What They Play™ Finds Parents More Concerned About Video Games Than Alcohol and Pornography; Violence More Acceptable Than Sexual Content
Polls Reveal Parents Have Attitudes Toward Video Games and Social Issues That May Surprise
SAN FRANCISCO--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Parents are more concerned about their children’s exposure to video games than alcohol, violence and pornography, according to recent polls conducted by What They Play (www.whattheyplay.com), the parents guide to video games. Nearly 3,000 respondents in two separate What They Play polls concluded that drinking beer and watching pornography were less objectionable activities for children than playing certain video games. Further, viewing violence was more acceptable than seeing content involving sex and sexuality within games.
“Although these findings seem surprising at first, they hint at fears parents have about video games”
“These poll results demonstrate that parents are as apprehensive about their children’s media diets as they are about traditional social issues such as alcohol, drugs, violence and sex,” says John Davison, president of What They Like, Inc. “When it comes to video games, parents should know that What They Play is a resource that helps demystify one of the most popular – and challenging – forms of entertainment their kids are into.”
“Although these findings seem surprising at first, they hint at fears parents have about video games,” says Cheryl K. Olson, Sc.D., co-author of Grand Theft Childhood. “To some parents, video games are full of unknowable dangers. While researching for Grand Theft Childhood, parents we spoke with in focus groups often bemoaned the fact that they didn’t know how to use game controls - and felt unequipped to supervise or limit video game play. Of course, parents don’t want their children drinking alcohol, but that’s a more familiar risk.”
The results of the initial What They Play online poll, conducted April 4-10, 2008, found that the 1,266 participants were most offended by the following in a video game: a man and woman having sex (37%); two men kissing (27%); a graphically severed head (25%); and multiple use of the F-word (9%).
The second poll, which ran August 1-6, 2008, queried parents on what they’d be most concerned about their 17-year-old child indulging in while at a sleepover. More than 1,600 respondents revealed they’re more apprehensive about their child smoking marijuana (49%) and playing the video game Grand Theft Auto (19%), than watching pornography (16%) and drinking beer (14%).
Additional What They Play poll results and insight into parents’ attitudes toward video games and other forms of entertainment in which their children engage can be found at www.whattheyplay.com/polls/
About What They Play
What They Play (www.whattheyplay.com) is the parents guide to video games. As the most comprehensive resource of its kind, What They Play provides parents with expert insight into the themes and content of thousands of today’s most popular interactive entertainment products.
What They Play is the first online product from What They Like, Inc. (www.whattheylike.com), founded in 2007 by entertainment and media industry veterans Ira Becker and John Davison. What They Like provides parents with helpful guides and insight about the various forms of popular entertainment that engage their children. What They Like believes parents are the ultimate parental control. The company’s singular goal is to provide useful information and resources within a wholly unbiased and neutral environment, empowering parents to do what they do best: parent.