Video Game Bits
The U.S. video game market reached $21 billion in sales in 2008, one-third of monthly entertainment spending in the U.S.
- Education, recreation, and time playing together are top reasons for buying kids video games.
- 21% of kids report parents set rules about which video games they can play.
- 17% report parents checking warning labels or ratings.
- 12% report playing video games they know their parents don't want them playing.
- 36% of kids 10-19 play video games regularly, 80% boys, 20% girls.
- 97% of adolescents play video games regularly.
- 1/3 of parents play video games with their children.
- Increasing marketing to younger children: Wii Lego®, Wii Go, Diego, Go!®, Wii Baby and Me®.
- Virtual Childhood: Rise of virtual pets (ZhuZhu Pets®, Webkinz®) and experiences (e.g. Crayola Art Studio®/Fireworks Spectacular®, Diego Rain Forest Adventure®).
Video Game Effects:
- Lone Wolf - the Bedroom: Avid video gamers are more likely to experience social isolation and spend less time with family.
- Toggle the Amygdala: Children playing violent video games are prone to aggressive, violent behavior, especially when playing at a young age.
- I Used to Share Your Pain: Long-term violent video game exposure is associated with lower empathy in children.
- XYbox 360: Women tend to be portrayed as weak, helpless, or sexually provocative.
- Mario Minimum Wage: Children with the lowest grades spend more time playing video games and less time reading and doing homework than those with best grades.
- NCAA Football Academic Probation: Gaming is linked to lower SAT scores.
- Um…I forgot: Video game playing decreases verbal memory, possibly due to effects on emotions and the consolidation stage of memory.
- After-School Amnesia: Memory effects are greatest within hours after a learning session, i.e. after school.
- Wii are So Bored: Adolescents who play more than one hour of video games/day have more intense symptoms of ADHD/inattention than those who do not.
- Not-So-Fun For the Whole Family: ~10% of video game players 8-18 exhibit pathological patterns of play, including damage to family, social, school, or psychological functioning.
- Call of Duty - Psychiatrist: 12% of video gamers fulfill diagnostic criteria of addiction concerning their gaming behavior.
- Citations available on request.