The Role of Exemplification in Shaping Third-Person Perceptions and Support for Restrictions on Video Games
The origins of third-person perceptions remain uncertain, with most research focusing on psychological mechanisms. We investigate whether media content might also play a role, using a 2 ? 2 experiment presenting a single story describing video games as harmful or harmless and using either research and statistics or a specific anecdotal exemplar to illustrate this claim. Results show perceived effects on others are influenced by the use of an exemplar but do not show an effect for explicitly describing games as harmful. The findings suggest that media may influence third-person perceptions and subsequent support for censorship in previously unexplored ways.