This is How We Play It: What a Mega-LAN Can Teach Us About Games

T.L. Taylor and Emma WitkowskiFoundations of Digital Games, Monterey, CA, June 2010

T.L. Taylor and Emma Witkowski
Foundations of Digital Games, Monterey, CA, June 2010

Using data gathered through our participant observation and informal interviews at DreamHack Winter 2005 and 2009 we explore a number of themes that not only provide insight into aspects of face-to-face real-time play at LAN parties but also highlight considerations for game studies more generally. In particular, we focus on the heterogeneity of play and experience, the role of spectatorship in computer gaming, the public performance of leisure and gamer identity, and the growing presence of women in game culture. We conclude by suggesting that researchers should begin to consider the much larger trend in which this form of leisure activity is integrating itself into mainstream pop/youth/network culture.

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T.L. Taylor

About T.L. Taylor

T.L. Taylor is Professor of Comparative Media Studies and co-founder and Director of Research for AnyKey, an organization dedicated to supporting and developing fair and inclusive esports. She is a qualitative sociologist who has focused on internet and game studies for over two decades. Dr. Taylor’s research explores the interrelations between culture and technology in online leisure environments. Her book Raising the Stakes: E-Sports and the Professionalization of Computer Gaming (MIT Press, 2012) chronicles the rise of esports and professional computer gaming. She also authored Play Between Worlds: Exploring Online Game Culture (MIT Press, 2006) using her multi-year ethnography of EverQuest to explore issues related to multiplayer online gaming. In 2012 Princeton University published her co-authored book on conducting ethnographic research in online multi-user worlds, Ethnography and Virtual Worlds: A Handbook of Method. Her book about game live streaming – Watch Me Play: Twitch and the Rise of Game Live Streaming (Princeton University Press) – is now out and is the first of its kind to chronicle this emerging media space. Dr. Taylor is a highly sought after speaker. Both the White House and the International Olympics Committee have invited her to special summits focused on gaming. And journalists for the The New York Times, PBS, the Los Angeles Times, BBC, CBC, and many others often reach out to Dr. Taylor for her expertise. For more info about her and work visit tltaylor.com.

 
 

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