Video Game Mania

According to the textbook “Communication Technology Update and Fundamentals”, “72% of American households play computer and video games (ESA, 2012).”  The role that video games play in society today is both positive and negative.  In my own life video games have posed a problem. A few years back I had a boyfriend who I eventually broke up with literally over video games. He preferred to spend all his free time playing Call of Duty. Another relationship ruining game is World of Warcraft A.K.A. WOW. WOW had gotten so out of hand that my pastor at church had a sermon about the problems it’s causing in church members marriage. Another Problem video games bring is contribution to obesity. America is already one of the most obese countries in the world. Since people are sitting inside on their butts’ playing video games they are spending less time outside getting exercise. A final problem with video games is the violence. Video games have created lack of sensitivity towards violence, and children have a problem differentiating between real life and fantasy. Kids are seeing people get shot in these games and see no repercussions happening in the games for doing so they figure it is okay.

With all the negative things video games bring there are also positive roles video games play in society. There are games like Leap Pad that help children learn while having fun. There are also video games that help with health. Doctors have used video games to help children with autism, People with physical rehabilitation, senior citizens with Alzheimer’s disease, and now video games are helping discover heart conditions. I have found and attached an article that shows positive effects of video games.

With video games the theory of relative constancy plays a big role. To reiterate what the theory of the relative constancy principal tells us is that people only have a finite amount of leisure time. Time spent on new communication technologies will come at the expense of old communication technologies.  In reference to the textbook “Communication Technology Update and Fundamentals”, “In monetary terms, video games are easily competitive with the largest media. The opening day sales of Call of Duty: Black Ops exceeded $360 million worldwide, easily exceeding the largest-ever weekend movie gross mid-2012 (The Avengers) and the first-day sales of the final Harry Potter book.” This data shows that with more time/ money spent on video games there is less money/time invested into movies. I think one reason people spend more time on video games is because you don’t have to the comfort of your own home. Another possible reason people prefer video games is because it is an investment. With video games you pay three times what you would for a movie ticket, but you get to play the game for the rest of your life; whereas going to the movies is a onetime thing.

Ahh…. Yes the good old days!



       I can still remember my first encounter with computers and the Internet. The first computer I ever used was when I was about seven years old. I used to play games on my father’s computer. The computer games I played at that time were minesweeper, free sale, solitaire, pinball, and paint. I could spend hours playing games or painting a picture with assorted tools, such as paintbrush, spray, or fill. My first memory I have a bout the Internet was the famous animated Dancing baby. I also remember back then we had dial-up, which made it hard to make or receive calls. If you picked up the phone you would hear this annoyingly loud high-pitched squeal in your ear.

   The experiences I had with computers and The Internet that had the biggest impact on me were educational uses. When I was in fifth grade my sisters and I got to have a computer just for us girls. By this time we had computer games on CD-ROMs. The first game I remember is my Sesame Street game, because it allowed me to play with whatever Muppet character I wanted. I always pick Zoe the Spanish-speaking Muppet. I learned a lot of Spanish that has stuck with me all my life. I even use some of these words in Spanish class now days.  Another cd ROM game I remember is where in the world is Carmen Sandiego. This game was educational, because it taught me historical and geographical facts but in a fun way. I also remember going on the Internet for games. I would go to Barbie.com or nickelodeon.com because they had all sorts of games for children.

     However I would have to say the biggest and most positive impact that I have of the computer was in the fifth grade. At this time I lived in Germany and I attended a DoD school (school for military memeber’s children). There they taught us children how to use PowerPoint and Excel. We didn’t have a choice in the matter but I’m happy they made us learn it, because these programs are still in important part of today’s society.

     The theory of the relative constancy principal tells us that people only have a finite amount of leisure time. Time spent on new communication technologies will come at the expense of old communication technologies. With my experiences this has proved to be true. I stopped playing computer games once I got my CD ROMs, and I stopped playing cd ROM games once I had Internet games. Even though we have newer technologies we still have a resemblance of the old technologies from which the new one started. For example, CD-ROM games are computer games, and so our Internet games. The difference being you don’t have to use a disk to play the Internet games, but the gist is still the same. I have attached an article that talks about Old-Fashioned Tech Terms You Still Use Today. This article points out the difference, but similarities we use with old & new technologies.

Technology, For the Youth?

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In the article “The Terrifying Truth About New Technology” didn’t sit well with me. A statement that really stood out to me was “We think we’re afraid of the technology. But we’re really afraid of getting old.” I disagree, I think we are not afraid of technology,but the trust so many of us put in technology with no questions asked. To me, the reason older people tend to shy away from technology is because they have learned to live this far with out it so they don’t feel the need to go out and upgrade. I will say however when they need to upgrade they usually do. For instance, my grndmother knows how to use every aspect of her IPhone. She doesn’t use a “roladex”  she stores her contacts in her phone just like a teenager would.

I read an article –which I have inserted a link (http://www.oprah.com/health/Aging-Brain-Facts-Do-You-Get-Smarter-as-You-Age)- that proclaims we get the smarter with age. I look at people throughout history who have made landmark discoveries like Einstein or Darwin, and they were very smart and older. The article by Daniel Wilson says the opposite. According to the article, the older you get “the process of adaptation slows down.”  In my own family , my elders appear as if their minds are still  intact and some of them have learned new words relating to the higher education levels they have achieved. Yes, I think the problem solving skill improves but I think that’s more with experience then age. I have relatives that haven’t experienced hardly anything outside of their small community whose vocabulary is very basic, and those who have traveled the world gain knowledge and have a better understanding

I think if a person chooses, for whatever reason, not to adapt to their surroundings or to new situations than they choose live in a fish bowl. I think a person can live off the grid and still maintain an adequate amount of modern technology. Times change quickly I can remember my mother buying me a Logitech computer that seemed so advanced at the time and now when I look at my younger relatives learning on IPads, I feel out of date and old. I remember in school the big computers in only a few rooms now children have laptops or flat screen desktops to work on in almost every room. The blackboards are not the same no longer do you need chalk now you have to calibrate it and it’s like using a computer. My mom talked about using a typewriter and having to learn what she called 10 key, I’m still not sure I understand what made that such a valuable commodity but she was really proud of it.