Outlet Seeking Tales of Crimes Caused By Games

An unnamed national UK newspaper has allegedly filed an advertisement seeking a story about "how computer games turned you to crime," a description that suggests a sensationalist story about the evils of video games.

The listing popped up over at StarNow, which provides job ads for models, actors, musicians, writers, and more to its members. Registered users are able to post listings free of charge, though it must be approved by customer service before it appears.

According to the advertisement, which was filed on March 27, the story could "pay hundreds of pounds" assuming "it's something we like." Interestingly, the listing did not note if the story had to be true.

The role of violence and video games has recently been thrust back into the spotlight following the publication of the Byron Report, a study by clinical psychologist Tanya Bryon that was commissioned by British Prime Minister Gordon Brown.

Byron examined child safety in games and on the internet, including a look at the relationship between violent video games and real-world violence. She suggested that Britain revise its game-classification system to be more movie-like.

"There are some possible negative effects of violent content in games, but these only become 'harmful' when children present other risk factors," Byron noted in the report.

"There is some evidence of short term aggression from playing violent video games but no studies of whether this leads to long term effects," she wrote.