Research Paper Analysis Essay Example
Research Paper Analysis Essay Example

Research Paper Analysis Essay Example

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  • Pages: 12 (3265 words)
  • Published: December 24, 2017
  • Type: Research Paper
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Final Draft 5th Period Media Violence affecting children Children who are exposed to media violence have a higher chance of becoming violent and aggressive. Throughout the years, many still questions, “Can media violence make a child violent? ” Media companies target children, teenagers, adults and the elderly. Although adults and elder people can view any kinds of media, teens and children cannot. Many researches about the issue have been done, but some are still unsure about it.

Most researches look at violent video games since it is the most media consumed by children. What they are forgetting is that television, music and the internet can also influence children. Violent video game research has not kept pace with current modes of gaming or tracked the content consumed by youth, not many have paid attention to violent advertising


that children consume, comprehensive research on T. V. violence has become old, and no studies has been done on online internet violence. Researchers use different methods to study the effects of media violence.

Some use physical acts of violence like verbal use, threats and insults, to study the reactions of the children exposed to violent media. Other methods of studying media violence are not enough funded or too expensive, creating a research gap. Because of research gaps, it is difficult to prove if media violence does really make children violent. Violence in Television A study by BJ Wilson for the Handbook of Children, Media, and Development says, it is estimated that 90% of movies include violence, 68% of video games, 60% of T.V shows and 15% of music videos (Wilson, 2008), and that children and teens consume seven or more hour

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of media screen per day (Kaiser Family Foundation, 2010). By the time they are 18 years old, the children would have seen 250,000 acts of violence and 40,000 attempts of murder on television alone.

Most of the violence that occurs in television comes from TV series. TV series shows like the Walking Dead, Game of Thrones, and Breaking Bad contain many violent acts. TV news may not show any acts of violence, but they do present some gruesome news that children an fear like the Boston Bombing, and the Sandy Hook Shooting. Also, cartoons that children tend to watch can contain acts of violence, and an average cartoon show shows 20-25 acts of violence, for example, the show “Tom & Jerry” is a childhood cartoon favorite where a cat and a mouse try to hurt the other using different types of weapons like a pipe, a bat, or a frying pan. Same with the show ‘The Road Runner,” where a wild coyote tries to kill the road runner by using any type of killing machine like a rocket launcher, catapults or bear traps.

Although no one would expect a child to use rocket launchers, they are still exposed to the violence that is presented in the cartoon. A 1972 study followed children from the age of 8 to the age of 19 (Eron, Lefkowitz, and Huesmann, 1972). The study controlled the IQ, initial aggressiveness, and social class of the participants but not their exposure to violence in the home, another thought key contributor to violent behavior (Ferguson, 2008). For boys, heavy viewing of television violence at the age of 8 predicted peer reports of violent behavior at

the age of 19.

For girls, the only effect found was that those who watched television violence at the age of 8, were less likely reported by peers to be violent at the age of 19 (Lefkowitz, Eron, and Huesmann, 1977). This study also found that children, who were already aggressive at the age of 8, were not more likely to consume violent programming at the age of 19, meaning the relationship between television violence and later behavior was not due to people who seek more violent media content. Violence in Movies Television shows are not the only television media that shows violent acts, movies also show many acts of violence.

In a 1999 study of the 50 top grossing G- and PG- non animated rated films 40 % had a main character carrying a firearm and an average of 4. 5 other characters also carrying a firearm per film (Pelletier, Quinlan, Sacks, Van Gilder, Gulchrist, and Ahluwalia, 1999). Although some of the main character or other characters do not use the firearm, it still portrays them possessing a lethal weapon. A study on movie previews show that 76% of previews contained at least one act of physical aggression, and 46% contained gun scenes.

Most of those previews were introduced in DVD’s that are rated G, PG, PG-13 and R. Some of the DVD’s rating information is not prominently placed right, resulting in parents not being informed of the violence that will occur in the movie. The Federal Trade Commission studied marketers of violent music, movies and video games found out that “movie studios targeted violent PG-13 films to children under 13 both through advertising and promotional tie-ins

with foods, toys, and other licensed products” (Federal Trade Commission, 2009a).

The Federal Trade

Commission also mentioned violent movie trailers being advertised in online websites popular to children under the age of 17, without age-based access restrictions. (Federal Trade Commission, 2009b). This makes it difficult to prevent children seeing R-rated movie previews in online websites since some websites do not have age-based access restriction. Violence in Music Not to be forgotten, music also plays a role in exposing violence in our society. Eight to eighteen year olds will spend two and a half hours listening to music per day (Kaiser Family Foundation, 2010).

Music doesn’t really show visual presentations of people doing violent acts, some music videos, usually rap and metal music videos, show many acts of violence, aggression and possession of firearms. A study of 2000 random drawn music videos from MTV, BET and VH-1, 15% featured “intentional physical aggression. ” Rap and Metal music videos are the most kind of music that show aggression (Smith and Boyson, 2002). Music lyrics can also influence a child. Today’s music contains many violent lines and phrases. The song “Mercy” by Kanye West contains lyrics that tell listeners about committing suicide in a plane.

A song from the 90s, “It Was a Good Day,” by Ice Cube was a song about having a good day because of someone from a different gang getting killed and also about carrying guns all day. Though music is different than television and movies, music restrictions are more successful. Music marketers do an excellent job at displaying the rating of the song or album or parents to see, but retailers fail at selling explicit songs

or albums to the right age group. Television ads only show the explicit content label half the time, sometimes they do not even show it. Violence in Social Media and Internet

Ever since the internet or World Wide Web (WWW) was released to the public, it gave everyone access to many websites in the World Wide Web. Big websites like Facebook made it possible for us to contact people around the world, and YouTube gives the option to watch videos that people post around the world. One in four teen social media users say they encounter some type of hate speech like racism, sexist comments, and homophobic remarks, but it is not clear what portion of that includes or discussions of physical threat and violence (Rideout, 2012). This is called “Cyber bullying. Ever since social media sites like Twitter and Facebook were made, cyber bullying has become a big problem. Some cyber bully can push a victim to his/her limits, causing the victim to commit suicide. Also, online media users can send death threats to other people, without being caught, which make it very dangerous for other online media users. YouTube is known for its videos. 1 hour of footage is uploaded every second to YouTube, and has 2 billion views every day, making YouTube the 3rd most visited website. Not only do YouTube users post funny videos, some videos that are being posted contain extreme violence.

Although YouTube always does a check on every video being uploaded, not all videos are turned down or blocked. A 2008 survey of 1500 10 to 15 year olds found that 38% of them have seen violent acts and scenes

on the internet (Ybarra and Suman, 2008). Videos can contain some violence like explosions, guns and physical violence. YouTube users like FPSRussia uploads videos of him using different types of guns to shoot old beaten up cars and making them explode. Some videos has him using knifes to stab man-like mannequins with limbs filled with fake blood.

A child would never possess any firearm, but it can get them interested in possessing one at an early age. Violence in Video Games For years, video games have improved its every detail. Due to our technology in the 1960s, video games were very simple. It started from hitting a digital ball back and forth across the screen to shooting zombies in the head with a very detailed gun. Video games are also the most blamed kind of media for its violent contents. Because of the total control video games offer, children give more attention to video games rather than other media sources.

In a game called “Grand Theft Auto” you play as a character that kills people with guns, drive cars recklessly, and have sexual experience with prostitutes. Another game “Call of Duty,” which is the top selling franchise video game, contains extreme violence. The point of the game is to shoot, stab and blow up other players you play online. There’s also another mode called “Zombies” where you and other players try surviving a zombie apocalypse by stabbing and shooting zombies in the head. The graphics that the game offers is very detailed to a real life injury.

A 2004 survey provided by the Kaiser Family Foundation shows that 65% of kids in the grades 7-12 have played the

game Grand Theft Auto (KFF, 2005). Although a kid may not go out, drive their parents’ car, and run over people or simply grab a gun and shoot people, it can give the kid who plays the violent video game an idea to maybe reenact what they experience in the video game in real life. Because video games have not been around as long as television and studies on them take many years to complete, there are only a few long term studies exploring the possible effects of violent video games on aggressive behavior.

Researchers believe video games have a greater effect on violent behavior than more passive media such as television: because users are actively engaged in the violent behavior presented by the video game and because the video game rewards the user from doing violent acts with points and new levels (Bushman and Huesmann, 2011). A recent Meta analysis on video game violence (Anderson, Shibuya, Ihori, and Swing, 2010) included longitudinal studies that met the best practices criteria and explored the effect of it on physical aggression.

After studying 4,526 participants who played violent video games, the researchers found the relationship between the times spent playing video games and later violent behavior was an average effect of . 203 (small). Some argue that violent media such as video games can improve a child in many different ways. In shooting, the character may be required to run and shoot at the same time. This requires the player in real life to keep track of the position of the character, where the character is headed, their speed, where the character’s gun is aimed, and if the gunfire

is hitting the enemy.

All these factors need to be taken into account, and the player must coordinate their brain’s reaction and interpretation with the movement in their hands and finger tips, resulting in improving the player’s hand-eye coordination, fine motor skills, and multitasking skills (Anthes, 2009). Studies by Ferguson (2007) suggested that playing violent video games can assist a child in social communities, mostly children that have social problems in real life.

Also another positive effect is that if the child was ever in need to let anger out, he/she can let all his/her anger through playing a video game, without having to harm someone. Author Ethan Gilsdorf (2013) writes “Perhaps violent video games aren’t only “not so bad,” but actually help keep the real world killings where they belong – in our imaginations, as harmless as fantasies. ” Although some of the arguments may be true, there are many other safer ways to improve a child’s motor, hand-eye coordination, multitasking skills, and anger management instead of playing a violent video game.

A scientific study shows that children who play violent video games are more likely increased to have aggressive behavior, feelings, and thoughts (Bushman and Anderson, 2001). Since the player is rewarded with new levels and points by acting violent in the game (Bushman and Huesmann, 2011), the interactive nature of the video game keeps the player to keep playing, and the act of violence keeps repeating. The player is in control of the violence happening in the game with his/her own eyes (killing, stabbing, and shooting). This kind of active interaction is an effective tool for learning behavior.

Instead of playing violent video games, playing a

sport like baseball or wiffleball can improve a child’s hand-eye coordination (Callum). Hitting a ball with a bat requires a lot of hand-eye coordination since the batter has to watch where the ball goes, and has to swing the bat at the right location. Easily playing a random sport like basketball can relieve some stress and anger without having to harm someone or the risk of becoming aggressive. Many have questioned, “Can watching or playing media violence make a child violent? A series of longitudinal studies indicates that there are reasons to be concerned that a child who view or play media violence increases the chance of the child becoming violent and aggressive later in life no matter what type of media the child views, whether it’s listening to violent music lyrics, looking up violent images and videos on the internet, playing an extremely violent video game, or simply just watching a violent television show or movie. Certainly there are gaps in the research, especially in monitoring the rate of exposure the children receive and in the time it takes to collect data.

In addition to uncover the truth behind media violence, longitudinal studies, especially on first person shooter video games should be more conducted. Research also needs to be more controlling and pay special attention to not just the media, but other ways a child might become aggressive and violent. And while it is very tempting to think in terms of tragic incidents like Aurora or Sandy Hook, it may be important that the relationship between media and behavior is located in everyday violence of pushing and hitting rather than shocking rampages of mass murder.



  1. Anderson, Craig A. Akiko Shibuya, Nobuko Ihori, and Edward L. Swing. "Violent video game effects on aggression, empathy, and pro social behavior in Eastern and Western countries: A meta-analytic review. " Psychological Bulletin 136. 2 (2010): 151-173.
  2.  Andrew, Pelletier R. , Quinlan K. P, Sacks JJ, and Van Gilder TJ. "Firearm use in G- and PG-rated movies. " Journal of the American medical Association (1999): 282, 428.
  3.  Anthes, Emily. "How Video Games are good for the brain. " Boston. com [Boston, MA]. The Boston Globe, 12 Oct. 2009. Web. 26 May 2013.
  4. Bushman, Brad J. , and L R. Huesmann. Effects Of Violent Media on Aggression. "Handbook of children and the media (2011): 231-248.
  5. Bushman, Brad J. , and Craig A. Anderson. "Violent Video Games and Hostile Expectations: A Test of the General Aggression Model. " Violent Games and Hostility (2001): 1679-1686. Web. 28 May 2013
  6.  In this article, the main point was to show the effects of violent video games in different kinds of aggression. Topics that were covered were effect of violent video games on aggressive behavior, aggressive cognition, aggressive affect, psychological arousal, and pro-social behavior.
  7. This source was very useful because it showed the different levels of aggression a person would meet in the amount of time spent playing a violent video game. Though very helpful, it helped me shape my claim. Callum, Leila H. "How To Improve Hand-Eye Coordination. " wikiHow - to do anything. MediaWiki, Web. 26 May 2013.
  8. Eron, Leonard D. , Monroe M. Lefkowitz, and Rowell L. Huesmann. "Does television cause aggression? " American Psychologist 27 (1972): 256-263. Web. 26 May 2013
  9. The main point of the article was to uncover if

television violence can cause aggression.

  • The research in the article was about peer reports on third graders (a peer reports the behavior of the child exposed to media violence). The information was very useful since they proved third graders can be violent after viewing a violent program. This article helped shape my essay with the television section.
  • Ferguson, Christopher J. , et al. "The School Shooting/Violent Video Game Link: Causal Link or Moral Panic? " Journal of Investigative Psychology and Offender Profiling5 (2008): Web. 26 May 2013.
  • Ferguson, Christopher J. "The Good, The Bad, and the Ugly: A Meta Analytic Review of Positive and Negative Effects of Violent Video Games.  Psychiatric Quarterly 78. 4 (2007): 309-316.
  • This article was about pointing out the good and bad effects of violent video games. It points out the positive effects of violent video games, which is improving motor skills, hand-eye coordination and helps deal with anger without harming anybody, and points out the negative effects which is increasing the chance of becoming aggressive and violent later in life. The article helped with the counterargument of the paper. FTC Renews Call to Entertainment Industry to Curb Marketing of Violent Entertainment to Children.  Federal Trade Commission. 3 Dec. 2009. Web. 9 May 2013.
  • This article was published in an internet website called “Federal Trade Commission. ” The main point of the article was to show the effects and errors in advertising violent media. The article mostly concentrated on false rating advertisement of music albums on television, and video game advertisements on the internet. Though very informative, it did not help as much in the essay, but gave an idea of
  • how violent media is advertised. Gilsdorf, Ethan. "Why We Need Violent Video Games. " Cognoscenti. 90. 9wbur, 17 Jan. 2013. Web. 8 May 2013.

  • Lefkowitz, Monroe M. , Leonard D. Eron, and Rowell L. Huesmann. Growing up to be violent: A longitudinal study of the development of aggression. Elmsford, NY: Pergamon Press, Inc. , 1977.
  • Rideout, Victoria. "Some teens wish they could disconnect more often - and that people around them would, too. " Social Media, Social Life: How Teens View Their Digital Lives (2012): 12. Web. 9 May 2013. Rideout, Victoria J. , Ulla G. Foehr, and Donald F. Roberts. Generation M2: Media in the Lives of 8- to 18- Year Olds. Menlo Park , CA: Kaiser Family Foundation, 2010.
  • The book “Generation M2: Media in the Lives of 8 to 18 Year Olds,” was about the effects of types of media such as television, cell phones, computers, video games, music, print media, and movies have on kids at the age of 8 to 18 years old. The point of the book was to show some data on the behavior of the kid who is exposed to media. The book was a very helpful and useful source, since it showed many data. Though it was very similar to many of the sources used in this essay, it was a lot more helpful because of the different kinds of data it contained. Roberts, Donald F. , Ulla G. Foehr, and Victoria Rideout.
  • Generation M: Media in the Lives of 8 - 18 year olds . Menlo Park, CA: Kaiser Family Foundation, 2005.
  • Smith, Stacy L. , and Aaron R. Boyson. "Violence in music videos: Examining
  • the prevalence and context of physical aggression. " Journal of Communication 52. 1 (2002): 61-83.

  • Sandra, Calvert L. , and B. J. Wilson. The Handbook of children, media, and development. Boston, MA: Wiley-Blackwell, 2008.
  • Ybarra, Michele, and Michael Suman. "Reasons, assessments and actions taken: sex and age differences in uses of Internet health information. " Health Education Research23. 3 (2008): 512-521. Web. 11 May 2013.
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