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Posts with tag antisocial

We're not antisocial! Yay!

This might be an obvious statement for those of us around here, but as it turns out, we're not antisocial. A new study has proven that gamers are not just basement-dwelling loners. In other words, everyone you see at BlizzCon did not just come out of their mother's house to talk about WoW -- they really are socially well-adapted people who enjoy the company of others.

This combats the stereotypes typically associated with gamers. More studies like these are an important step in eliminating the stigma associated with the online gaming community, and can go a long way in places of business and with health care in making "serious" online gaming like WoW more of an acceptable hobby. Now of course we consider it acceptable, however the CEO of Super Mega International World Corp might not agree.

The only problem with this study is that it viewed gamers already acting in social situations. Now given that they picked these gamers from that group, there would be a natural tendency for them to be more inclined to normalized social behavior. However at the same time, the study would have easily been able to pick up on outliers in the social interaction (meaning that their only social interaction was say, BlizzCon). The study found that this social interaction was deep and not just limited to one thing -- so while the population might not be ideal, the data still holds up (for the most part).

Filed under: News items

Drama Mamas: How to befriend when antisocial

Dodge the drama and become that player everyone wants in their group with the Drama Mamas. Lisa Poisso and Robin Torres are real-life mamas and experienced WoW players -- and just as we don't want our precious babies to be the ones kicking and wailing on the floor of checkout lane next to the candy, neither do we want you to become known as That Guy on your server. We're taking your questions at DramaMamas (at) WoW (dot) com.

We'll get to the drama in a minute, but first I must talk about the awesome avatars that the awesome Kelly Aarons of Byron and World of Warcraft, Eh? fame has awesomely drawn and painted for us. Awesome. See them after the break.

Yeah, yeah. You want drama. We've got your drama right here. The thing about WoW (and MMOs in general) is that while you may be able to solo through it, the most benefits are reaped by at least a minimum of social interaction. We are answering a letter this week from someone who isn't very friendly but still wants to make and keep friends in Azeroth. Try not to get too distracted by the awesome avatars. Awesome.

Read more →

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Drama Mamas

Australian TV covers World of Warcraft

Fortunately, this "mY Generation" show from Australian TV is a little more fair with WoW than the last bit we saw. Though the stereotyping of an entire generation and the video effects grate after a while, it's a generally better look at what it's like to be a World of Warcraft player. It would be nice to see, for example, these kids going out to a movie occasionally or interacting with other people (since most of WoW's population actually does that), and it would have been good to hear from more than just that scientific woman talking about the average playtime -- why all the focus on how many hours /played these people have and not what it feels like to play during those hours? But as far as mainstream reporting goes, it starts out as a pretty good description of what it's like to be a WoW player.

Part 2 and part 3 start to fall down, though, and by the time an intervention rolls around, the show gets a little more biased. I have to say, it would be fun to see a documentary done in this way for someone who watches TV 20 hours a week -- "We wanted to hang out with her, but she said the season finale of Top Model was on. She's a completely different person now!" Somehow, staring at a screen and doing nothing is still socially acceptable, but according to television itself, staring at a screen and interacting with other human beings isn't.

Thanks, Luke S.

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Fan stuff, Virtual selves, Blizzard, News items

Holy cow, somebody in the media got it right

As if to prove that not all media in Australia is completely insane about World of Warcraft, The Age has published a great column by comedienne and writer Wendy Harmer about her experiences playing WoW... with her eight-year-old son.

Now this is what I'm talking about-- she praises the game almost unreservedly for not only teaching her son about how to interact with computers and numbers, but also for how to interact with people. In the world of WoW, where the kid is "often playing alongside much older people who have high demands on courteous behavior and fair conduct," the kid is learning how to be social and save up a "bank of goodwill" with his guild members. She even attacks the notion that playing MMORPGs is anti-real world-social-- she says his son plays with both his mother and his friends, and that the game actually encourages real-world interaction modeled on the game, just as past generations of boys modeled their playtime on the TV and radio shows they experienced.

And notice how, as opposed to most of the crazy WoW kids portrayed by the media, Harmer actually moderates her child's playing. She keeps the computer out of the bedroom, and, I'd guess, evaluates and adjusts his playing time as necessary. In short, she lets her child play the game as its meant to be played-- as a part of a normal life-- and he's better off for it. That's the picture of WoW that most players see, and yet it's a picture that's almost never shown by the media.

Now all we have to do is get that kid to abandon his Pally and play Horde...

Filed under: Analysis / Opinion, Virtual selves, News items

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