RE: media violence report in Science

From: Vincent Campbell (
Date: Mon Apr 15 2002 - 13:35:40 BST

  • Next message: Vincent Campbell: "RE: media violence report in Science"

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    From: Vincent Campbell <>
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    Subject: RE: media violence report in Science
    Date: Mon, 15 Apr 2002 13:35:40 +0100
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            <I don't know. I have a lot of respect for 'Science'. It is one of
    the most
    > respected scientific journals in the world. I don't think they publish
    > 'bogus' research.>
            One shouldn't believe what you read just because it's in a highly
    regarded journal. Judge an argument on its evidence. These researchers
    assume that level of TV viewing equates to watching "violence", yet they
    neither actually measured this, nor even define it. New Scientist carried
    an uncritical piece on this piece of research, and I wrote them a letter
    outlining these problems (whether they'll publish it or not I don't know. I
    put my hat on as a member of the Stirling Media Research Institute to try
    and give a little impetus to my submission but we'll see).

            < And it makes perfect sense to me. See violence. Do
    > violence.>
            There you go you see- they claim the public don't have this view,
    and you do at least. When do you last see violence on TV and then go out
    and commit a violent act? Never? Why- is that because you are abnormal?
    No, it's because that is not how it works at all. Violent people commit
    violent acts- they may also watch violent TV shows, but so do 10s of
    millions of other people without committing violent acts. If it's all
    see/do then why this state of affairs? Reactionary writers speak of the
    multitide of violent acts on US TV per hour, yet why don't the crime rates
    reflect that? How come we're not all murderers etc.? _Because it doesn't
    work like that_.

            <Memetic transmission at its most basic. Especially when the more
    > repellant results are censored.>
            Even if this were true, the problem of this kind of "research" and
    the ultimate reason I get so worked up about such views is that the only
    consequence that results in censorship, and censorship is anti-democratic,
    and undermines the very basis of the societies we live in (that is those of
    us in democratic states). There's a reason that freedom of speech comes
    before the right to bear arms in the US constitution, and why the former is
    enshrined in the UN and European declarations on human rights and the latter
    is not.


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