Online cultures are ever growing with internet access becoming easier and cheaper to acquire, more people are becoming members of online cultures, from chat-rooms, Facebook, Myspace, and online games. I myself am a member of Steam, a program that allows you to have I.M. conversations with people from all over the world; it also has its own store and member profile pages.
I am also a subscriber to ‘World of Warcraft’, which is not just an MMORPG (massive multiplayer online Role Playing Game), but it is also its own gaming society, cities full of people buying and selling with other players, it even has an auction house for people to sell rage items for extortionate prices, well in certain situations anyway. I am a Member of guild known as ‘The Shadow Vanguard’ with currently around 250 members from all over Europe. There are many, in fact most of the people I know on ‘WoW’, I only know as a virtual character, and have never met in real life, yet we become good friends. I think being a part of these gaming cultures takes up a majority of my spare time.
Game cultures are often criticised because of the lack of social interaction, yeah you might get square eyes from sitting in front of the computer, but you are given the ability to interact with people from all over the world, discuss many different topics, not just games. You can also gain a lot of knowledge from this, for example a friend of mine, has been learning Dutch from someone that he has met via these gaming cultures.