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Gaming In Sweden Bigger Than Football and Hockey

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  • by girlintraining (1395911) on Wednesday November 26, 2008 @12:42PM (#25900663)

    Nice to see we have some friendly competition for the coveted "Most Hours Spent Sitting on Our Arse" award. *looks around* Hmm. Why are all these people looking at me like I just ran over their dog? And at least four of them have pitchforks.

    Well, I'm going for a walk!

    *backs away slowly*

    • by postbigbang (761081) on Wednesday November 26, 2008 @01:23PM (#25901079)

      Computer games are an indoor sport. That it would be popular in areas that get mightily cold in winter is no surprise.

  • by MaxwellEdison (1368785) on Wednesday November 26, 2008 @12:45PM (#25900713)

    ...bigger than football and hockey combined.

    It's easy to understand why. Have you ever tried kicking a football on skates?

  • by Drakkenmensch (1255800) on Wednesday November 26, 2008 @12:45PM (#25900721)
    Is the day far when nerds and geeks will rule the high schools, bullying and terrorizing the jocks and athletes?
    • by Tanktalus (794810) on Wednesday November 26, 2008 @12:51PM (#25900777) Journal

      Um, no.

      Jocks and athletes have power in secondary schools simply because their ego is fed by the swooning girls who are hardwired to look for guys who can protect them. In secondary school, girls think that big, strong guys provide the daddy-style protection that they covet. It's not until later (20 to 30) that most women figure out it's the nerds that will provide the economic protection that they really want. Of course, by that time, the nerds will have picked up zero in the socialisation department and not know what to do to pick up the chicks.

      • Re:Nerdcore uprising (Score:5, Interesting)

        by hey! (33014) on Wednesday November 26, 2008 @01:08PM (#25900947) Homepage Journal

        It's funny how so many people seem to have gone to school on a different planet than I did ...

        I guess maybe it's how you look at things. Eleanor Roosevelt once said, "No one can make you feel inferior without your permission." I'd put it differently: whether you are an insider and outsider is a matter of perspective. If you aspire to be something you aren't cut out to be, then you're an outsider.

        • Re:Nerdcore uprising (Score:5, Interesting)

          by theaveng (1243528) on Wednesday November 26, 2008 @01:34PM (#25901189)

          Sorry but I'm fairly certain I didn't imagine getting my glasses stolen (hidden in the teachers' desk). Or sand dumped on my head. Or my gymbag thrown into the girls' locker room.

          This isn't just a matter of "attitude" but repeated hazing. If American teachers were doing a proper job, they wouldn't turn a blind eye to this stuff, but instead intercede and punish the instigators. But because the instigators are usually "cool" jocks, they don't do a thing.

          • by Ogive17 (691899)
            Stories like this make me wonder if I ended up going to one of the most progressive high schools in the nation... Nothing special about my school, 1500-1600 students in a town around 22k people in Ohio... I was in some geeky clubs (math, chess, french) but also lettered in soccer and baseball. Not once was I ever picked on or made fun of for my hobbies or academic success. I also never heard about anyone getting picked on because they were geeks or nerds. Of course, looking back, it seems that a good p
            • by bitrex (859228)

              The public school system I went to consisted of a huge number of students who had been groomed for success from an early age. They excelled in math, science, and the humanities - 98% of the graduating class went on to college, many to Ivy League universities, some to MIT, some to Stanford.

              A great number of them were also merciless sadists who took great delight in tormenting me and anyone else who was not a member of this huge clique. When they weren't passing tests in computer science with flying colors,

            • I'm sure a difference between your story and his is the "lettered in soccer and baseball" part, as you noticed.

              Personally, I never noticed any "Teen Movie" like hazing.
          • Sounds like my high school days. I got slammed into lockers, book bag kicked out of my hand and books notes and papers scattered down a flight of steps. Ongoing daily verbal abuse, interspersed with the odd burst of violence. Teachers and administrators did essentially nothing and when they did finally talk to one of the jerks that were beating on me, he just beat me twice as hard the next time.

            I wasn't actively trying to be different, I wasn't working at conforming either. Some people are offended and ang
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by Prien715 (251944)

        In my experience, there's different types of girls, just like there are guys. If you want cheerleaders, then yes, you probably want to be a jock. But there's more girls in music, dance, political groups, and theater than there ever were in cheerleading (at least in both my HS and college) and they tend to look for different qualities: ability to intelligently carry on a conversation not related to D&D, emotional support, and well, being interesting.

        It's unfortunate that so many nerds tend to take the

        • You can kind of be into tech while also being interesting - posting my digital photos on deviantArt was how I met my first gf (though I wish I hadn't - turns out she was a sucky girlfriend, and not in a good way)

        • by bitrex (859228) on Wednesday November 26, 2008 @01:55PM (#25901373)

          they tend to look for different qualities: ability to intelligently carry on a conversation not related to D&D, emotional support, and well, being interesting.

          Don't confuse traits girls may look for in a friend with traits they look for in someone they actually want to have sex with.

          The difficulty is that human beings are fantastic at self-deception, and often the qualities that a person tells you they're looking for in a mate are not really the qualities they're looking for, but are whatever allows them to think of themselves in a positive light and avoid too much cognitive dissonance. In practice, if the reality of their behavior doesn't fit with their image of themselves, it can always be rationalized later.

          In light of the constant state of self-deception that people live in (it's a fantastic evolutionarily strategy), taking advice from a woman on what she wants in someone to actually have sex with is like asking the Devil for advice on avoiding sin - it will always lead you wrong. If you want to learn, pay attention to the behavior, not the words.

        • by genner (694963)

          I'd venture if more nerds dropped the attitude of being into technology at the expense of all other interests, they'd probably have an easier time socially.

          They'd also cease to be nerds.

      • by theaveng (1243528)

        >>>nerds will have picked up zero in the socialisation department and not know what to do to pick up the chicks

        "Hi. My name is ______. I couldn't help noticing your beautiful smile. :-) What's your name?"

        • by Yvan256 (722131)

          Thanks a lot, buddy.

          You should have seen her face when I tried to introduce myself by saying "Hi. My name is underscore-underscore-underscore-underscore-underscore-underscore. I couldn't help noticing your beautiful smile. :-) What's your name?"

    • Re:Nerdcore uprising (Score:5, Interesting)

      by MBGMorden (803437) on Wednesday November 26, 2008 @01:02PM (#25900881)

      Maybe it was just my school, but the line between "jock" and "nerd" blurred a lot. At least so much as "nerd" is defined as the smarter kids who typically do well as far as grades. Most of the top athletes at my school were actually in the top of their class (and that wasn't any fudging going on - most of them I'd known since grade school and they'd always made good grades even before athletics came into play). I myself played offensive line (Guard, though I'll admit despite being 1st string I wasn't really considered a "star player") and graduated second in my class. At least one of the guys who was a few years ahead of me graduated with honors AND had the unique distinction of never missing a single day of school from grade K through 12. Absolutely perfect attendance. He later played for both the Cleavland Browns and the Denver Broncos.

      We just didn't have that TV drama "guys with letterman jackets picking on the smart kids" thing going on. I've often wondered if that we were just an exception or if that situation plays out less often in real life than on TV.

      There was CERTAINLY a division between the athletes and the "kinda goth" (I say kinda goth because these guys were not quite as white makeup and weird as TV goths - rather some Southern goth variant), but that was pretty much separate from grades. It also was mostly just a situation where the two groups didn't associate rather than actively persecuting each other. Both groups had their smart and dumb people with about equal frequency.

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Hadlock (143607)

        This was true in my high school as well. A large portion of the football team went to ivy leauge schools (we're in Texas). The ones that didn't however either made it into 2nd or 3rd tier state colleges in a highschool with an 80% "goes on to college" rate, where most of the students head off to 1st or 2nd tier state colleges.

      • Re:Nerdcore uprising (Score:5, Interesting)

        by moderatorrater (1095745) on Wednesday November 26, 2008 @01:26PM (#25901105)

        Most of the top athletes at my school were actually in the top of their class (and that wasn't any fudging going on - most of them I'd known since grade school and they'd always made good grades even before athletics came into play). I myself played offensive line

        Many people on the football team thought the same thing about the team captains. I heard people saying that one of the captains should have been valedictorian because he was the smartest person they knew.

        In actuality, they didn't know the smartest kids in the school because they didn't take the same classes as those kids (myself included). If they had paid attention, they would have known that the valedictorian had done research that was being published in journals and that there were more than a dozen students (out of 200 or so) who were ahead of him academically. He obviously wasn't dumb, and he did well in school and will likely do well in life, but he wasn't at the top of the class. Like your school, there wasn't any animosity, just a lack of socialization between the groups.

    • I think the nerds are gonna have to start taking a lot more 'roids.
    • Only as far as East Asia is from you...
  • by Ced_Ex (789138) on Wednesday November 26, 2008 @12:48PM (#25900743)

    Who wants to be outside in cold wet weather physically exerting themselves when you can be toasty and lazy sitting on the couch?

  • by dalewj (187278) on Wednesday November 26, 2008 @12:52PM (#25900791) Homepage

    About 25% of my online society (Hunters-unlimited.com) is sweedish and uses those funny little dots in their words. Plus one or the games we play (entropiauniverse.com) is also sweedish, They are a pleasure to play with, speaking multiple languages (for the most part). With all that extra night time in the winter they keep our soc warm.

  • Good (Score:3, Informative)

    by BigJClark (1226554) on Wednesday November 26, 2008 @12:58PM (#25900831)

    Maybe in 10 years the game of hockey will return to normal, and we won't have to worry about the prancing-through-the-daffodil-swedes wrecking our game with their pseudo-soccer-take-the-fall style of game.

    I kid, I kid ;)
  • Sure, almost anyone can play a round of knock-about pond hockey as a kid.

    .
    But fundamentally, organized league play is a physically demanding - potentially very dangerous sport - at every level. Typically kids begin training no later than nine or ten and it's a big investment in time and money.

    You can be a Wii Bowler and call yourself physically active. But that isn't going to be good enough to keep you competitive on the rink with a talented seventh grader.

  • Haven't they been following this same trend for a while? Heck, Star Craft is essentially a sport over in Korea.
  • by yours truly zerocool (1409875) on Wednesday November 26, 2008 @01:16PM (#25901013)
    Does this mean when Starcraft 2 comes out I will start seeing borkborkborks instead of just kekekes?
  • by hey! (33014) on Wednesday November 26, 2008 @01:28PM (#25901119) Homepage Journal

    Museums, it turns out, have much higher attendance in aggregate than professional sports. They have a much greater net economic impact than professional sports as well. A single headliner museum in a city can bring in a quarter of a billion dollars annually; the Boston Museum of Fine Arts (an absolutely amazing place) was shown to bring in 369 million annually to the Boston area in a recent study. This is actually comparable to the annual revenue of the Red Sox; the net impact of the Red Sox on regional economy might be somewhat more, but there are a lot more comparable cultural institutions in Boston than there are comparable sports teams. You can walk across the street from the MFA to the Gardner, a smaller but equally culturally significant art museum. Boston is a famous sports town, but it is stuffed to the gills with cultural institutions that have heavy attendance every day (except possibly Mondays) year round.

    I think one of the reasons for the outsize impact of cultural institutions is that they have a mission to have an impact. They're supposed to maximize bodies in the doors, eyeballs on the exhibits. Sports franchises aren't run that way. They're run to maximize profit.

    Gaming's higher impact is likewise related to the fact you can do it every day. However it isn't going to have the same economic impact as having strong cultural institutions.

    • by drfireman (101623)

      That's a very interesting post. But I think the numbers must tilt heavily in favor of spectator sports if you include not just attendance but also sports on TV (which I believe is the main source of revenue for most pro sports franchises). Most sports fans I know see about two orders of magnitude more games on television than live. This would account for why, although museums have more live attendance, you're more likely to end up talking about sports around the water cooler.

    • That's an interesting comparison of the economic impact. It's not surprising that people coming and paying money every day adds up to more money than a few dozen games a year bring in. Companies with recurring service fees also tend to do better at milking their clients than those with one-time charges. :)

      Coincidentally, I am planning a trip to Boston right now. The MFA is indeed spectacular and enough to entice a Miami boy to venture north into the freezing cold. :)

      The New England Aquarium also has
      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by hey! (33014)

        I endorse your recommendations. Also, if you've been to the MFA, definitely ought to walk across the street to the Gardner. It's a must see. I'm serious, if you think the MFA is a reason to visit Boston, you have to do the Gardner.

        With respect to Harvard's museums, you should consider in addition to Natural History the Fogg, (art), Peabody (archaeology) and most especially in the Spring or Summer the Arnold Arboretum (the tree museum), which is a must see.

        The Peabody Essex in Salem can be combined with a

  • But the gaming jock is never going to sleep with the prom queen.

  • Gaming is also cheap compared to attending a soccer event. The stadium entrance fee ranges from 50 to 100 Euros and you get 90 min of entertainment. A PS3 costs about 400 Euros (depending on the version) and a game sales at about 25 Euros (prices of course vary), which means that a PS3 and two new games is roughly like going 6 times to the soccer stadium, i.e. "buying" 9 hours of entertainment. With two PS3 games you can definitely spend a LOT more time than that, plus the fact that you will only buy the co

  • by Riktov (632) on Thursday November 27, 2008 @02:37AM (#25906691) Journal

    As the article says, the survey is about how many people participate in the sports and gaming. If you put it that way, probably more Americans play games than play basketball, more Japanese play games than play baseball. Not at all surprising.

    But if someone says he's "in to football", chances are good that he's in to watching professional football, not playing it. Apparently only 3% of Swedes play hockey, but undoubtedly many many more watch it. I think even a lot of football fans would, if placed in front of a TV set, prefer to interact and be challenged by a game than passively watch a game. And either activity would be greatly preferred to actually going out and getting down in the dirt.

    And nowhere does the article mention the amount of money spent on gaming vs. sports, and that's the conventional measure of how "big" something is. It's quite possible that gaming does take in more money, but probably not to the proportions reported here.

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