Follow

sometimes i'll think about the "do video games cause violence" debate from around twenty to thirty years ago and its implications on modern society and i wonder often about how as a result it's completely poisoned our ability as a culture to tackle the normalization of hyperviolence not only in media but in real life

basically we kind got ourselves fucked up on assuming everyone that's concerned about the mass portrayal and glorification of violence in popular media as a jack thompson figure that has no coherent position or arguments based in facts. so instead of coming at the conversation from a rational place we instead fall back on that style of debunking that's basically just saying people have no position or authority and calling it a day instead of analyzing our usage of violence as a storytelling or game mechanical tool and how that shapes our perception and use of violence in the real world

Show thread

it should also not be forgotten that this debate was heavily relevant to atheist circles at the time, so as the atheist movement partially moved on from tackling christianity to tackling feminism; feminist critique of violent media, and especially video games, was ripe for the forward porting of the ideas about the video game violence debate to the new feminist critiques of violent media

Show thread
@CyclopsCaveman I've pondered this before too. Like yeah, the main people who said this first were laughably wrong, but at some point when more and more people bring up the point, we need to stop laughing at the first guy and actually consider it again.

@trysdyn i think the main issue is that the position, at the time, WAS fundamentally incoherent. the people making the argument were basically making a spurious claim that wasn't backed up by anything significant at the time, and they weren't (conjecturally) making the point to critique society but instead to blanket ban something they saw as out of the norm and therefore bad. the difference here is that the modern critiques are coherent and are interested in eliciting introspection in how we view the media we consume-media that is within the norm and is recognized as such

@CyclopsCaveman @trysdyn I was in one of these conversations around 2014 and when I explained to my interlocutor that I didn't think videogames made people violent and wasn't interested in banning them and they said, in as many words, that if I didn't want to ban games, they didn't understand why I wanted to complain about their content

People have really narrow views about criticism as a concept

@LogicalDash @CyclopsCaveman @trysdyn as if the only purpose of criticism is to decide whether something is embraced by everyone unquestioningly or made illegal

@CyclopsCaveman lets look at it from an authoritative stand point then. Has violence shot up in the US in the last 20-30 years? It has not. A interesting fact though the number of gang related and murders during the commission of felonies rose as a share of homicides during that time.

So no movies & games do not shape our use of violence in the real world. They are STILL an excuse 2 ignore structural social factors in US murder rates.

IMO violence in media is there because it gives a rush

@pequenopete @CyclopsCaveman it's not just video games; violence in media as a whole has impacts more subtle than whether a bunch of people decide to kill a bunch of strangers for fun

@CyclopsCaveman I would suggest that in general modern society's ability to "understand" its media is very poor

there was a buzzword flying around German education discussion in the 90s about this, "Medienkompetenz", wrt concerns about how people not learning to critically engage with media was liable to cause problems - but the onus for fixing this was kind of put on schools with no actual suggestions or plan for *how*

@CyclopsCaveman relatedly, here's this that just zipped past on my Twitter timeline because asdkahslghasg [cw: cg alien bug gore]

@Ludonaut @outie @CyclopsCaveman TFW the Wikipedia page for a movie has a better critical analysis of it than you

Sign in to participate in the conversation
Radical Town

A cool and chill place for cool and chill people.