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They were then asked to watch a 10-minute video of real life violence.
The studies of violence in mass media analyzes the degree of correlation between themes of violence in media sources (particularly violence in video games, television and films) with real-world aggression and violence over time. However, some scholars argue that media research has methodological problems and that findings are exaggerated.(Ferguson & Kilburn, 2009; Freedman, 2002; Pinker 2002; Savage, 2004) Complaints about the possible deleterious effects of mass media appear throughout history, even Plato was concerned about the effects of plays on youth.
Various media/genres, including dime novels, comic books, jazz, rock and roll, role playing/computer games, television, films, internet (by computer or cell phone) and many others have attracted speculation that consumers of such media may become more aggressive, rebellious or immoral.
According to the catalyst model, violence arises from a combination of genetic and early social influences (family and peers in particular).
According to this model, media violence is explicitly considered a weak causal influence. Recent research with inmates has, likewise, provided support for the catalyst model.
This actual person-on-person violence actually decreased aggressive acts in the children, probably due to vicarious reinforcement.
Nonetheless these last results indicate that even young children don't automatically imitate aggression, but rather consider the context of aggression.It is theorized that with repeated exposure to media violence, a psychological saturation or emotional adjustment takes place such that initial levels of anxiety and disgust diminish or weaken.For example, in a study conducted in 2016, a sample of college students were assigned at random to play either a violent or non-violent video game for 20 minutes.Research studies and positions taken by scholars and politicians tend to confirm the pre-existing belief, rather than dispassionately observe and evaluate the issue.Eventually the panic dies out after several years or decades, but ultimately resurfaces when yet another new medium is introduced.Social learning theory suggests that one way in which human beings learn is by the process of modeling.Modeling of behavior was observed in Bandura's Bobo Doll experiments.Elucidated largely by David Gauntlett, this theory postulates that concerns about new media are historical and cyclical.In this view, a society forms a predetermined negative belief about a new medium—typically not used by the elder and more powerful members of the society.Given that some scholars estimate that children's viewing of violence in media is quite common, concerns about media often follow social learning theoretical approaches.Social cognitive theories build upon social learning theory, but suggest that aggression may be activated by learning and priming aggressive scripts.