La Trobe
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Stereotype content of players of violent and non-violent games

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Since the introduction of commercial video games in the 1970s, video game players have attracted the perhaps undeserving but negative stereotype of being unpopular and socially dysfunctional. However, with gamers increasing in numbers that now reach billions worldwide, the contents of gamer stereotypes may be in flux. The current study investigated the content of gamer stereotypes along the dimensions of physical/social attractiveness, warmth, competence, and morality as a function of genre violence level and gamer identity. Male and female participants (656 U.S. and 428 Indian) completed an online survey on the MTurk platform, rating social stereotypes of gamers in high-violence and low-violence genres on 22 adjective pairs and answering questions about gamer identity. Results revealed positive gamer stereotypes, especially in the low-violence genres in both the United States and India. Low-identifiers' stereotypes were less favourable in the high-violence than in the low-violence genres; this tendency diminished among high-identifiers. This study suggests that, whereas once gamers were seen negatively, they are now seen remarkably positively. The implications of such positive views of those engaging in violent gaming are discussed.


The study was funded by the Higher Degree Research Budget of the Department of Psychology and Public Health, La Trobe University, Australia.


Publication Date



Asian Journal of Social Psychology






12p. (p. 287-298)





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© 2022 The Authors. Asian Journal of Social Psychology published by Asian Association of Social Psychology and John Wiley & Sons Australia, Ltd. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs License, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited, the use is non-commercial and no modifications or adaptations are made.

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