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Friday, March 7, 2008


A coalition of groups representing four million teachers in several countries is urging retailers to refuse to sell a controversial video game about school bullying, reports Jill Mahoney for the Globe and Mail (Canada). The game, "Bully: Scholarship Edition," features a shaven-head teenager who adjusts to life at a new boarding school by harassing others, which the organization says glorifies bullying. The group spearheading the call to ban sales says there is a link between violent video games and aggressive behavior in children, with some studies support this conclusion while others do not. However, calling for a ban is like "flailing at windmills" when it comes to actually confronting bullying, said Michael Hoechsmann, an assistant professor at McGill University and an expert on the role of violence in video games. "As tempting as it may seem, I'm not so certain that banning this will somehow result in a more peaceful and more loving school population," he thinks. In addition, Hoechsmann noted that he hasn't found any evidence suggesting that playing a violent video game results in violent actions.

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