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  1. #1
    Noob in the Passing LaGrim's Avatar

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    Gaming - Waste of Time?

    Ey guys, here's a short essay on the topic we've all probably heard of at some point from either our parents or stuck up friends. Here I'll address the often heard complaint that gaming (unless you're playing competitively) is a waste of time and should be dropped. Point of this thread is to provide those of you who are irritated by this complaint a well-mannered and constructive argument to defend your gaming interests. I'll divide it into 4 parts:

    - Waste of time?
    - Is gaming superior?
    - Other concerns
    - Concluding remarks

    Hopefully, at the end you'll be able to respond properly and reasonably to whoever still considers gaming bad.

    Waste of Time?


    A common attitude from non-gamers is that gaming (in such form at least) is a waste of time. The argument they bring can be deployed in terms of financial gain (if you don’t get anything from it then you’re wasting your time on it) or in terms of inferior activity (there are better forms of entertainment out there like reading books or going out, so playing games is a waste of time). I’m sure most of you have heard (or even used) these arguments before. In this section, I’ll point out the flaws in both of them.

    The argument from financial gain suffers from the fact that it deploys a standard of worth which no one conforms to. Very few things outside of work bring us financial gain so casual gaming is far from alone in this. After all, watching TV, reading books and any other form of entertainment for that manner doesn’t give us financial gain and therefore is considered worthless and a waste of time according to this argument. An even worse problem is that it implies the only thing worth doing is work, but how many of us here actually think this makes for a good life? Hardly anyone. Therefore, we see the first argument isn’t a very good one.

    What about the other one, which states that gaming is a waste not because of its inability to provide financial gain but because there are better things (some may say far healthier) we can do to entertain ourselves and so we ought to drop gaming in favor of those other things (reading books to educate ourselves, going out and socialize etc). While the first argument suffered from unrealistic (and overall unhealthy) criteria for worth, this argument fails for other obvious reasons. First one is that is assumes these other activities are somehow incompatible with gaming. Why can’t we play games and then go out, depending on the circumstances? Another problem is that it assumes these other forms of entertainment have something that gaming doesn’t which is blatantly false. Gaming too offers the ability to
    socialize and meet new people while also being able to tell us an interesting story much like a book would.

    Both of these arguments therefore fail to show that gaming is a waste of time.

    Is Gaming Superior?


    I’ve explained why the 2 arguments most often deployed against gaming are flawed but I think we can go a step further and establish that not only do video games not lack the good properties of other forms of entertainment such as reading books or watching movies but they actually hold additional properties that make the experience of playing video games a far richer and constructive one than that of other media.

    The argument for this comes from the nature of videogames that sets it apart from other forms of entertainment and that is the type of consuming. While reading books and watching TV are exercises of passive consuming (we don’t do anything besides receiving input), gaming is active consuming which means we not only receive input but we also participate in information output – we are actively engaged with the matter at hand.

    This will be best illustrated on a more focused example of genre. Let’s compare watching a mystery movie or reading a mystery book to playing a mystery videogame. When reading or watching you’re simply observing these characters as they try to solve this puzzle at hand. How they will do it and when is already predetermined by the authors and your job is to simply lay back and watch how they will do it.

    Contrary to this, video games will put you into the shoes of the protagonist and will force you to solve this puzzle yourself! You won’t be simply laying on the couch waiting for the mystery to resolve, you will actively pursue the solution. You will think, plan and try hard to solve the problem at hand.

    As such, gaming is a way more constructive activity than the other two forms of entertainment and is therefore superior! But this doesn’t only apply to puzzle games, any game with a certain goal that’s challenging will give you the same benefit. Not to mention it doesn’t have to be problem solving at all! The game could simply throw you into a fantasy world and let you explore it and do what you want – experience something that you wouldn’t be able to experience in any other way.

    Other Concerns

    Given what I’ve said so far, it may seem like gaming is flawless. There are plenty of known issues with gaming which haven’t been discussed and I will turn my attention to them in this section. First and foremost is the question of health. How healthy is it to sit in a chair or on a couch and stare at the screen? It might not surprise you to hear it’s not very healthy at all. There are very serious issues that arise with too much gaming such as back pain, muscle problems, eyesight weakening etc.

    Aside from this we have the issue of addiction. While it may not be very high profile, video games are very much capable of causing addiction and can have negative impacts on one’s life. Another problem is that certain themes presented in many popular video games are commonly perceived as unhealthy (a lot of violence, aggressive or sexualized designs etc.).

    Given these well-known problems, how does gaming stand? Well, as you may have noticed many of these don’t have much to do with gaming itself but are a part of bigger issue. The first problem with health issues equally applies to any activity that requires you to sit and stare at the screen (which is basically every well payed job nowadays). As such, there isn’t anything inherently wrong with gaming.

    The second issue is that of addiction, but again, it’s not hard to notice that this is more of a question of self-discipline than gaming itself. Any activity will prove harmful if we do it too much. Games aren’t like drugs where they input substances into our bodies that deform our brain and leave us craving for more. No, that’s drugs and alcohol for you. Gaming can turn into addiction if one has no self-discipline and doesn’t know when to stop. As such, this problem is a personal issue that depends on the individual and not a problem with gaming itself.

    The final issue is that of content which, again, equally applies to other forms of media. We all know reading violent books or watching violent movies will mess you up if you take it too far. The mere fact that we’re talking about
    themes being presented rather than the media that is presenting it goes to show that this too isn’t a problem with the specific media in question, but a wider, more general problem.

    Concluding Remarks

    So, what can be said of gaming after all this? I went over the most common arguments used to discredit gaming on a casual level and concluded that they are fallacious either in proposing a non-realistic standard or by underestimating the ability of games as media. After that I’ve proposed my own argument for the superiority of gaming over some other activities. In the last section, I went over some of the more serious issues and concluded that these aren’t really issues with gaming alone but are shared by a great many of other activities. If we accept those activities, we ought to accept gaming as well.

    *The content of this thread is a part of my University essay titled "The Status of Gaming in Modern Society"*
     
         
    Last edited by LaGrim; 06-07-2017 at 04:36 PM.

  2. #2
    Akatsuki Member Itachi The Solo King's Avatar

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    Re: Gaming - Waste of Time?

    not if you're a popular streamer and make 10k a day.. sometimes 20 or 30k in a single day (when rich people decide to donate)
     
         

  3. #3
    Noob in the Passing LaGrim's Avatar

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    Re: Gaming - Waste of Time?

    Quote Originally Posted by Itachi The Solo King View Post
    not if you're a popular streamer and make 10k a day.. sometimes 20 or 30k in a single day (when rich people decide to donate)
    Yes, this is another section of my essay (which I didn't share here) but again, the argument I outlined is clearly stated to mean gaming in abscence of financial gain.
     
         

  4. #4
    Senior Member Tauren Chieftain's Avatar

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    Re: Gaming - Waste of Time?

    Everyone should do what they like . If some likes playing games he should do it. I am having best time of my life when I am playing awesome game.

    God of War 1,2,3
    Gta : San Andreas
    Waracraft 3 reign of Chaos and Frozen throne
    Ultimate ninja 4 Naruto shippuden
    Smack down vs raw 2008
    PES 2008,2009,2010

    I will never forget those games .
     
         

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    Anubis's Avatar

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    Re: Gaming - Waste of Time?

    I thought gaming was a hobby or a past time to relieve stress? I would not consider it a waste of time.
     
         

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    Re: Gaming - Waste of Time?

    I didn't really read but my opinion on this is that games are actually beneficial as long as you don't engage in them redundantly.

    Too much of anything in fact can be pernicious. Which means you just have to have a right balance of things. Which also means you should be careful not to be too immersed in gaming as that can bring out problems for you in the aspects of being socially awkward and unable to engage in a proper conversation.

    The benefits are as many. Psychologically, our brains require a dose of mental activity once in a while, and games provide that realm. It's a plus when the game requires you to think and be adroit to overcome the obstacles.

    In short, games provide both ways, and YOU choose how it'll affect you.

    And great thread by the way.

    Some games though you can't really speak for them. Like car racing, lol.
     
         
    Last edited by Zack; 06-07-2017 at 04:53 PM.

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    Re: Gaming - Waste of Time?

    By the way, I'm definitely plagiarizing this.
     
         

  8. #8
    The Man With The Proof DrProof's Avatar

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    Re: Gaming - Waste of Time?

    Wasting time is subjective.
     
         

  9. #9
    Noob in the Passing LaGrim's Avatar

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    Re: Gaming - Waste of Time?

    Quote Originally Posted by Zack View Post
    By the way, I'm definitely plagiarizing this.
    You should read it first and then you have my permission.

    Quote Originally Posted by DrProof View Post
    Wasting time is subjective.
    Given how it's formulated here, it really isn't.
     
         

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    Re: Gaming - Waste of Time?

    Quote Originally Posted by LaGrim View Post
    You should read it first and then you have my permission.
    I just did. And you provide really good points.

    Just remember to swing by when you get graded. I'm actually curious now of how you're going to perform.
     
         
    Last edited by Zack; 06-07-2017 at 05:02 PM.

  11. #11
    Noob in the Passing LaGrim's Avatar

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    Re: Gaming - Waste of Time?

    Quote Originally Posted by Zack View Post
    I just did. And you provide really good points.

    Just remember to swing by when you get graded. I'm actually curious now of how you're going to perform.
    Well, I'll hold a presentation in front of other students and have some Q&A so it should be interesting.
     
         

  12. #12
    Premium User sdkljfsdjnsjnoids's Avatar

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    Re: Gaming - Waste of Time?

    That world of warcraft time...I would not wanna spend it during the summer and I think instead of playing it I could learn programming or something. But if it was free I would play it all the time.
    I used to argue with myself if I should play it or not.
     
         
    Last edited by sdkljfsdjnsjnoids; 06-07-2017 at 06:51 PM.

  13. #13
    Beautiful Ōkami's Avatar

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    Re: Gaming - Waste of Time?

    Technically everything is a waist of time.
     
         

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    Premium User sdkljfsdjnsjnoids's Avatar

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    Re: Gaming - Waste of Time?

    If I don't waste time playing games I do it watching tv.
     
         

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    SB = Salty Base AniCetuS's Avatar

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    Re: Gaming - Waste of Time?

    In that case all forms of entertainment are a waste of time.
     
         

  16. #16
    Senior Member Tauren Chieftain's Avatar

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    Re: Gaming - Waste of Time?

    Quote Originally Posted by AniCetuS View Post
    In that case all forms of entertainment are a waste of time.
    this.
     
         

  17. #17
    Member CosmicPlayground's Avatar

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    Re: Gaming - Waste of Time?

    It's not that complicated at all.

    Gaming is a hobby.
    Some people do things because they are passionate about it.
    Sometimes people are lucky enough to make a career out of their passion
    No one can dictate how or what others enjoy or what they need to get out of it to be considered time well spent.

    Gamers don't have to defend themselves or "make an argument" for others sake.
     
         

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    Jack Spicer's Avatar

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    Re: Gaming - Waste of Time?

    Everything is a waste of time. Life is meaningless. Nothing matters. So, in this nothingness and random world, I'm just going to be happy and one of my sources of happiness is from gaming, so I'll keep on keeping on playing games.

    Cool essay tho.

    I didn't read it.
     
         

  19. #19
    Noob in the Passing LaGrim's Avatar

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    Re: Gaming - Waste of Time?

    Quote Originally Posted by CosmicPlayground View Post
    Gamers don't have to defend themselves or "make an argument" for others sake.
    They do if they want to have a an actual discussion. We can always simply ignore what others say but providing a reason for why the thing you do is better than something other people want you to do, regardless of your own preferences, is something we ought to have.

    Quote Originally Posted by AniCetuS View Post
    In that case all forms of entertainment are a waste of time.
    Quote Originally Posted by Tauren Chieftain View Post
    this.
    Based on what? If someone were to say that gaming is a waste because there are healthier and more useful forms of entertainment out there how would you respond?

    Quote Originally Posted by Jack Spicer View Post
    Cool essay tho.

    I didn't read it.
    I never understood how people could claim an article to be good without reading it. If it's just from the size or esthetics of it, looks can be deceiving. Besides, I'm aware most people won't read this but if I were to narrate it and put it in a video format it would be under 4 minutes lengths so is that really much time to ask for?
     
         

  20. #20
    SB = Salty Base AniCetuS's Avatar

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    Re: Gaming - Waste of Time?

    Quote Originally Posted by LaGrim View Post
    Based on what? If someone were to say that gaming is a waste because there are healthier and more useful forms of entertainment out there how would you respond?
    I'll tell them that their knowledge and perception of gaming is incomplete. Gaming has its own health benefits and they should check that before asking such question.
     
         

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