Media Violence and Gun Violence - Experiment 3
This study has been completed.
Ohio State University
First Posted: July 18, 2017
Last Update Posted: July 18, 2017
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Brad Bushman, Ohio State University
More American children die by accidental gun use than children in other developed countries. One factor that can influence children's interest in guns is exposure to media containing guns. The objective of this study is to test whether children who see a movie containing guns will handle a real gun longer and will pull the trigger more times than children who see the same movie without guns.
|Study Design:||Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Single Group Assignment
Intervention Model Description:
Participants are randomly assigned to watch a movie containing guns, or a movie not containing guns.Masking: Single (Participant)
Participants did not know which condition they were in. Participants' parents were aware of the deception (hidden gun) and what condition their children were in (with or without guns). Research personnel knew conditions as well. Research assistants who transcribed recorded laboratory sessions did not know what condition they were coding (eg. what type of movie participants watched)Primary Purpose: Other
|Official Title:||Exposure to Gun Violence in Movies Increases Interest in Real Guns|
Further study details as provided by Brad Bushman, Ohio State University:
Primary Outcome Measures:
- Time spent holding gun [ Time Frame: 20 minutes after intervention ]Time (in seconds) participant spent holding the real firearm during the play session
- Number of trigger pulls [ Time Frame: 20 minutes after intervention ]Number of times participant pulled trigger of real firearm during the play session
|Actual Study Start Date:||July 15, 2015|
|Study Completion Date:||January 1, 2016|
|Primary Completion Date:||January 1, 2016 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)|
Experimental: Experimental Condition
Participants in this condition viewed a movie without guns. The movie (National Treasure or The Rocketeer) was edited to remove guns from scenes.
Behavioral: Movies without Guns
Participants in this arm viewed movies (National Treasure, The Rocketeer) without guns. The movies, rated PG, were edited to remove guns from the scenes
No Intervention: Control Condition
Participants in this condition viewed a movie with guns, as it was filmed and distributed. The actual scenes in the movie (National Treasure or The Rocketeer) was not edited, but the same scenes were used as the Experimental Condition
A recent analysis of top selling films found that the depiction of guns in violent scenes in PG-13 films that target youth has increased from the level of G and PG files in 1985 when the rating was introduced, to the level of R films by 2005, to exceed the level of R films since 2012. By definition, a PG-13 movie is supposed to have less violence than an R-rated movie. The Motion Picture Association of America says on its website that the violence in a PG-13 movie "does not reach the restricted R category." Our study shows that it does. By including guns in violent scenes, film producers may be inadvertently increasing aggression in youth via a weapons effect. This experiment directly tests this hypothesis.
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