back to article Youth crime falls as kids stay inside to play Grand Theft Auto instead of going out to steal cars

Crime rates in the Australian State of New South Wales have dropped markedly in recent years and researchers think technology might be a big reason why. So says an Australian Institute of Criminology study (PDF) titled “Where have all the young offenders gone? Examining changes in offending between two New South Wales (NSW) …

Alert

Bahhh!

"Comparisons between two cohorts [one of people born in 1984 and another born in 1994]"

This means that people born in 1997 are now 21. This makes me feel well old.

The findings may be right of course. I walk or drive around now and I see far less late teens/20 somethings wandering the streets at night than what was when I was a late teen/20 something.

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Paris Hilton

Who commissioned the study?

As this appeared only as the last possibility: "The authors also note numerous schemes to work with at-risk youth may have worked.", I assume it was not by the supports of said schemes.

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So all those claims that violent video games train people to be bad are complete rubbish, it's the opposite. Kids these days are too busy slaughtering orks to bother with mugging people, but leaves them time to troll.

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But when the apocalypse comes how will Australian youth gain the skills to drive armoured V8s across the outback in pursuit of oil and/or Mel Gibson ?

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"But when the apocalypse comes how will Australian youth gain the skills to drive armoured V8s across the outback in pursuit of oil and/or Mel Gibson ?"

We need a Grand Theft Auto Outback edition.

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Anonymous Coward

how will Australian youth gain the skills to drive armoured V8s across the outback in pursuit of oil and/or Mel Gibson?

They won't. They'll be too busy trying to enter the cheat codes for tanks, all weapons and unlimited ammos when the apocalypse comes.

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So basically ...

... the lazy little shits are too busy sitting on their arses playing with TehIntraWebTubes to get into physical world trouble? Sadly, it means they are also not out in the RealWorld learning how to be human ...

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Re: So basically ...

Wow, I've never wanted to reply to a post with ODFO quite this strongly before. Lucky for you, I recognise this for the joke that it is.

Anyway, RealWorld sucks. The mechanics are terribly defined and nobody really knows the rules. Graphics are pretty good, if you're into that sort of thing.

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Re: So basically ...

The resolution may be good but on most levels the design is dull and uninspiring and the special effects are just pathetic.

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Re: So basically ...

The resolution may be good but on most levels the design is dull and uninspiring and the special effects are just pathetic.

Worse than that, most of the characters you encounter are so banal and repetitive they get very low marks on a Turing Test and are best avoided.

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Re: RL

it has been thoroughly tested though and all the glitches that you could use to fill your bank account quickly have been patched.

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Re: So basically ...

No joke, folks. You've only got one life, don't blow it.

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Mushroom

Re: So basically ...

Yes, you only have one life. One life that you should spend enjoying as you see fit (as long as this doesn't involve being a douche to other people). Who the hell are you to cast judgement on others for enjoying different things than yourself?

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Anonymous Coward

Maybe it's because nobody has anything worth nicking? Most people already have phones/tablets/consoles/tv's and there isn't any point nicking cars as a lot of cars need the on board computer reprogramming when you change a part which makes it pointless because you have to take it to a garage and as it's Australia it's not like you can ship the car to an eastern European country like they do over here. There's also GPS tracking that wasn't about years ago. It's basically reward versus risk. Over here the little scrotes wear hoodies so CCTV isn't a problem.

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“Increased opportunities for home entertainment"

More like decreased opportunities to socialize.

Suburbia effect. In my childhood we spent all of our free time hanging out and doing stupid things as a result. It is a natural result. You get 20 bored teenagers together and something stupid WILL arise as a result.

I am looking at my kids - they simply no longer physically hang out with their peers. Virtual contact has replaced a lot of it and the whole idea of hanging out is somewhat foreign. The most they do is congregate for an hour or two after school in one of the parks and that's it (and even that is not popular).

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Anonymous Coward

Re: “Increased opportunities for home entertainment"

"I am looking at my kids - they simply no longer physically hang out with their peers."

Kids have less opportunity these days to escape from their parental controlled areas. In the 1950/60s we were expected to "go out and play" with our pals - and we had an area at least a mile in diameter to wander. Pre-teens would walk to school, go shopping, or go to Saturday cinema on their own. We didn't even have watches - but relied on public clocks, the sun, or rumbling stomachs to tell us when it was time to go home.

Wordsworth's "Prelude"

And in the frosty season, when the sun

Was set, and visible for many a mile

The cottage windows through the twilight blaz'd,

I heeded not the summons:—happy time

It was, indeed, for all of us; to me

It was a time of rapture: clear and loud

The village clock toll'd six; I wheel'd about,

Proud and exulting, like an untired horse,

That cares not for its home.—All shod with steel,

We hiss'd along the polish'd ice, in games

Confederate, imitative of the chase

And woodland pleasures, the resounding horn,

The Pack loud bellowing, and the hunted hare.

So through the darkness and the cold we flew,

And not a voice was idle; with the din,

Meanwhile, the precipices rang aloud,

The leafless trees, and every icy crag

Tinkled like iron, while the distant hills

Into the tumult sent an alien sound

Of melancholy, not unnoticed, while the stars,

Eastward, were sparkling clear, and in the west

The orange sky of evening died away.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: “Increased opportunities for home entertainment"

"In the 1950/60s we were expected to "go out and play" with our pals - and we had an area at least a mile in diameter to wander."

You're making me feel old.

At eight years old my grandmother would send me to market to buy the fruit and veg on a Saturday. The West Indian stallholders tried to persuade me to get mooli and ugli fruit among others. That was a two mile round trip through parts of London now controlled by gangs and I wouldn't be doing it now.

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Go

I'm picking up a lot of negativity from other oldies on here. Kids these days always inside not outside socialising, not learning how to be human, yadda, yadda, yadda.

I dont really get that attitude. The kids are socialising, they're just doing it online. big deal. I'm late 30's and I probably catch up with my mates online more often than I do in person (we've all got families now with kids and finding time to all get together down the pub isnt easy to do). So why shouldnt the kids as well. The kids get to socialise for 7 hours a day at school, so its not like they're not getting face to face socialising time, and all of mates and I are spending a lot more time at home then our parents did, so our kids get a lot more family socialising time then our generation did.

So long as the kids are fit, happy and healthy and you keep a good idea on what they are doing online, why shouldnt they be inside more often?

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Anonymous Coward

So long as the kids are fit, happy and healthy and you keep a good idea on what they are doing online, why shouldnt they be inside more often?

because there is one basement and it is taken. /coat

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Anonymous Coward

Problem is we are being told childhood obesity is a problem so it's more than likely linked to not going out and exercising. Kids don't go out because of the culture of fear pushed by the media that there are pedos, terrorists and criminals everywhere. Congregating in public where the government can't see what you are saying is frowned upon these days.

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Anonymous Coward

What a strange study

I firmly believe that social media is directly to blame for the 23 school shootings and others.

People wanting their "15 minutes" at any costs.

A world where "likes, shares, followers and upvotes" feed the ever increasing need for Dopamine "hits" designed by unscrupulous advertising billionaires and a huge team of doctors, scientists and psychologists to keep them wanting more.

When I was in high school almost every truck had a gun rack in the back window and school shootings were unheard of.

Now when you see CCTV videos of crime taking place there are several people standing around filming with their phones hoping to be the first to post a "viral" video before anyone thinks to aide the victim(s).

Now the latest trend is to stream murders and or abuse on "Facebook Live".

Preteen children commiting suicide due to cyber bullying and then hanging themselves while live streaming.

Users afraid of having compromising photos of themselves exposed online are asked to submit their nude photos to Zuckerburg first so that his AI might intercept them before being posted.

(Yes, this is a thing!)

Unfortunately the elephant in the room has grown much too large to be handled and just like the corrupt banksters of 2008 they are too big to jail.

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Re: What a strange study

Unfortunately the elephant in the room has grown much too large to be handled and just like the corrupt banksters of 2008 they are too big to jail.

Society needs banks. Its an unfortunate fact of life, but it is a fact, however much it may be disliked. I've yet to see any particular reason why society needs social media - the modern economy works perfectly fine without it, as did society. Its nought more than an unhelpful distraction, so quite clearly it could be banned with limited if any downsides. Not, of course, that I am in favour of banning things - just saying that banks and social media are at polar opposites of the worlds needs spectrum.

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Re: What a strange study

I dont think we need banks. money itself dosent do anything. Its just a note to say the owner is owed x amount of goods or services. you dont need interest, Money shouldnt grow by itself , that defeats the point of it , and if it didnt , and there was a fixed amount of money , there wouldnt be inflation.

Then you could just store who has how much in a database .

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Re: What a strange study

I am quite convinced we need banks, i.e. for handling payments and turning short term deposits into long term credits How would most people buy a house?

An example of a fixed amount of money is a gold-based currency, that has its own set of problems and does not eliminate interest.

Interest is the payment for deferring your consumption.

Another thing is the mixing of investment (Casino) and retail (utility) banking. I think it should be separated, as the Glass-Seagal act did (now unfortunately repealed).

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Re: What a strange study

"I firmly believe that social media is directly to blame for the 23 school shootings and others."

Are you sure it's not television? The law change that prevents kids getting a darn good thrashing when they are naughty?

Speaking for most English speaking Commonwealth countries: the biggest change from then to now is the move to "help" seriously mental ill people with "care in the community". Accountants, looking to save money, ably assisted by liberals, who were concerned about the "rights" of the violently ill. The upshot? Closure of care facilities.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: What a strange study

"I firmly believe that social media is directly to blame for the 23 school shootings and others."

Except if that were the case, would you not expect similar levels of school shootings in all the other countries where children have access to social media?

Can we identify a cause which might be unique to the country where the school shootings occur?

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Re: What a strange study

Just to muddy the waters a trifle ... In one of my highschool yearbooks (early/mid 1970s), one of our classmates was voted by his peers as "most likely to shoot up the school". He was arrested several times, on and off school grounds. His parent (singular) was also in and out of jail, with a fairly useless 20-something cousin acting as his guardian. Everybody knew he was trouble, and everybody kept an eye on him, so he never really had a chance to do any permanent damage. He's currently doing 26 to life for shooting a cop during a botched bank robbery ... AFTER he left school.

Today? Would people even talk about the kid? Is it allowed? I had a couple High School seniors come to the door with some petition or other about gun control after one of the latest shootings. I asked 'em point-blank "Which kid in your graduating class would be most likely to shoot up the school?" They both blurted out a name at the same time. The same name. So I asked 'em if they had gone to the authorities with their perception of the problem. The answer was negative. I pointed out that they were therefore more a part of the problem than any inanimate object like a gun ... The next day, I got a telephone call from the principal at the school giving me a raft of shit about poisoning children's minds.

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Obesity, Diabetes Type II and so on

The first thing that comes to mind when I read about increased numbers of young people (well, under 25s anyway) spending more of their time indoors playing computer games are the side effects of such a sedentary lifestyle: obesity, diabetes type II, tracksuit/pyjama wearing [1] and so on. In other words, the ticking time-bomb is being magnified.

For all of us in our 40s and 50s, these won't have a positive effect on us when we come to retirement age in 20 years' time. But this is just me being selfish.

That being said, I played a lot Quake, Half Life, Team Fortress, StarCraft & Civilization in my 20s and early 30s, so I'm hardly one to complain. Computer games, *when played with others*, are immensely satisfying and very good for social contact. So they can have a positive effect on our mental health and a detrimental effect on our physical health. I'm still waiting to find railguns that float about a metre off the ground.

[1] I don't mean to come to come across a snob here. If you're going to stay in all day anyway, then putting on the easiest and comfiest clothes seems like a good idea, more of this notion.

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Re: Obesity, Diabetes Type II and so on

"If you're going to stay in all day anyway, then putting on the easiest and comfiest clothes seems like a good idea"

What's wrong with wearing the easiest and comfiest clothes when outdoors? I'm ugly anyway, putting on some uncomfortable but pretty clothes isn't gonna help. So I might as well be comfortable.

I have three reasons for wearing clothes, practicality, comfort, and to avoid getting arrested for public nudity. That third one is optional. Anything else is just fashion nonsense.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Obesity, Diabetes Type II and so on

[1] I don't mean to come to come across a snob here. If you're going to stay in all day anyway, then putting on the easiest and comfiest clothes seems like a good idea, more of this notion. But at least I said they still wear something indoor.

FTFY.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Obesity, Diabetes Type II and so on

"If you're going to stay in all day anyway, then putting on the easiest and comfiest clothes seems like a good idea,"

Why wear any clothes at all? As long as you are not likely to upset any prudish neighbours - then it is a healthy option.

IIRC below an ambient temperature of 18C the body will divert calories to making brown adipose tissue instead of storing them as "white" fat. The "brown" fat itself then burns calories to make heat to help keep you warm.

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Re: Obesity, Diabetes Type II and so on

What's wrong with wearing the easiest and comfiest clothes when outdoors? I'm ugly anyway, putting on some uncomfortable but pretty clothes isn't gonna help. So I might as well be comfortable.

LOL! I wish I could upvote you more than once, I really do....

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Re: Obesity, Diabetes Type II and so on

Apologies to all for this post. If you are eating your lunch now, skip one or the other.

AC» Why wear any clothes at all? As long as you are not likely to upset any prudish neighbours - then it is a healthy option.

Have a look at your underpants (should you wear any) at the end of a day and realise that all of what is on them could be on your sofa/settee [1], chairs and anything else that you sit on.

This problem is magnified if you should happen to have to worms (and many people unknowingly do) or any other condition that cause migration out of your rectum.

[1] As appropriate

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Coat

Re: Obesity, Diabetes Type II and so on

Anything else is just fashion nonsense.

I see people wearing jeans with "artful" rips and tears in them. They're considered fashionable. Yet when I walk around with the arse hanging out of my trousers people laugh at me. Somebody please explain the difference.

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Re: Obesity, Diabetes Type II and so on

It's fashionable when the fashion industry says it is, mostly so they can make more profits. Next year something different will be fashionable, and the fashion victims will need to replace their wardrobe.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Obesity, Diabetes Type II and so on

"Have a look at your underpants (should you wear any) at the end of a day and realise that all of what is on them could be on your sofa/settee [1], chairs and anything else that you sit on."

Naked at home - it is only a minute's task to wash after using the toilet. That is something that is less easy when clothed - and just about impossible away from home in most countries' toilet facilities.

My underpants usually look clean at the end of the day - but that may vary for people with different diets or habits.

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Disturbing

Doesn't anyone else find "kids today know that they’re under constant video surveillance" disturbing?

It's a sad reflection on society that such surveillance is accepted and taken for granted.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Disturbing

Given that teenager's brains are intrinsically risk-takers that do not look ahead - then it is surprising that surveillance is any particular deterrent.

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Re: Disturbing

I wonder if the researchers tried correlating the numbers with alcohol and drug use amongst the same teenagers?

Maybe they're too stoned to go out and nick a car.

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Re: Disturbing

no , they dont do that either apparently. Survey just done at a Uni says 71% think drugs are baaad. mkay.

"Total of 71 per cent of students polled in study have not taken drugs at university

Meanwhile 62 per cent of students want a tougher line on both users and dealers"

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Re: Disturbing

"Total of 71 per cent of students polled in study have not taken drugs at university"

I wonder if they count alcohol, cigarettes, and coffee as drugs?

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Re: Disturbing

I wonder if anyone thought about actually talking to a cross-section of the two cohorts, instead of wildly guessing. Qualitative data have an immense value in these types of research.

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Physical crime is down...

..Youth crime falls as kids stay inside to play Grand Theft Auto instead of going out to steal cars....

...but computer crime goes up....

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The only large groups on street corners i see of a night now, are 40 year old playing pokemon go!

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It isn't the surveillance that has them staying home, besides the UK is plastered with CCTV and it doesn't even pause crime there.

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I3N
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Big Brother

Gotta be true ...

Yeah caught an 'old guy' on video breaking our windows at 6PM, daylight here ...

Searched and searched the feed looking for some nighttime punk ...

Kind enough to fix the screen back, but turned and appeared to be cursing the building ...

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In the future it will be impossible to commit crime and get away with it. For one thing, you'd have to leave your phone at home. Surveillance becomes continually more pervasive, including self-surveillance like posting on Facebook. This isn't new but it bucks the trend of the last few hundred years. We are more like living in a village or even a hunter-gatherer tribe where everyone knows what everyone else was doing. Privacy barely existed and certainly wasn't fetishized like now.

My personal experience in hanging out with delinquents is that boredom is (was) a big cause of youth crime. One thing this report doesn't mention is that online people are, I think, getting more socializing influences online which reduces crime.

And kids are smarter. Crime doesn't pay, especially at the lower end.

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This so called study is hogwash.

It's not a study, it's an opinionated observation. There are so many things left out and unobserved, that to call this a study is an insult on anyone who is educated.

People do what they do based on opportunity, knowledge of something and whether or not it's 'cool' vs responsibility/irresponsibility.

In the 70s kids did one thing, in the 80s another and so on. To attribute it to one main thing or another is ridiculous.

Also, these horrible tragedies whether they involve kids, college campuses, alley ways, belt ways, etc. have been going on for many decades. The only thing which changes is the number of people who are made aware of it.

Today, EVERYTHING makes national if not international news. The Watts riots in the 60s didn't make the news in London, and its significance didn't even make it to Orlando. Today, it would be an entirely different story.

...and then there of course is ignorance. What people are told, because it's easy to sell them on... or it's what they've been led to believe. Especially if they don't have any idea at all. Such as the right to own firearms. There is no 'gun culture' in America the way people are led to believe it in Europe. Gun use comes down to the same thing nearly everything else does... responsibility or irresponsibility which is mainly placed on us by our community. Not a video game, music, etc.

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