Attacking games as corrupters of youth is nothing new — historically, self-declared protectors of innocence have damned novels, the waltz, movies, telephones, comics, and rock and roll as one-way tickets to delinquency. Tom Standage catalogs the hysterical media responses to historical new art-forms from the novel onwards:
"The free access which many young people have to romances, novels, and plays has poisoned the mind and corrupted the morals of many a promising youth; and prevented others from improving their minds in useful knowledge. Parents take care to feed their children with wholesome diet; and yet how unconcerned about the provision for the mind, whether they are furnished with salutary food, or with trash, chaff, or poison?"
– Reverend Enos Hitchcock, Memoirs of the Bloomsgrove Family, 1790
"The indecent foreign dance called the Waltz was introduced … at the English Court on Friday last … It is quite sufficient to cast one's eyes on the voluptuous intertwining of the limbs, and close compressure of the bodies … to see that it is far indeed removed from the modest reserve which has hitherto been considered distinctive of English females. So long as this obscene display was confined to prostitutes and adulteresses, we did not think it deserving of notice; but now that it is … forced on the respectable classes of society by the evil example of their superiors, we feel it a duty to warn every parent against exposing his daughter to so fatal a contagion."
– The Times of London, 1816