[MUD-Dev] [DGN] MUD developer's motives

Casbaria casbaria at pacbell.net
Wed Apr 10 20:26:20 New Zealand Standard Time 2002


Brandon J. Van Every wrote on Monday, April 08, 2002:

The reasons for every person who develops a MUD will probably be
different but there seemed to be theme to the question on the side
of "Why do MUD developers bother thinking about social
repercussions?"  or maybe it's "Why do MUD developers feel that
multi-user games have any impact upon society?"

Personally, from the point of view of a free MUD dev for the past 8
years and as a public school teacher for 5 years, I think there has
already been a social impact from online interaction on the young
audience via chat rooms, muds, multiplayer games, etc.  It can be
seen in how they write, and in some cases, how they act.(Although
I'd have to reference lots of child psychologists to try and prove
that one.)

> So why do these particular MUD developers stridently participate
> in the imagined and projected social consequences of their
> actions?

They aren't just imagined and projected. They are here already.

Almost all middle-class families have access to the internet and a
good many lower income families are there as well. Schools, like
mine, not only have online access, but actually desire students to
make email addresses at hotmail, etc. so that they can use it for
school work.

When so many people, and when I say people I mean young people, are
using the internet in one form or another, we as developers of part
of that medium should at least consider the social ramifications of
what we are putting forth.

To say that a MUD has no impact on a person's life seems far
fetched.  And if it does have an impact, I personally want to
consider what impact I want to have on people's lives.  I doubt that
we'll have social rules with strict enforcement but such things as
playing nice shouldn't be reserved for recess at gym class.

A Wizard/IMM/Moderator of an online game has to deal with the social
interactions on an individual basis and needs the support of the
game itself to accomplish the desired atmosphere. Hence, why the
developer has to think about social behaviors.

- Adam Casbarian

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