Failure to demonstrate that playing violent video games diminishes prosocial behavior

Tear, Morgan J. and Nielsen, Mark (2013) Failure to demonstrate that playing violent video games diminishes prosocial behavior. PLoS ONE, 8 7: e68382.1-e68382.7. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0068382


Author Tear, Morgan J.
Nielsen, Mark
Title Failure to demonstrate that playing violent video games diminishes prosocial behavior
Journal name PLoS ONE   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1932-6203
Publication date 2013-07
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1371/journal.pone.0068382
Open Access Status DOI
Volume 8
Issue 7
Start page e68382.1
End page e68382.7
Total pages 7
Place of publication San Francisco, CA, United States
Publisher Public Library of Science
Collection year 2014
Language eng
Formatted abstract
Background Past research has found that playing a classic prosocial video game resulted in heightened prosocial behavior when compared to a control group, whereas playing a classic violent video game had no effect. Given purported links between violent video games and poor social behavior, this result is surprising. Here our aim was to assess whether this finding may be due to the specific games used. That is, modern games are experienced differently from classic games (more immersion in virtual environments, more connection with characters, etc.) and it may be that playing violent video games impacts prosocial behavior only when contemporary versions are used.

Methods and Findings Experiments 1 and 2 explored the effects of playing contemporary violent, non-violent, and prosocial video games on prosocial behavior, as measured by the pen-drop task. We found that slight contextual changes in the delivery of the pen-drop task led to different rates of helping but that the type of game played had little effect. Experiment 3 explored this further by using classic games. Again, we found no effect.

Conclusions We failed to find evidence that playing video games affects prosocial behavior. Research on the effects of video game play is of significant public interest. It is therefore important that speculation be rigorously tested and findings replicated. Here we fail to substantiate conjecture that playing contemporary violent video games will lead to diminished prosocial behavior.
Keyword Et-al. 2010
Aggression
Life
Feelings
Eastern
False
Model
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: Official 2014 Collection
School of Psychology Publications
 
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