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RIP Ralph Baer (1922-2014)
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RIP Ralph Baer (1922-2014) I really, really hate writing obits. I really do. But I take it as a personal honor to be able to say good things about the men and women I respect, whether in this industry or just in my life, and Ralph Baer is the reason all of this exists in the first...

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Why 'Addiction' Is The Wrong Word
Posted on Tuesday, June 26 2007 @ 00:10:36 Eastern

(Let's keep this short and sweet.)

PASSION. Somehow, this word is abandoned for the more fearful word: ADDICTION. Could it possibly be that when someone sacrifices much of their livelihood towards the pursuit of success in video games, it is not because of addiction, but because they are passionate about it? You know, like they would a sport - which is a GAME, I might add. Poker, blackjack, paintball, deer hunting, mixed martial arts. Last time I checked, sacrificing most of your livelihood, even for something that involves gambling or violence, can also be called dedication and heart.

Video game addiction is actually a myth constructed by the media. There's nothing inherently addictive about gameplay, and much of the media, politicians, and psychiatrists are trying to relate video games to drugs. Nearly all game studies practioners agree that game addiction does not exist, a mere fabrication geared towards generating alarmist reactions. I, for one, am only alarmed by the dismissal of passion, the place where all dreams are found.

Addendum: But let me cool my horses a bit. The operative word here is 'excessive' and/or 'addiction'. That video games just happen to be the vehicle for which the addiction or excessiveness arises, does not mean that video games are at fault. I refuse to believe there is something special about video games that make it any more addictive than anything else that someone wants to be successful in. Striving for success will always lead some to the extreme. Video game addiction really should be addiction in its most general form and should be treated in that general form, without any special need to focus on the "video game" in front of it.

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