Fact Sheets and Statistics
- More than 70 percent of American teenage boys have played the violent and adult-rated Grand
Theft Auto video game, and those teens are more likely to have been in a fight than
those who have not played, according to a new Gallup poll quoted in the
- "Learning happens," Harvard School of Public Health researcher Kimberly
Thompson told the Boston Globe,
speaking about the lessons children learn from violent video games. "I fear we
are growing a society of alienated, aggressive, untrusting adults," adds media
research Joanne Cantor. The article gives some details about HR 669, a bill pending
in Congress which would make it illegal to sell ultra-violent video games to
children. This bill, introduced by Representative Joe Baca of California ,
"makes good sense," writes Globe columnist Barbara Meltz. "E-mail
your congressman today."
- The Lion & Lamb Project participated in a briefing on Capitol Hill on May 14, and
premiered a new 10-minute videotape showing the unprecedented levels of violence in the
video games marketed to children today. The briefing was sponsored by Congressman Joe Baca
(D-CA) and Congressman Frank Wolf (R-VA). CNN, Good Morning America and numerous newspapers covered the
event. You can read the CNN interview here.
- A recent Dateline expose
shows just how easy it is for underage children to purchase adult-rated video games such
as Grand Theft Auto, even at stores that allegedly have a system for checking age
identification. Two years after a dramatic Federal Trade Commission report found that
adult-rated entertainment products are pervasively and aggressively being marketed to
children, 80 percent of the minors who attempted to buy Mature-rated products were still
able to do so.
- For the first time ever, the National Institute on Media and the Family gave the video
game industry a failing grade in its annual MediaWise Video Game
Report Card. "The best selling games of the past year glorify and reward
extreme violence, particularly toward women," the report notes. "While
these games are rated M (Mature), they are extremely popular with pre-teen and teenage
boys who report no trouble buying them.
- Does the First Amendment give video game manufacturers the right to sell adult-rated,
violent video games to children? A Boston Globe article examines arguments in a U.S.
Court of Appeals case brought by the industry against a St. Louis County ordinance that
restricts minors' access to violent video games. Lion & Lamb's position is
quoted in the article..
The Washington Post also ran a story about Grand Theft Auto as well as
other Mature-rated video games played by teens, called For Young Fans, the Name of the Video
Game is Gore. "Violence gets marketed like apple pie," Lion & Lamb
told the Post. "It is sold to boys as cool, and if you come out and speak
against it, then you are uncool."
Lion & Lamb Executive Director Daphne White appeared on the July 22 Phil Donahue show on MSNBC,
to discuss the marketing of violent video games to children.
Violence to Children, an article by Lion & Lamb's
Executive Director Daphne White, appeared in The Washington Post in August 2000
detailing the ways in which adult video games are marketed to young children.
- Playing violent video games can increase aggressive thoughts, feelings and behavior, say
researchers in the BBC News article, Video Games 'Increase Aggression.'
They warn that violent video games may be more harmful than violent television or films
because they are interactive, and require the player to identify with the aggressive
- A scientific study suggests that the less children play video games, or watch
television, the less aggressive they become, reports the BBC.
- A U.S.
District Court judge upheld an ordinance in St. Louis County, MO that requires
parental consent before minors can purchase or rent adult-rated video games. The judge
clearly saw through the hypocrisy of the video game industry when he ruled that:
Non-violent video games can be purchased and played by everyone. According to
plaintiffs, that is the majority of video games. Violent video games can be purchased and
played by all those over seventeen, which according to plaintiffs are the majority of the
purchasers. Violent video games can also be purchased and played by those under the age of
seventeen if the parents have given their consent. So in practice, the video game industry
is only restricted in conveying their violent message to those under seventeen
years of age whose parents do not want their children viewing and/or playing that
particular type of game.
- The Influence of Media Violence on Youth by
Craig Anderson, Leonard Berkowitz, Edward Donnerstein, L. Rowell Huessman, James D.
Johnson, Daniel Linz, Neil Malamuth and Ellen Wartella in Psychological
Science in the Public Interest, December 2003.
(This paper was written by an eight-member expert panel put together by the National
Institute of Mental Health, and should have been included in the 2000 Surgeon General's
report on youth violence. Since the Surgeon General decided not to include this
paper as a chapter in his report, the authors have now updated their findings and
published them independently in a peer-reviewd journal.)
and Violent Video Games: Are There "High Risk" Players? by Jeanne B. Funk, a
paper presented at Playing by the Rules, the Cultural Policy Challenges of Video Games
Conference organized by the University of Chicago Cultural Policy Center, October
of Violent Video Games on Aggressive Behavior by Craig A. Anderson and Brad J.
Bushman in Psychological Science, Vol 12, No. 5, September 2001.
Validity Test of Movie, Television and Video-Game Ratings by David Walsh, Ph.D. and
Douglas Gentile, Ph.D. in Pediatrics, Vol. 107, No. 6, June 2001. (You will need Adobe Acrobat
Reader, which can be downloaded for free, to view this article.)
- Effects of Reducing Children's Television and Video Game Use on Aggressive
Behavior -- Stanford University Study by Dr. Thomas Robinson in Archives of
Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, January 2001.
You can also read an AP news story
on the Stanford study.
Video Games: Assessing the Amount and Context of Violence by Ken Lachlan, Stacy L.
Smith, and Ron Tamborini, a paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the National
Communication Association in Seattle, WA, Nov 9-12, 2000.
- Video Games and
Aggressive Thoughts, Feelings, and Behavior in the Laboratory and in Life by
Craig A. Anderson in Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, Vol. 78, No. 4,
You can also read an APA
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Introduction || Ratings
Issues || Video Games
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