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Virtual communities and the value of life, by s3238700

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By s3238700 …

By s3238700
My bias conclusions and research on the diminished/warped value of life by virtual communities and the mechanisms that developers use to create this state of mind.

Published in: Education

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  • 1. What is more immoral? Ganking a WoW funeral, or just being at a WoW funeral in the first place?
  • 2. Incident Background:
    “On Tuesday of February 28th Illidan lost not only a good mage, but a good person. For those who knew her, Fayejin was one of the nicest people you could ever meet. On Tuesday she suffered from a stroke and passed away later that night.I'm making this post basically to inform everyone that might have knew her. Also tomorrow, at 5:30 server time March, 4th. We will have an in game memorial for her so that her friends can pay their respects. We will be having it at the Frostfire Hot Springs in Winterspring, because she loved to fish in the game ( she liked the sound of the water, it was calming for her ) and she loved snow.If you would like to come show your respects please do. :) Thanks everyone.”“We're planning some cool stuff and we're going to make a video of it to show her family :). So I would appreciate it if nobody comes to mess things up.”
  • 3. Then this happened:
  • 4. My topic is “What is more immoral; Ganking a WoW funeral, or just being at a WoW funeral in the first place?”-And I wanted to suggest that digital communities have really blinded us to massive injustices on the part of money grubbing corporations.-Through the majority of people’s reactions to this incident we can see that people feel that the ones who ganked this funeral group are seen as immoral, heartless dogs. People think that this in-game ceremony holds serious significance and deserves to be respected.-I would say that a lot of people have really lost sight of the important different between real life and a computer game
  • 5. What is a game?A game is something you play for fun, something you enjoyWhy do you play a game?To take a break from reality, and have a virtual experience of whatever it is the game you choose to play provides, this could be -excitement/action, -horror/thrill, -love/respect, -achievement/learning. Why don’t people see it as sad when people decide to play a game and make some machinima to commemorate the actual death of a real human being?
  • 6. How has this happened:
    It would seem that some computer game developers using carefully balanced techniques of addiction have reduced our value of real life to less than that of a digital one. For the sake of keeping players paying more money into the machine every day, these developers are preying upon the psychology of gamers to create for them an existence within a digital prison that they can value higher than their real life existence. In a recent article, David Wong of Cracked.com suggested 5 ways game companies keep you playing…
  • 7. Burrhus Frederic Skinner’s Box
    "Each contingency is an arrangement of time, activity, and reward, and there are an infinite number of ways these elements can be combined to produce the pattern of activity you want from your players."
    -John Hopson, Microsoft games researcher
  • 8. 1. Putting You in a ‘Skinner Box’Conditioning behavioural patterns from a player through stimulus and reward 2. Creating Virtual Food Pellets For You To EatGiving virtual items real value and playing on the natural hunt and gather instincts of human beings 3. Making You Press the LeverSlot machine gambling mechanics subtly implemented within games 4. Keeping You Pressing It... ForeverExtending the gap between level up ect. Further and further making the ‘goal’ of an MMO not only non-existent but physically unachievableAs well as making the items, levels and status that you have spent so much time on, and given so much real world value to constantly diminishing if you attempt to stop playing. 5. Getting You To Call the Skinner Box HomeThis is where you start to like the game more than your real life because it easily provides you with a sense of reward and mental escape, just like drugs or alcohol.
  • 9. WoW had over 11.5 million subscribers as of December, 2008
    • Wikipedia
    “A 28-years-old man from Beijing, nicknamed "Snowly", died last month after playing the online game "World of Warcraft" for several continuous days during the national day holiday.”
    - Carmen Ivanov, Associate Games Editor, November 2005
    “..this week one married Korean couple discovered the awful consequences of letting virtual life overtake real responsibilities.
    The pair -- who were hooked on an online game called "Prius," where they were raising a virtual daughter -- were arrested by Korean police this week and charged with failing to care for their three-month-old baby daughter, who died of malnutrition last September.”
    Mike Smith – videogames.yahoo.com
  • 10. In conclusion, I would say that it is nothing short of sick that an in-game funeral was held for the death of a real person, showing that these people not only belittle the life of this Fayejin girl to less than that of a virtual avatar but they believe all of their own real lives to be just as insignificant. It’s sick that through some of the techniques in addictive game design I mentioned earlier coupled with the social / psychological health issues of addicted players (which just keeps going on getting worse, remaining untreated) millions of people are now in this situation.