August 8, 2012

I’m not a gamer, but I saw this on TED and was fascinated.

Reality is broken, says Jane McGonigal,
and we need to make it work more like a game.

Games like World of Warcraft give players the means to save worlds, and incentive to learn the habits of heroes. What if we could harness this gamer power to solve real-world problems? Jane McGonigal says we can, and explains how.

Fascinating, whether you’re a gamer or not.  For me the  most interesting thing it how this relates to yoga philosophy in the Bhagavad Gita–difficult tasks become enjoyable and absorbing when we detach our ego from the results, as though it’s just a game.~

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Tracy Aug 11, 2012 9:52am

I think that this could be a great idea- I'd be excited to see it put to use.

spacefiddle Aug 8, 2012 10:22pm


Has this person actually played any online game or immersed herself in any online community of the last 10 years? Has she heard the term "griefer?" There's a whole lot of research that asserts that anonymity + lack of accountability = major jerk. People get selfish in games. They're jerks, they're rude, they're racist. In addition to Griefer, let's add the term Troll. "In online games, people become the best versions of themselves." Go to Youtube and search for "Onyxia Wipe Guy" and see if you still believe that. People don't magically transform when they connect to the internet and play a game. They're just themselves. There's nothing magic about the game or the setting. Any and all positive aspects of the experience can be entirely – ENTIRELY! – attributed to the people involved. Because all those things she says "we don't feel" in games – frustration at lack of progress, lack of motivation to get things done, "wondering what to do" – these are all not just common occurrences in games, they are *well-known* occurrences in games. To the point of being stereotypical, really. And then there's games like eve-online, which the presenter clearly has never encountered, or she would have run screaming from her shining utopia immediately.

I'm sorry, there are too many provably false assumptions here and a lot of baseless assertions for me to really take this seriously.

Hilary Lindsay Aug 8, 2012 8:55pm

Hmmm. I don't know. I just had it out with my son who spends hours,;all hours of the night gaming. But maybe there's more benefit than I thought. I don't see any connection between playing games and changing the world with warcraft but maybe games like she has invented will be a different story.I can see value in that. Interesting indeed. And by the way, gamers are not detached from the outcomes! But they are certainly absorbed. 🙂

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Bob Weisenberg

Bob Weisenberg: Editor, Best of Yoga Philosophy / Former Assoc. Publisher, elephant journal / Author: Yoga Demystified * Bhagavad Gita in a Nutshell * Leadership Is Like Tennis, Not Egyptology / Co-editor: Yoga in America (free eBook) / Creator: Gita Talk: Self-paced Online Seminar / Flamenco guitarist: “Live at Don Quijote” & “American Gypsy” (Free CD’s) / Follow Bob on facebook, Twitter, or his main site: Wordpress.