Digital Ethnography is a very interesting idea that aims at an experience that is somewhat relative to some type of digital media paradox. The following masterpiece will be an auto-ethnographic look into a digital media experience of my own, this piece of media is something that I interact with daily.
Since I was young, I have always had a love for video games, they have helped me through parts of my life and have always been a safe haven for me to block everything out and just play a couple games of NBA 2K or Call of Duty. Some of the most memorable moments in my life have come from video games.
One of the first digital ethnographic experiences I encountered was when I was in Year 5 and League of Legends was a huge online game for kids our age, it was truly an awesome game and have some fond memories playing it. I distinctly remember being so excited when that 3 o’clock school bell rang because I knew I’d be able to come home and be on the computer by 3:30 and start playing League of Legends with all my school friends. There was about 15 of us playing at once and we would have a Skype call running so that we could all communicate and strategise about what manoeuvre we were going to pull next. I had so much fun playing this game because it was socially fun as I was constantly talking with all my mates at once and at the same time I was playing a game that I was so in love with. This created another topic of conversation at school and by us just talking about playing, it made me so excited and it is a really awesome memory to look back on.
There has also been a truly significant digital experience that I have been involved in and it has to do with Call of Duty. I would play Call of Duty a lot and sometimes even online competitive. This is where I met a dear friend of mine McGregor. McGregor lived in New Zealand and we met playing Call of Duty, we only ever saw each other online and never actually met in person because he was in another country, we had grown to be pretty good mates even without physical face-to-face conversations. This year though, McGregor came to Sydney for a trip to see the Call of Duty tournaments and I was lucky enough to have caught up with him. It was a surreal moment, this guy I met playing a video game and would talk to over text or call all the time but after 3 years of knowing him, I finally met him in real life. Gave him a huge hug and was just in awe because I literally talk to him all the time and I’m a supportive mate and it was only now that I met him. I am forever grateful for this moment.
Personally, video games have always been about positive vibes and making friendships or playing with friends. It’s a safe haven, getting away from your responsibilities and just letting everything fall past you. Every time I play, I know there will be laughs and lots of jokes flown around and I will cherish these moments forever.