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Social Games: Teaching Kids to Think Like Communists?:

 1 Kilyle, Thu, 5th May '11 5:13:44 AM from Procrastinationville Relationship Status: Yes, I'm alone, but I'm alone and free
Field Primus
It's just a thought I had this morning, and to be honest I haven't put much thought into it. But to open the discussion, here's how the line of reasoning went:

Man, this Facebook sure isn't the site for introverts. Everything I try to play keeps telling me constantly to go bug my friends. If I want the most efficient gaming experience or the coolest gear, I've got to convince my friends to give it to me or help me get it; I can't do much of anything on my own.

Wait a minute. These games have "group efforts lead to goodies and lonerism leads to lack of goodies" as their basic premise. I wonder if this is some sort of political indoctrination ploy?

Now, I realize that even if some people have put political agenda into the designs, it's unlikely that the majority of game designers have this in mind as they Follow the Leader. But for this discussion, let's see what we can figure out about what kids might be learning from playing games where "neighbors" are the primary source of all goodies.

(Corollary: May teach loners to be enraged and/or unsympathetic. E.g.: Yes, I see you are a poor little turtle, and you need a home, and I have plenty of room in my tank for you... but since I don't have a friend to accept you and funnel you back to me, I cannot have you. Go away, you little crying nuisance.)
Only the curious have, if they live, a tale worth telling at all.
Burn
...Why the fuck are you even on Facebook if you don't like getting bugged by friends?

No, really, why?

edited 5th May '11 5:56:26 AM by Scardoll

 3 Tyyrlym, Thu, 5th May '11 6:03:28 AM from Normandy SR-2
Jerk
It's not communism, it's capitalism at it's finest. They're turning the players into salesmen for the game.
"Tyyr's a necessary evil. " Spirit
It's me.
Social sites exist for friends to goof around with other friends. It's not so much a political ploy as it is optimizing the platform it's using. Social sites are made to interact with other people and broaden your friend network. This is encouraged with the games you are talking about and also by adding rewards to said games. If you want a game that doesn't involve Facebook friends, log off Facebook and play...almost any other game that exists.

For an extroverted child, this is paradise. You find more people with relevant interests as you (the games) and your shared interest also gives you goodies! Yay! For an introverted child, it's pointless. Facebook was never made for introverted interests. For child-friendly introverted fun, read a book, watch a show/movie, or play a non-Facebook game. There's a lot of alternatives for both demographics.

Also I don't see how communism fits in here.
...Let us in...
It's not communism, it's capitalism at it's finest. They're turning the players into salesmen for the game.
 
 6 Noelemahc, Thu, 5th May '11 6:18:35 AM from Moscow, Russia
It's a form of pyramid scheme, if you've ever heard of those. Granted, most world attempts at introducing communism were also pyramid schemes, but that's not the point, the point is that it's capitali$m.

Social games are communist to the same degree that wikis are. After all, wikis are all about working together for the common good. Economic theory doesn't enter into it.

If someone uses wikis or social games to seize control of the means of production, I'll apologize.

...Why the fuck are you even on Facebook if you don't like getting bugged by friends?

No, really, why?

This. Seriously, why?
 
 9 Omega Kross, Thu, 5th May '11 11:31:32 AM from Nosgoth Relationship Status: Mu
Vae Victus
Err, maybe because it's the easiest way to see what all your friends are up to, and if they're available to meet up? Seriously, stop being so aggressive.

As for why facebook games try to get you to tell all your friends about them, yeah, its like a pyramid scheme. If every player gets a few of their friends involved in the game, the company gets more players, who tell their friends, = $$$.

Capitalism at work.
 10 Noelemahc, Thu, 5th May '11 11:51:35 AM from Moscow, Russia
Social games are communist to the same degree that wikis are. After all, wikis are all about working together for the common good. Economic theory doesn't enter into it.
Wikis aren't there to leech moneys from your wallet. Or, to be more precise, credit card account. Social games are.

Good point! In that case social games teach laissez-faire capitalism.

If they also deleted files, they'd be stalinist.

 12 Zersk, Thu, 5th May '11 4:03:27 PM from Columbia District, BNA
o-o
Err, maybe because it's the easiest way to see what all your friends are up to, and if they're available to meet up? Seriously, stop being so aggressive.

But the person said loners, which is assumed to mean someone with few or no friends, right? I guess there's family members, though.
ᐅᖃᐅᓯᖅ ᐊᑕᐅᓯᖅ ᓈᒻᒪᔪᐃᑦᑐᖅ
 13 thespacephantom, Thu, 5th May '11 4:21:35 PM from starts and sails, pipe dreams and fairytales
Burn My Dread
It wouldn't be kids, they're not old enough to be on Facebook.
Cheer up, baby, it wasn't always quite so bad. For every bit of venom that came out, the antidote was had.
 14 Omega Kross, Fri, 6th May '11 10:05:35 AM from Nosgoth Relationship Status: Mu
Vae Victus
^^ Even introverted people have social lives you know.

BTW, how much money does the company that runs Farmville actually make? Most of the stuff in that game is either free or costs very little.
Jonah Falcon
Communism isn't Socialism.
Jonah Falcon
Grin and bear it
It wouldn't be kids, they're not old enough to be on Facebook.

And yet there are kids on Facebook.
 17 Omega Kross, Fri, 6th May '11 11:46:58 AM from Nosgoth Relationship Status: Mu
Vae Victus
Didnt think Facebook was age restricted in the first place. And if it was, all they'd have to do is lie about their age.
 18 Known Unknown, Fri, 6th May '11 4:33:52 PM from Here. There. Everywhere.
Fresh For 2014
Wikis aren't there to leech moneys from your wallet. Or, to be more precise, credit card account. Social games are.

And on this note, I'd like to formally reveal that soon we'll be releasing TV Tropes Gold, which gives you all the original aspects of the Wiki you know and love, plus unlimited access and bonuses to let you really get your Wiki on! We regret to inform you that non-subscribed users will suffer some drawbacks through redistribution of privileges, but that's all the more reason to sign up! Upgrade today for only a marginal fee!

And by "marginal, " we mean "enormous."

edited 6th May '11 4:35:39 PM by KnownUnknown

"My final prayer: O my body, always make me a man who questions!" — Frantz Fanon
 19 Kilyle, Sat, 7th May '11 2:31:48 PM from Procrastinationville Relationship Status: Yes, I'm alone, but I'm alone and free
Field Primus
Don't have the time to read through this whole thread right now, but two things:

A. Why am I on Facebook? Several factors. I did resist it for a long time, but:

1. Various friends and family members were insistent that I was making it harder for them to plan events or keep in touch in the way they normally do (by forcing them to use email instead of Facebook).

2. Friends got Mom and Dad into it, and neither of them knew how to make use of the features, so they wanted me to learn and teach them.

3. My niece (12) is an avid user, and my dad was concerned that someone ought to be keeping an eye on her activities, so (basically) I got elected.

There were other factors, but those are the biggest. And yeah, it's not the sort of site tailored to my needs, any more than IMVU was. And you're right that I could play almost any other game imaginable.

On the other hand, Extra Credits tells me to play even games not aimed at me, ones I think I wouldn't like, in order to better understand games and game theory. So there's that.

B. Communism, Socialism, Capitalism...

Told you I didn't put much thought into it.

And yeah, it definitely does sound like a Pyramid scheme. You can't get very far unless you get all of your friends to drop what they're doing and join in. (On the other hand, a circle of friends can feed off themselves in a way pyramid schemes haven't been able to do in real life. You get to pass gifts both ways, freely, because of the nature of computer-code objects as opposed to real-life money.)

Thanks for the responses; I look forward to reading the rest of them.
Only the curious have, if they live, a tale worth telling at all.
Not Actually Indie
Err, maybe because it's the easiest way to see what all your friends are up to, and if they're available to meet up? Seriously, stop being so aggressive.

It's a convenient way to keep in contact people, especially if you no longer see them on a regular basis for school or work.

I was driven from the site by all the new content encouraging members to bug each other.

edited 7th May '11 4:29:21 PM by Desertopa

...eventually, we will reach a maximum entropy state where nobody has their own socks or underwear, or knows who to ask to get them back.
 21 Rocket Dude, Sat, 7th May '11 4:36:20 PM from AZ, United States
This hat doesn't fit!
I think Mitch Hedberg put it best when it came to staying in contact with a tight social circle:

...My friends say, "Hey Mitch, " and then I turn my head slightly and say "Yeah?"

edited 7th May '11 4:36:46 PM by RocketDude

Tumblr | "Hipsters: the most dangerous gang in the US." - Pacific Mackerel
This thread confuses me to no end.

Could someone please explain it to me in a TL;DR version?
"That is not dead which can eternal lie, And with strange aeons even death itself may die."
 23 Kilyle, Sat, 7th May '11 10:09:46 PM from Procrastinationville Relationship Status: Yes, I'm alone, but I'm alone and free
Field Primus
Desertopa, that's a good description of my experience, except I haven't yet been driven from the site (but I've only been on a couple months or so). One of the reasons I finally gave in was the idea that I could maybe reconnect with a couple friends I had back in college that I'd never been in contact with after that... and I couldn't find them despite their having unusual first names (Londo and Bizhan).

For a TL;DR version:

  • Hey, Facebook games constantly want you to bug your friends!
    • Maybe this is an attempt to teach Communism?
  • No, it's more likely an attempt to get lots of money, hence Capitalism.
  • Your argument makes more sense than mine; I concede the point.

There's some bits about whether an Introvert ought really be on Facebook to begin with, but that got answered by people with common sense before I even got the chance, so I guess that issue's no longer on the table.

edited 7th May '11 10:12:04 PM by Kilyle

Only the curious have, if they live, a tale worth telling at all.
It seems to me that facebook is actually better for introverted people. It allows them to keep up with the lives of the people they know without having to deal with all that annoying face-to-face interaction.
<><
 25 Calico Jack, Fri, 13th May '11 6:38:42 AM from Somewhere Piratey
Calico Jack
Also, that isn't quite the same as Communist. It's more encouraging people to work in a capitalist environment. Communism, as espoused by Marx and Engels, is more about a redistribution of wealth so that the rich don't hold their privileged position and more people are privy to expensive luxuries, good healthcare, ability to travel etc. These games aren't encouraging kids to make everybody equal in terms of their e-farms and share those profits in harmony, they're still dangling cosmetics rewards and rewards that only aid them in playing the game, promoting further play and more profit oriented tasks. Really not Communist, not even Socialist.
Arr, shiver me timbers, land ho etc.
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Total posts: 25
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