New Study Shows Shy People Make More Friends In Online Gaming




/ 6 years ago

Young man playing computer game

A new study confirms what many of you may have already assumed/believed about shy people who frequently play video games online: They are more likely to gain friends in a virtual setting than in real life.

According to VG Researcher, the study—it was performed by a German university (the University of Münster)—focused on “the relationship between online videogame [sic] involvement and gaming-related friendship among emotionally sensitive individuals.” They polled a total of 396 respondents through a telephone survey in March and April 2013, during which they found that “emotionally sensitive players are using online gaming spaces differently from their less emotionally sensitive counterparts.”

In other words, they are creating more friendships online than they more socially active counterparts. Part of the reason for that, the study claims, is that shyer people “overcome their traditional social difficulties and generate new friendships as well as strengthen old ones.” Without being thrust into sometimes-awkward face-to-face interactions, people with social anxieties can exercise more freedom in an online setting. They can speak with whoever they want and however they want, though more important than that is the fact that they’re talking to others about something they all find interesting: the game itself.

Just look to the latest Bungie game, Destiny, for example. While this first-person shooter can be enjoyed as a single-player experience through the campaign mode, it (like many other games of its ilk released of late) is far more entertaining when played with others online. And it’s not difficult to imagine that the shyer people out there playing the game are forging new relationships while also trying to grind their character to the next level for a new weapon, armor upgrade, etc. To be frank, can you think of a better way to accomplish all of this? Surely doing it by yourself can be fun, but is it as much fun as doing it with other players? No.

Although it may seem obvious, the importance of anonymity also helps for shy people in feeling more comfortable at the gaming aspect, too. This is something stressed at InterCasino, an online gaming platform where users can disclose as much information about themselves as they’d like. As long as you sign up with the proper details, the rest of how you present yourself is in your hands, and that goes for whether you do something single-player like slots or go up against actual opponents in the live casino. It’s the latter that can be a bit more intimidating to players, so playing online feels more comfortable and relaxed as you can go at your own pace and choose how involved you want to get.

What do you, the reader, think about this study and its results? Does it simply confirm what you already thought or do you think it was worth putting a study like this together? Let us know in the comments!


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