Tag Archives: Video Games

Is anything ever completely original?

25 Mar

When posting on YouTube users have to be careful when being imposed with copyright infringement. “The way to ensure that your video doesn’t infringe someone else’s copyright is to use your skills and imagination to create something completely original,” (Copyright Tips on YouTube). But how do you create something “completely original” when most people generate ideas from another piece of work because there is some inspiration behind the new idea.

Online YouTube offers self-help pages about preventing copyright, what copyright is, and what happens when you upload infringing content. YouTube has these pages as disclaimers to project their website and others original pieces of work. They also offer this disclaimer,


On YouTube all videos, clips, and audio have to be original works. However, aren’t there numerous videos that are remakes of other videos or responses to other videos? Are they “completely original” works if they are responses or reactions to other original works? I wonder what exact regulations or guidelines are written out they decided exactly what videos are “completely original” and what are copies.

In the chapter, “Copyright and American culture: Ideas, expressions, and democracy,” by Siva Vaidhyanathan says, “Copyright was created as a policy that balanced the interests of authors, publishers, and readers,” (Vaidhtanathan, 20). It is a way to protect the creators of the “completely original” pieces of work. It is hard to believe that a lot of videos on YouTube are remaining online and are considered original pieces of work. I have seen numerous videos that are remakes, responses, or paradoxes of other videos.

What makes some thing “completely original” if it’s a response to another video or the idea was inspired from another video?



Can children learn from video games?

1 Mar

Video games are taking over and many argue that children learn from video games. I do believe that children can learn from CERTAIN video games, but not all. Children are not learning from video games where they are robbing stores, killing people, or bombing a certain race. The only thing children are learning from those type of video games are violence and how to hate a certain group of people. These video games make it okay for children to kill off an entire race of people, sell drugs, or run over people with cars. That is not the real world. If we teach children that all of these negative things are okay by including them in video games they are going to grow up wanting to do the things they learned from these video games. However, there are video games that are educational and do help children learn. They help children solve problems, strategies, learn math, etc. There are also many educational apps that help children with math, reading, learning the alphabet, or writing. If we are going to use video games as a way for children to learn, they need to be educational video games and not video games where children are only learing to kill people.

Play to Educate?

28 Feb

I have seen my brother play on xbox Live for countless hours a day. All of my friends play on xbox Live and in reality, do I think they are learning anything from it? My first reaction is probably not. But, I would be wrong.  They are learning something from playing video games. They are learning strategies and developing a different way of thinking.

Schools have developed this way of learning “content”. I put content in quotes because we think of content as information that comes out of a text book. James Paul Gee the author of What Video Games Have to Teach Us says:

“Consider, for a moment, basketball as a domain. No one would want to treat basketball as “content” apart from the game itself. Imagine a textbook that contained all the facts and rules about basketball read by students who never played or watched the game. How well do you think they would understand this textbook? How motivated to understand it do you think they would be? But we do this sory of thing all the time in school with areas like math and science” (22-23).

Let me put this in plain terms, teach students by problem solving and experience. We should not be teaching them by what some call the “skill and drill” way. Video games are problem solving machines. If you play any video game it is all about how do I get around the obstacle a head of me. Why can’t we adapt this way of thinking into our schools.

Now, I am not saying that we should play COD in the classroom. I am saying though that we should consider having more problems solving ways of learning. Why can’t students have adventures when they go to school? Did you know that the way preschoolers learn is by exploration and discovery, also known as play. Who said that adults cannot learn by play anymore? Of course you would have to adapt it to a different kind of play.

Before I start rabbling on I want to finish with one statement. America is in a creativity crisis because of the “skill and drill” method of teaching. When Newsweek wrote an article about the creativity crisis last Fall (2010) they were quick to blame video games. Video games are doing the opposite, they are exploring creativity. To read more about the creativity crisis you can check out the following links.




Still Think Video Games Are A Waste Of Time?

27 Feb

As I began to read the chapter, Semiotic Domains: Is Playing Video Games a “Waste of Time”?, by James Dan Gee I was thinking to myself that they are. Too many people waster their time playing COD, Mario Kart, Wii, or anything else that is a current X-Box or Playstation game. However, I think position has changed. While reading James Dan Gee’s article something popped into my head, and something that I am a huge support of in school: The iPad.

Dan Gee made many valuable points about what video games have to offer students. iPads have a lot to offer students and this comes from the thousands of different apps that Apple has created. There are apps that do everything, and there are apps that teach students something. A lot of those are in the forms of games that teach students colors, math, shapes, alphabet, about space, writing prompts, vocabulary, and spelling. Shouldn’t we consider apps on the iPad as video games? This is why my position on these times of video games have changed, and I feel that I can’t be a full supporter of the use of iPads in the classroom if I do not support the use of video games to teach important skills for students.

Another reason my position changed is because Dan Gee listed that, “When we learn in a new semiotic domain we learn in a more active way,” because we learn through experience or through “play,” we can gather resources, and interact in a social group or with other people (Dan Gee, 24). These three reasons are also very supportive in my argument that iPads should be used in the classroom when ever possible or at home for students to continue their education outside of the classroom to reinforce ideas. The iPad has numerous opportunities for students who need extra resources, who may be special needs, or are a part of an enrichment program at school. The iPad has almost unlimited resources for students, and some video games may have these as well.

As I still remain against young adults and teenagers wasting hours upon hours on X-Box live playing COD. I can see that it does teach critical thinking, hand-eye coordination and problem solving; however, I still don’t see COD as a form of literacy in today’s word. But, I can see that applications on the iPad can teach critical thinking, problem solving, and be an enforcement of literacy. I have conflicting values. Furthermore, I can see both sides of the fence and cannot decide which side I want to permanently place my feet.

Video games can be beneficial for young students, but I still don’t think I am completely sold on giving children video games to be an enforced form of literacy. Yes, they can be good as a part of a balanced education, which does not seem to be happening. I know numerous people that can spend hours on X-box, an iPhone, and even the iPad when they should be writing a paper or reading for their class the next day. From before reading the article to reflecting on it after, I have some new information and different ideas about how video games can be beneficial. However, like previously mentioned I still need to be offered more information and data to be completely sold.

Video: Academic Benefits of Computer & Video Games

Video: School with no Papers and just iPads