Serendip is an independent site partnering with faculty at multiple colleges and universities around the world. Happy exploring!

voyeurism and video games

spleenfiend's picture

Like teal, I was amused that both Tim Burke and Geeky Mom talk a lot about video games.  Personally, I find video games hopelessly boring because I just don't care about fighting, completing tasks, or really doing anything in a game.  Then again, I also find card games and board games boring, so that may just be me.  Either way, the mentions of gaming in both blogs were endearing to me.  I remember Anne mentioning at the beginning of the semester that video games could be a "genre" to explore, and I wonder if maybe these blogs make it look like blogging and gaming go hand-in-hand or something.  Well, I do think games have a lot of imaginative potential; I just can't get into them.

Anyway, Geeky Mom's blog is filled with more personal details than most of the blogs we've read.  Personally, I felt like a happy voyeur while reading it, getting a glimpse into the daily lives of Geeky Mom, Mr. Geeky, Geeky Boy, and Geeky Girl (such cute names, really).  This blog probably symbolizes everything some members of our class have said they don't like: "random" personal posts, often depicting the blogger's day.  Well, I don't mind that.  I would probably ask Geeky Mom how much she self-moniters, though I think that's a generic question to ask.  

I most enjoyed reading her musings on the internet, and how she thinks it isn't perfect but isn't terrible, and "Maybe, it’s just like real life, which isn’t always positive either."  I also like how she mentions in an entry that "And once upon a time, I did an interview with the Wall Street Journal, whose main question was, how do you keep kids away from porn and child predators online.  That was 1998.  We still think the Internet is just for porn."  And I thought about how much I agree, that there is so much stigma about the internet.  I understand caution, but not paranoia.

Finally, I found this entry, which is about creating a positive online profile.  It reminded me a bit of some of our class discussions.  I like this post because she isn't saying, "Don't post anything on the internet that anyone can find."  She's just saying to present a positive image on sites like Facebook, where your real name is attached.

Comments

TPB1988's picture

The Missing Link

I think saying that blogging and playing video games go hand in hand is generalization that does not always prove to be correct. I personally cannot see a link between bloggers and video gamers aside from the fact they both use technology when either playing or writing and that they both are opening themselves to a more social atmosphere. The social interaction that one receives from a blog atmosphere and a video game atmosphere is also completely different.  Bloggers and video game players do not even share the same set of skills when they make use of the technology. A blogger is using his/her words to convey whatever it might be that is crossing their mind while a player is making use of his/her hand-eye coordination to reach a certain goal. When I read that Geeky Mom played WOW I was not shocked at all. She did after all claim that her job title was a technologist as well as a consultant. From what I hear not many can resist the technology involved in WOW and perhaps that is why she is attracted to the game(although similar to the bloggers above me videogames hold no appeal for me) but, it never occurred to me that maybe she enjoyed playing WOW because she was a blogger.  

Blogging and video games are very common nowadays and it is not surprising to know that most users of blogs and video games run in the same circle. To me it would be like saying that because someone enjoys Harry Potter they will enjoy Twilight and there is a link between the two. Both Harry Potter and Twilight are books that are read and enjoyed worldwide and therefore it makes sense that a lot of people will be fond of both but to say there is a link between the two novels would be an overstatement. With concepts so widely used it might be easy to notice connections but, with that thought process most things would appear to be connected to others. This is just my view on the matter although I definitely would love to hear Geeky Mom’s opinion on the “link” between blogging and playing video games.

As far as the lowering social capitol in the United States I think it would be a safe assumption to attribute it to the more modern “interactions” that are now preferred by many people, at least according to Putnam.  I think Nk0825 made an excellent choice in bring Putnam’s argument into this blog and his point of view poses the question of how much the internet is really helping create social interactions.

 

nk0825's picture

 I too was especially

 I too was especially intrigued by Geeky Mom's WoW Wednesday posts. Like spleenfiend I am not particularly interested in playing video games (I find it hard to sit still long enough to understand how the game works and am far too impatient to complete the various "levels"). I however, believe that a link plausibly exists between bloggers and video-gamers. If you think about it, it makes sense that someone who is interested in interacting and competing with individuals on the web through video games would also be interested in using the internet as a form of social connection. People who are avid gamers may think that blogs are the equivalent to video games, yet as opposed to sharing gaming tips and competing with people from across the world they want to share stories of their own lives.

It was interesting to read Geeky Mom's take on her son's interest in video games (and learning that time spent playing video games is only regulated if grades being to fall). For my family at least my brother's video game time was always limited because my parents believed he should be outside playing basketball, doing homework, or riding his bike. The idea of losing social connection (which I believe has been a fundamental discussion in our class) is nicely portrayed by Robert D. Putnam's "Bowling Alone: America's Declining Social Capital." I think that Putnam's description of a decline in social capital (the very idea that community is created by people gathering and connecting through face to face activities) would be even more interesting if it included the idea of blogging and video-games because while these still generate interaction they detract from the actuality of meeting face-to-face.

The question posed by spleenfiend and aseidman concerning the existence of a link between video games and blogs should be asked to Geeky Mom during her visit to class tomorrow. I believe hearing her interest in both blogging and video games may reveal certain aspects of interest that those of us who aren't involved in either area cannot think of.

aseidman's picture

The gaming mentions were

The gaming mentions were interesting to me as well. I'm actually surprised that we're finding connections between blogging and video games. Blogging, as we've discussed in previous classes, is a very free and open ended writing process, generally unregulated and allowing of all sorts of loose ends. Gaming, particularly when it comes to video games, tends to be a very regulated, structured process, with, as mentioned by spleenfiend, specific tasks to complete in specific ways in order to reach a specific, pre-determined conclusion. Naturally I'd like to figure out why people who like one also seem to find the other appealing.

 

I think presenting yourself "positively" on the internet is in fact very important...actually I'm not sure how the class discussion got where it did last week. By "employers can see you on the internet," I did not mean "never post anything and stay away from technology eternally." Somehow I am starting to begin to feel that it may have been interpreted that way. Oops!

As to the names, they are adorable! However, I wish they did not all include the word "Geeky." Sometimes I have to read them twice to figure out exactly who it is who is being referred to. Perhaps if she diferentiated the names slightly, it'd be easier th skim...and then again, maybe she doesn't at all want to be skimmed Vladimir Nabokov had the same problem with his readers. He wanted to make it hard to understand his prose so that they would have to read every word...

 

Post new comment

The content of this field is kept private and will not be shown publicly.
To prevent automated spam submissions leave this field empty.
3 + 5 =
Solve this simple math problem and enter the result. E.g. for 1+3, enter 4.