OfCom Report: UK Home Console Ownership Declines

October 4, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

The latest "Children and Parents Media Use and Attitudes Report" from UK regulatory agency OfCom shows a decline in console ownership for the first time in the region. The report notes that 87 percent of children live in a UK household with a home or portable games console - compared to 90 percent in 2012. Around 66 percent of children ages 3-4 have a console; 78 percent for the 5 - 7-year-olds have a console system at home, and 91 percent of 8 - 11-year-olds said they have a console in the home. The report notes that every age bracket decreased, compared to 2012.

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OFT Warns UK Developers about High Pressure Monetization of Kids' Apps

September 26, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

The UK's Office of Fair Trading (OFT) is warning app and game developers that high-pressure monetization in programs that are aimed at children needs to be avoided going forward. The OFT made its announcement today after months of investigation (which began in April) into allegations that some free online apps and games for children were using questionable tactics to get children to purchase in-game items - often without parental consent. The OFT examined 38 games related to this practice and drafted a set of guidelines for UK developers.

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Court Bans Wisc. Teen From Playing Video Games

September 25, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

A Wisconsin teen has managed to get himself officially banned from playing video games. According to multiple reports, Racine County Court Commissioner Alice Rudebusch ordered 17-year-old Jeffery A. Ehlers of Mount Pleasant to pay a $250 signature bond and ordered him to not play video games or have "violent contact" with his family. Ehlers made his first court appearance on Monday answering charges of disorderly conduct. He is being charged as an adult.

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Video Game Retail Veteran to Parents: Do The Right Thing

September 23, 2013 - James Fudge

Kotaku has an interesting editorial written by "a video game retail veteran" discussing how 100 of the 1,000 copies of Grand Theft Auto V sold last week were to parents accompanied by young kids who "couldn't even see over the counter." In his editorial he talks about being a parent who works at a retailer that sells games, and how he is often surprised at how many parents don't pay attention to the ESRB descriptors, shrug off any advice about what a given title might contain, or how many parents simply ignore what he is saying.

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Report: MPAA and RIAA Teach Copyright at California Public Schools

September 19, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

According to this TorrentFreak article, the trade groups representing the music and movie industry are indoctrinating kindergartners in the state of California with an "educational program" about "sharing creative works." The Center for Copyright Information, a partnership between the MPAA, RIAA and five of the largest Internet providers in the United States, are teaching copyright classes in California public schools.

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Kids Playing On Mobile Devices as Much as Home Consoles, Says NPD

September 11, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

A new report by retail research firm NPD Group finds that the way children are playing games has taken a dramatic shift since 2011. The report, "Kids and Gaming 2013," finds that children ages 2-17 are playing games on mobile devices nearly as much as they are on home console systems.

More than half (53 percent) of mobile device users reported that they spent more time playing on these devices this year compared to last year, but the real increase is with children who spent an average of seven hours per week on mobile devices compared to five hours per week in 2011.

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Digital Kids Summit and Digital Kids Education Events Kick Off Next Week

September 10, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Over 250 digital media, entertainment, and learning experts and industry professionals are set to converge on San Francisco next week for the Digital Kids Summit and Digital Kids Education (Edu) Day taking place Wednesday, September 18th, and Thursday, September 19th, at the San Francisco Children’s Creativity Museum. The summits are spin-offs of Engage Digital's New York-based Digital Kids Conference.

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2013 Life.Love. Game Design Challenge Winner 'Love in the Dumpster' Released

September 9, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

Jennifer Ann’s Group has released the top award-winning video game from its 2013 Life. Love. Game Design Challenge. The first place winning game is Love in the Dumpster by Jean Hehn of Belgium-based developer Another Kind. Love in the Dumpster is the fourth video game to be released from the 2013 Life.Love. Game Design Challenge and is free to play to increase awareness about teen dating violence.

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Report: Too Much Screen Time Affects Children's Well Being

August 28, 2013 - James Fudge

A new briefing from Public Health England (an agency of the Department of Health in the United Kingdom) suggests that children who spend a lot of time watching television, surfing the Internet, and playing video games, are more likely to have lower levels of wellbeing than their more active peers.

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The Rise of the 'Mom Gamer'

August 28, 2013 - James Fudge

A new report from the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) found that 75 percent of "moms" play video games. The data comes as part of a new report from the trade group representing the video games industry called "Mom Gamers Study: A New Generation of Gamer." The report is based on a survey of 2,500 females over the age of 18 with children under the age of 18 in the household.

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ESA Launches Fellowship for 'Young Developers of Color'

August 21, 2013 - GamePolitics Staff

The Entertainment Software Association (ESA) announced a partnership with the Black Association for Science and Engineering, the Hispanic Heritage Foundation (HHF), HHF's Leaders on the Fast Track (LOFT) and other groups to create the ESA Loft Video Game Innovation Fellowship.

Second Game Released from the 2013 Life. Love. Game Design Challenge

July 24, 2013 -

Jennifer Ann’s Group has released the third-place winning video game from the 2013 Life. Love. Game Design Challenge. The 2013 Life. Love. Game Design Challenge asked developers to create games that raised awareness about the dangers of Teen dating violence. Jennifer Ann's Group is a charity dedicated to the cause and named after Jennifer Ann Crecente, who was murdered by an ex-boyfriend.

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Report: CDC Closer to Beginning Research on Gun Violence and Video Games

July 12, 2013 -

An extensive and exclusive report over on Polygon reveals that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) are getting closer to pursuing the Obama Administration edict to study the correlation between violent media (music, movies, television and video games) and gun violence. The President called for more research in January of this year in the aftermath of the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in Newtown, Connecticut.

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2013 Life. Love. Game Design Challenge Winners Announced

July 12, 2013 -

Jennifer Ann’s Group, an Atlanta-based 501(c)(3) charity dedicated to preventing teen dating violence through "awareness, education, and advocacy;" announced the winners of the 2013 Life. Love. Game Design Challenge. The competition asked participants to create games that raised awareness about teen dating violence and appealed to students. One other key element of all of this year's winners is that they raise awareness about teen dating violence without using any violence in gameplay.

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All or Nothing: Active Games Best for Combating Sedentary Behavior After School Time

July 3, 2013 -

A new study coming out of Australia says that video games are great for combating sedentary time after school and making small improvements in physical activity levels - if the only ones you play are "active games." Leon Straker, PhD, of Curtin University in Perth, Australia led a team to conduct a crossover trial study to see how the effectiveness of active games could be maximized. One of the best ways was to remove all other kinds of games that did not require the user to get up and move. Removing all video games from the home of participants had similar results.

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Eighteen-Year-Old Chinese Man Sells Kidney to Pay Video Game Debt

June 26, 2013 -

Hearing about the youth of China selling their vital organs for something stupid is nothing new, but apparently the trend continues... Kotaku (by way of Tencent) reports that an 18-year-old Chinese man surnamed Zhang from the Gangsu province has sold his kidney. Zhang had to find a way to pay down some debt he apparently amassed while playing "video games" according to the Chinese press.

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Research: Video Games Make Teens Better Citizens

June 5, 2013 -

Video games can make teens better citizens, according to Kathy Sanford, an education professor at the University of Victoria, (British Columbia, Canada) She comes to this conclusion after a five year research project that followed a group of teens between the ages of 13-17 years old. Sanford sat down with The Globe and Mail earlier this week to talk about her findings before presenting them at a UVic conference of humanities and social sciences.

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First Lady Sees Culture as an Obstacle to Higher Education for African American Youth

May 17, 2013 -

First Lady Michelle Obama recently gave a commencement address at Bowie State University encouraging more young African Americans to continue their education. She does so by throwing culture like videogames, television, and music under the bus.

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Peter Thiel Foundation Announces the 2013 20 Under 20 Thiel Fellows

May 10, 2013 -

The Peter Thiel Foundation (founded by the former CEO and co-founder of PayPal) announced the third set of young entrepreneurs to be awarded 20 Under 20 Thiel Fellowships. These new "Thiel Fellows" will receive $100,000 from the Thiel Foundation as well as mentorship from the Foundation’s network of entrepreneurs over a two year period.

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Research: Active Gaming and Team Work Can Help Children Lose Weight

April 23, 2013 -

A new study published in the scientific journal Obesity finds that active games or exergaming are a good way for children to lose weight. The goal of the study, "Adolescent Exergame Play for Weight Loss and Psychosocial Improvement: A Controlled Physical Activity Intervention," was to find effective ways to encourage youngsters to be more physically active through video gaming. Researchers Sandra Calvert, Ph.D.

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2012 National STEM Video Game Challenge Winners Show Off in D.C.

April 22, 2013 -

Gustavo Zacarias of San Antonio, Texas was one of the winners of the2012 National STEM Video Game Challenge who joined a select group of students that participated today in the third White House Science Fair, an event that emphasizes and celebrates student achievements in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) competitions. The National STEM Video Game Challenge is an annual competition presented by the Joan Ganz Cooney Center at Sesame Workshop and E-Line Media.

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Research: Children with ASD More Susceptible to Video Game Addiction

April 17, 2013 -

Children and teens with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) use screen-based media, such as television and video games, more often than their typically developing peers and are more likely to develop problematic video game habits, according to research conducted by Micah Mazurek, an assistant professor of health psychology and a clinical child psychologist at the University of Missouri.

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Summer Course Uses ShootMania Storm to Teach Game Design

April 11, 2013 -

STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Math) focused program iD Tech Camps today announced that it will be holding classes this summer that teach pre-teens between the ages of 10 - 12 how to design a first-person shooter game using Nadeo's recently-released ShootMania Storm.

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Former CNN Host: President Should Focus on Entertainment Industry Too in Gun Control Debate

April 4, 2013 -

Former CNN host Campbell Brown was a guest on MSNBC's Morning Joe program yesterday, where she suggested that President Barack Obama would have a better shot at passing gun control laws in the United States if he would stop singling out the Nation Rifle Association and put some of the focus on the violent content created by Hollywood and the video game industry.

Brown has written several op-ed pieces about the issue in publications like the Daily Beast and - most recently - the Wall Street Journal.

You can watch her appearance to below.

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First Raspberry Pi Game Jam Held in the UK

March 13, 2013 -

The first Raspberry Pi game jam was recently held in Manchester, according to Develop. Using the affordable computing devices, the event offered 336 teachers and educators who attended the basic skills needed to apply their knowledge and teach coding in the classroom.

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Mojang Hard at Work on 'Minecraft Realms'

March 13, 2013 -

Mojang is working on a new service called Minecraft Realms, which it hopes will give those players interested in subscribing their own special little corner of the Minecraft universe.

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Brad Bushman Research: Frustration Leads to Violent Video Game Choices

March 11, 2013 -

A new study from Brad Bushman of Ohio State University comes to the conclusion that some players of violent video games are led there out of a sense of frustration because they cannot engage in taboo behaviors in the real world such as stealing or cheating. Don't worry, the latest Bushman study will connect this to aggression, violent video games, and a negative effect of some kind... The temptation to steal or cheat is sometimes great — especially when the risk of being caught is low.

Boys Scouts of America Offering Merit Badge for Game Design

March 7, 2013 -

It looks like the Boys Scouts of America are finally recognizing that video games and technology are important in society. The Boy Scouts of America is now offering a merit badge in game design, according to GamesBeat. The organization has apparently spent the last two years building a program that will enable scouts to do the work necessary to earn the badge.

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A Little Birdee Told Me: New App Teaches Children About Sex in a Safe and Friendly Way

March 1, 2013 -

Your young son or daughter comes home and asks the one question you worried that you would inevitably have to answer since the day they were born into this world: "Where do babies come from?" Well as Apple used to be fond of saying, there's now an "app for that." It's called Birdees, and it is an educational app for iOS devices created by Vancouver-based educational entertainment software developer GoTo Educational Technology Inc.

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The Trouble With Connecticut's Video Game Sin Tax Bill

February 22, 2013 -

An interesting article on The Atlantic examines why sin taxes like the one proposed for video games by Connecticut State Rep. Debralee Hovey (R-112th District) never really do anything productive. You may recall that Hovey, who represents the district that includes Newtown, Connecticut, proposed a 10 percent sin tax on violent video games rated "Mature" by the ESRB.

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Will Code Avarice's Paranautical Activity make its way back onto Steam?:

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Craig R.And I'll be perfectly happy in never seeing the phrase 'false flag' ever again, as it is one of the worst notions to ever come out of the camp of the tinfoil brigade that is already completely overused.10/25/2014 - 3:50pm
Craig R.Gone for a week and come back to find GG didn't go away at all. Dammit.10/25/2014 - 3:48pm
Matthew Wilsonif they were serious, they would go to youtube. most youtube game reviewers tend to revew games as product, and tend leave social issues out of it.10/25/2014 - 1:42pm
quiknkoldif the gamergaters were serious, they'd realize that Kotaku and Polygon arent the only games in town, and that with the freedom of the internet, they could create their own websites and achieve the goals they are trying to achieve without arguement.10/25/2014 - 1:35pm
james_fudgehe should have called the police.10/25/2014 - 1:20pm
TechnogeekAt least my statement still holds if it does turn out to be a false flag.10/25/2014 - 1:03pm
NeenekoThough I admit, since doxxing and false flag where heavily used tactics of the GG supporters, while they are not historical tactics used by detractors, I am skeptical how much it is really 'both sides' doing it in any real volume.10/25/2014 - 1:01pm
NeenekoOne thing that makes all of this messy is 'false flag' is a serious concern here. It does not help that the original GG instigators were also known for doing elaborate false flags to discredit feminism themselves.10/25/2014 - 12:59pm
MechaCrashThe guy who got the knife is the one who advocated doxxing, by the way, and was getting court documents about Zoe Quinn so he could publicly post them. It doesn't make what happened to him right, but he deserves no sympathy.10/25/2014 - 12:42pm
TechnogeekNo, that's a pretty shitty thing to do and I fully support the responsible parties getting a visit from the relevant legal authorities.10/25/2014 - 12:17pm
Neo_DrKefkaSomeone anyone tell me how two wrongs somehow make a right? This is becoming exhausting and both sides are out of there minds!10/25/2014 - 11:40am
Neo_DrKefkaSo two GamerGate supporters received a knife and syringe in the mail today. The same GamerGate supporters who said how awful it was were seen in other tweets gathering lists and sending our similar threats or harassment to shut down the other side....10/25/2014 - 11:36am
NeenekoJust look at how interviews are handled. Media tends to pit someone who is at best a journalist, but usually entertainer, against an expert, and it is presented and percieved as if they are equals.10/25/2014 - 7:38am
Neeneko@MC - Focusing on perpetrator does nothing for prevention, the media and public lack the domain knowledge and event details to draw any useful conclusions. All we get are armchair risk experts.10/25/2014 - 7:36am
Neeneko@AE - no name or picture, I like it.10/25/2014 - 7:34am
PHX Corp@MW and AE The news media needs to stop promoting the Shooters. period10/25/2014 - 7:16am
Andrew EisenWhen I write about these massacres, I don't use the shooter's name or picture. I'm not saying everyone has to play it that way but that's how I prefer to do it.10/25/2014 - 12:44am
Andrew EisenYep, it's why the news media stopped spotlighting numbnuts who run out on the field during sporting events.10/25/2014 - 12:01am
Matthew Wilsonin media research its called the copycat effect. it simply says that if the news covers one mass shooting shooter, it increases the likelihood of another person going on a mass shooting.10/25/2014 - 12:00am
Andrew EisenAgreed. It bugs me that I know the names, faces and personal histories of a bunch of mass shooters but I couldn't tell you the name of or recognize a photo of a single one of their victims.10/24/2014 - 11:51pm
 

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