Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Violence and video games

*note added Nov.7, 2008: This is what I'm worried will happen when people don't do their homework regarding methodology. I agree that we need to parent our children but the conclusion is to facile considering the faults of the study.*

My wife noted last night that I hadn't played a violent video game in a long time. She was not a fan of GTA Vice City. And she likely has cause to be concerned. I am now the father of young children and simply do not have the time to immerse myself in the game world.

Yet another study has come out that co-relates video game violence and aggression. I'm sympathetic to the argument though as argued here, the methodology of the study does leave a lot to be desired.

I'm currently taking an empirical research methods class and I wonder if our intentions are right when it comes to studying violence and video games but our methods are wrong. Quantitative studies like this one will never really get at how young people construct meaning in their world and in their relationships. Shouldn't we abandon the quixotic quest of trying to go for the statistically causal relationship and simply switch methods to qualitative? Shouldn't we look at how actual gamers shape their realities in relation to games? There are oodles of valid research methods other than quantitative ones. Why don't we use them? Better yet, why doesn't someone fund me to do the study? Then I could move past the retro gamer I am into a whole new level of hipness.

Inspiration for Twilight

Is it not a little sad that Meyer names 12 artifacts as inspirational for her books but only two are books? Jane Eyre and Lucy Maud Montgomery. I have to be a little happy I suppose that a Canadian made the list but still, not Mary Shelly? No Bram Stoker? Not even Anne Rice?

As well, I'm a little disappointed that Buffy wasn't one of the movies listed. As great as Tina Fey is, how does she rate above Joss Wheadon?

Camp Camp

My new favourite blog. Must get the book. In the spirit, here is a pic from the 80's camp experience. I have so many more not scanned. Vivian and I are both here.

God Blessed America

I've never said, "God Bless America" (nor God Damn America) and have thought the practice trite at the least and idolatrous at worse. Last night, after listening to Obama, I felt a gladness and delight in the American ideal as symbolized in the electoral victory last night. Hundreds of thousands of people gathered without tanks or military coups to transition from a horrible government to a new one. In defeat McCain was gracious. In victory, Obama set out an audacious vision. McCain and the Republicans may have lost but America won last night. The world is a slightly better place this morning. God blessed America.