VIDEO GAMES AS A MEAN OF FOSTERING OF THE INTERACTIVE RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN PEDOPHILES AND CHILDREN
Keywords:video game, pedophilia, online gaming, communication, trust, interactive relationship, security culture
Video games are the most rapidly growing and evolving product of the entertainment industry, and as such, became of the favorite pastimes. Various researches point that video games are not just entertainment for children for a while now and that the average age of a gamer is nearly 40 years old. The industry follows that trend, so the majority of gaming platforms and systems are created for adults. Nonetheless, with the saturation of the market we have the situation that there is a video game for everyone, and with the development of broadband Internet multiplayer online gaming became an indivisible component of video games, in such measure that some of the most popular video games are multiplayeronly. In online gaming, you make contact with other players so the door of possibility for potential misuse is open. Although the mentioned gaming services have age restrictions, most often set at 13 years of age, there is a possibility of giving a false statement and reaching those services, and additionally, there are popular games where the age limit is very low. The danger of misuse and even criminal behavior is increased by psychological mechanisms that appear during playing video games in teams, and one can get an impression of knowing and trusting somebody more than it is true. Still, the communication channels in video games are not the most suitable form of communication between pedophiles and children, but it should be stressed that the danger is in the possibility of migration of that virtual and interactive relationship to a more suitable platform, such as social networks, chat rooms, etc. additionally, the author gives examples of content with elements of pedophilia in video games, while sorting it into two groups according to embedded ethical relationship to that disorder. In the first group, there are games where pedophilia is present as a minor plot point and where the ethical relationship is following social norms, while the other group consists of games where pedophilia is a major plot point, and these games are mostly derived from certain genres of Japanese manga and anime. In conclusion, the author stresses that the danger from pedophiles in online gaming can be significantly mitigated by raising the level of security culture both in the parents and the children.
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