Saturday, July 11, 2009


I fully realize the biased and for-entertainment-only value of Penn & Teller's series BullSh*t!

That being said, the episode on video game violence that aired this last Thursday was just as balanced as all of the arguments I have heard from the anti-video game camp.

I cannot make any claims on the effects of violent video games on people, because I have not done the research; but as researcher myself, I can see the fatal flaw in all of the arguments that have been presented to me. The flaw is phrases that all begin, "Well kids who play video games ..." followed by some gross generalization. They all what now? Millions of people play video games every day, and yet it has become acceptable to generalize about what gamers are like.

Now let's think about this... if someone made that claim about a gender, they would be sexist; or about a race they would be racist. Therefore, I think we need a name for these anti-video game people (something more eloquent than anti-video game people). I like the term technophobe, but maybe that is a little to general....I don't want to generalize like they do.

Friday, July 3, 2009

What Do You Do for Fun?

I have written about the false (or should I say inaccurate?) dichotomy between work and play before, and of course I have read a lot on this idea seeing as Thomas is my adviser; but it wasn’t until recently that the idea of work and play being one and the same hit my personal life.

I was chatting with someone I met professionally (but we were not chatting about work or school so there it is again – was this fun or networking?) and he asked me what I like to do for fun. Simple question right?

Well let’s see, I play WoW – but that is with a guild of other game researchers. I follow a few game related websites – but I do games research. I chat online – but mostly with other researchers. I like to read – but mostly academic books. Sure, I read some fiction works and I like to watch movies, but I also generally like fantasy and Sci-Fi both of which easily tie back to my research themes and serve to keep me up-to-date with what the people in the community are talking about as well.

So, what do I do for fun? I guess I work for fun.

Or, I have hit the jackpot and I have fun for work.