Category Archives: Research cumulative

a sum of my research put into patterns

Final Post

I dove into this with a fairly bleak outlook, I knew that this was a depressing topic which is why I initially tried to ignore VGA, but in the end, I knew this probably was the best topic for me to choose. So without further ado here is my final post and thoughts on video game addiction.

 

It never was a pretty picture, VGA has been around for less than 2 decades at the time of this post with public opinion looking at it like a diseased abomination. You can tell how I felt about tackling this issue. My spirits lifted temporarily after starting my research, temporarily, even now I think it is going to take time for public opinion to change. When I started this I asked, what causes VGA, what is the truth behind the tragic stories we hear in the news, and what about it that makes people go bezerk? Those answers were clearer and easier to find than I thought, but in my search for those answers I found another issue, “is video game addiction a subjective term?” First I’ll go into those answers I found, then I will talk about the new issue that had surfaced during my searches.

 

People handwave VGA as its own distinct thing that shows up out of the blue and ruins lives. However what people fail to realize is that it is not its own disorder. According to psychcentral.com internet addiction, and by extension VGA, are not real disorders listed in the DSM-5, the official handbook for mental disorders. So in the first place, the American Psychiatric Association hasn’t even listed it under further study so what is VGA if it isn’t its own disorder? It is a symptom or a replacement for something else in our lives, a result of cause and effect. As humans we like to do what we like in our spare time, for some that is collecting items, for some playing sports, or for some it is their job. If we do not have something to take up our time then we become bored, dull, and ultimately failing to function as a human. So answer this for me, what is easy to access, easy to learn, accepting regardless of current condition, and generally very safe to participate in, I’ll give you the count of 3,

1…..

2……….

3………………, ok all together now, VIDEO GAMES! Don’t agree with me? Let me break it down and explain it. First let’s all admit it to participate in a sport you need to meet certain physical requirements, varying from sport to sport, comprised height, weight, speed, and etc. What are the physical requirements to start playing video games: hands, eyesight, and partial brain and nervous function; no speed, no weight requirements, and hell you don’t even need LEGS. You probably get the point by now, video games are incredibly easy to access and start playing. But some of you may say that sports are easy to access too you just need to have a passion. Unfortunately passion is no match against the mighty bench, according to cbc.com on the story of Brandon Crisp they said that,”Brandon had put that passion into hockey years earlier but stopped playing at 12, frustrated about getting benched because of his small size,” you see sports aren’t the all-inviting activity that they are thought of to be, and because of that Brandon got addicted to video games and got his name into the paper posthumously. However the story of Brandon Crisp gets me started on another point.

 

For all the parents this is going to hurt, but this is necessary to say: if you don’t want your video game addicted child to commit or cause any tragedies DO NOT take away the video games. As stated in the above paragraph video games are generally a replacement for an activity a person used participate in or was that activity in the first place that we need to occupy our minds to keep them active. Attempting forceful removal of video games when it becomes a childs habit (addiction or otherwise) is the wrong thing to do. Don’t believe me? Brandon Crisp, mentioned above, left video games after heated argument with parents after they, forcefully and without his consent, confiscated his video games. Daniel Petric, according to wikipedia, tried to kill both of his parents after they, forcefully and without his consent, confiscated his video games. You see there is a pattern. However I am not saying removing video games doesn’t work, a keyword above is “consent.” According the the Libertarian Prepper the author of a particular article managed to stop his VGA by removing video games from his life under his own discretion and choice. There is one distinct difference between working to remove VGA and causing an incident which is consent and choice of the one afflicted with VGA. The parents of Crisp and Petric tried to stop VGA by sudden removal of video games and their well intentioned but misguided action resulted in tragedies that made television. I bet that if their parents sat their child down at a table and tried to negotiate and/or convince to have their child willingly give up their video games, the names of the children would not have been mentioned above. However they didn’t, they did the wrong thing. Why they did is my next point.

 

Any parent that thinks that taking away video games without their child’s consent simply doesn’t know video games and thus is why they do it anyway. The issue with most parents is that they don’t understand that video games are mean to their kids. Crisps parents had no idea what the games meant to him and I bet 1000 dollars they never asked in the first place. Same bet applies to Daniel Petric whose father was strictly against video games with a strict no games in the house policy. Just simply denying video games pre-emptively and a refusal to negotiate is what caused the unfortunate events to unfold. The likely reason is because video games are new, they are a scapegoat for groups to sink their teeth into for media coverage; they take advantage of naive parents to start a frenzy for the sake of getting views as parents panic and flock to major news outlets as parents gasp in horror of these stories thinking their child is next. Ironic isn’t it, that misguided research leads to a misguided thought that leads to the names of those parents becoming the headline of the next story on the news.

 

In the end this wall comes down to my final point that renders almost everything I did irrelevant, “Is video game addiction subjective?” In a way it kinda is, what I perceive as casual gaming, a parent could perceive as a growing addiction. What I call an everyday occurrence, a parent could see it as something horribly wrong. What my experiences led to me getting VGA are completely different from someone else’s. Brandon and Daniel were bored and thus drawn to something exciting, I on the other hand was either depressed or pretty close to it when I developed VGA. Oddly enough, my parents never said I was overly addicted yet I type these words today. Unfortunately, the parents of Crisp and Petric said their children were overly addicted and their names are being used here.
VGA is only as bad as you make it and once again I can’t give you the end all be all solution only what I know and what I have observed, and what I have observed is not the brightest of pictures. VGA is a complex matter beyond what I can cover, parents are causing thing to get worse by taking wrong actions inspired by incorrect information. However the most important thing about all of this is that VGA is not something that is definite and is likely not going to be for a long while, but remember to be tread carefully around it and don’t become the next story on TV.

The Void to Fill

For those of you who remember my last post on an article, I ended on a note saying that I will go into greater detail about the void in our lives that video games fill and why it isn’t easy to replace. That is exactly what this post will be about, one part out of an unspecified number on how the void we get in our lives are made open to video games.

Some activities require proper weather and physical conditions to be met for participation. Video games only requires two things sight and hands, no size or weight requirements no flexibility needed. You could be the size of a smart car or as small as an ant you can play video games.

Sports are widely considered to be the #1 activity for being social….. if you are good enough, have proper levels of fitness, and even things that you can’t control like a good height and weight. If you don’t meet the requirements then prepared to be benched in each game and ridiculed for it for the rest of your school life. That is why we look for other forms of entertainment and that is the hole video games fill.

Role of video games when you have VGA

NOTICE: Since this is on personal experiences alone there will be no cited sources. References will be hyperlinked. The sequel to my previous ramble about how VGA could be part neglect and no this time around it will probably not make sense reading every other sentence so don’t try it.

At times I am a lone soldier on the wilderzone, other times I am a violent killer jumping around a simulated city with the powers of a superhero with my brother. Other times I am a plumber trying to save my girlfriend from my go-kart pal.

Video games are a form of escape from our lives and sometimes it works better than others. When I play video games I am no longer Derek Li. If I am playing single player then I am Snake or Subject Delta. Some of these characters have personalities like Snake for instance a veteran soldier with an expertise with stealth. Others are blank slates that I can convey my own thoughts and emotions on to, such as subject delta a protagonist with a vaguely defined past and met with questionable tasks with the outcome largely based off of my choices. These protagonists allow me to have a point of view in their world and a glimpse into their thoughts through events I would never encounter otherwise. A fresh new experience, an escape from reality, and the ability to feel important.

Multi-player is a completely different situation. I am not Derek Li but rather a username: Laitome. I treat complete strangers with total respect and in turn they return the respect in a way that could never happen in real life. They too respect me  and trust me to pull my weight in team games or to become a force to be reckoned with in versus. They call me by my username, but they respect me and treat me with a kindness that is hard to find in the real world when everyone out there thinks you are crazy  spending your time playing video games and not socializing. I get the ultimate sense of community there being able to talk freely and openly without the usual judgments, we all have something in common, and we all know the limits of our communication so we get along just fine. But if I suddenly disappear without warning they become curious and wondering where I have been if I suddenly come back. Video games mean a lot to those who play them and those who get addicted to them. They provide us with a sense of self-worth and community that is hard to find when you are depressed, just simply don’t know what to do with your life, or have been shunned from the real world by society and your peers.

While a feeling of self-worth and community is easy for those who are out going and social and don’t have mental issues, gaming while not in person do provide those values that keep us from going over the edge and give us a reason to keep on going.   relevant last 10 mins 

Video game addiction could be neglect?

The thought occurred to me while looking for more VGA stories. Just hear me out, what are some symptoms of neglect. Lack of meals, lowered academic performances, and physical decline. What are key symptoms noticed in VGA victims. Skipping meals, lowered school grades, and a tendency to stay inside which leads to physical decline. Seem familiar to you, or do you skip every other sentence and completely missed what I said earlier. If you are the former disregard the next sentence. If you are the latter then keep reading that way this will still make sense. Another sign of neglect from the parents could be a sense a alienation between their child. While parents aren’t trying to get their kids attached to video games they certainly aren’t doing any good work to remove them. When this thought hit me, I didn’t think “How could I let that shameful thought enter my mind saying that parents aren’t helping their kids after such a harsh series of events.” My thought when this came to me was, “Holy S@#T, that actually makes sense of the pattern I see in every VGA story.” All the tragedy’s could have been avoided if the parents paid more attention to their children outside of thinking video games are solely a bad thing. Change the names and a change of template then every last “unforeseeable” and “sudden”  VGA story reads exactly the same. Kid gets hooked on video games then dies. But these templates don’t include anything about the parents instead saying that they tried to remove video games. Disregarding the fact that they BOUGHT the video games they are largely pushed as victims. In fact it is because there is nothing to add about the parents to the story, all of them don’t play video games and thus don’t know of the affect it has on people or the role of video games. Hope you enjoyed my little ramble I will do another post on the role of video games to VGA afflicted people and how removal is NOT the best option eventually. See you next post. symptoms for neglect taken from lists below: http://www.webmd.com/parenting/tc/child-maltreatment-symptoms http://www.psychologytoday.com/conditions/child-neglect?tab=Symptoms

VGA symptoms:  www.9news.com/story/tech/personal-tech/stories/2014/05/01/video-game-addiction/8556321/