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Videogames damaging the brain?

  It has been recently reported in a Japanese study that prolonged periods of videogame play may cause people to become angry easily, have trouble concentrating, and lack the skills to interact with people. The study was conducted by a Professor Akio Mori at Nihon University and included 240 people between the ages of 6 and 29. He separated the subjects' brain waves into two categories, beta and alpha; beta waves indicate liveliness and degree of tension in the prefrontal region of the brain, while alpha waves appear when the brain is resting. It was found that those who rarely played videogames had very strong beta waves, but subjects who played between two and seven hours of videogames a day had extremely weak beta waves. 

  "I want people to be aware of the quality of games and the time young people spend playing them during their earlier years when sentiment develops," Mori said of the results. "Many videogames stir up tension and a feeling of fear, and there is concern that this could have an effect on the autonomic nerves. During childhood, playing outside with friends, not videogames, is the best option."

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Arnold: I'd just like to point out that accusations against videogaming are getting stupider and stupider everyday.

7/9/2002 Matt Stensrud

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