Feminine gamification viewpoint: Be another
In my work around gender and design, which is primarily research based in the sense that I find research on areas that interest me and I would believe will make a difference. Some people will always disagree with it despite the studies findings and sometimes I wish they could just see things through the other gender’s eyes. Then I came across this experiment, where people were asked to be another person in virtual reality. The experiment asked people to mirror the behaviour of the other person and that way they would see what the other person saw. Different gender, different cultures, different sizes, able bodied with disabled etc took part in the experiment.
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The experiment gives the impression that you are really in somebody else’s body, by mirroring the other person’s behaviour you receive the images the other person sees. The experiment is interested to find out if by experiencing life through somebody else’s body whether that will increase empathy or not.
So far I have only read the experiences of people that took part and no research finding have as yet been published. Most participants seem to declare an element of confusion about reality and found it interesting. The fact is you are seeing life through somebody else’s body, but you still have no real clear idea of how they feel internally, which would require more than simple mirroring of bodies. You would need to add storytelling and experiencing into the mix.
Would you be willing to body and experience swap?
I think it would be an interesting study to find out, virtual reality may well create some of the tools to instil more understanding and empathy. At least in my experience stepping into the shoes of someone else, emulating their choices and experiencing some of their experiences, my perception definitely on occasion has been challenged. By stepping into the shoes of a person trying to escape war in Syria and making their way to Sweden as a refugee in a game, I didn’t make it all the way. I had the same choices at each point, which raised my awareness and also a whole lot more questions about reality. From an empathy perspective it rocked my original thoughts to be more careful in expressing thoughts one way or another, because we don’t understand their reality.
What about yours, have you had similar experiences?