Decision making patterns— is there a difference in the patterns of decision making between groups that are harmonious and groups that have a lot of conflicts?— do patterns evolve over time?Effects from introducing democracy (definition: "a system of governance in which rulers are held accountable for their actions in the public realm by citizens, acting indirectly through the competition and cooperation of their elected representatives" (Schmitter, P. C. and Karl, T. L. (1991). What Democracy Is ... and Is Not. Journal of Democracy, vol. 2, no. 3, p. 76))— are democratically negotiated decisions better for the game as a game, players' satisfaction, etc.?Other microworld studies— if the approach turns out well, it opens for endless possibilities for studying social phenomena within games.
Democracy has arrived - A Model for Ethical Decision Making of Players in MMO's - Prax/Laaksoharju
Democracy has Arrived! A Model for Ethical Decision Making of Players in MMOsPatrick.Prax@im.uu.seMikael.Laaksoharju@it.uu.seUppsala University, Sweden
Game Plan • Code • Virtual World Structure and Effects • Add-ons • ColLab • Effects firstname.lastname@example.org 2
Code• “the rule is applied to an individual through a kind of physics” (Lessig, 2006, p. 81-82)• No possibility to reflect on the power structure in the game• Leadership structure hard-coded.• Try and defy gravity. And why did it take so long to discover it anyways? email@example.com 3
Virtual World Structure and Effect• Game dynamics and mechanics that are enforced normatively by players influence the game (Thomas & Brown, 2009)• Games as “frozen discourses” (Zabban, 2011) firstname.lastname@example.org 4
World of Warcraft• Now about 10 million paying subscribers• Ages old• Still the biggest in the western world• Sets the standard for MMORPGs• A single, all-powerful leader (in guilds, raids, parties) 5
Prax, P. (2012) Co-creative interface development in MMORPGs - the case of World of Warcraft add- email@example.com 6 ons, Journal of Gaming and Virtual Worlds, 4 :1, pp. 3–24.
ColLab -http://interact.it.uu.se/collab/• Open-source o EtherPad Lite, Node.js• Collaborative o concurrent editing• Structured• Concrete• Focusing on values/interests• For a deeper discussion please see Laaksoharju (2010, 2012)
An Alternative Model for Democratic Decision Making • Not determining social outcome, but offering an alternative • Enable players to discuss and reflect upon the leadership structure in the code of the firstname.lastname@example.org 9
Best case scenario• A new possibility to code leadership and conflict solving in MMOs• A possibility for players to take a reflexive approach to power structures outside of the game and to start to question their analog society email@example.com 11
And next…1. Make the add-on (taking your feedback into account, so hit me!)2. Test it3. Iterate4. Make it accessible for players5. Collect usage data6. Survey to find changes in reflexive attitude to power structures (in games and society)
Selected References• Lessig, L. (2006) Code. Basic Books, New York.• Laaksoharju M. (2010). Let Us Be Philosophers! Computerized Support for Ethical Decision Making. [Thesis]. Uppsala: Department of Information Technology, Uppsala University: IT licentiate theses / Uppsala University, Department of Information Technology• Laaksoharju (2012). In support of democratic dialogue. In Critique, Democracy and Philosophy in 21st Century Information Society - Towards Critical Theories of Social Media, The Fourth ICTs and Society-Conference, Collection of Abstracts, Retrieved from The ICT and Society Network: http://www.icts-and-society.net/wp-content/uploads/Abstracts.pdf• Prax, P. (2012) Co-creative interface development in MMORPGs - the case of World of Warcraft add-ons, Journal of Gaming and Virtual Worlds, 4 :1, pp. 3–24.• Thomas, D., & Brown, J.(2009), Why virtual worlds can matter. International Journal of Media and Learning, 1(1), 37-49• Zabban, V. (2011), What Keeps Designers and Players Apart? Thinking How an Online Game World is Shared. Proceedings of DiGRA 2011 Conference: Think Design PlayCopyrighted material used under fair use. If you own an IP andwant me to take something out please contact me. Thank you.Patrick.firstname.lastname@example.org