Online Games Parenting, Business and Culture

June 03, 2012

Synthetic Worlds: The Business and Culture of Online Games by Edward Castronova
Synthetic Worlds: The Business and Culture of Online Games by Edward Castronova

Online Games Parenting

Benefits of online games are still debating by most parents, where internet nowadays, is also becoming the source of home based educations. My cousin who grew with Playstation since he was ten years old, is now become an introvert person. I remembered how he got me impressed by his english study, when he was still at the first grade of elementary school.

I can not blame him entirely for what he has becoming right now, an introvert person who less concerned about his relatives. The blame was on his parent who always spoiled him. He was always playing Playstation, soon after he woke up, he had to take a bath by his mommy, by forcing, until the age of 15 years. Can you imagine that! At that age, he had become addicted of playing both on Playstation or online games.

Last month, I visited my grandparent in Magelang, Central Java. It has been two years since my last visit. My cousin lives with his parent next to my grandparent's house, two houses with a fence. It was two days since I arrived, and he did not even say hello or greet me. I found him in his room, still busied with what he did as usual. But this time, he got also two internet gadgets which both online together at the same time, a Samsung tablet for social networking, and a laptop for playing online games. While the PC was still loading to download games.

He said to me that he's going to continue his study on an University in Yogyakarta. I asked him whether he stayed at a dormitory or not, I can't sleep, if it's not in my home. I will ride with my motorbike to go to college, he answered. The distance between Magelang - Yogyakarta is about 45 km. I guess, he cannot live without internet and online games, because he is no longer enthusiast on playing games with his Playstation2.

Study and Research on Online Games

Several studies about gaming and its impact on children, researchers found that online gaming can have many benefits to children, if it being fully monitored by parents. Thing that was not done by my cousin's parent. The development of social skills, academics and emotional intellect will increase, if the online games which are playing, are the right ones.

Online games will give children chance to play with other children from all parts of the world. They will learn how to socialize, and learn about teamwork, with many people around the world. Though parents must pay attention on the time based, by accompanying them while they are playing the games. So that children will not forget, what is the time, whether they are going to have a dinner, or taking a bath.

Parents should take full responsibility, and not leaving the parenting to the games. Parents should always keep an eye on the games that their children are playing, due to many dangers on the internet that children might become exposed to while gaming.

Online Games Business and Culture

Based on Castronova's book of Synthetic Worlds: The Business and Culture of Online Games, Castronova believes that online games are affecting the real-world culture and economy, also creating real value. Survey conducted by Edward Castronova, Ph.D., an economist, has found that MMORPG (Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games) enthusiasts are not typical high school geeks. Over half the players of EverQuest are adults with full-time jobs, and a typical player who spends 29 hours per week in Norrath, an artificial world, created online by participants in a computer game called EverQuest.

Castronova also believes that MMORPGs will offer social scientists, a valuable research tool. A synthetic world enables researchers to control variables as needed. Just as MMORPGs are useful in classrooms and social science labs, in which can serve a role in monetary policy research, suggests Castronova.

Editorial Reviews of Synthetic Worlds: The Business and Culture of Online Games by Edward Castronova

Synthetic Worlds is a surprisingly profound book about the social, political, and economic issues arising from the emergence of vast multiplayer games on the Internet. What Castronova has realized is that these games, where players contribute considerable labor in exchange for things they value, are not merely like real economies, they are real economies, displaying inflation, fraud, Chinese sweatshops, and some surprising in-game innovations.

Tim Harford, Chronicle of Higher Education

There is a surprisingly large and growing number of people spending an astonishingly large amount of time - and financial resources - playing online games. These games build upon the platform of the Internet and enable users to interact in an increasingly realistic world. Synthetic Worlds introduces a wide range of perspectives to this important phenomenon. It is a valuable and informative book that makes a significant contribution to a growing and important area of social life.

Lawrence Lessig, author of Free Culture: How Big Media Uses Technology and the Law to Lock Down Culture and Control Creativity

Click here to read the book Synthetic Worlds: The Business and Culture of Online Games by Edward Castronova from Amazon.


  1. Now a days people are avoiding the outdoor games and they are playing online games. These are few most popular games which I am playing online Continuum, Monster Den, King’s Island, Hands of War, Play Portal:The Flash Version and Paradise Paintball.

    1. Yeah, indoor games don't make you sweat.


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