The stereotype, however, is that games are still for children (but somehow at the same time unsuitable for them and clearly marketed at older age groups). Activist and lawyer Jack Thompson called video games "murder simulators," prior to his disbarment, but as of 2009 only 17.4 percent of video games have a rating of "M" (17+, the equivalent of an R rating) and are played by more women over 18 than boys under 17, according to the Entertainment Software Association.
Violent crime among youth has declined sharply since the mid-nineties, while at the same time video game use -- and the realism with which games depict violence -- has exponentially increased. Numerous new studies, in particular the ones leading to the book Grand Theft Childhood, have shown that video games are no more dangerous to children than movies, books, or television, and should be monitored by parents in the same way. This stereotype no longer reflects reality, if it ever did.