Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Online Gaming Promotes Social Interaction

14.09.2007
Online multiplayer communities are social networks built around multiplayer online computer games.

Members of these communities typically share an interest in online gaming and a great deal of the interaction between them is technologically mediated. Marko Siitonen from University of Jyväskylä studied social interaction in online multiplayer communities in his doctoral thesis of speech communication.

- Online multiplayer gaming is a playground which can give us clues about the future of social and technological developments, Siitonen states.

Online multiplayer games enable the formation of lasting relationships

Online multiplayer games typically encourage interaction between players: some go even as far as demanding it. Collaboration with other players may be a prerequisite for making progress in a game, or a game may be based on competition between players.

- Typical online games can be played fairly independently, without seeking closer contact with other gamers. However, social interaction is a strong motive not only for playing multiplayer games, but also for forming lasting social relationships with other gamers, Siitonen says.

Online games are based on the possibilities of computer networks. This shows in the scope of modes of communication that typical multiplayer games offer. A single game can support communication based on text, image, and sound. In addition, a game may provide tools for interaction between two people, as well as enable communication between whole groups and communities.

- In addition to using the modes of communication offered by games, members of multiplayer communities may keep in touch face to face, over the phone, via email, or in IRC, Siitonen explains.

Long-term interaction lays the foundation for a feeling of community

Social interaction between members of multiplayer communities shares similarities to interaction in face-to-face groups. Shared values and goals are the basis on which a shared understanding and a sense of community are built on. Negotiating values and goals is an ongoing process that takes place throughout the existence of a community. They are reflected e.g. by how new members are accepted in the community and by how the roles that are significant to the operation of the community are cast. Disagreement concerning these issues may lead to conflicts within communities, yet solving these conflicts can serve the purpose of strengthening or changing the community’s foundations.

- The traditional building blocks of identity, such as appearance or age, are often insignificant in multiplayer gaming communities. A 13-year-old French schoolgirl, a 27-year-old Swedish housewife, and a 44-year-old American engineer can all be members of the same community. When the members never meet face to face, they form perceptions of each other based on e.g. how active or reliable they think the others are, Siitonen describes.

Forming images of the other members can be quick in a technologically mediated environment. Still, reputation based on long-term social interaction does have real significance in online multiplayer communities. Activity and motivation are emphasized in technologically mediated communication, and the most active members often hold the leading positions in the communities.

Online multiplayer communities are susceptible to changes. Old communities perish and new ones are born constantly, and gamers frequently shift between communities. However, the social networks and personal relationships that form the base of these communities may survive even though the disbandment of a community. It is possible that a new multiplayer community rises out of the old one’s ashes.

Siitonen used interviews and information gathered by participant observation as the data for his study. The observation data was collected from two different communities within an online multiplayer game called Anarchy Online.

Liisa Harjula | alfa
Further information:
http://dissertations.jyu.fi/studhum/9789513929312.pdf

More articles from Social Sciences:

nachricht Sibling differences: Later-borns choose less prestigious programs at university
14.11.2017 | Max-Planck-Institut für demografische Forschung

nachricht Visual intelligence is not the same as IQ
09.11.2017 | Vanderbilt University

All articles from Social Sciences >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: A “cosmic snake” reveals the structure of remote galaxies

The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.

Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...

Im Focus: Visual intelligence is not the same as IQ

Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.

That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...

Im Focus: Novel Nano-CT device creates high-resolution 3D-X-rays of tiny velvet worm legs

Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.

During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....

Im Focus: Researchers Develop Data Bus for Quantum Computer

The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.

Future quantum computers will be able to solve problems where conventional computers fail today. We are still far away from any large-scale implementation,...

Im Focus: Wrinkles give heat a jolt in pillared graphene

Rice University researchers test 3-D carbon nanostructures' thermal transport abilities

Pillared graphene would transfer heat better if the theoretical material had a few asymmetric junctions that caused wrinkles, according to Rice University...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Ecology Across Borders: International conference brings together 1,500 ecologists

15.11.2017 | Event News

Road into laboratory: Users discuss biaxial fatigue-testing for car and truck wheel

15.11.2017 | Event News

#Berlin5GWeek: The right network for Industry 4.0

30.10.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

Carefully crafted light pulses control neuron activity

20.11.2017 | Life Sciences

SYSTEMS INTEGRATION 2018 in Switzerland focuses on building blocks for industrial digitalization

20.11.2017 | Trade Fair News

Heavy nitrogen molecules reveal planetary-scale tug-of-war

20.11.2017 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>