Can VR desensitise people to violence?
Chris Mackenzie, CEO, Opaque Holographic, discusses whether virtual reality has the potential to desensitise people to violence.
Chris Mackenzie CEO, Opaque Holographic, 1:53 video
TEXT ON SCREEN: Chris Mackenzie, CEO, Opaque Holographic.
TEXT ON SCREEN: Can VR desensitise people to violence?
AUDIO: Ambient music
VISUAL: Chris McKenzie speaks to camera. When he speaks, his words appear on screen in large coloured captions.
CHRIS MACKENZIE SPEAKS: When it comes to talking about desensitization of people with these VR and AR technologies, you look at a broad trend, right? I see this as just the very latest component of the story which is being played out over the generation. I think Shigeru Miyamoto said, "Video games are bad for you, that's what they said about rock and roll", and think that's a great quote, because it's almost an eternal struggle, right? We have new things, there are new concerns, but sometimes they're the same new concerns we had a generation or two ago.
I think we've seen the possibility that we can use VR, and games in general, to train and educate people in a way that is more powerful than we've been able to do before. There's definitely more power here, in this medium, at least in some circumstances, and I'll admit, I think that could lead you to the thought that there's more power for ill, as well. I think it's really going to come down to what we use them for, how we design these. Not necessarily how they're going to be violent, but are they going to encourage you to do things, and take those things into the real world, I don't know if someone out there is making game that wants you, encourages you, to be violent, but I wouldn't rule it out in the near future.
designers will have to think about what they want people to take away from the experience. That's going to be very interesting, especially as it allows you to do things that just aren't acceptable in our society. You're not going to go out there and slaughter 10 zombies but you can get that kind of cathartic release. I think it's something we'll see a lot more about in the near future, but I think it's just the very latest in a long running story of, is media bad for us? I think there's unresolved questions, I think they're going to be unresolved for a last little while, but this will add a really interesting spin to them.
VISUAL: Fades to RMIT logo, with white text on a black screen.
AUDIO: Ambient music fades out.
[End of transcript]
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