THE INFLUENCE OF TECHNOLOGY, MEDIA, & POPULAR
ON CRIMINAL BEHAVIOR: COPYCAT CRIME & CYBERCRIME
xamining the technological advances to date, what types of crimes have
increased? What can be done to decrease these
Sparks & Sparks (2002) identify six theoretical mechanisms in the media violence
literature that have enhanced our understanding of the influence of violent media.
List and discuss these six theoretical mechanisms.
Explain the “continuum of influ
ence” of media and pop culture discussed in the
The role of celebrities in the age of mass technology is an important consideration
in exploring the dynamics of copycat crime. Discuss the relationship between
technology, crime as art, and and cel
ebrity obsession and criminal behavior. What
role does celebrity obsession play in criminal behavior?
Research has shown that media has an effect on violence. Do you think that there
should be stricter regulations on violence in the media?
ping in mind that many crimes today have some sort of new technology
involved, is it important for new police officers to enter into low enforcement
with these skills and for those who are already in law enforcement, is it important
for them to have intens
ive training to keep up with technological advances?
List and describe the different types of computer hackers and their motivations.
Compare and contrast the various categories of crime that can be committed
through the use of the computer.
It is suggested in this chapter that mass media and computer technology can be
thought of as a dynamic risk factor for criminal behavior. Explain how technology
influences criminal behavior and discuss whether or not you agree/disagree that it
rtant for criminologists to focus attention to the role of technology in
shaping crime in the 21
Are copycat crime and cyber crime meaningful (and homogeneous) crime
categories? Are these types of crime best viewed theoretically as subtypes or
upertypes of criminal behavior? Discuss.
Review the different cultural artifacts that have been linked to copycat cases in
Box 10.1. What, if any conclusions can be drawn from examining this list of
anecdotal evidence? If you were asked to design an empir
ical study to examine
the copycat phenomenon, how would you design such a study?
One interesting question to consider is whether or not children who are born and
grow up with mass media technology in the 21
century are more or less likely to
criminogenically influenced by it. Do children who grow in a world
where media technology is a normal part of everyday life have a healthier
relationship to media than individuals who grew up in the 20
As computer technology become
s more sophisticated and video and other virtual
reality games more realistic, do you think there will be more/less potential for
cathartic versus criminogenic effects of virtual violence? Discuss.