Study: Video Games Rated “Mature” Not for Kids

7 06 2006

This is getting silly…  Do they need a study to know this?  Do they not know that the “Mature” rating means the game is not for anyone under 17?  This is like saying R-rated movies are not for kids.  Of course they aren’t!  That’s why they’re rated R!

Let’s breakdown this article :

In the last five years, 8- to 18-year-olds have nearly doubled the average amount of time spent playing such games from 26 to 49 minutes a day.

These statistics will be skewed in relation to the topic of this article.  The rating of M (Mature) means it’s only for people aged 17 or older.  So the 17- and 18-year-olds in that range are allowed to be playing the game, according to the rating system.  Thus that statistic alone does not necessarily say that underage kids are playing such games more than they used to.

Let’s continue…

Activity diaries kept by caregivers recording two days in the lives of 3,500 children aged 6 to 12 found that for each hour of violent TV watched, the children spent 20 to 25 fewer minutes with friends.

Researcher David Bickham of Harvard School of Public Health described the phenomenon as “a downward spiral from violent television viewing to aggressive behavior to social isolation to viewing more violent television.

“Exposure to violent television could, therefore, be the catalyst for a cyclical system leading toward an aggressive, socially isolated lifestyle,” he wrote.

Hold up a minute… when kids watch more violent TV, they spend less time with their friends?  Maybe it’s because they were watching TV instead of hanging out with their friends.  Hmm…  (Perhaps their study dug deeper, but the article didn’t reveal it.)  Just based on their “logic”, you could probably say that for each hour of non-violent TV watched, the children spent less time with friends.  Also, why is this study subjecting 3,500 children aged 6 to 12 to violent TV?  If it’s as bad as they suppose, why are they corrupting children in the name of research?

Okay, now to the actual issue.  The problem is not that there are M-rated games but that kids are allowed to get these games.  Stores shouldn’t allow kids to buy them, and, brace yourself for this one, parents should take some responsibility for what their kids do.




2 responses

7 06 2006

parents should take some responsibility for what their kids do.

Oh no, you can’t expect parents to be responsible for their children, that’s just absurd! Of course, I’m being sarcastic.
It amazes me in todays age how parents won’t take the responsibility of raising their chilldren but instead it’s up to either one, or possibly all, of the following three groups:

The government; they should be running some program to help my child
The education department; the teachers should teach them about discipline
The church; it’s their ‘job’ to give them spiritual guidance
Sadly they miss the fact that the greatest role model a child has, during its formable younger years, is its parents…

12 06 2006

I read an article today about a detox clinic for video game addicts that is opening in Amsterdam, and there’s already several such clinics in the US and Canada (and 1 in China). It’s odd to think of gaming as an ‘addiction’, but according to some of the news articles out there, I think it definitely is for some people, especially when drug use is started just so the person can stay awake longer to play. The director at the Amsterdam clinic was quoted as saying, “Some show withdrawal symptoms, such as shaking and sweating, when they look at a computer console.” Now that’s pretty bad…

This comment goes back to the parents taking responsibility for what their kids do. Even if the game is not rated ‘M’ and doesn’t have violence, it can STILL do damage to kids! And that is something even the stores can’t regulate. I’m not saying kids should not be allowed to play video games, I think they’re great. I’m just saying that it’s important that kids have a balanced lifestyle, for example, one that includes physical activity and the development of social skills. And that is the parents’ responsibility.

FYI, here’s the Amsterdam article.

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