This week's discussion is about, "time sinks," those online activities that eat up a lot of our time. Monday, we talked about Facebook games, then social news sites on Tuesday. Yesterday, it was e-Mail. Next up? Role-playing games (RPG).
Now, I have to say that this is something that doesn't appeal to me personally, so the following information was obtained from the web, not personal experience. I wasn't even good at "let's pretend" when I was a kid (I was more about inventing better water guns, and selling pet rocks to my family and neighbors), but I'm even less interested in RPG as an adult. But a lot of people are really, really, into this, so it's worth a note in the "time sink," category.
In role-playing games, players (as the name implies) take on character roles in created settings. Online, this can happen through text, as in discussion forums or instant messaging), or through multi-media, using audio, video, graphics. RPG's can be used for entertainment, or for learning, or to "meet people" (yes, that's a euphemism, and you don't need my help finding the links - this is a family-oriented site, after all).
Role-playing games are have themes relating to science fiction, crime, war, or fictional characters (vampires, or cartoons). Here's a list of some of the most popular games. The 3D technologies now available through sites like second life are making these games more and more realistic for those who choose not to rely heavily on their imaginations for playing these games. Some people have become so caught up in these games, they have developed symptoms of addiction.
Bottom line? Some people like this type of entertainment, and some don't. Just like any other hobby, however, this can be a huge time sink.
Jennifer Pointer (e-mail) is in Tulsa, OK. She promotes a simple, a low-tech approach to effective online profile management, search engine optimization and social networking.