If you play Massively Multiplayer Online Games (MMOG) such as World of Warcraft, Everquest 2, Matrix Online and the likes, please spend a few minutes with our research to have a say in shaping the future of online gaming. You can participate now at http://schoolof.info/mmog/. Here’s the press release we prepared:
On Oct 2004, Microsoft announced that pre-orders for Xbox-exclusive title Halo 2 passed 1.5 million in the United States alone, breaking videogame records and guaranteeing first-day revenues higher than any movie in history.
Given the popularity of games, much of the concern about the social effects of gaming has to do with what we refer to as “leakage”. This idea can be seen in David Cronenberg’s film “eXistenZ”, where a highly immersive multiplayer online role-playing game leaves players straining to differentiate the game world from the real world.
The mass media depicts “leakage” with everything from the Littleton school shootings to the death of an infant neglected by his game-playing father (Karp, 2001). Likewise, leakage in the other direction, the real to the game world, has be seen through many game research literature.
A research team at the School of Informatics, from the University at Buffalo (SUNY), addresses the issue of how such “leaks” between the real-world and the game-world might affect individual identities. This formal research into the social impact of Massive Multiplayer Online Games (MMORGs) is entitled “Playing Myself: The persistence of self-image in MMOGs”.
Through an online survey at http://schoolof.info/mmog/ , this research hopes to gain an understanding about the social impact of online gaming and to help provide reference to the formation of public policy. For gamers, this study allows them to engage in a conversation of what gaming means to them and to consquently help shape the future of online games.
If you have any questions about this study, you can contact the project leader, Alexander Halavais. You can reach him by email: firstname.lastname@example.org, or by telephone: 716-645-2141 x1192. When the research is complete, a copy of the initial findings will be made available at http://schoolof.info/mmog/ .