Wired on Lieberman and the Game-Rape Correlation

February 11, 2011 -

Game | Life is the latest outlet to talk to psychologist Carole Lieberman about her recent "games cause rape" comments to Fox News. Much like every other outlet that has sought out an explanation for those outlandish comments (or some evidence to back those comments up), Wired instead finds a wall. And let's face it, there's no back pedaling from the fantastic conclusion that Lieberman drew in that Fox News article.

The most interesting comments don't come from Lieberman in Wired's piece - they come from Iowa State University professor Douglas A. Gentile, who soundly squelches her claim that there are "thousands of studies" that draw some sort of correlation between sexual scenes in games and real world sexual assault.

"I don’t know where [Lieberman] would get any evidence for this opinion," said Iowa State University professor Douglas A. Gentile, who has studied media violence since 1999. "There’s really very little to substantiate her claims in research literature."

In a phone interview with Wired, Gentile could not think of any modern games that contain real sexual content. Games like "Leisure Suit Larry and Custer’s Revenge," Gentile said, are hard to find on store shelves.

In her extended conversations with Wired through email and on the phone, Lieberman continued to say that there are a number of studies that support what she says. At the end of it she went from "thousands" to "hundreds" of studies:

"Over the years, I have read hundreds of studies linking videogames to violence. Rape, as a violent act, is implied in them," she wrote in an e-mail. "When videogames are violent and sexual, it causes the players to become desensitized to rape and think it is a ‘game.’"

Unfortunately for her, not one researcher that commented in the Wired article agreed with her. Another example:

"No serious researcher is linking playing violent videogames with criminal violence," Gentile said. "There is good evidence that playing violent videogames will lead to increases in aggressive behavior, and violence is a very extreme subtype of physical aggression … but there is almost no evidence that playing a violent videogame has a clear causal link to that level of serious criminal violence."

Unfortunately for Lieberman, it is too late to say what she should have said right after that Fox News article was published: "I was mistaken."

Read the full article here. It is an interesting dissection of the whole situation.


Comments

Re: Wired on Lieberman and the Game-Rape Correlation

If she was a lawyer she'd remind me of Jack Thomson.

Where is he anyways... I guess he gave up a while back.

Re: Wired on Lieberman and the Game-Rape Correlation

She actually admitted she was wrong. Jack, no matter how glaringly obvious he was wrong, would never admit any fault or error on his behalf. She may have a few more brain cells than the disbarred one.

============== James Fletcher, member of ECA Canada

Re: Wired on Lieberman and the Game-Rape Correlation

Why does it not surprise me that, when pressed, she couldn't cite a single study or sources?  Instead, she thinks it'll automatically be accepted as fact by saying, "Since I'm a psychologist, it's becuase I say so."  Just like JT couldn't back up a single thing he said, because he assumed since he was a lawyer - and therefore an authority figure in a supposed position of trust - he must automatically be right.

Just proves to me she only is saying these things for the sake of getting attention, and that's all there is to it.

Re: Wired on Lieberman and the Game-Rape Correlation

But don't you know?

The tide goes in, the tide goes out.  There is never a miscommunication. 

Re: Wired on Lieberman and the Game-Rape Correlation

She talks about "hundreds and thousands of studies" and yet can't name a single one?

You know what we need? To go through the GP archives, pull out all the articles of all the studies of gaming effects, both good and bad, whether they be for violence, addiction, sex, depression, obesity or whatever, and put them all into one, big tome. Organize them in two sections, good and bad studies, and catagorize them by their "genres".

That way, we're ready next time we go into debates about "research", like this.

Re: Wired on Lieberman and the Game-Rape Correlation

Should I make a video response to this, or would I just be lowering myself? 

Re: Wired on Lieberman and the Game-Rape Correlation

how did it go?

"You've been measured, you've been weighed, and you've been found wanting." or something like that?

she should really go back and find sources for her information, i'd half bet 2/3 of it was bullox some politician put out, or copy/pasted info from other bad "research" repeated over and over.

otherwise i'm sure the movement for this would be stronger and not just limited to over zealous politicians, lawyers (out for easy money since the tobacco thing dried up), and old farts who'll believe literally anything their told.

Re: Wired on Lieberman and the Game-Rape Correlation

 I guess the remaining 1/3 would be misinterpretting/exgerating studies, such as translating "aggressive behavior" to "real world violence"... y'know have these studies been defining what "aggressive behavior" is? cause just from the sounds of it i might go with it meaning a long range of things including having temper tantrums and resorting to verbal abuse... y'know something that's not really at all dangerous

Re: Wired on Lieberman and the Game-Rape Correlation

on the other hand, she might actually be enjoying all this extra attention in some wierd way.

Re: Wired on Lieberman and the Game-Rape Correlation

Of course, now she'l write a book, GP, wired, and everyone else will report on that as well, and she'l sell tones of copies! 

 
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ConsterSleaker: if you think there's only been "a handful of" incidents, you have your head stuck *somewhere* - I'm assuming it's sand.09/20/2014 - 5:38am
prh99Most of it's agitprop clickbait anyway.09/20/2014 - 5:27am
prh99A good reason to stop reading reguardless of view pointhttp://www.theguardian.com/media/2013/apr/12/news-is-bad-rolf-dobelli.09/20/2014 - 5:22am
Andrew EisenWell this is unique! A musical critique of the Factual Feminist's "Are Video Games Sexist?" video. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-K4s7cV4Us409/20/2014 - 2:41am
Andrew EisenSome locked threads. Some let them be. So, no, I'm not seeing a problem here. No corruption. No collusion. No ethical problem with privately discussing ethics.09/20/2014 - 12:48am
Andrew EisenAnd still, in the end, Tito made up his own mind on how to handle his site. All 150 or so members went off to handle their own sites in their own ways. Some talked about it. Some didn't. Some changed disclosure policies. Some didn't.09/20/2014 - 12:40am
Andrew EisenThere were two comments other than Kochera and Tito's. One pointed out the Escapist Code of Conduct, another comment was in support of Tito.09/20/2014 - 12:40am
Andrew EisenKochera privately expressed his disagreement on how Tito decided to do something. No, I don't consider that crossing a line nor do I consider the exchange an example of the group pressuring him.09/20/2014 - 12:36am
Kronotechnical reasons. Anyways, I need to get to sleep as well.09/20/2014 - 12:29am
KronoAnd he wasn't the only one pushing Tito to censor the thread. If Tito had bowed to peer pressure, we likely wouldn't have gotten this http://goo.gl/vKiYtR which grew out of that thread. Said thread also lasted until a new one needed to be made for09/20/2014 - 12:28am
Krono@Andrew So it's an example of Kuchera crossing the line from reporter to advocate. And an example of the group pressuring for censorship.09/20/2014 - 12:21am
E. Zachary KnightAnyway, I am off to bed. I will probably wake up to all of this being knocked off the shout box.09/20/2014 - 12:20am
E. Zachary KnightKrono, that is the type of reading too much into things that bugs me. Ben did no such thing. Greg had the last word in that part of the exchange. The rest was about how to approach the story and Quinn.09/20/2014 - 12:19am
Andrew EisenSo?09/20/2014 - 12:13am
KronoExcept that the forum thread wasn't harassment, and Kuchera continued to push for the thread's removal after Tito made it clear he didn't consider it harassment.09/20/2014 - 12:12am
Andrew EisenPersonally, I see nothing wrong with someone offering their opinion or the other person making up their own mind on how to run their site.09/20/2014 - 12:06am
E. Zachary KnightKrono, I read nothing of the sort in that email chain. I read Ben giving advice on what to do when a forum thread is used to harass someone and spread falshoods about them and others.09/20/2014 - 12:05am
KronoThat's exactly what Ben Kuchera was doing to Greg Tito.09/19/2014 - 11:58pm
Krono@EZK So you see nothing wrong with one journalist pressuring a journalist from a different organization to not only not run a story, but to censor a civil discussion already taking place?09/19/2014 - 11:56pm
E. Zachary KnightI write for a number of blogs and talk to people who write similar blogs all the time for tips and advice. I see nothing wrong with that.09/19/2014 - 11:50pm
 

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