The "game console couch squat" phenomenon

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The "game console couch squat" phenomenon
The "game console couch squat" phenomenon
John Dvorak has posted an article over at PC Magazine that takes a look at new technology from the modern world that has caused us to behave strangely, at least from the perspective of a person from 100 years ago. Some examples include the chatroom, where teenagers spend hours typing and reading pointless messages and the "digital camera arm stretch" where people hold their digicams at an arm's length instead of peeking through a viewfinder.

The most relevant example for this blog is the "game console couch squat" that many gamers tend to exhibit. As Dvorak says, "this is now a stereotyped image" that is used to represent gamers in TV commercials, TV shows and movies. The couch squat is usually accompanied by gyrating body and hand movements as the player guides his or her on-screen persona. I take issue with Dvorak's claim that this is an entirely new phenomenon: the phrase "on the edge of your seat" was used decades before video games to imply a person's immersion in a story or a movie.

We can expect that the Xbox 360 and the PS3 controller will continue to advance the stereotype (and, in the case of the PS3's motion sensitivity, the arm movements), but there's always the chance that the Wii's single-handed approach to game control will stir things up a bit.

[Image: Couch Gamers on Flickr]
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