“Mothers Against Violent Video Games,” Dana Severin et al. (2015) — Inquiry 4

Check out the group’s project here: http://severidj.wix.com/inquiry4

Upon receiving the initial inquiry four prompt, my group and I began to brainstorm ways in which we could some how re-create my fellow member Alex’s essay. In order to fulfill the requirements for the assignment, we had to come up with a way to present his formal essay in a new way while getting the same point across. His original work revolved around the rising debate on whether or not video games are causing violence in children. He took the stance claiming that video games did not lead to violence in adolescents, and continued to delve into scholarly research to get across his point. While this traditional essay filled with useful facts and information was fitting for the original assignment, for the purpose of inquiry four, we wanted to establish the stance in a more intriguing way aimed at a non-academic audience.

With this in mind, we chose to take a satirical approach and create a website. Our website is called Mothers Against Violent Video Games (MAVV), and from the title alone, one can see how our remediation aims at satire. The entire site develops the original stance by mocking the other side. We zeroed in on casting the opposite side of Alex’s argument, that video games indeed cause violence, in such an extreme light that it appears almost ridiculous and humorous. In doing so, an audience is able to better side with Alex’s position because it appears more realistic and less severe. The website appears to be like any other one would visit and well put together, as if it was actually assembled by a group of extremist moms. This, along with many other aspects, adds to the comical satire established throughout the site. Each individual detail of the website cohesively comes together and helps construct what the true point is that is still being made through the use of satire.

Personally, I contributed a great deal by doing most of the composing of the website as a whole. One of the benefits of presenting the argument in a visual form such as a website was that the new medium allowed for the stance to come together in more than merely words on a page. The fact that the audience would be able to visually interpret, as well as read the information on our sites was key. Starting first with the color scheme of the entire site itself, I chose a very stereotypical techno theme. It was what I imagined most mothers and uninformed people in general think of when they first hear video games. Also, in terms of color scheme, I chose a very dark background with red and blue as the main accents. I feel that this choice lead to furthering the extreme feel, which overall enhanced the satire found within the website. Next, one of my favorite parts of the site is all of the minute details created, such as the usernames on the home screen. With names such as “mommabear22” and “lovingmother1676”, a viewer can capture a witty image of your classic overprotective mother. Further, the actual content embedded throughout the website in various forms supports the extreme cult-like society the mothers have supposedly created. The words appear to the audience as almost sarcastic, making fun of the mothers’ point, despite being presented in a serious established website. I contributed to such aspects including the “upcoming events” and the “founders” biographies which add to the collective feel. The text all comes across as if truly written from a mother’s point of view, but written with a certain mocking extremity. It captures such the radical end of the argument as told by mothers it’s taken in a humorous light. Even the founders names were carefully thought out and reflect what one would associate with a conservative, typical, controlling mother.

Overall, in order to get the point that video games do not cause violence in children we aimed at forming this absurd mother clan whose point about video game violence is being made so extremely that it comes across as funny. The anti-videogames argument is presented in our website in such an exaggerated manner, while appearing serious, in a way that criticizes the opposite view point. This was a drastic remediation from the way Alex’s paper initially presented; however, I do feel it really works. Through various features of our website, in which I helped in many ways to create, we were able to re-work Alex’s essay on video game violence and represent his viewpoint in an entirely different way. Our website creates a very obvious satire, that shines the opposing view in such an elaborate, overemphasized style that any viewer would find it to be comical and utterly ridiculous. Thus, highlighting the intended position that video games do not cause violence in children.