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Online gaming and behavior Research Paper


Introduction

Over the last three decades, technology has drastically changed and so has technology-based games. The rapid increase in popularity has been due to development of the internet infrastructure, which can now support online games that can be accessed from any geographical location.

As a result, the effects of computer games can be seen in almost all aspects of today’s lifestyle, from politics, music and Hollywood.

Body

Technology’s influence on the gaming community has continued to grow at an alarming rate and with its increase in popularity there have been social and psychological problems that have resulted.

Research shows that online gaming activities are one of the most sought after form of lifestyle by kids and young adults, a behavior that is carried along into their adult life. Though the games are popular across all genders, the male gender is one that is affected by the games more than the female gender.

Research has shown that due to their nature, online games have an impact on the human brain as they spend most of their times indulging in the game rather than indulging in outdoor activities which are more interactive.

The addictive nature of the games can be attributed to the nature of the game that results in the player being indulged in mindless amusement, reduced social interaction, sexism and several antisocial behaviors (Wan & Chiou, 185).

These antisocial behaviors are acquired in early childhood or during the early stages of the games and develop further as the person advances. In terms of being social, a gamer tends to isolate himself socially in the name of excessive participation in online games.

There are several types of games, some which were created for positive and educative purposes such as mental exercises and teaching. Nevertheless, these games aren’t popular as people opt for more indulging games that provide thrill unlike the academic based ones.

As a result, research shows that individuals who indulge in these violent thrill online games develop an increase in their emotional arousal, decrease in brain activity in sections of the brain that are responsible for self organization, self-consciousness and concentration.

In addition, it has been known that people engage in online gaming activities to escape social pressure or abuse as they find solace in the games as they don’t directly intrude into the character of the players, as a result they is increased dependency on the games as social ills continue to increase all over the world.

As a result, the negative psychological effects arising from online games result in aggressive behaviors with others exhibiting aggressive thoughts towards the society. Also research has shown there is direct relationship between depression on males and engaging in online games as they sit alone and play the addictive games (“The Brief Penguin Handbook” 88).

However, the negative effects arising out of continued use of online games will not be uniform across the players as each player has different reasons as to why they engage in the activity.

Hence, if the conscience of an individual doesn’t counter the difference between reality and the game, the negative effects of the games on such an individual are bound to increase and be more severe than on persons who can easily counter reality and the online game effects.

As a result, individuals who fail to differentiate the two worlds show an increase in violent behaviors directly and indirectly related to the online games, for example an increase in school shootings, suicide, drug and alcohol abuse, stress, anxiety and depression.

Massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPGs) are known to influence the day to day activities of the players as the players have to reschedule their daily lives to fit the activity into their program.

It is wise to note that the behavior is not only manifested in young people but also in older adults whereby they engage in the activity either in the morning, lunch breaks or during and after work.

This indicates how intensively engaged the players are with the game since the games give points to players who play more where they advanced to certain levels.

These advance levels give a certain player advantages over other players and thus it is the desire for all players to achieve a certain degree of success unlike their counter parts. This is so as the games are created with the intention of making the players get hooked to them and the social aspect rising out of gaining success over other players.

The social aspects of MMORPGs have the off-putting impact of causing excessive playing. Excessive playing for some gamers was caused by their perception that the virtual world is a place to pass time. Excessive play was also aided by the online community (Roberts et al, 12).

Online gaming has been viewed as an addictive activity to gamers hence posing as a disadvantage than an advantage.

Because the addiction caused by the online games and as a result some gamers skip school or work so that they can play; an action whose outcome is one losing his/her job or school focus. This addiction is normally triggered by societal interaction, in-game tasks as well as competition between gamers.

Online gaming has several negative psychosocial implications to the gamers. Some of these negative impacts include the loss of real life friends as well as break up of relationships since the online games impair ones social skills due to one spending a lot of time playing the games instead of interacting with his/her friends.

Not only does excessive online gaming lead to dissociation, it also causes loss of time for adolescent gamers apparently whom, instead of focusing on more constructive activities such as their studies, they tend to waste their time playing. The main reason for time loss for online gamers is the extent of involvement in excessive playing.

Sanders et al notes “Sure video games maybe therapeutic for some people, but the small amount of people who are negatively affected by gaming impact many. So just like one alcoholic can cause a car accident that can kill twenty people, increased promotion of violence coupled with real life graphics can do the same thing.”(78).

Studies carried out have resulted to the conclusion that violent online games may cause negative behavioral changes in young adults at their adolescent especially in males. The worst effects of these violent online games are neurological and also behavioral changes in young men.

Violent online games ought to interfere with the brain’s ability to control emotions hence lead to aggressive behavior. Conclusively, excessive online gaming results to a long term effect on ones brain and results to changes of one’s behavior on a negative scale since it translates to aggressive behavior on the part of young males.

The more time spent in playing violent games online, the more the increase in physical aggression particularly in young males since they are the most probable online players of violent games. The aggression triggered by the violent games leads to the gamers participating in criminal as well as hazardous activities such as substance abuse, alcohol dependence and also gambling.

Having an addiction from an excessive habit such as excessive online gaming, one acquires both social as well as emotional impairments. Online gaming has the most negative psychological implications to gamers such as: a decrease in social interactions, increased physical aggression and aggressive behavior and also an increase in physiological stimulation (Grusser et al, 292).

Conclusion

It is evident that excessive gaming habits will lead to social and psychological problems for adolescents, especially an increase in aggressive behavior in males.

On social terms, when social integration is looked into in terms of investigating the implications of online gaming, the result outcome of excessively indulging in online games is development of depression since excessive gamers lack the necessary comfort offered by real presence and association of people.

Due to social problems associated with intensive online gaming, loneliness of the players comes into effect since they become socially handicapped, in event; depression comes into being. Prolonged online gaming may cause neglect of one’s duties and also interference in ones social groups as well as participation in social duties that don’t involve gaming.

As for psychological problems brought about by online gaming in young males in their adolescence, depression acts as a psychological end result of excessive online gaming. At the same time, the loneliness that the gamers gradually suffer causes venomous effects on one’s psychological state.

Due to loneliness and withdrawal, the player tends to be aggressive to his peers and friends. Another cause of aggression is the psychological interference of the player particularly in event where he excessively participates in playing violent games.

This factor greatly increases aggressiveness in the players particularly young adolescent males since they participate in playing violent games more than their female counterparts. The violence portrayed in the games affects the player’s brain in that he lacks the ability to have emotional control and thus result to portraying aggressive behavior.

Works Cited

Grusser, Sanchez, Thalemann Ring, and Griffiths Davison. “Excessive computer game playing: evidence for addiction and aggression?” Cyber Psychology & Behavior 10 (2007): 290–292. Print.

Roberts, Tammy, et al. The Broadview Anthology of Expository Prose. 2nd edition. Peterborough, Ont: Broadview, 2011. Print.

Sanders, Edwin, et al. “The relationship of internet use to depression and social isolation among adolescents.” Adolescence 35 (2000): 237-242. Print.

The Brief Penguin Handbook. 2nd Canadian Edition, with MyCanadianCompLab. Toronto: Pearson, 2009. Print.

Wan, Cheng, and Chiou Wui. “The motivations of adolescents who are addicted to online games: a cognitive perspective.” Adolescence 42 (2007): 181–197. Print.

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IvyPanda. (2019, December 8). Online gaming and behavior. Retrieved from https://ivypanda.com/essays/online-gaming-and-behavior/

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"Online gaming and behavior." IvyPanda, 8 Dec. 2019, ivypanda.com/essays/online-gaming-and-behavior/.

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IvyPanda. 2019. "Online gaming and behavior." December 8, 2019. https://ivypanda.com/essays/online-gaming-and-behavior/.

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IvyPanda. (2019) 'Online gaming and behavior'. 8 December.

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