It is said that television and media brought about new problems that are evident in the modern day and age. Mostly, these influences are harmful in relation to violence and people’s general behavior, which is characterized as careless, destructive and unpredictable.
In reality, there is a great difference and separation between the violence that is seen on TV and that in real life, as people will not become aggressive if their character is not based on aggression.
For a long time, there has been a debate that violence in the media causes more aggressive behavior in the person. There have been numerous studies, but the evidence is somewhat controversial. The majority of people believe that the causation of violent behavior by media is exaggerated. The social theorists suppose that people learn by modeling and imitating behavior.
There have been experiments where such imitation would be tested with children as participants. It has yielded imprecise results (Wells, 1997). Further studies and experimentation have not established any particular correlation because of the control variables being too fluid.
An important concept in movies and media is that they constantly remind the viewer that it is only the authorized people, like police officers and other authorities, are allowed to use violence as a last resource. In many instances, there is added humor, even though it does not diminish the violent and dangerous nature of the situation where a person is killed or their life is threatened.
In general, it is possible to assume that a person might get desensitized towards violence, blood, aggression and criminal behavior. It has been proven that the more a person is confronted with a certain stimuli, the more they will get used to it. This can be seen in many examples from real life (Casey, 2008).
Today, there are movies that show very gruesome and graphic scenes, and it is a fact that many people watch movies like “Saw” and it might make them more used to horror and blood. But people realize that it is a movie and a false, staged situation. A real life occurrence would be very different.
For example, if a movie does not have graphic images or scenes, it might create an idea of violence where people are controlled against their will or held hostage. From one perspective, it is said that the person will learn to like the violence and use it in real life. But a person’s character or individuality cannot learn to like a particular stimulus. If a person does not like to smoke, they will not get used to it by constantly smoking.
Or if someone likes a certain color or smell, a person cannot be made to like or unlike something. In the end, it is possible to see that there must be a link between violence and an already existing personal predisposition to it. The only people who will get affected by graphic violent media are those who require ideas in how to manifest own violent behavior.
From this perspective, it would be better if violence was excluded from media and movies. It can be left simple, as if when a person gets shot or hit, there are no close-ups to show the wound or any blood. It would be useful to promote that the only moral of the movies in relation to violence is that it is unlawful and unwanted by anyone. Most evidence supports the fact that there must be a predisposition towards violence.
It very much depends on an individual. A person who is kind and moral will not resolve to violence because it will conflict with their core moral beliefs, and no matter how often they see violence on the news or in movies, each time they will feel appalled and will not simulate such behavior (Freedman, 2002).
It is clear that a person, who resolved to violence, either grew up in aggressive circumstances where they thought that it was allowed or possible or they have some genetic malfunction. Majority of people are taught that violence is wrong and will not be tolerated by the law and society.
Modern civilized countries take every effort to make this as clear as possible and everyone, even the criminals, know that taking someone’s life or being aggressive towards someone is the highest crime and will be punished. Unfortunately, the evolving technology is becoming a greater part of human life. The 3D or hologram affects, not to mention virtual reality, can stimulate senses in ways that were not possible before.
There is very little evidence as to how the body and genetic information reacts and what it stores. There is a slight chance that a person who watches violence all their life and becomes desensitized to human pain and suffering, will record that information in genes and pass it on to the next generation (Holtzman, 2000).
In any case, there is always a limit as to violence on TV and its nature. The modern society wants to see more blood, which is evident from many movies, and the types of people that watch those movies are of specific character. But the general public seems unharmed by media, as it is too character specific.
Casey, Bernadette. Television studies: the key concepts. New York, NY: Routledge, 2008. Print.
Freedman, Jonathan. Media violence and its effect on aggression: Assessing the scientific evidence. Toronto, Canada: University of Toronto Press, 2002. Print.
Holtzman, Linda. Media messages. Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe, 2000. Print.
Wells, Alan. Mass media & society. London, England: Greenwood Publishing Group, 1997. Print.