Informations and abstract
Keywords: violent videogames, aggression, emotions, facial emotion expression categorization, face recognition, accuracy
Happy faces are categorized faster than sad or angry faces (Happy Face Advantage). Violent video game play, in addition to having negative effects on social behavior, can lead to a reduction of the HFA, speeding up the categorization of angry faces. However, it is not clear whether violent video game play could have an effect on facial emotion categorization accuracy. The goal of our study was to investigate whether the use of a violent videogame could have an impact on accuracy rates in a fast categorization task of happy and angry faces. 24 students were asked to play either a neutral (N = 12) or a violent (N = 12) videogame, and subsequently to categorize emotional faces. Participants who played the violent videogame committed more errors with happy faces (by categorizing them as angry) than those who played the neutral videogame, thus indicating that violent videogames could cause a categorization bias,leading to the recognition of happy faces as hostile faces.