RE: [-empyre-] Academic Aggression

I love this parallel!

>>the behaviour of academics online to the behaviour of gameplayers in
online environments.

When I decided to do a PhD, I knew there were certain games I had to play
and that ultimately I had probably the same cute/misguided notion of playing
the system in order to change it! (I hope you are all saying
'ahhhhhhhhhhhhhhh how sweet' as you read this!) But just getting back from
ISEA, I realise just how much this game playing goes on. In fact the  whole
ferry experience was centred around the notion of networking, which is kind
of a game. On the last day of the conference, 2 of my friends remarked that
they only had one business card left and we joked about the need to use it
wisely! I on the other hand had 3 cards left and we couldn't decide if that
meant I had been over prepared or had under-networked!!!! And then the other
day I found myself laughing at an episode of Friends where Ross gives a
*keynote* speech at a conference and they introduce a load of pathetic
pseudo academic jokes about such protocol. I can imagine a briefly funny and
subsequently boring game centred around keynote speeches, business card
handouts and academic sparring! ;-) So why does it go on so much in real
life?! I even have a book on the PhD process which provides you with what
might be termed in the gaming world 'cheats' such as 'working out who your
examiner might be and properly referencing their work in your thesis'!
Perhaps your PhD could be about how to play the system at its own game?!

>>My interest is in game studies - that has enough manifestations of
aggressive intellectual behaviour; the ludology vs. >>narratology question
created as many questions about academic responsibility as it posed about
interactivity. Recently, >>there has been some fascinating exchanges here
about aggression, and even a couple of examples. I'd like to hear how
>>people account for these phenomena and how important they are to the
conducting of their arguments. Is it discouraging or >>inspirational?

I think that such gaming is very important, but not because it is in any way
essential to the construction of debates or knowledge dissemination, but
rather because it has come to connote academia. We think that is what
academia looks like, it is how we recognise it, so we don't make many
attempts to alter its visage. In the same way that games often draw on
stereotypes in their construction of characters, academia has its own, and
my how it loves them! It would be fun to step outside of this kind of
system, and I am sure many people will jump in at this point and tell me I
could if I wanted to. I could stop my PhD right now, but I guess I must just
love a good keynote speech ;-) but perhaps with a little less wanking than
is currently concomitant!

>>I'm aware that posts starting with "I'd like to hear your thoughts about
____ " end up unanswered;

Not true! Although I don't think I answered you so much as gave you a
'thumbs up', hopefully some other people WILL answer as I would like to hear
more about this! I will have a think in the mean time! Really interesting
topic though, and I would love you to keep me posted on your progress (off
list) in the future!


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