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October 23, 2003 at 11:44 am #2867
I’ve been having an argument for the last while and would like some other people’s input. It basically revolves around how people who play games see themselves and the term “gamer”.
My take on it would be that “gamer” is often seen as having a negative connotation by many people, and there are a huge number of people out there who would play games, but would react negatively at the though of being called a “gamer”.
(1) how do different people see themselves when playing games?
(2) how much of the games industry is comprised by people who may not yet be old enough to distinguish between the different social interpretations people have relating to games players and
(3) Will the public perception evolve as these people grow into a population who have had games as part of their lives for as long as they can remember?
(Boards been quiet, mise well stir up some debate…)
October 23, 2003 at 12:50 pm #9798
well I’ve been looking at that very issue in my game players research. It emerged as an important issue when I was advertising in various fora looking for female gamers – it appears that many females do not see themselves as gamers and even if they play games they don’t see themselves as gamers.
That to me was very interesting. Firstly I had to change the wording of my ads and make it clear that I was looking for females who played games, not gamers. Secondly, it emerged in the interviews that there were different definitions of what a gamer was but many had negative and gendered connotations.
there is more to say about this but suffice to say at this stage that I am careful about how I use the term gamer now…
by the way, anyone going out to the GaelCon this weekend and do you know if you need to register or anything in advance…
October 23, 2003 at 2:42 pm #9799
Well, I’m glad to have someone else on my side :) Like most things in life, a few badly chosen words can completely change how people interpret a persons intentions…
As for gaelcon, you dont need to pre-book or anything.
October 23, 2003 at 3:23 pm #9800
October 23, 2003 at 3:28 pm #9801
October 23, 2003 at 6:13 pm #9802
October 23, 2003 at 7:11 pm #9803
A word is probably best defined as the understanding the greatest % of the population ascribe to it, and in this case, I think the percentages consider “gamer” a negative word, one referring to a fanatical games player more then just a casual one. Thus while many of us would call ourselves gamers, it would seem best to avoid referring to others in the same way at any point.
This current generation of children and young adults is the first to have the technology available which allows them to access digital games at a cheap cost and at a good level of graphical excellence.
There is no previous generation and as such, in another 5-10 years time, there will be digital games players who have children coming to an age where they might take an interest in games playing.
October 23, 2003 at 11:25 pm #9804
I wouldn’t go out of my way to call myself a ‘gamer’. I play computer games and have done so since I was about 3. Should someone call me a ‘gamer’ I’ll accept it, but it sounds almost a derogatory term.
I’m someone who plays games. To me thats nothing unusal and I reckon over 50% of the people I know of my age group also play games.
When you’re using terms such as that you’re just asking for trouble if you are not talking about hard-core gamers at the time.
October 24, 2003 at 8:25 am #9805
From my experience of being a “gamer”, I find it strange that you know of people who would balk at the idea of being called one. In any of the social circles I’ve ever been part of, and certainly in the one I associate with now, there are no obvious negative consequences at all to being an avid gamer. The three lads I live with and alot of our friends play games every day, and not one of us has any social interaction problems. Well maybe one, but not for the fact he likes games:)
You seem to be almost suggesting that the term gamer is synonomous with the other common derogatory computer user names, like nerd, or geek, but the truth is that even people who fit the stereotypes these names represent have become more intergrated with the “normals”, as I like to call them:)
October 24, 2003 at 4:52 pm #9806
Actually Dave I think your projection is a little off timewise. Gaming really took off with the C64 and Spectrum, a good 20 years ago. I think we are already at the point where there are 2 distinct generations of gamers, and it has become pretty much accepted socially (albeit as said that very few people actually like being called Gamers…’dont pidgeon hole me…Im a people person…I’m not a geek….blah blah’). I don’t think the technical quality of the games for any one generation should define whether they can be classed as a gaming-generation or not (you mentioned graphics etc.). In that case as technology constantly improves from hindsight such a generation would never exist (I think the percentage of folks with home computers who were avid gamers was about the same when we were pottering around on Manic Miner as it is today).
Basically most of the beginniner bunch of avid gamers are 30 somethings now, many with children of an age to be playing themselves. Sure there’ll be more in 5-10 years but the 2 generations are already here imho.
Just my pre-coffee $.02
October 24, 2003 at 5:27 pm #9807
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