A while back someone asked this question on Twitter: “blogwriters, how many people in your real life know about your blog?” In my case that would be one… Which would be my brother. If the question would be: “How many people know that you play World of Warcraft” then the answer would be a bit higher. My parents and family know that I’m a “gamer”. At work nobody knows about my WoW addiction or my blog. At times people look at me in a strange way when I tell them that I rather spend the night before my pc and raid instead of going out and get wasted. I think that games are automatically linked to a younger crowd and a lot of people have trouble seeing or accepting otherwise.
A while ago Blacksen wrote an article about being a raidleader/officer and if people would put this “experience” on application letters for a new job or promotion. I’ve been an Officer for several months and I’m not going to say that I haven’t learned anything out of that experience. There are a lot of things that people just don’t think or care about but when you’re suppose to run a guild a lot of those subjects are yours to fix/handle and even if this is “a game”, you’re still working with real human beings, who have there own set of idea’s and opinions. So why shouldn’t you put this on a job application letter? Simple, because a lot of people (generally the older generation) don’t see “gaming” as something that an adult would care about.
GAMING IN THE MEDIA
One of the best life experiences I had was an internship in an advertising agency (not sure if I’m using the correct term). So you don’t have to tell me how the media works. In Belgium gaming is often brought up in online newspapers and how they affect the current youth. These articles are mostly backed up by some kind of study from a university or a professor in psychology. As you might guess there are both positive and negative articles and a lot of them aren’t really that accurate when it comes to real facts. This is also a reason why gaming is seen as something that provokes bad behaviour and therefore gaming gets a bad reputation. Personally I don’t see how I would want to kill are hurt another person just by playing Call of Duty, or grow a more aggressive behaviour? A lot of these articles are focusing on extreme cases that occur rarely.
HOW I FELT...
When I still went to school I felt a bit odd about this whole concept. A lot of my mates where hanging at the pub or in some kind of sports club. While I was at home, doing my dailies. I felt a bit uneasy to talk about it but after a while I accepted the fact that I’m not going to be an athlete or the biggest drunk of our town. Don’t get me wrong, I did join my mates at the pub for a beer and a laugh, but I wasn’t joining them just to feel like I was a part of their group. When I had enough I went home and I didn’t bother what they though about it. In then end we do what we do to relax so why should I do stuff that I don’t really enjoy just to please others.
I recently changed the view people have about me at work. When I heard about Cataclysm’s release I immediately spoke about it at the office so I could see if I would be able to take a few days off to play. When people asked me if I was going on a trip I just answered them and told them the truth “No, I’m going to play a new game that’s going to be in stores that week”. I had a lot of surprised looks and some people asked me why I would waste my off days to sit in front of a PC. Others reacted interested and asked questions about World of Warcraft and the people I raid with, some of them where impressed when I told them that I play with different people from all over Europe.
MY PERSONAL VIEW…
Yep, I’m a gamer! I love things with buttons like computers or gizmo’s. I enjoy working out boss tactics with my guild far more then spending my evenings drinking in some pub. I’m not an antisocial person, I go to work everyday and I work together with the people at the office as well as people from outside the office. So you can’t really say that gaming has ruined my social life but when I get home I want to spend time tweaking the blog or in game and playing with all kinds of people from around Europe.
Not everyone will accept the fact that I like this lifestyle but then again I don’t have to like his or hers? Games have thought me things that other people struggle with (my English is one of the major examples, it’s not perfect but I’m the only one at the office that would answer a phone call when an English speaking person has a question. Which is a big advantage in a multicultural country). I lot of people also come to me when they are having trouble with their computer because I’m one of the few that knows more than just the basics.
When I joined the blogging community and registered myself of several forums I quickly saw how massive this World of Warcraft community is. And how people that I never would’ve guessed are also gamers.
Bottom line: Gaming is a hobby like any other hobby; the only big difference is technology. I’m connected to the world and the world is connected to myself, I don’t think my granddad that plays cards every Saterday evening can say the same thing :)
I hope you enjoyed reading this post as much as I enjoyed myself writing it. I think RestoDude has come to a point where I can write a bit more about serious, non-Druidish topics. This topic is something I come across in every day life so... it's a good one to start with :) Thanks for reading!