Presentation given by Joi Ito at the 23rd Chaos Communications Congress on World of Warcraft.
Joi is an unfluential blogger and Entrepeneur, and also a guild leader of the Guild ‘’We know’’, which has many such people from the blogosphere and tech industry in it.
I thought it was very very good, also quite humorous to watch if you are a WoW player. The greater point he is trying to convey though is how MMO’s are increasinlgy becoming a proxy for real life, and a new social enviroment on a scale we haven’t seen yet much.
His comments about Teamspeak are very interesting, and I have been thinking about the same thing often. We as a guild have our own Teamspeak server, which I purchased, and a core group of people are always on it. Its an ambient channel of presence, and its very important to the guild to have this social tool, it enhanced the feeling of community, even though some people in the guild choose not to use it at all, except during raiding.
The argument that especially interpersonal and leadership skills are naturally developed in games like this is one I can very much identify with, being in the leadership of a guild myself.
I have probably learnt more about people and how to deal with them in the last year of playing WoW, than I ever have in my job or social life. You are simply exposed to more, more diverse people, in a dynamic, and totally free-range enviroment. Many of the restrictions to social contact in the real world simply dont exist in an MMO, and the context is totally different.
Ito als touches briefly on Machinima, the addon and interface customisation (and how its use parrallels our increasingly online activities), and he talks briefly about gold-farming and socio-economics. All in all its a great presentation, go have a look!