Video games once again blamed for poor driving skills

Once again there's been another report of how video games promote irresponsible behaviour. Apparently researchers in Germany found that men take more risks on the road after racing in video games but women did not. A NSW acting superintendent Dave Evans said that "in games you race, you crash and it is a matter of pressing the buttons and off you go again. In real life it doesn't work that way, you can be killed."

I'm getting sick of how patronising and condescending the general public view gamers. Fortunately, with the average age of gamers going up eventually we will be rid of people with such luddite views on what is said to be the fastest growing sector of the entertainment industry.

By the logic proposed in the article it's probably not a good idea for people to play Civilization - since this could encourage people to become fascist dictators who seek to rule the world through the stockpiling of nuclear weapons! [sarcasm]This is obviously due to them being unable to tell fact from fiction [/sarcasm]. The funny thing is though, this has always been happening throughout history and the more impressionable of us are sadly going to be very easily influenced by what the media or even competent orators tell us. Yes, use the OFLC to give higher ratings to games that may influence a younger person's behaviour adversely; yes, reinforce the fact that speeding and reckless driving can kill, but don't ban driving games just because some people are unable to act like responsible adults when it comes to driving on the road - these people are probably irresponsible in other aspects of their lives too and it isn't the video games that are to blame! I know people who didn't grow up with video games and still think speeding is cool...

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  1. Perhaps we should also blame terrorism on computer games, since they often depict terrorists and counter terrorists at each other's throats? Perhaps a bit too much tongue in cheek, but it boils down to simple ignorance. Blame the ills you see around upon something you don't understand or don't appreciate.

    If people only listen to those who are loud yet ignorant, then it leads to mass misinformation, dislike, even hatred in extreme cases, for example, in the case of Jack Thompson the disbarred former lawyer. The way to combat these ignorant and misguided fools, is usually not to fight them, rather better to educate them.

    Computer (or video) games are relatively new medium for us, especially since they are typically interactive. However, in the beginning, I'm sure there were many cries against the creation of mass producing books, with the invention of the printing press, as it allowed ideas to spread easily and widely. There was even resistance against the compact disc (CD), as arguments that records or CDs are much better, was still a sore subject for many music lovers.

    We should be trying to educate those ignorant fools the benefits of games, ie. the hand-eye coordination from playing console games, and problem solving skills from playing strategy games. However, lack of judgement or the lack of responsibility for one's own actions is the real culprit behind the "negative impact of video games".

    Through driving games, often it may appear to the ignorant that children are exposed to street racing, irratic and dangerous driving and lack of understanding the impact of motor vehicle accidents. However, should we also ban the MatchBox cars too? I still remember playing with those as a child, and launching them off ramps, imagining being the driver in the vehicle doing insane stunts. There were never any real damage to my cars either. Does that mean I will be going out to race on the streets, driving on two wheels on the side or doing jumps? No, because it takes a bit of common sense that unless you're a fully trained and experienced professional, you will be in a world of trouble. I'm still a petrolhead, and started all from my childhood playing with those MatchBox cars.

    Just like I love video games, but does that mean that I will turn into a maniac driver with unsuppressable urge to go take drugs, womanize, dominate the world, commit violent crimes, even murder? Just because of the games I play?? Come on... I enjoy video games, as part of an escape, but it doesn't mean I wouldn't re-enact what goes on in games. I'm sure I wouldn't re-enact the scene by Hannibal Lecter after reading "Hannibal", and books are another means of "escape".

    Simply take responsibility for your own actions, and think before you act... and then when they start running of things to blame computer (or video) games onto, then we can start telling those ignorant twits to bugger off.

  2. Agreed Choona and good point about how the luddites blame new media as being the spawn of Satan!

    Haha I remember playing with Matchbox cars as a kid too! I wonder if they're going to stop kids playing those too since it encourages "reckless driving"! I remember another article in the news awhile back blaming Bratz dolls for encouraging girls to take crash diets so they could look more like the dolls they idolise! I kid you not. For those of us brought up on Bugs Bunny, does that mean we all have the urge to transform into an anthromorphic rabbit? I think not!

  3. When you let idiotic morons get on the soapbox talking about things they have no idea about... that's what happens.

    The same kind of idiots that managed to take Fat Cat off Australian TV, on the grounds that he doesn't talk, and therefore makes children antisocial and non-talkative. So instead, they let Tellytubbies on instead... like "WTF?"

    So what's next on the agenda? Perhaps they should also ban books? Since it encourages antisocial behaviour by reading on your own. Or maybe they should ban sports, since it brings out competitiveness in children, and thus leading violent aggression?

    How about we just ban those nitwits from getting the publicity they crave? Obviously they don't really care what the agenda is, so long as they get the attention they seek, they'll keep going. What happened to the good old fashioned common sense?


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