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Video Games and Prejudiced Stereotypes

I enjoy playing computer games and video games, although I am not a teenager, and even further from being a child – yet according to many people, I am highly likely to be a violent, irresponsible, society hating thug with no concern for the welfare of other people or the environment, and with a high chance of ending up either dead or in jail. Surprisingly, I am none of the above, and am actually a perfectly sane, perfectly sociable, intelligent professional who does a great deal for charity and has a family and two dogs. Statistics – they’re always guaranteed to be wrong 67% of the time. Like that one.

The thing is, it is very easy for people to jump on to a popular bandwagon and assume that anyone who has a fascination with, or simple enjoyment of, computer games or video games which involve one character or characters killing or conquering another, must have an unhealthy tendency towards violence and that this will become so ingrained within their psyche that, sooner or later, they’re going to lurch down the street armed with a machete, an evil grin and a blood stained hooded anorak.

In fact, not only is violent crime decreasing quite considerably and quite quickly, but at the same time, the number of video games available, and the number being bought and presumably played, is increasing. How does that work out then? If the use of the games is on the increase, it would follow, according to popular assumption and argument, that violent crime should also increase.

The problem is, that time and again it has been shown that playing video games or computer games does no more harm to you than watching television or reading books. The real issues and problems with any social makeup or lack of morals lie with the upbringing of a child, with the family and its own morals and consistencies. Computer games cannot be blamed for society’s general lack of understanding of how to tackle the issue of crime.

Granted, there are some very violent games on the market today, and personally, I tend not to favor them as much, and in most cases these games have age restrictions on them. Although this is supposed to prevent children from seeing or playing these games, there is no such check carried out if bought online, second hand, passed down from an older sibling or friend, and even many parents don’t check the labels in the first place.

As with anything in life, computer and video games have to be used in moderation, and anyone who becomes unhealthily absorbed or obsessed with a game is doing no good to themselves in any case – such an addiction needs to be identified and dealt with early. But just because some children enjoy spending an hour or so each day pretending to be an orc, or a secret agent, or a military leader, there is no reason to assume that they will eventually walk down the high street, completely brainwashed into believing that they really are orcs and that they need to purge the high street of humans. At least, if they do have those thoughts, the cause of the problem lies a lot deeper than in a video game.

Guidelines For Kids’ TV and Computer Games – How Much is Enough?

Sometimes when life becomes hectic it can be tempting to parent via the path of least resistance. One of the “easiest” paths is allowing our kids to turn on the Television, put on a DVD, or play with a computer.

Unfortunately these “paths of least resistance” often become draining and disempowering for both parents and children. While initially there’s a sense of relief of not having to engage and think – over a period of time we lose energy from a member of our family not being engaged with their home and life.

The opposite can be true when we stand firm and invite our kids to engage with life and creativity – instead of disappearing into “the box”. Initially, there’s effort required on both the part of the parent and child, while the child gets in touch with their inspiration. However, once engaged in a project – creates it’s own momentum, and on completion gives a cause for celebration.

If you’d like to discover your child’s idea schedule around TV and computers, as well as how best to implement this schedule answer the following questions:

1) How much does your child currently spend in front of the TV or computer daily?

2) What’s the positive and negative consequences of this investment?

3) How much time ideally would you love your kids to spending in front of the TV/computer on a daily/weekly basis.

4) What would be the benefits in this reduction for both you and your child?

5)What must you do to implement your ideal TV/computer schedule?

Online Gaming and Your Child – Protecting Your Child While Having Fun

Kids love playing online and it’s totally pointless to argue with them if they would be allowed to play or not. If you insist that they should not play because of the many dangers of online gaming like identity theft and the possibility of being infected with malware and viruses, think again. There is always something that you can do to create a fun and safe gaming experience for your child that is both fun, friendly and educational while being age-appropriate.

Of course, everything starts with educating yourself about the gaming world. You have to learn how to access the gaming community as well as their rules, the significance of game ratings, and how privacy settings and safety tools can help your child play safely.

Of course, it would also be beneficial if you would know the basic difference between online gaming and online gambling. This is something that you have to teach your kids so that they will never engage themselves into something that they may regret in the future. Here are some of the basics that you might consider to help protect your child as they play and compete games online:

1. As previously mentioned, you have to first educate yourself. Read about online gaming and how other parents feel about this stuff. There are a lot of online forums that you can join online where you can ask related advice from other parents who have children who play games online too. They may be able to provide you with some tips and advices on which games are safe for your kids and which are not.
You also have to get yourself familiar with the game that your child plays. Visit the site and investigate further. View their game ratings from other online gaming review sites and read as well the site’s end-user agreements, privacy policies or terms of acceptable use.

2. You have to establish rules clearly before you allow your child to play online. These rules can include how much time they can spend playing online, with whom they can play, and what other things they can do on the computer besides gaming. This should be something that is set clear before your child goes to play online and you have to be vigilant and determined to maintain this set of rules.

3. When your child starts playing, you have to closely monitor their game and chat messages. If, at any point in the game, your child felt uncomfortable because another player used foul language at them, then encourage your child to tell you so. You also have to educate your child that they should not share their personal information to anyone that they play with online because there can be hackers and identity theft criminals out there who pose as players to get access to their victim’s information.

4. Help your child choose an appropriate screen name that he will use for the game. The name that they will use can include your child’s nickname or any other name that does not give out too much personal information. Avoid using names with number prefixes since more often than not, kids use their birthdays as the prefix.