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Grand theft auto

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Guest 19:19

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i was talking to my sister and she read a story on the internet yesterday where a victim's family has a lawsuit against the creators of Grand Theft Auto because a 16 and 14 year old went on the highway with shotguns and killed several people.

now in my honest opinion i feel video games, which i have been into since before the age of 14, don't have such an impact on someone to cause this to happen. especially seeing the ages of these kids why isn't it the parents fault, they allowed such a game to land in their children's hands in the first place! and it can't be just one thing that causes these actions, but a build up over years to cause this.

are we creating a society of psychotic kids that no longer can tell the difference between reality and games?!


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Guest Wellington


I do not think so... Like you said, the burden of responsibility should not be loaded onto the shoulders of the lone parents or the lone children. Non moral behaviours in video games are often a miss hit from the marketing managers of multimedia companies. It is a very young field of activity, and it is spreading faster and faster as people are more and more likely to buy a computer at bargain price. The adult public gets younger and younger, and there is probably now a need to carefully pick the right target for the right game.

There have been many problems regarding age rating for video games. There is no law for that anywhere, nor is there any official board for rating. In France, for example, a rating advisory logo is left to the good will of the editors. In the UK, the rating for the same game can be different and there is only one border to cross! In fact, what people dislike in video games is greatly dependant on the cultural background of their country. Here, too much blood is bad, there, foul language is bad, and over there nudity is bad. So there is no hope of a global unification for the rating of video games. However, there is an active repression against shops that sell games for "under age" customers. Yes, just like alcohol and cigarettes. First consequence is that those shops do not sell adult rated games any more, pity for you and me! And just like films, adult rated can be implied by 1 or 2 mere sequences... Family organisations (catholic and traditionalist, but there is no need to bother to write such obvious things) are very active towards the regulation of software. There is no dialogue between them, editors, and gamers. The problem will not be solved tomorrow... Other thing, games should get some self-selection: Fallout for example. Along the game, you choose to shoot, to kill, to defend, to attack. But I do not think this kind of game should come into possession of a 10-year old. He is simply too young to understand half the story of the game, so can hardly progress through its scenario. It is completely useless to let him play it. On the other hand, Quake like games have one rule: shoot whatever moves, living or solid. A 10 year old is able to manage with it, it is only a matter of reflexe moves. But he has probably better things to do in his life than fragging for hours...

Back to the topic... At the end, the family background could be accused. Video games are not the only media depicting non moral behaviours. In fact, I would fear more for children who slowly mute into couch potatoes in front of all these so-called entertainment broadcasts. The American channels are full of real-life events put together with no care of context of any sorts. I am mainly thinking about all those cop pursuits, etc, that can be close to the feeling of GTA games. A young child left alone alone with such footages only hears "unbelievable, outstanding, extraordinary" and much more. Left alone, he will not have his parents to explain that such situations are not common, that those are clearly not examples to follow, and that any documentary about wild life is always better than this crap. We are in front of a spectrum where at one end there are parents locking their children as far away of such debilitating programs as they can, and at the other end there are the parents who hide behind anything in order to leave their sibling in front of tv because this is the only way they are not fidgetty! And too little in between...

I do not see any problem in video games, because children can see such things elsewhere and more easily. Parents have to put things in perspective, in the right context. It is probably the only responsibility they have. Contrary to the common "modern" belief that children should not be forbidden anything, that it is better they get their own experience through things they come across, that they should not be said "no", I do think that family is not democracy. Some members have to make decisions and to force them on the others. These members cannot be the children. Be it getting to bed, shutting down tv, eating spinach or watching wild life programs, there must be a time when a child has nothing to say against. I will not attract friends this way, and despite the fact that it is a totally different debate this thread is only a part of, I think that children should be given the time to understand their position in society, the size of which broadens with age: family, neighbourhood, classroom, town, country. Not only should they be given this time, but also should they not be allowed to escape from it! If parents were there at the right time, there would no question as why did he find casual shooting people through the head?! Each time I see children abusing other children, or showing egotist manners, or behaving like an opportunist 30-something golden boy, I really wonder why a parent handbook does not come in the package.

Then my answer is no. We are not creating psycho children unable to part real life from fiction. We just let them grow like this, passively, desperately trying to gain some good counsciousness in the process. Too bad for us, at the end, they will refuse us our pensions...  :wink_big:


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