Essay The Importance of Media Literacy

1507 Words 7 Pages
Media technology tends to make its greatest advances by fulfilling the changing needs of consumers, as illustrated in the exponential increase we see in computer processing power every year. Many have argued that one of the driving forces behind this has been video games; a medium that requires more processing in terms of graphics and computational power than many other applications. Despite their impact on computer technology, and the pervasiveness they have in our culture, video games share much of the same stigma as television. Critics of video games often describe playing them as a waste of time. It is thought that video games, often being violent, will lead to violent behavior in those that play them. Also it is …show more content…
(Gee, James Paul, 2007 p. 12) This is true of all forms of media, from video games to books. One thing we can agree on is the addictive nature of video games. There is clearly something at work that draws kids in for hours at a time. Is there something to be learned from this phenomenon? The means of videogame production are not as accessible as many other media forms, such as video or photography. Therefore, what we can learn from videogames is mostly in the area of consumption. I believe the initial draw of videogames is a subconscious and natural one, and could provide insight for teachers in how to connect with students with a variety of subjects. What are the techniques that videogame designers use to connect with their players? To understand this, it is important to first understand how video games function as a commodity, as well as a model for learning. Video games often have a difficult learning curve, especially for those not well versed in the medium. They have to have a set of learning principles built into them, otherwise no one would ever learn how to play them, and they wouldn’t sell. James Paul Gee puts video games into the category of a domain. In this category he would include any other knowledge system that has its own set of rules and semiotics. According to Gee, literacy in a semiotic domain involves being able to produce meaning in that particular

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