[racket] Racket Badges

From: Neil Van Dyke (neil at neilvandyke.org)
Date: Thu Sep 1 01:00:17 EDT 2011

Danny Yoo wrote at 09/01/2011 12:20 AM:
>> I wish you could earn Racket badges and levels for completing exercises, getting +1'ed on the mailing list, and contributing code and documentation.
> +1.  Stack Overflow does this sort of achievement system. It feels
> very much like a game.

When someone helps me out here or contributes a good idea to a 
discussion, I appreciate it, but it's even more appreciated if they're 
doing it out of higher goals, community, or altruism, without the taint 
of working towards a merit badge.

Stack Overflow's game is probably benign, but there's a context of the 
last several years of connected society.  Online sites are conditioning 
us in various ways to accept ubiquitous buzz marketing, and to parody 
social processes and fritter away social capital to promote products in 
exchange for some consideration ("like us on Facebook for a discount"), 
and this all being socially acceptable to the extent that people care or 
realize it's going on.  This isn't new -- we've enjoyed entertainment 
industry generated 'news' and disingenuous performances for TV talk show 
for decades -- but it's only the last decade or so that everyone can see 
themselves acting a role and playing the game on a large scale.  I hope 
that individuals of the new generation somehow manage to value being 
genuine and to have genuine connections, despite an environment that's 
trying to push them otherwise.  In this context, do you *really* want to 
bring more of this game into a relative oasis?

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