Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Not just a dumb question hed, it's ...

... a particularly irrelevant dumb question hed!

Do video games make kids aggressive?

THE CLAIM: Violent video games make young people aggressive
THE FACTS: Republicans and Democrats alike screamed government waste in March when a group of senators suggested spending $90 million to study how video games "and other electronic media" influence children's behavior. Surely an important question, critics of the plan said, but $90 million?
This month, the American Psychological Association called for a reduction of violence in all video games, saying the evidence from 20 years of research on the subject was clear. They based their conclusion largely on the work of Kevin Kieffer, a psychologist at St. Leo University near Tampa, Fla., who prepared an analysis of dozens of relevant studies.

After this one circles the drain for a few paragraphs, it comes to a conclusion that looks strikingly like, er, several decades' worth of research on the effects of media violence on children: There might be some, and there might not, but if there is, it doesn't seem to last long.

Lesson to wire editors: Just because something moves on the New York Times wire doesn't mean it's new. Or news. Judge by content, not by credit line.


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