How Does Media Violence Affect Society?

Multiple studies indicate that prolonged exposure to media violence has desensitized society to violent acts. Additionally, children in particular demonstrate more aggressive behavior after even short-term exposure to media violence.

A growing number of experts acknowledge the link between violent crimes in the United States and the amount of violence to which people are exposed through media outlets. It is estimated that 99 percent of American homes have at least one television. As of 2015, television programming subjects the total viewership to more than 800 violent acts per hour. This total does not include exposure to violence through other mediums, such as videogames. According to critics, the fact that many protagonists on television also result to violence in order to defeat antagonists constitutes a risk factor for real-life violence.

The American Academy of Pediatrics believes that children should not be permitted to watch more than two hours of television per day and strongly cautions parents to monitor their children's viewing habits. Studies also indicate that a percentage of the population may become super-sensitized to violence through media overexposure, developing violence-related phobias. As a result, such individuals, particularly those who watch several hours of television per day, may develop antisocial tendencies.