Dec 16th 2008 10:19PM I think fads come and go as far as psychological scapegoats go, and online gaming is the scapegoat du jour. When I was a kid it was rock music and satanism. When I was a teen, the big thing was repressed memories of abuse. Now it's online gaming.
And really online gaming is perfect for scapegoating. If you don't play it, then it is easy to stigmatize it and those who play as being "other." Really, going around fighting orcs? Yeah, unless you're into that sort of thing it sounds mighty strange. And then there is the whole association with gaming with dorks and fantasy with dorks, and well you know it's going to be an uphill battle to gain acceptance or even tolerance for WoW from those who don't play.
As for those who played WoW and screwed up their lives? Well, they get to blame a game for their screw ups. Convenient, and perfectly understandable given that taking responsibility for ones mistakes isn't exactly pleasant or a real common personality trait with people who I know who have screwed up their lives with anything.
For those who played WoW and didn't screw up their lives? Well, it's easy for people to claim that those gamers are obviously in denial. They're screwing up their lives; they just haven't come to terms with it.
The fact is that people get addicted to anything and everything. I have a friend who swears up and down in all seriousness that lipgloss is truly addictive. She's not the only one. (There are websites about lipgloss addiction too by the way.) I know a few people who are addicted to genealogy. And we won't even go into the bicycle fanatics and car junkies I know. Then there are the sports fanatics. There isn't a hobby or interest out there that some people don't take too far.
Dec 13th 2008 10:37AM Most of the time I ignore the spelling errors, egregious grammar mistakes, and the nearly indecipherable series of letters and numbers that has become shorthand for the English language. It's a game, not a writing exercise after all.
However, if someone is making a lot of errors while being a jerk in trade chat, then I'll bust out the English major in me and say something.