What Was I Thinking?

#OneADay 2 – Are We Normal Yet?

with 4 comments

Way back during the whole kerfuffle about Blizzard and RealID, I wrote this:

When a potential employer is googling names off a pile of hundreds of CVs, is he going to click through and read my proven successful point-by-point tactic for taking down that rare elite? Of course he’s fucking not. He’s going to see my name, see the phrase “World of Warcraft” and decide that I’m a fat spotty loser with no social skills who probably lives in my parents’ basement.
Me – When Journalism Meets Naivety: CrunchGear Edition (The Average Gamer)

I’ve been experimenting over the past couple of months and my hunch seems to be bearing true. As you know, I’ve been self-employed since July. I’m casually looking for full-time employment but mostly doing exciting games-related things so I do send out CVs now and then. Back when I had nothing but the NHS on my profile? Loads of interview requests. Now that my most recent employment includes “Reporter for the London Games Festival 2010” and “Editor-in-Chief of The Average Gamer”, I get zero interest.

Just to put this into perspective, in my last NHS job – and please forgive me if this sounds like boasting; not my intention – I managed multiple simultaneous (sometimes even successful) projects worth 4 million pounds of public money. Shouldn’t that kind of experience warrant at least a telephone interview? It did, until I started including my games activity to fill the 6 month gap.

Now, I’m not saying this is definitely the cause, but its certainly a correlation. I’m gonna spend January applying to as many project manager jobs as I can and track which CV version gets a higher response rate.

I’ll leave you with another quote:

In this way, the process of becoming an effective World of Warcraft guild master amounts to a total-immersion course in leadership. A guild is a collection of players who come together to share knowledge, resources, and manpower. To run a large one, a guild master must be adept at many skills: attracting, evaluating, and recruiting new members; creating apprenticeship programs; orchestrating group strategy; and adjudicating disputes. Guilds routinely splinter over petty squabbles and other basic failures of management; the master must resolve them without losing valuable members, who can easily quit and join a rival guild. Never mind the virtual surroundings; these conditions provide real-world training a manager can apply directly in the workplace.
John Seely Brown – You Play World of Warcraft? You’re Hired! (Wired)

What’s been your experience of mixing games and workplace culture? Is playing video games accepted as normal yet?


Written by Weefz

2 January, 2011 at 10:35 pm

4 Responses

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  1. I think it’s more “acceptable” than it used to be. As much as I detest Call of Duty and 90% of the people who play it, it’s done a lot to show games can be mainstream entertainment.

    I think Warcraft in particular has stigmatic associations, however. Which it really shouldn’t, for the reasons you outline above.

    Pete Davison

    2 January, 2011 at 10:45 pm

    • I hope so. Certainly in conversations it seems to be more acceptable but I suspect that’s just because my friends are now seeing me as “the girl who loves video games” and because most people I meet these days are involved in either the games industry or another geeky past-time.


      2 January, 2011 at 11:44 pm

  2. Nope, it’s seen as a childish, geeky (in the negative way) thing to do.

    I work in a school and on Tuesdays for the past two years I’ve run an after school PC Gaming club. We only really have access to Unreal Tournament 2k4, Guitar Hero 3 and Dawn of War (plus of course web based stuff) Other clubs started at the same time, a cooking club, dance club and cinema club. Mine was always the most popular and 2yrs on it’s the only club still going. But the person that organises it will still laugh and call us geeks. Although she does it jokingly the kids may take offence and she’s reinforcing the negative stereotype of gaming. Rather than seeing it as something obviously popular and the guys are making new friends there, it’s something to be laughed at.

    Despite the popularity of gaming I think there will always be a negative connotation to it because the word game is associated with children, and so to be playing them is immature. Unless of course it’s a game like football where they pay you millions of pounds and worship you, then it’s fine.


    2 January, 2011 at 11:15 pm

    • Yeah, that sort of behaviour from an organiser really doesn’t help :(

      I’m hopeful that things will change as gamers grow up. Then again I’ve heard from a few women lately, “Oh, of course I played games as a child but I’ve grown up now”. >.<

      It was inspiring to hear back in September that this current generation of MPs is the first to have grown up with video games so at least they understand what they're talking about. Well, some of them at any rate.


      3 January, 2011 at 12:03 am

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