Young male gamers who strongly identify with male characters in sexist, violent video games show less empathy than others toward female violence victims, a new study found.
After playing a violent, sexist game, these male players reported lower levels of sympathy and compassion (compared to those who played games without a sexist component) when shown a photo illustration depicting an adolescent girl who had been physically abused by an adolescent boy.
“Most people would look at these images and say the girl pictured has to be terrified. But males who really identified with their characters in the sexist, violent games didn’t feel as much empathy for the victim,” said Brad Bushman, co-author of the study and professor of communication and psychology at The Ohio State University.
By: Jeff Grabmeier