The Sciences

NCBI ROFL: Macbeth and the Joystick: Evidence for moral cleansing after playing a violent video game.

DiscoblogBy ncbi roflOct 1, 2012 11:00 PM

Newsletter

Sign up for our email newsletter for the latest science news
 

"The “Macbeth effect” denotes the phenomenon that people wish to cleanse themselves physically when their moral self has been threatened. In this article we argue that such a threat to one's moral self may also result from playing a violent video game, especially when the game involves violence against humans. The cleansing effect should be particularly strong among inexperienced players who do not play video games on a regular basis, because frequent players may apply other strategies to alleviate any moral concerns. Seventy students played one of two violent video games and were then asked to select 4 out of 10 gift products, half of which were hygiene products. Inexperienced players reported more moral distress when the game involved violence against humans (compared to violence against objects), and selected more hygiene products in this condition than frequent video game players. Frequent players, on the other hand, reported less moral distress, irrespective of the game they played."

Thanks to BBoyButzemann for today's ROFL!

Photo: flickr/Silvio Sousa Cabral

Related content: Discoblog: NCBI ROFL: Sex differences in Nintendo Wii performance as expected from hunter-gatherer selection

Discoblog: NCBI ROFL: Is Mr Pac Man eating our children? A review of the effect of video games on children.

Discoblog: NCBI ROFL: Can playing Tetris help cure PTSD?

NCBI ROFL. Real articles. Funny subjects. Read our FAQ

!

1 free article left
Want More? Get unlimited access for as low as $1.99/month
Already a subscriber? Log In or Register
1 free articleSubscribe
Want unlimited access?

Subscribe today and save 70%

Subscribe

Already a subscriber? Log In or Register
More From Discover
Recommendations From Our Store
Shop Now
Stay Curious
Join
Our List

Sign up for our weekly science updates.

 
Subscribe
To The Magazine

Save up to 70% off the cover price when you subscribe to Discover magazine.

Copyright © 2021 Kalmbach Media Co.