Live from Ludium II

Editor’s Note: ARGNet’s Michelle Senderhauf is attending and reporting from the Ludium II conference, put on by Indiana University’s Synthetic Worlds Initiative.

This is Michelle Senderhauf reporting live from the Ludium II conference at Indiana University in Bloomington, Indiana. The conference is being run in game format which is interesting since the conference itself is about developing principles for sensible video game policy.

The Ludium game has two goals –

1. to develop a set of policies regarding synthetic worlds that will be sent to real world governments and
2. vote a single person as our de facto spokesperson for the ideas in the platform.

We’re in the second day of the Ludium conference and the group has reached a point where we 33 nominated policy statements and 3 nominees for the Speaker.

Of interest to ARG players, the conference has had its share of intrigue. Several “spies” are playing the game and are trying to derail the process. Also “reporters” are roaming the hall trying to get a scoop. Also, several of the conference attendees or players have thrown a wrench into the puppetmasters’ plans. Overnight, several players tried to merge members from their opposing groups into one large group. A response for this was not written in the game rules that were originally laid out so the puppetmasters were sent scrambling.

These events have brought up many interesting questions. If you’re using a serious game to solve a real world problem at some point or at what point do you abandon the game framework? Is there a point where the game becomes unimportant? Or even a hindrance? Many of the conference attendees agree that the game has definitely had a positive effect. It has successfully facilitated discussions in an organized fashion and allowed for a democratic decision-making process.

What will be the result? We won’t know until the end of the conference. Stay tuned!

1 Comment

  1. This sounds very interesting, not only because of the unusal format – but also since those questions might very well soon become real politics. I don’t know about you guys, but since my home country (Sweden) just opened an embassy in Second Life – something I’m sure a lot of other countries have done/will do, I’m curious as to how people handle and react to these questions.

    I’m expecting a follow-up on this, aight?

    Peace, love and pancakes!

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