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Permanent link (DOI): https://doi.org/10.7939/R3T64W

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Fair Game: An Anthropological Study of the Negotiation of Fairness in World of Warcraft Open Access

Descriptions

Other title
Subject/Keyword
anthropology
virtual
distribution
fairness
currency
economy
game
Type of item
Thesis
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Hibbert, Alicia
Supervisor and department
Lowrey, Kathleen (Anthropology)
Examining committee member and department
Gouglas, Sean (Humanities Computing and History and Classics)
Ruecker, Stan (Humanities Computing and English and Film Studies)
Department
Humanities Computing - Anthropology
Specialization

Date accepted
2010-04-14T16:20:53Z
Graduation date
2010-06
Degree
Master of Arts
Degree level
Master's
Abstract
This study examined fairness in the online society of World of Warcraft(WoW), a society under constraint by game developers but dynamically affected by users. Because the society is voluntary, people have the ability to both effect major change on, and leave, that society at any time. Thus, fairness in this virtual world is an important area for anthropological research. In-game fairness pointed to the organization, distribution, and acquisition of wealth. In particular, I examined player perceptions of real-money trading (RMT) in the context of individual and collective motivations in the endgame. In addition, I considered loot distribution systems as a mode of promoting player-initiated definitions of fairness. I discovered an overall economy of fun in which players act to maximize fun for the majority. Real-money trading was justified by casual players because players require progression as individuals in order to better serve the fun of the collective.
Language
English
DOI
doi:10.7939/R3T64W
Rights
License granted by Alicia Hibbert (ahibbert@ualberta.ca) on 2010-04-13T20:53:14Z (GMT): Permission is hereby granted to the University of Alberta Libraries to reproduce single copies of this thesis and to lend or sell such copies for private, scholarly or scientific research purposes only. Where the thesis is converted to, or otherwise made available in digital form, the University of Alberta will advise potential users of the thesis of the above terms. The author reserves all other publication and other rights in association with the copyright in the thesis, and except as herein provided, neither the thesis nor any substantial portion thereof may be printed or otherwise reproduced in any material form whatsoever without the author's prior written permission.
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