Tag Archives: mangle of play

Digital Media and Learning Conference, day 2

I created a proper backchannel for the conference at todaysmeet, but the site went down after a couple of hours or so. (Not sure exactly when it went down, but Debbie Fields and Moses told me it wasn’t working about two hours after I created the channel.) I tweeted about it being down (since I originally also tweeted about it being up) and @buridan replied that I should check out etherpad. Etherpad is great!

Down at the bottom right is an IM client which works like todaysmeet does. But the main portion of etherpad’s real estate is on the left showing a google doc-like collaborative writing space. Some of us have been using it to take notes and write commentary about the conference sessions.

Since we just published the url openly, we got some random person named “badass” who came in and defaced our pad, but Jeremy cleaned it up. (I kinda wonder if badass is Alice Robison who plans on using a backchannel during her session tomorrow and was asking me about etherpad…)

Go check out the pad if you want to read up on the sessions I went to today.

http://etherpad.com/eSPRnZTy9d

Or just check out this dinner:

Shree, Chris, Moses, and Ben eating at El Charro, La Jolla Shores

After dinner, we met up with Sarah Walter who flew in this evening and Sara Grimes via skype, since she was at her sodo hotel, and went over our presentation that we’re giving tomorrow about the mangle of play.

Here’s our original abstract:

The mangle of play: Game challenges and player workarounds
Participants: Mark Chen (University of Washington), Ben DeVane (University of Wisconsin, Madison), Sara M. Grimes (Simon Fraser University), Sarah E. Walter (Stanford University), Moses Wolfenstein (University of Wisconsin, Madison)
Diverse forms of participation in gaming often manifest as subversive resistance to prescribed forms of play. Recent research highlighting the variety of in and out-of-game practices players employ in negotiating obstacles includes looking at modding and cheating practices (Postigo, 2008, Consalvo, 2007) to knowledge sharing in online forums (Steinkuehler & Duncan, 2008). Gaming, as exemplified by these studies, consists of acts of accommodation and resistance in a complex “mangle of play” (Steinkuehler, 2006), where players appropriate and orchestrate distributed networks of resources to accomplish their gaming goals. In this session, we will describe how particular gamers pushed at or circumvented obstacles imposed by different game spaces.  We will discuss how leadership was negotiated in World of Warcraft (WoW), how a particular WoW group enrolled a mod to troubleshoot failures, the experience of newcomers to a stable gaming group in the Lord of the Rings Online (LOTRO), how young children overcame design limitations in Club Penguin and BarbieGirls, and how players resisted the prescribed and normative play-based activity structures in Civilization III. Following our descriptions will be a whole-room discussion on obstacles and their workarounds to gaming.

We had some crazy ideas about how we could involve the audience tomorrow and/or how we could demonstrate the resistance/accommodation dialectic that Pickering was referring to with his original “mangle of practice” idea. I think tomorrow will be great, but charades presentations would have been even awesomer. :)

Also, I’ve been enjoying meeting new people or people I haven’t seen in a while, like Lisa Nakamura who is great, and meeting people who I first met through Facebook and Twitter, such as Hillary @ludditeatheart, Evonne @amoration, Flourish @flourish, and Jenny @tunabananas :)