ing effects of short episodes of violent media exposure on short-term outcomes, although, as noted above, some question the assumption that it is the violence of the media content that is the active component in these effects (Adachi and Willoughby, 2011a,b; Przybylski et al., 2010). There is also controversy about the extent to which evidence of such short-term effects is relevant to the long-term associations found between persistent violent media exposure in youth and subsequent real-life violence (Browne and Hamilton-Giachritsis, 2005; Ferguson, 2011; Ferguson et al., 2013; Savage, 2004); the absence of experimental data renders it impossible to make unequivocal interpretations of these long-term associations (Ferguson, 2009; Grimes et al., 2008; Gunter and Daly, 2012). Critics note additional limitations of studies documenting long-term associations between violent media exposure and real-life violence, including poorly validated outcome measures and inconsistent measures across studies of aggression, childhood media exposure, and later violence (Ferguson, 2011; Ferguson and Kilburn, 2009; Kutner and Olson, 2008; Savage, 2004).

The number and variety of long-term prospective studies are sufficient to warrant systematic parallel secondary analyses to address criticisms regarding appropriateness of measures and adequacy of controls. Appropriateness of measures could be addressed by sensitivity analyses to examine variation in results, based on recoding the baseline measures of media exposure and refining outcomes to focus on the subset of violent behaviors with more public health significance. Concerns about adequacy of controls in original analyses could be addressed by applying consistent methods of control analysis using modern statistical methods for supporting causal inferences based on nonexperimental data.

Examine the relationship between exposure to media violence and real-life violence.

Examples of topics that could be examined:

Synthesize evidence from existing studies and relevant databases that would reveal long-term associations between violent media exposure in childhood and subsequent adolescent or adult firearm-related violence. Studies should focus on evidence regarding the consistency and strength of these associations and the sensitivity of effect-size estimates.

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