[Air-L] CFP: Surveillance, Games and Play Deadline Extension

Jennifer Whitson jwhitson at connect.carleton.ca
Mon Sep 16 07:17:29 PDT 2013

Hi All,

Due to popular demand, we are extending the CFP for the special issue of
Surveillance & Society<http://library.queensu.ca/ojs/index.php/surveillance-and-society/announcement/view/72>on
surveillance, games and play for an extra 10 days. The extended
for submissions is Wednesday September 25th.

The full CFP is below.

*CFP Surveillance, Games and Play

The games we play on our computers, iPads, and video game consoles are
watching us. They track our every online move and send data on who we are,
how we play, and whom we play with back to game and virtual world
publishers such as Sony and Microsoft. Two events in the summer of 2011
exemplify the need to study surveillance in games:  a hacker attack against
Sony's Playstation Network compromised over 77 million user accounts
including credit card numbers, while iPhone users discovered hidden code in
their devices that tracked their movements and secretly sent this data back
to Apple. This form of consumer surveillance that targets players has
eluded critical appraisal in both the games studies and surveillance
The games we play are not only watching us, but are leveraging surveillance
to mold us into better students, workers, and consumers, as evidenced by
the growth of gamification applications that combine playful design and
feedback mechanisms from games with users' social profiles (e.g. Facebook,
twitter, and LinkedIn) in non-game applications explicitly geared to drive
behavioural change. Accordingly, traditional surveillance activities are
transformed through their combination with playful frames of reference and
game-like elements.

Yet, as argued by Anders Albrechtslund and Lynsey Dubbeld in volume 3(2/3)
of this journal, surveillance is fun. It is an essential component of many
games and virtual worlds. It enables family to find each other and play
together online, such as when adult children who live thousands of miles
away challenge their parents to a *Words with Friends *scrabble match over
Facebook. Surveillance allows game companies to match strangers with
similar skill sets and play-styles together in multiplayer games, thus
increasing the flow of the game and players' mutual enjoyment. Surveillance
facilitates coordinated teamwork and sophisticated game economies,
exemplified by informational tools such as the damage mods and kill-point
monitors created by players for massively-multiplayer online games.
Surveillance also makes online games and virtual worlds safe for children
and young adults, restricting both the use of inappropriate language and
content, as well as prohibiting the entry of potentially dangerous adults.
Moreover, surveillance is pleasurable. As game company Valve found when
they forayed into biometrics (i.e. measuring galvanic skin response and
arousal levels), players are more engaged when they can see how they affect
their opponents' own physiological responses. We, as players, like to watch
our opponents, anticipating what they will do next. We also use
surveillance to improve our prowess and extend our moments of victory by
using recording software and game replay functions

This theme issue is dedicated to balancing two very different sides of
surveillance: surveillance as a technology of corporate governance and
surveillance as a technology of pleasure and play.

*Possible research areas might include (but are not limited to):*

   - The role of surveillance in enabling play and games
   - The role of play and games in normalizing surveillance
   - Surveillance as gameplay or surveillance as a game mechanic
   - Playful surveillance applications
   - Playful representations of surveillance
   - Playful resistance to surveillance
   - Issues of identity, anonymity and pseudonymity in online games and
   virtual worlds
   - Online visibilities and the relationship between game publishers and
   user populations
   - The implications of using data gathered in-game for non-game
   - The use of surveillance and the representation of surveillance in
   online games, virtual worlds, and/or gamified applications, including
   topics such as:
   - Games that educate users about privacy and surveillance
   - End-User Licensing Agreements, Terms of Service, and awareness of
   - Applications of social networking services, locational data, and GPS
   devices in games and play
   - Uses of data gathering services, screen-capture tools, and recorded
   gameplay sessions
   - The surveillance of children and youth in virtual worlds and games
   - State and police use of in-game data for surveillance, tracking,
   behavioral profiling etc.
   - Surveillance and the competitive, professional e-sports gaming industry
   - Data mining, game metrics, and targeted advertising in the game

This is not intended to be an exclusive listing of possibilities for this
edition. Other possibilities are welcomed and encouraged and can be
discussed in advance with the guest-editors: Jennifer R.Whitson<
j.whitson at concordia.ca>and Bart Simon <bart.simon at concordia.ca>.

All papers must be submitted through the online submission system no later
than *September 25th 2013*, for publication in *March 2014.* Click here<
further information on submissions.


Jennifer R. Whitson, PhD

Postdoctoral Fellow, Technoculture Arts and Games Research Centre
Concordia University
Montreal, Canada

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