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The head of game studio EA has defended the gaming industry, refuting claims that video games promote violence in the real world.

The head of game studio EA has defended the gaming industry, refuting claims that video games promote violence in the real world.

 
John Riccitiello, CEO of the game giant, told analysts at a company conference call that the gaming industry was suffering from a perception issue, but he firmly denied that there is any link between games and real-life violence.
 
“There's been an enormous amount of research done in the entertainment field about looking for linkages between entertainment content and actual violence, and they haven't found any,” he said, according to the BBC. “Hundreds of millions of dollars of the research has been done [and] has been unable to find a linkage because there isn't one.”
 
He said that there “appears to be the perception of a problem” and admitted that gaming studios do have to tackle this. He said members of the Entertainment Software Association are prepared to deal with the issue.
 
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The comments follow a growing debate in the US over gun control, with many gun advocates, including the National Rifle Association (NRA), blaming video games for the recent spate of gun massacres in the country. Of course, the NRA also released its own shooting game, so it is perhaps not the best critic of the industry.
 
As part of his gun reform package, US President Barack Obama promised investment in research to identify the link, if any, between violent video games and gun violence. Previous studies have largely been inconclusive, while some have come out with support on either side of the bitter debate.
 
Vice President Joe Biden, however, said: “There is no hard data as to whether or not these excessively violent video games in fact cause people to engage in behaviour that is antisocial, including using guns.”
 
The gaming industry faces a potential clampdown as gun violence escalates in the US, which could mean changes to the minimum age to play such games, or perhaps even a total ban on popular first-person shooters, which are often a staple of teens' entertainment.
 
Source: BBC