His research interests include digital culture and media industries. With regard to the characteristic of community then, the player-moderator is a player who has been helpful and willing to share their advice, and ensures respect among players through the moderation of inappropriate language and behaviour. Vancouver: Simon Fraser University Press, 2005. Fish, Stanley, Is there a Text in this Class? These points will be touched on throughout, but the main aim in the following is to outline the specific set of concerns and framework for analysing learning and interaction that the communities of practice approach may provide. This paper has sought to offer a snapshot of my engagement with the concept and some of the distinctive findings that emerged through its application.
This is bound up with issues of anonymity and, perhaps more importantly, that player-moderators are in character and such a line of inquiry from a researcher would be a significant break with and intervention into this fantasy world. Within the scope of this paper and in drawing on the communities of practice framework, it is noteworthy that Runescape is a world within which collective learning is an ongoing practice and player-moderators perform a delegated role integral to this domain. The last three in this list are reworkings of existing well-known stories and characters. Within this very broad community of practice or MMOG, I was a peripheral participant in that I did not have the familiarity or knowledge to contribute tools or advice. In terms of player-moderator and developer aspect of this community, I was also a peripheral participant. Even at the most basic level, being able to navigate around the world and know where things are takes time and is an endeavour helpfully served by asking. As a researcher focusing on particular dynamics in this MMOG, I equally was a newbie.
Whilst the focus above is on television, these activities ring equally true for digital gaming. The domain may be identified as the common sharing and exploration of this world. The broad domain surrounding the game further translates into priorities and tasks performed within the game world by particular agents or staff of the developers and players towards, as this paper is principally concerned, regulating this domain. Within the online game new players, often called newbies, may turn to more experienced players. A number of articles and conference papers on player support practices unpack some of the specifics of these relations. These points are embedded within Wenger’s (n.d.) outline of the three characteristics of communities of practice: the domain, the community and the practice. The communities of practice framework, I suggest, is especially useful for attending to the nuances and subtleties of interaction between players in MMOGs and between the players and the designers/developers who construct those worlds.