In this episode of academic ramblings, we are going to explore the relationships between (online) video games and friendship. There are a lot of discussions in and around friendship formation in and around games.
For anyone who plays games, we know that they can be wonderful melting pots, so to say, to meet new people, or catch up with old friends, engage and interact with people we may have never met before – from across the globe, across cultures, age groups and backgrounds. But on the flip side, there is the idea that friends met online are somehow “less valuable” or less important than friends made not within games. As well as this idea of social displacement. That is, that offline friends are replaced by these “less valuable” online friends, the more we engage with games.
So what is the long short of it all? In this video, we explore these ideas by focusing on two questions:
- Are online friends less valuable than offline friends?
- And do online friends replace offline friends through displacement?