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gaming + role-play

gaming + role-play

Win a war, answer the phone, talk to your roommates

"Gamers are no unwordly people with autism". David Nieborg interviewed game specialist Marinka Copier about her dissertation on role-play in online games for an article published in newspaper De Pers on 15 June 2007.

Marinka Copier researched en criticised different theories on gaming in her thesis Bewond the magic circle - a network perpective on role-play in online games. Her research: playing the PC game World of Warcraft for months on end. Within a community in which everyone acts out a fantasy role, these were the perfect surroundings to put her theories to the test.

Copier: "In the media games are constantly explained by means of opposites. Games are online or offline, real or not real (...). But the point of view of my research is that there is no clear divide between online and offline, between real and virtual. I wanted to understand how it melts together. When gamers are playing a game, they are also on the phone, instant messaging or talking to for instance their roommates. We have to get rid of the assumption that games are different or otherwordly. It is just one of many environments. A space in itself with its own time and rules."

Read the whole article here. (In Dutch)

David Nieborg teaches, researches and writes about participation culture and games. Read more on