While reading these three different readings there was one thing that really stuck out to me. The easiness with which people get completely involved with the distractions that the internet can offer. Two of the articles expressly deal with virtual worlds and while the two articles have varying perspectives on these worlds the message is the same. That people can use these games as an extension of their lives and that they are easy to get immersed into. The ability for people to become completely attached to their computers/games/virtual worlds was always a phenomenon that amazed me. I’m personally someone that is only ever online or on my computer or phone if I’m doing homework or checking emails or researching a topic. In fact over summer breaks I maybe turn on my computer maybe once a month at max. It’s just not something that has ever appealed to me. Even the world of social media I’m not really involved with. That’s why while reading these articles it was a little hard of a concept for me to grasp, I had to relate it to what I see with those around me like my peers and friends. I do like Bloomfield’s discussion of “serious games” and what they have to offer. I think I would be more into games that offered me some sort of knowledge as an output. Also, the idea that they could be just as entertaining as a game for pure enjoyment purposes was an interesting proposal to me.
The one thing out of these three articles/chapters that I have witnessed first hand is my friends and peers being addicted to the internet and social media. No matter where I turn whether it’s at work or while we are hanging out the people around me are always on their phones or their computers checking Facebook or Twitter or Instagram or whatever the newest app is. On the other hand over the past few years I’ve been noticing more and more people who have deleted their social media and refuse to invest anymore time in the websites. I’ve always wanted to be the person that just deletes my Facebook profile but I like being able to message old friends even when I have lost their numbers over the years and I just can’t bring myself to delete my profile. These people who are participating in “media refusal” I hope are the beginning of a trend the get people back into participating more in life. I’ve also witnessed around midterms but more often during finals my friends “deactivating” their social media so they can focus on studying. It always amazed me that there are people so absolutely addicted to social media that they have to get rid of and lock themselves out of their accounts so as to focus on their exams. I’m not sure if the upwards trend is to step away from social media and the internet or if its just because those closest to my age actually remember what it was like beforehand. If that’s the case, those younger than me will most likely never walk away from their online addictions because they don’t know anything else.