Essay about Grand Theft Auto (GTA)
Moral Responsibility of Media Authors
With the emergence of the internet and social media, the world has experienced the most drastic shift in human history. In other words, the appearance of such assets has shaped the social life, relations, sociology, and the psychology of individuals across the world (Valkenburg 478). This drastic change was then followed by single- and multiplayer computer games of all kinds and the movies that are shot in the cutting-edge technology of our age. Both are increasingly accessible through internet tools for almost everyone, either on legal and illegal platforms. This paper aims to highlight the ethics of computer games and cinema. Accordingly, in this assignment, GTA San Andreas (and a related article) has been selected to highlight the moral responsibility of media authors as a game and a movie, respectively. Also, a few credible articles concentrated on GTA San Andreas have been analyzed, and they were filled with hatred; in other words, a credible hatred. Although these types of media are often considered innocent and leisure activities for children and adolescents, one can readily claim that such medium, including violence, blood, and explicit sexuality, can create a type of young generation with negatively-affected psychology and corrupted ethics.
GTA San Andreas is a widely-known computer and PlayStation game across the world. In the game, players can control the main character in a couple of cities that were presented and designed quite realistic. Also, the players have the chance to keep up with the duties in the game, presented by the game scenario. However, these duties seem to be extremely violent and unethical. When considered the graphics of the game, one may understand the preferences of the players. Still, one should not forget that children below 12+ can easily access this game through illegal online download platforms such as uTorrent.
The Meaning of Race and Violence in Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas
The research article, written by DeVane and Squire, concentrates on “how youth actually play Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas and what meanings they make from it” (Devane, Squire 264, par. 3). The study reveals insights into the sociological and psychological aspects of children who expose themselves to such games, especially GTA. After meticulous and proper conceptual and statistical analysis, the authors have concluded that players, which are mostly children, tend to use their own knowledge and experiences to interpret the game. In other words, the authors argue that the game content and images do not have a direct impact on players—"they do not passively receive the game" (Devane, Squire 264, par. 4). On the contrary, the authors believe that the game's effects on individuals are highly dependent on identities, local practices, and discourse models of the players. Therefore, both conclude that scholars need to consider the natural settings of players if they aim to see their 'real negative effects' of such a game.
Anti-PC Games: Exploring Articulations of the Politically Incorrect in GTA San Andreas
The article, presented by Jahn-Sudmann and Stockmann, focuses on “to date controversies about computer games…their presumed harmful effects, particularly on children and adolescents” (Jahn-Sudmann, Andreas et al. par. 2). The authors, as well, conducted both conceptual and empirical research on the issues and came up with a few critical points. They argue that computer games and violence are highly correlated in society's mind. In other words, people believe that computer games have a great potential of damaging our children's psychology, and to the community, in return. Normally, authors believe that explicit sexuality seems to be rare as considered a type of media consumption. However, they think that GTA San Andreas (2004) is an example of violence and explicit sexuality, and it directly plays a critical and decisive role in children's psychological, sociological, and ethical development.
Grand Theft Auto and the Articles
Before I start analyzing the correlation between ethics, the article, and the game, I would like to mention that I had played the game for a while when I was still a kid. Therefore, one can see that I have the first-hand experience of the content. At first, the game has excellent graphics and a sense of control over everything. In other words, a player can easily travel around the map, drive a car, swim, fly, go to a casino or even a strip club. The game is designed to offer a sense of freedom throughout the map, which is highly similar to Los Angeles and Miami and presents duties for some who want to be directed. However, in most cases, the children tend to be corrupted in the game. For instance, instead of driving through the lanes or picking up a normal car, the children stop a car on the street, kick the driver, and take the car for themselves. The game also provides a star-rated system that shows the player's "wanted" level (by the police). Accordingly, many kids purely focus on violence by killing people on streets, stealing cars, kicking official authorities in the game to get to the latest wanted level, which is five star-signs, then they easily get rid of these by simply writing a cheat, which is quite easy to find on the internet.
Similarly, both articles highlight the fact that children get quite involved with violence and explicit sexuality contents throughout the gameplay, and it is quite easy. Instead of keeping up with the duties (also violence and sexuality), they directly go for the killing, stealing, and creating chaos in the game just to get wanted stars so that they see a police helicopter aiming them. Let us imagine a generation that spent a lot of their productive years by killing, stealing, and not obeying the social and authoritative norms. The impact on their sociology and psychological status may be extreme when imagining them having experienced such incidents with 3d consols, which makes everything quite realistic in the game.
The producers of GTA should be aware of their huge impact. After all, just like we are a collective result of people whom we see often, children and adolescents are also a collective result of their friend environments, and believe me, they are all busy with GTA or downloading violence and crime movies from the internet through an illegal software. Therefore, media authors, regardless of their type, have a drastic impact on society, sociology, and ethics.
As a result, in this assignment, GTA San Andreas has been selected to highlight the moral responsibility of media authors as a game and a movie. Both articles highlight the fact that children get quite involved with violence and explicit sexuality contents throughout the gameplay, and it is quite easy. Although adults are aware of its storyline and surreal images, children and adolescents can easily attract to immoral, unethical, and crime incidents that often occur. Research findings infer that children and adolescents can easily be affected by their surroundings, repeated media, and friend environment. Although these types of media are often considered innocent and leisure activities for children and adolescents, one can readily claim that such medium, including violence, blood, and explicit sexuality, can create a type of young generation with negatively-affected psychology and corrupted ethics.
Devane, Ben, and Kurt D. Squire. “The Meaning of Race and Violence in Grand Theft Auto.” Games and Culture, vol. 3, no. 3-4, 2008, pp. 264–285.
Jahn-Sudmann, Andreas, and Ralf Stockmann. “Anti-PC Games: Exploring Articulations of the Politically Incorrect in GTA San Andreas.” Computer Games as a Sociocultural Phenomenon, 2008, pp. 150–161., doi:10.1057/9780230583306_15.
Phoenix, Ann, et al. “Environment in the Lives of Children and Families.” 2017.
“Pulp Fiction.” IMDb, IMDb.com, 10 Sept. 1994, www.imdb.com/title/tt0110912/.
Valkenburg, Patti M. “Understanding Self-Effects in Social Media.” Human Communication Research, vol. 43, no. 4, Mar. 2017, pp. 477–490.
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