The issue of negative video game influences on youth remains contentious in public debate, the scholarly community and among policy makers. Recent research has indicated that negative attitudes toward video games are, in part, generational in nature with older adults more inclined to endorse negative beliefs about video games. The current mixed design study examined the impact of exposure to games on beliefs about video games in a small (n = 34) sample of older adults. Results indicated that older adults were more concerned about video games as an abstract concept but when exposed to a particular video game, even an M-rated violent game, expressed fewer concerns about that specific video game. Results support the hypothesis that negative attitudes toward video games exists mainly in the abstract and do not survive direct exposure to individual games. Further, older adults were not uniform in their condemnation of video games with older adults having varying opinions about the harmfulness of video games. Related to specific concerns, older adults tended to worry more about issues such as addiction than they did violent content.
- older adults
- Video games