Essay on Media and Violence


Research studies indicate that media causes violence and plays a role in desensitization, aggressive behavior, fear of harm, and nightmares. Examples of media platforms include movies, video games, television, and music. Violence in media has also been associated with health concerns. The youth have been the most common victims of media exposure and thus stand higher chances of exposure to violence (Anderson, 2016). In the contemporary world, violence in media platforms has been growing, reaching heightened levels, which is dangerous for society. When you turn on the television, there is violence, social media platforms; there is violence when you go to the movies; there is violence. Studies indicate that an average person in the United States watches videos for nearly five hours in a day. In addition, three-quarters of television content contain some form of violence, and the games being played today have elements of violence. This paper intends to evaluate the concept of media messages and their influence on violent and deviant behaviors. Television networks and video games will be considered.

The Netflix effect involves the behavior of staying home all day, ordering food, and relaxing the couch to watch Netflix programs (McDonald & Smith-Rowsey, 2016). Netflix and binge-watching have become popular among the younger generation and thus are exposed to different kinds of content being aired. Studies indicate that continuous exposure to violent materials has a negative effect on the aggressive behavior of individuals. Netflix is a global platform in the entertainment industry (Lobato, 2019). Although, the company does not have the rights to air in major countries such as China, India, and Japan, it has wide audience. One of the reasons for sanctions is the issues of content being aired by the platform, which may influence the behaviors of the young generation. The primary goal of Netflix is entertainment; it’s only the viewers who have developed specific effects that affect their violent behaviors through imitation of the content.

Television Networks

Television networks focus on feeding viewers with the latest updates on different happenings across the globe. In other instances, they focus on bringing up advertisements and entertainment programs. There is little room for violent messages and content in the networks unless they are airing movie programs, which also are intended for entertainment. However, there has been evidence in the violence effect witnessed in television networks. Studies called the “Marilyn Monroe effect” established that following the airing of many suicidal cases, there has been a growth in suicides among the population (Anderson, Bushman, Donnerstein, Hummer, & Warburton, 2015). Actual suicide cases increased by 2.5%, which is linked to news coverage regarding suicide. Additionally, some coverages are filled with violence descriptions, and their aftermath with may necessitate violent behaviors in the society. For instance, if televisions are covering mass demonstrations where several people have been killed, the news may trigger other protests in other parts of the country.

Communications scholars, however, dispute these effects and link the violent behaviors to the individuals’ perception. They argue that the proportion of witnessing violent content in television networks is minimal. Some acts of violence are associated with what the individual perceives and other psychological factors that are classified into social and non-social instigators (Anderson et al., 2015). Social instigators consist of social rejection, provocation, and unjust treatment. Nonsocial instigators are physical objects present, which include weapons or guns. Also, there are environmental factors that include loud noises, overcrowding, and heat. Therefore, there is more explanation of the causes of aggressive behaviors that are not initiated by television networks but rather a combination of biological and environmental factors.

Video games

Researchers have paid more attention to television networks and less on video games. Children spend more time playing video games. According to research, more than 52% of children play video games and spend about 49 minutes per day playing. Some of the games contain violent behaviors. Playing violent games among youth can cause aggressive behaviors. The acts of kicking, hitting, and pinching in the games have influenced physical aggression. However, communication scholars argue that there is no association between aggression and video games (Krahé & Busching, 2015). Researchers have used tools such as “Competition Reaction Time Test,” and “Hot Sauce Paradigm” to assess the aggression level. The “Hot Sauce Paradigm” participants were required to make hot sauce tor tasting. They were required to taste tester must finish the cup of the hot sauce in which the tester detests spicy products. It was concluded that the more the hot sauce testers added in the cup, the more aggressive they were deemed to be.

The “Competition Reaction Time Test” required individuals to compete with another in the next room. It was required to press a button fast as soon as the flashlight appeared. Whoever won was to discipline the opponent with loud noises. They could turn up the volume as high as they wanted. However, in reality, there was no person in the room; the game was to let individuals win half of the test. Researchers intended to test how far individuals would hold the dial. In theory, individuals who punish their opponents in cruel ways are perceived to be more aggressive. Another way to test violent behaviors for gamer was done by letting participants finish some words. For instance, “M_ _ _ ER,” if an individual completes the word as “Murder” rather than “Mother,” the character was considered to possess violent behavior (Allen & Anderson, 2017). In this regard, video games have been termed as entertainment ideologies, and the determination of the players is to win, no matter how brutal the game might be.

In this paper, fixed assumptions were used to correlate violent behaviors and media objects. But that was not the case with regards to the findings. A fixed model may not be appropriate in the examination of time-sensitive causes of dependent variables. Although the model is applicable for assessing specific entities in a given industry, the results may not be precise.

Conclusion .

Based on the findings of the paper, there is no relationship between violent behaviors and media. Netflix effect does not influence the behavior of individuals. The perceptions of the viewers and players is what matters, and how they understand the message being conveyed. Individuals usually play video games and watch televisions for entertainment purposes. The same case applies to the use of social media platforms and sports competitions. Even though there is violent content, individuals focus on the primary objective of their needs.

Analysis of sources

The sources have been thoroughly researched, and they provide essential information regarding the relationship between violent behaviors and media messages. Studies conducted by various authors like Krahé & Busching did not establish any relationship between the two variables. Allen & Anderson (2017) argue that the models for testing the two variables are unreliable and invalid. The fixed assumptions effect model was utilized, and its limitations have been discussed above. Therefore, the authors of these references have not been able to conclude whether there is a connection between violence and media messages.

Allen, J. J., & Anderson, C. A. (2017). General aggression model.  The International Encyclopedia of Media Effects , 1-15.

Anderson, C. A. (2016). Media violence effects on children, adolescents and young adults.  Health Progress ,  97 (4), 59-62.

Anderson, C. A., Bushman, B. J., Donnerstein, E., Hummer, T. A., & Warburton, W. (2015). SPSSI research summary on media violence.  Analyses of Social Issues and Public Policy ,  15 (1), 4-19.

Krahé, B., & Busching, R. (2015). Breaking the vicious cycle of media violence use and aggression: A test of intervention effects over 30 months.  Psychology of Violence ,  5 (2), 217.

Lobato, R. (2019).  Netflix nations: the geography of digital distribution . NYU Press.

McDonald, K., & Smith-Rowsey, D. (Eds.). (2016).  The Netflix effect: Technology and entertainment in the 21st century . Bloomsbury Publishing USA.

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Science Leadership Academy @ Center City

Advanced Essay #4- Violence in the Media

I can honestly say this Advanced Essay has been the most challenging one of the four we have received in this English class this year. Starting off the unit, I couldn't really get into the book we were reading because I just wasn't interested in it and when it was announced we were to do another advanced essay for our benchmark this quarter, that made me feel even worse about everything. I didn't know what I wanted my paper to be based off on at first, I was going in the direction of story-telling and the affects that had on people until I realized that was more of a personal piece. So, I finally came to conclusion of wanting to surround my paper on the media and with the help of my peers and Mr. Block, I am satisfied with what I produced. My goals were to have a clear, concise and controversial thesis which the reader could thoroughly understand which I do feel I've accomplished. I feel as though teens would be able to relate to this paper the most simply because we are living in the generation where media is booming.

Unconsciously and unknowingly, people’s behavior and aggression towards violence are influenced by the media. Majority of the youth is exposed to some sort of act of violence through the media before the age of ten years old. With the numerous and everlasting murders that have been occurring more frequently lately, school shootings, and fights going on it’s hard to ignore the violence factor that goes on in the world. Because children are still developing in their teenage years, seeing certain things such as inappropriate music, movies, television shows, etc. can affect their psychological development and views in the world.

Television can be a very powerful teacher to not only the youth, but adults as well. According to the BLS American Time Use Survey by A.C. Nielsen Co., approximately 99% of Americans own at least one television in their household. This shows just how accessible tv is and how common it is for people to be watching it. A new study in the Journal of Pediatrics says the average eight year old child spends eight hours a day on media, and teens more than 11 hours of media a day. This is more than a full day of school, which means the youth are being exposed the media and the inappropriate things it contains For example, they see things from funny memes to violent beatings and fights. With the youth being revealed to such at this young of an age, it’s already registered in their minds that this is common in society since it is praised and laughed at which can increase the likelihood of aggressive behavior at an older age without them even thinking much of it.

Kaj Björkqvist, a Professor of Developmental Psychology at Åbo Akademi University, randomly assigned one group of five- to six-year-old Finnish children to watch violent movies, another to watch nonviolent ones. Raters who did not know which type of movie the children had seen then observed them playing together in a room. Children who had just watched the violent movie were rated much higher on physical assault and other types of aggression. Other experiments have shown that exposure to media violence can increase aggressive thinking, aggressive emotions, and tolerance for aggression, all known risk factors for later aggressive and violent behavior. With the children being so young and naive, they had no clue how great of an impact the violent movie had on their actions and aggression. They were just following what they had seen in the movie and weren’t even incorporating the fact they were being violent which shows how unconscious people are with the influence violence in the media has.

media violence essay conclusion

The cartoon above is a perfect representation on how oblivious society is to the issues that we constantly encounter. There are constantly issues with violence in the world and we wonder where some of the root causes stem from, yet the answer is right in front of our eyes. The future is completely dependable upon how we bring up our children, which can either be a good or bad thing it’s all in the power of our hands. Allowing violence in the media to take over our children’s mindsets can only lead to even more violence and aggression, which this cartoon shows. It’s also shown above how the child is saying “Kill them! Kill them all!” With a huge smile on his face which shows he’s condoning the people who are being killed. Both the parents and the child are unaware of how violence is impacting and influencing their lives as shown in this cartoon.

On October 1, 2015 at Umpqua Community College located in Oregon, there was a mass shooting killing nine and wounding many others. The shooter, Christopher Harper- Mercer, after killing nine innocent people was shortly killed in gunfire with responding officers. After the shooting, the police investigated Harper- Mercer’s background and found that he was obsessed with violent gaming and would focus on this more than spending time with his family. His neighbors would say he was a nice young man, but was isolated majority of the time and only took interest in conversations when discussing video games and guns. While investigating, the police even found a secret chat room online which him and anonymous others were planning out exactly what he’d do. Before he had committed this tragic crime, he said “I’ve been waiting to do this for years”. Meanwhile, his companions were supporting him and even giving him ideas on when and where to do it. Recently, researchers at Ohio State University conducted a study and concluded that, "People who have a steady diet of playing these violent video games may come to see the world as a hostile and violent place”. Without even the slightest thought, one’s perception of the world can be altered just by constantly being exposed to violent video games.

In conclusion, the media can impact our daily life decisions unconsciously. Some solutions to reducing the influence violence in the media has on us are reducing the exposure to violent movies, television shows, videos games, etc. By doing this, it won’t place anyone in a specific and unhealthy mindset. Also, by increasing media that will have a positive effect on our lives and actually teach us something helpful both short and long-term will not only educate us, but place us in the right mindset that’ll benefit everyone in the world.

"Managing Media: We Need a Plan." Managing Media: We Need a Plan. 29 Oct. 13. Web. 21 Mar. 2016. < >.

Eves, Christopher. "Television Watching Statistics." Static Brain Research Institute, 18 Feb. 2016. Web. 21 Mar. 2016. < >.

Thoman, Elizabeth. "What Parents Can Do about Media Violence." Center for Media Literacy. Web. 21 Mar. 2016. < >.

Fletcher, Lyndee. "14 Mass Murders Linked to Violent Video Games." Charisma News. 15 Oct. 2015. Web. 21 Mar. 2016. < >.

Healy, Jack, and Ian Lovett. "Oregon Killer Described as Man of Few Words, Except on Topic of Guns." The New York Times. The New York Times, 2015. Web. 21 Mar. 2016. < >.

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Media Violence Essay

media violence essay conclusion

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Exposure to Media Violence on Behavior Essay

The debate on whether exposure to media violence plays a role in influencing aggressive or violent behavior is a critical one. There are those who argue that exposure to media violence encourages violent behavior while others oppose the notion. Those who support the idea like Nancy Signorielli argue that exposure to media violence prompts people to have a notion that the world is a violent place. This desensitizes them so that they begin adapting unacceptable behavioral traits.

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The pro side of the argument clearly brings out the fact that media violence has a long time effect on the people especially the children. They are desensitized and tend to become aggressive or fearful. The argument against the connection has however been clearly brought out the fact that media violence has significantly increased in the resent past yet cases of real-life violence have significantly reduced.

The argument for the existence of a connection between the two proposes that people exposed to media violence are more likely develop aggressive behavior than those who are not. It is stated that the media does not clearly bring out the fact that crime is bad and people in the long run tend to ape aggressive behavior from the same. Those arguing against it on the other hand insist that studies show no connection between the two. They are of the opinion that exposure of media violence to the children at an early age has no effect whatsoever to the change of the children’s behavior to that associated with violence. It is argued that the violence in the media is purely entertainment and that there is no message intended to convince the viewers that violence is good.

Jonathan Freedman’s Argument

Those who are against the notion like, Jonathan Freedman, argue that scientific evidence shows no connection between media violence and the actual aggressive behavior in people. They argue that the violence in the media just causes arousal and existent among the people but not necessarily aggressive behavior. According to this argument, there has been a significant increase in media violence in the resent past yet the real cases of violence have significantly reduced (Potter, 2003).

Nancy Signoriell’s argument

According to Signoriell’s argument, children who are exposed to violence at an early age tend to develop antisocial behavioral traits that are associated with violence later in life. Some of them indulge in fights, abuse of their spouses as well as other criminal activities. It is believed that most of the violence shown in the media does not clearly bring out the fact that crime never pays. In some cases, those who indulge in criminal activities go unpunished and children get the wrong signal that indulging in crime is not immoral and hence tend to adopt criminal behavior.

Pro-side of the Argument

The argument is based on several studies and statistical data which have proved that children exposed to media violence are more likely to exhibit aggressive behavior than those who are not. Several experiments have been carried out to the same effect. Studies have proved that the children exposed to pro-social media messages are likely to develop positive behavior traits while those exposed to media violence tend to copy the same. Exposure to media violence increases the rates of gender stereotyping especially among the children. People tend to use the media while confirming their attitudes as well as beliefs for instance while approving violence. Some of these arguments are however biased in a way given that some of the studies have been done in highly repressed societies like South Africa during the colonial era (Freedman, 2002). The other weakness of this argument is that violent or aggressive behavior among people could be due to the fact that people come from families that witness frequent incidences of violence. The media might in such cases not be the cause of aggressive behavior in such people. There have also been an increase in the media violence in the resent past yet the cases of real violence in society have significantly reduced instead of increasing. This shows weakness in the argument.

Con-side of the Argument

Going by the con side of the issue, desensitization has its own positive side. It has for instance been found out that children with problems of fear are likely to be less fearful after being exposed to desensitizing films or media programs, particularly those that are horrifying. It is therefore a remedy to those children with social problems. The weakness of the con side is that exposing people to media violence desensitizes them and they in the long run tend to approve of such violence and show less concern or pity for the victims of the violence. The violence and scary images are likely to instill fear in the children who watch such programs either on the short or long-term basis. Some of them might even have nightmares in which they might scream while sleeping. People exposed to more of the violent media tend to believe that the world is a scary place and they become cautious of many people or things. They tend to believe that they are out to protect themselves. Studies carried out have proved that people exposed to media violence are more likely develop aggressive behavior than those who are not. This evidence shows weakness on this side of the argument (Phillip, 1979).

Author Credibility

The arguments are credible given that the authors have cited the appropriate sources and studies that support their arguments. Those who argue that there exists no connection between media violence and aggression have for instance based their arguments on other scholars who have written concerning the same issue like Fowles : (Fowles 1999). Some of the studies quoted include that done by Ronald Milavsky with others which was a longitudinal study that was carried out in three years from 1970 t0 1973. These are accompanied by statistical evidences and figures. In this case for instance, a study was carried out on 2400 school children at the elementary level while 800 teenagers were sampled in the study. The argument for the existence of the connection between the two has also been based on other scholarly material like; (Singer 1988) as well as (Potter 2003). The two arguments are both coupled with evidence from other sources.

Personal Opinion

The author who holds a substantive argument is the one who argues that media violence affects people’s behavior driving them towards aggressive or violent behavior. This is because the argument is couple with enough evidence to justify the same. Television for instance tends to shape people’s opinions as well as perceptions towards life issues. When it is stuffed with violence and crime people tend to appreciate the fact that crime and violence are not bad, given that some of the offenders go without being punished. People therefore tend to adopt violent and aggressive behavior as a result. The description, analysis as well as evaluation of the argument has been done in a comprehensive and clear way coupled with evidences derived from different studies or sources. It has been clearly brought out that exposure to violent programs to children as well as adults tends to drive them towards behaving aggressively as compared to those who are not exposed to them (Signorielli, 2002).

Contemporary Research

Contemporary research supports the side which argues that a connection exists between aggressive behavior and exposure to violent media programs. Different studies have been carried out to the same effect and they have proved that children who are exposed to violent media at an early age tend to have their future lives characterized by acts of violence like spouse abuse as well as fighting. Studies have also been carried out whereby children have been separated into two groups; one group is exposed to violent media and the other not. The evidence revealed that those children that were exposed to violent media exhibited change in their behavior as well as speech as they tended to be more aggressive than their counterparts who were not exposed to the same. It has also been proved that those who are exposed to violent media programs tended to be desensitized in the sense that they tended to sympathize less with the victims of violence as compared to those who were not exposed to the same.

Reference List

Fowles, J. (1999). Teaching the Post modern. The Enigma, 50-60. Freedman, J. (2002). Media Vilence and its Effects on Aggression: Assessing The Scientific Evidence. Toronto: University of Toronto Press. Phillip, D. (1979). Suicide, the motovehicle facilities and the mass media: Evidence towards a theory of suggestion. American Journal of Sociology , 560-568. Potter, J. (2003). The eleven myths of media violence. Califonia: Sage Publications. Signorielli, N. (2002). Violence in the Media. A Reference Handbook , 25-268. Singer, R. (1988). Strategies and metastrategies in learning and performing self-paced athletic skills . The Sports Psychologist , 49-68.

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The Impact of Media Violence on Health Background Media allows for us to easily communicate with large amounts of people all at the same time. It can appear in many forms, including, broadcasting, video games, publishing, and the internet. Thanks to technology, the internet has quickly become one of the easiest ways for us to access information about current world events, just moments after they happen. With media being so accessible, it is becoming a staple in many people’s daily […]

Perception that Video Games

It is time to end the perception that video games, cause more violent behaviors in gamers. I might have a bias in this topic as I have been playing videos games, and violent video games for more than half my life now. If what the media says its true and that people who spend hours playing video games are more prone to violent acts, then I should be one of the most violent people you’ve ever met. Since I was […]


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  1. Essay on Media and Violence

    Introduction Research studies indicate that media causes violence and plays a role in desensitization, aggressive behavior, fear of harm, and nightmares. Examples of media platforms include movies, video games, television, and music. Violence in media has also been associated with health concerns.

  2. Advanced Essay #4- Violence in the Media

    In conclusion, the media can impact our daily life decisions unconsciously. Some solutions to reducing the influence violence in the media has on us are reducing the exposure to violent movies, television shows, videos games, etc. By doing this, it won’t place anyone in a specific and unhealthy mindset.

  3. Media Violence Significant Cause Of Social Violence Media Essay

    Media violence, unlike the violence in the politics, economics, and environment, seems like a chronic poison to erode people’s souls. Another reason why media violence causes social violence is that media violence is also the catalyzer of other aspects to cause the social violence.

  4. Media Violence Essay

    Many suggest the violence in media is causing violence in society but then how is it that violent crimes are actually decreasing in the United States. The violence that is occurring is actually due from the mentally ill, poor parenting, and the location of where one lives in society.

  5. The Harmful Effects of Violence in Media

    In conclusion, violence is more persuasive in video games (68 percent) than on television (60 percent), it is commonly found in movies (90 percent), and rarely seen in music videos (15 percent). However, certain genres in each medium are more aggressive in nature.

  6. Media Violence Argument

    The argument for the existence of a connection between the two proposes that people exposed to media violence are more likely develop aggressive behavior than those who are not. It is stated that the media does not clearly bring out the fact that crime is bad and people in the long run tend to ape aggressive behavior from the same.

  7. Media Violence Essays

    Media Violence is the kind of an extreme form of aggression that is produced due to constant exposure to aggressive and violent behavior in mass media, resulting in human suffering, lost lives, and economic hardship to our society as well […]