Can online video games actually have socially redeeming qualities?
Not only do that have socially-redeeming qualities, but they help promote social interaction. This finding contradicts earlier research that suggested people who spend a lot of time online or gaming are socially isolated.
As many parents lament, online games often seem to be an obsession consuming free-time and appearing to limit social interaction. Now, according to experts, one form of online entertainment called massively multiplayer games (MMOs), may actually “promote sociability and new worldviews.”
The key, of course, is what type of game or interaction is being done online. Games requiring social interactions, and activities online that require social interaction, would seem to, by their very definition, to foster less social isolation and more social interaction. This research helps support the idea that it is the action, not the technology itself, that is a determinant of social isolation.
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Last reviewed: By John M. Grohol, Psy.D. on 17 Aug 2007
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Grohol, J. (2006). Online Video Games Socially Helpful. Psych Central. Retrieved on June 18, 2013, from http://psychcentral.com/blog/archives/2006/08/17/online-video-games-socially-helpful/