White Paper – Oatmealvibes

Working hypothesis 1: For my research essay I will be looking into violent video games and its effects on children. My research essay will take a dive into how video games affect children, specifically violent ones for their cause in desensitization to violence committed in video games and in real life. This will in turn cause less violent crimes from happening.

  1. “This is your brain on violent video games: Neural desensitization to violence predicts increased aggression following violent video game exposure”

Background: This article goes into an experiment about violent video games and the brain’s reaction to the violence. It focuses on the link between desensitization to violence in video games and aggressiveness.

How I intend to use it: The experiment results on the desensitization from violent video games will be especially useful as a big aspect of my paper will be about how the desensitization is actually a good thing when it comes to violence as it will cause less willingness and curiosity to do violence in real life. (Cause/Effect Argument)

2. “The Myth of Blunted Gamers: No Evidence for Desensitization in Empathy for Pain after a Violent Video Game Intervention in a Longitudinal fMRI Study on Non-Gamers”

Background: The article talks about a study where there was no evidence that empathy was desensitized due to playing violent video games. The negative notion that playing violent video games would cause desensitization in the empathy department was promptly unfounded.

How I intend to use it: With the study showing that there is no evidence to suggest that empathy is desensitized by violent video games, I will use this article to show that while violent video games may desensitization to violence, it does not desensitize the empathy feeling that violence causes. It just makes kids used to seeing violence. I will use this to connect the dots that kids will still feel disgruntle by violence but that feeling plus the desensitization to violence will back up the hypothesis hat letting kids play violent video games will prevent them from doing real life violence. (Cause/Effect Argument)

3. “Long-Time Exposure to Violent Video Games Does Not Show Desensitization on Empathy for Pain: An fMRI Study”

Background: This article goes into depth about another study dedicated to violent video games and desensitization in empathy. An experiment with 2 groups, 18 participants playing violet video games and 17 participants playing non-violent video games. Both were screened to see if there was a difference in empathy to pain for others and there was no significant data to suggest violent video games cause a loss of sensitiveness to pain of others.

How I intend to use it: This combined with the previous article I will deep dive to the point that violent video games don’t inherently make you lack empathy or make you want to hurt others. Playing video games with violence will just cause desensitization to actual violent acts. (Definition/Classification Argument)

4. “Environmental causes of violence”

Background: This article goes into environmental causes of violence in children. By talking about the outside factors of what could be causing children to commit violence. Poverty and physical abuse are just two of many environmental causes that could affect children mentally and cause aggression and eventually violence.

How I intend to use it: My plan with this article is to demonstrate other factors that can cause aggression and violence into kids. Discussing environmental factors on why kids might become aggressive and violent may show the reader a different perspective on why children act that way and further my discussion of how violent video games are not to blame for violence in children. (Definition/Classification Argument)

5. “Mental Disorder and Violence: Personality Dimensions and Clinical Features”

Background: This article goes into the connection between violence and mental illness. Mental illness and violence are sometimes intertwined. The article talks about four personality dimensions that affect someone to become violent.

How I intend to use it: By giving my readers another insight on how violence is formed and the connection to multiple different factors, in this case mental/biological factors, I can push the notion that violence is something that can happen due to biological/mental problems and disorders and not because of video games that involve violence. (Definition/Classification Argument)

Current state of research paper: I’m honestly not feeling too good about it. My topic is a little bit frustrating to research and I know this will be a harder topic to prove. I tried to tweak my hypothesis and ask for feedback so maybe I’m actually moving in a positive direction but right now I feel a little shaky on everything. I do feel though that I feel more solidified with my hypothesis. It’s nice finding sources that believe in what you also believe. I’m hoping that the eventual outcome is that I can make a convincing paper that there is no harm in letting children play violent video games and the notion that playing them makes you a violent and aggressive person is incorrect.

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5 Responses to White Paper – Oatmealvibes

  1. oatmealvibes says:

    I have never done a white paper and this assignment was hard because finding sources has never been my forte, any guidance for better source research and how I did with my first draft?

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  2. davidbdale says:

    Good Questions, OV. I’ll address both “How to Find Sources” and “How you Did with your First Draft” after some preliminary Notes.

    Working hypothesis 1: For my research essay I will be looking into violent video games and its effects on children. My research essay will take a dive into how video games affect children, specifically violent ones for their cause in desensitization to violence committed in video games and in real life. This will in turn cause less violent crimes from happening.

    —”Effects on Children” is so vague it doesn’t qualify as a Hypothesis at all, OatmealVibes.
    —”HOW” it affects children sounds like a Causal Argument. Is that your intention? To investigate the features of Video Games that change children (their minds? their attitudes? their behaviors? their capabilities? their . . . .?) and describe HOW the games do so?
    —Or is your Hypothesis much narrower than that? Will you demonstrate ONLY (it’s more than enough to tackle) THAT video games CAUSE desensitization to violence in youth who spend more than 4 hours a day playing games in which they or others perform virtual violence on other players or characters?
    —And, if so, how does Desensitization manifest? Does it make the kids ACT violently?
    —Or does it just make them less affected by viewing the violence of others?
    —Or is their desensitization confined to the virtual world (in other words, they might still throw up if they saw a friend knock out someone’s teeth)?

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    • davidbdale says:

      Working hypothesis 1: Violent video games may desensitize children to images of violence, but they do not cause avid gamers to commit actual real-world violence, and they don’t mute children’s reactions to real violence.

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  3. davidbdale says:

    “This is your brain on violent video games: Neural desensitization to violence predicts increased aggression following violent video game exposure”
    Background: This article goes into an experiment about violent video games and the brain’s reaction to the violence. It focuses on the link between desensitization to violence in video games and aggressiveness.
    —This one appears to conclude that players who are “neurally desensitized” will behave more aggressively.
    —Does that mean hit people?
    —Or does it mean they become more aggressive negotiators? More intimidating? More likely to threaten others?

    How I intend to use it: The experiment results on the desensitization from violent video games will be especially useful as a big aspect of my paper will be about how the desensitization is actually a good thing when it comes to violence as it will cause less willingness and curiosity to do violence in real life. (Cause/Effect Argument)
    —I like the counterintuitive aspect of this proposal.
    —Does the source support that conclusion?
    —You don’t actually say so.

    2. “The Myth of Blunted Gamers: No Evidence for Desensitization in Empathy for Pain after a Violent Video Game Intervention in a Longitudinal fMRI Study on Non-Gamers”

    Background: The article talks about a study where there was no evidence that empathy was desensitized due to playing violent video games. The negative notion that playing violent video games would cause desensitization in the empathy department was promptly unfounded.
    —So many angles in your first two sources, OV.
    —So this one debunks the “common knowledge” that violent game saturation results in desensitization altogether?
    —Far from concluding that gamers will be more likely to punch someone, this one concludes that they will be NO LESS EMPATHETIC when they see SOMEONE ELSE punch someone?
    —Your abstract language seems to be masking the blunt facts.

    How I intend to use it: With the study showing that there is no evidence to suggest that empathy is desensitized by violent video games, I will use this article to show that while violent video games may desensitization to violence, it does not desensitize the empathy feeling that violence causes.
    —That may be a “distinction without a difference.”
    —What does it mean to be desensitized to violence but NOT LESS SENSITIVE?

    It just makes kids used to seeing violence. I will use this to connect the dots that kids will still feel disgruntle by violence but that feeling plus the desensitization to violence will back up the hypothesis That letting kids play violent video games will prevent them from doing real life violence. (Cause/Effect Argument)
    —I’m missing something in that explanation.

    —I FOUND THIS when I linked to the source:

    It is a common concern in the research field and the community that habitual violent video gaming reduces empathy for pain in its players. However, previous fMRI studies have only compared habitual game players against control participants cross-sectionally. However the observed pattern of results may be due to a priori differences in people who become gamers and who [do] not.

    —I’ve often suggested this to students interested in the topic.
    —In other words, Maybe violent kids are attracted to violent games, not the other way around.

    3. “Long-Time Exposure to Violent Video Games Does Not Show Desensitization on Empathy for Pain: An fMRI Study”

    Background: This article goes into depth about another study dedicated to violent video games and desensitization in empathy. An experiment with 2 groups, 18 participants playing violet video games and 17 participants playing non-violent video games. Both were screened to see if there was a difference in empathy to pain for others and there was no significant data to suggest violent video games cause a loss of sensitiveness to pain of others.

    How I intend to use it: This combined with the previous article I will deep dive to the point that violent video games don’t inherently make you lack empathy or make you want to hurt others. Playing video games with violence will just cause desensitization to actual violent acts. (Definition/Classification Argument)

    —I take it 3 is a followup to 2.
    —You claimed you were having trouble finding sources, but I’m impressed with your progress so far, OV.
    —I like the idea of two studies with different angles. 1. Introduce known pacifists and known aggressors to violent video games and track the results. 2. Introduce a cross-section of some kids to violent games, others to non-violent games, and track the results.

    4. “Environmental causes of violence”

    —Great. This material doesn’t have to reflect on video games at all.

    5. “Mental Disorder and Violence: Personality Dimensions and Clinical Features”

    —Great (echoed). Sounds quite similar to 4 (a more specific focus on ONE cause).

    Current state of research paper: I’m honestly not feeling too good about it.

    —Feel good about it.
    —Have you checked out the Reference lists of the sources you’ve found? Their titles might give you good clues on what to read next.
    —By the way, just debunking a popular “theory” is MORE THAN ENOUGH for a 3000-word essay. You don’t have to PROVE ANYTHING POSITIVE. Just demonstrate that earlier research got it all wrong and you want to set the record straight.

    Always Reply to Feedback, please, OatmealVibes. It’s the primary benefit of this class, and I love the conversation, but I lose interest if it’s one-sided.

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  4. davidbdale says:

    When you first posted it, this was a preliminary assignment. It was among the better first drafts then, but now it’s far behind where it should be, OatmealVibes.

    Use this White Paper to take Notes and record your impressions of your sources AS YOU READ THEM, the best way to begin converting your research material into language of your own that you can export to your short arguments when it’s time to draft them. You don’t appear to have investigated your sources any further than when you first posted them.

    This post will be regraded from time to time, or on your specific request.

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