world who aren't necessarily carrying out violent acts with games being the cause.
Posted by debatability 2 years ago
debatability
@andymcstab
Would "on balance" be a better term or is there no difference between that and "in general?"
Posted by andymcstab 2 years ago
andymcstab
I disagree with those below me. "In general" makes it practically impossible for Con to win, because there are millions of gamers and "in general", they aren't mass murderers. Even if 20% of them were mass murderers he still couldn't win because "in general" the average gamer isn't. You should avoid using generalities in a resolution like that.

A better resolution would be "violent video games do not reliably (or consistently) cause real-world violence"
Posted by JustinAMoffatt 2 years ago
JustinAMoffatt
don't feel stupid!

Thanks for actually listening :)

Best wishes to you in your debate :) If you have any questions, feel free to PM me.
Posted by lannan13 2 years ago
lannan13
I accept your challenge.
Posted by DarxDB 2 years ago
DarxDB
It is impossible for pro to actually loose this debate
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by MysticEgg 2 years ago
MysticEgg
debatabilitylannan13Tied
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Total points awarded:51 
Reasons for voting decision: Conduct to Con for concession. Spelling and grammar were fine, in general. Argument go to Pro, because she gave out arguments which weren't flawed by counter-arguments, whereas Con's were littered with them. Sources to Pro to, mainly due to Fox News as a source from Con, which is highly unreliable. Good debate, though!
Vote Placed by XLAV 2 years ago
XLAV
debatabilitylannan13Tied
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Total points awarded:31 
Reasons for voting decision: Concession. Though Pro was winning it anyway, in my opinion.
Vote Placed by bsh1 2 years ago
bsh1
debatabilitylannan13Tied
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Total points awarded:31 
Reasons for voting decision: Concession. Neat topic, btw...