Video Games: Pros and Cons

Video Games: Pros and Cons

The increasing popularity of video games among kids, teens and even young adults is a much debated topic among researchers, psychologists, teachers, trainers and parents. Most guardians and teaching professionals are of the common opinion that video games are “bad” for the youngsters. They are often heard to be complaining about irresponsible behavior of their kids owing to the amplified use of video games for entertainment. That these video games give rise to many physical difficulties (like long-term obesity) along with psychological problems (like anger, violence, and impatience) is also a frequently heard allegation. But, do video games only have negative effects? No. Recently, a series of research results have shown that there are many positive aspects of video games.

Some positive effects of video games have been jotted down in the following points:-
1) Enhancement of mental skills and brain capacity
2) Primary introduction to technology
3) Development of parent-child bonding
4) Good form of entertainment
5) Increases Creativity
6) Imparts spontaneity, self-confidence and self-esteem
7) Encourages cooperation and team-work
8) Prevention of outdoor aggression/violence

It would be rather naïve on our part to safely steer clear of the “ill impacts of video games” totally. So, to discuss in short, the following negative effects were mostly seen among young video-game-users:-
1) Induction of Violence
2) Causes Social Isolation
3) Retardation of moral values
4) Illusion of reality
5) Time-consuming
6) Deterioration of health conditions
7) Hampers concentration and mental stability
8) Leads to addiction

All the points above are self-explanatory. But, ‘violence’, we find, is a common point in both positive and negative aspects. Now, how is it possible that video games both induce and prevent violence at the same time? These are basically two schools of opinion regarding impacts of video games.

The view more commonly held is the latter, i.e. video games tend to give a violent streak to kids and teenagers, so that when they grow up, they become potential threats to the society. Games which use a lot of fighting-and-killing sequences propagate a view that being a deft killer is a great feat for every man. These games also provide the players with innovative strategies for unprecedented crimes in the real world. Hence, most teens who play video games tend to adopt violent paths in their adulthood.

The former opinion, on the contrary, of video games preventing violence in the real world is a more recent one. Some of the latest research studies have proved that video games actually do more good than bad. Many scientists are of the opinion that because the minds of the kids are busy in a superficial world created by video games, so they have less scope to show off their notorious talents outdoor. In fact, cooperation and mutual bonding are increasing among today’s kids.

One such study carried out by the University of Glasgow measured the relationship of behavior of children with the time they spend on playing video games. The results were startlingly positive. It must be mentioned here that the study was based on a very large sample of families in Britain. They found that video games had no such negative influence on kids as anger, impatience, attention disorder etc. In fact, Marilyn Price-Mitchell of Roots of Action observed in an article that “97% of U.S. adolescents play video games” who have displayed a constantly increasing IQ, creativity, concentration and thinking power in the last two decades.

Similarly, results of studies conducted by Entertainment Software Association also draw the same positive-effect-inferences and hence, encourage growth of video-games industry.

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