Sunday, 3 February 2008

Webkinz films

I have written previously about the machinima children make inside the virtual worlds they inhabit, but the users of the Webkinz virtual world appear to prefer making 'live action' films in which they use Webkinz toys to act out a narrative (see the example below, 'Webkinz American Idol'). One might wonder what the attraction of these films are for the viewer, but they are very popular with other Webkinz fans - Webkinz Americal Idol has been viewed more than 300,000 times. I wonder if the different approaches to film-making within these games are linked to gender? A group of researchers, led by Bobbi Hammett, is planning a joint project on Webkinz, looking at practices in Canada, Australia and England - maybe we will explore this aspect of the play... (more on this project another time).

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