Ask any social media maven if he’s into FarmVille and he’ll likely slap you in the Facebook at the mere mention of virtual agriculture. Yet Zynga, purveyors of such feed-clogging digital crack, just boasted of its more than 45 million daily active users. Somebody around here is playing FarmVille. Yes, I’m looking at you, Earl.
What’s interesting about modern social games is that we don’t sign up for them with anonymous handles like the olden days (MoistBoi82, for instance). We play them publicly, as ourselves. Forty-five million of us tie our real identity to our virtual string bean-harvesting identity every day.
It’s an existential crisis on a massive scale, and arguably one of the most pressing philosophical concerns of our time.
Think about it. No, really. Think about it.