FCC Commissioner Terms WoW a Leading Cause of College Dropouts

Yesterday GamePolitics reported on concerns by University of Minnesota Duluth officials that compulsive World of Warcraft play was causing some students to flunk out.

Those concerns have been echoed by Federal Communications Commissioner Deborah Taylor Tate (left).

The FCC commissioner commented on WoW during a speech on telecom policy and regulation delivered to the Practicing Law Institute on December 5th:

With the explosion of educational resources available online, one might think parents would be 100% pleased with the internet’s role in their children’s lives. But surveys show just the opposite: a late 2006 survey that showed 59% of parents think the internet has been a totally positive influence in their children’s lives– down from 67% in 2004.


You might find it alarming that one of the top reasons for college drop-outs in the U.S. is online gaming addiction – such as World of Warcraft – which is played by 11 million individuals worldwide.

Document Dump: Read Tate’s (mostly non-game-related) speech here.

GP: Big thanks to Steve Augustino for the heads-up!

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  1. carmellaB says:

    It was said that these are the main contributing factors why most dropouts leave college:

       1. Homesickness and feeling that you don’t fit in. It’s a whole new world out there, and you may not be ready to embrace it.
       2. Educational burnout. While college gives you control and flexibility over your schedule, the hard demanding schedule, challenging courses, and boatload of homework certainly has turned a lot of students away from the desire to continue.
       3. Academic unpreparedness. Sometimes, high school didn’t really prepare students for college. Other times, students slacked off in high school and paid the price during their post-secondary years. The high school goal was to pass (so that students could get into college); in college, it is to succeed.
       4. Personal or family issues. You may have had an unfortunate illness in the family or you yourself just got totally get stressed out from the workload.
       5. Financial constraints. Tuition costs continue to soar, and scholarships or grants are not always available. Additionally, financial situations can change from year to year.
       6. Too much fun — but not enough education. Some students take advantage of their friendships, which could put them on academic probation due to suffering grades or absence in classes.
       7. The school isn’t a good academic fit for the student. You’ve selected a great school that is very arts-centric. However, you realize that you like the sciences better. Similarly, you may hate the average class size of 100 and prefer much smaller classes for more individualized attention.
       8. Setting sights on the wrong major. You may have wanted to be a doctor but after taking several science classes, you decided that you’re rather go into marketing. Does your school have a marketing major? If not, you’re likely to go elsewhere.
       9. No guidance or mentors. In high school, teachers and counselors were there to guide you, as high school classes are typically smaller than the entering freshman class. It’s a lot harder to get the personalized attention that you’ve been used to and that could turn people off quickly.
      10. External demands, particularly within part time or full time employment. Can we say Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook? When the job puts too many demands on you, you may have to choose, and money usually wins out.
      11. Time to move out. If the cold winter just doesn’t suit you, you may decide to go elsewhere. You may want to go closer to home or to be closer to a significant other.

  2. Damn_It_all says:


    First off Barra, if you can’t  even spell marijuana, what leads me to believe you know anything about it?
    "addiction." Marajana (sp?)isn’t addictive… physically. Only mentally. You have to truly believe that you need to use it in order to function normally.
    You are correct, it’s not addicting, but for you to turn around and say “only mentally” ; you’ve contradicted yourself in the same run on sentence. Perhaps you should revisit philosophy 101. And leave the discussion of Marijuana risks and medical necessity to the grown ups. Or people who really know what they are talking about.
    I am so tired of the FCC and the AFF and parent groups attacking the video game industry and its products. I’ve been playing for some time, Nintendo, X-Box, Atari, PC, on line. You name it, old and new alike. I am not the “typical gamer” I’m not a male between the ages of 13-30. I am a 30 year old Female with  higher education and I spent many a year in the Navy as a medic. (And yes I am less than 300 lbs, and I’m not socially inept)
    Now, I am assuming that the FCC commissioner has had extensive CME training and medical courses directly related to the problems of addiction, right? She must have in order for her to speak so freely and open about the subject!
    Or am I being too crass and sarcastic for a Friday morning?
    I doubt she can barely find her ass hole from a hole in the wall.
    People don’t suddenly become “addicted” to video games. Addiction is much more complicated then that. Many people are predisposed to become addicted to various things because of genes, social history and many other factors. Often times in the video game sector, games such as WOW or other MMPGs offer a refuge from the daily mundane drudgery of life. I too have seen my friends sucked in to the void of color and magic. But most of them come around, usually from burn out, or real world situations infringing on their online freedoms.
    I agree with many of the posters. I want HARD data.
    I want to see numbers, proof. I want to see the slew of sleep deprived college students….oh wait that’s ALL college students.
    You might find it alarming that one of the top reasons for college drop-outs in the U.S. is online gaming addiction – such as World of Warcraft – which is played by 11 million individuals worldwide.
    1.      Many students drop out for financial reasons. Ie. They loose their scholarships, mom and dad cut them off, GI bill runs out, College raises tuition and cost of books ( we are in a ressecion people)
    2.      They weren’t ready for college (like a poster mentioned above, it’s become too easy and the standards have been lowered to let any half brained yokel into the college system.)
    3.      Some people just get bored.
    Maybe instead of wasting parent’s time with this “issue” they should address it academically, or medically. People who are really suffering from a gaming addiction,(usually have multiple other addictions they are fighting, caffine, alcohol, sex, shopping) have them tested and find them PROFESSIONAL help. Not some school counselor with 8 hrs of CME in general psych.
    That’s my 2cents.
    Damn it all.
  3. B166ER says:

    Guys here’s an honest gamer saying there is alot of truth in the statment gaming at a certain point if not controlled would lead to a dropout in college or unemployment. Why do i agree with these game ignorant politicians and lawyers? Because i’ve witnessed such gaming addiction first hand. No not me but my roomate in college, romanian buddy, slept with the laptop on his bed and woke up to it. WoW professional, started missing classes for instances and raids until 5 months into college he dropped out, and that’s not the bad news. What was a social clean roomate at first was now a pig and didnt talk much to anyone except me. Hardly left the room. Failed all exams and had a near zero attendance, parents had to pull him out finally. I myself am guilty of putting off work for a few extra raids and mining. Let’s all be honest and admit it, this is possible, this gaming addiction thing could actually be true, and lets not try and bring the whole scientific research into the picture here. All we need is a bit of common sense and an open mind. Not to mention….A SOLUTION!!!!!! Anyone got any????

  4. Grambo says:

    After being in college for almost one full semester, I would say alcohol with rampant partying is the main cause of dropping out. Has she heard of alcohol and partying at a college?

  5. Meggie says:

    I’ve known one person who "geeked" himself out of college (too much time role playing and other geeky hobbies, failed out), but know at least half a dozen who drank themselves out of college.

    It is a problem, students who play too much WoW and flunk, this is actually the first time I’ve heard a school attempting to address the issue (or self-distructive behavior in general, most just follow "sink or swim"). College in general gives students more freedom then they’ve experienced before, and some are unable to budget their time and priorities correctly.  The counceler is trying to do his job by issuing a warning (I see it less as a "blame"), the Commissioner on the other hand rattled off some half-informed statement while discussing telecommuting.

  6. mogbert says:

    Wait, stop the presses! A conservative republican being afraid of internet video games! Say it ain’t so!

    And of course we have already seen just how technically savy this particular one is. My only question is… has she ever said anything that wasn’t stupid?

    Shoot, in 1995 I started college. Few people had computers, and internet hadn’t caught on. WoW was definitely not out. Yet somehow, more then 60% of the class didn’t make it through the course to graduation… hmmm…. what were we blaming this on again?

  7. jccalhoun says:

    When I went to college in fall of 1992 only two people on the floor of my dorm had computers.  When I came back to school after New Years about half the freshmen on the floor had flunked out.  Somehow I don’t think they were playing WoW…


  8. DCOW says:

    Dear Mrs Tate.


    You are in a position of power, I shouldn’t have to tell you that means you should choose your words carefully to avoid offending anyone. However it seems that to be the case as you have chosen in one of your recent speeches to essentially blame one of my favourite videogames for college dropouts. While I don’t know if this was just a random quote you tried to bring up or if you are geniuely trying to take a potshot at videogames, I would suggest choosing your words more carefully. I understand your office most likely gets an absurd number of emails asking you to do things you can’t. In this manner I would suggest you do not include any other references to any video games unless they have been researched, or I will have to begin adding my own emails to the metaphorical pile.


    Thank you



  9. Larington says:

    Anecdotal, I know, but someone on my course dropped out "to play World of Warcraft" last year…

    However, to claim that WoW (Or any game) is somehow at fault would miss the point, as someone dropping out of a course to play games all day is almost certainly just a symptom of a bigger problem, which could be anything from depression to dissatisfaction with the degree that the drop-out is studying.

  10. TBoneTony says:

    I would like to say something from experience of a friend of mine.

    Two people I know who are major World of Warcraft people.

    One of them has already studied his VCE test exams and another who works part time 3 days a week.

    they love World of Warcraft and are huge gamers in it.

    But they still live their lives and they still go to their schools and jobs.



    ps. you can’t blame games if you have not even played them.

  11. Derovius says:

     I know a few people who got kicked out of first year Engineering because they sat at home/dorm all goddamn day and played WoW. They were losers to begin with, WoW just gave them a means to fail on an epic scale. If it wasn’t the game, it was going to be $0.25 draft at the pub or the free condoms at the Students Union that ruined their lives (protip: you pay for quality).

  12. Flaps says:

    I dropped out of college from playing too much Quake!

    Oh yeah, and also because I hated my instructors, most of the campus staff, half of the student population, my dorm room, my degree path, the amount of electives I had to take (underwater basketweaving FTW), the food, a string of bad relationships and in general I was too immature to take it all seriously.

    So I dropped out.

    THEN I worked for a few years in jobs that sucked and that showed me without some sort of higher level education or specialized degree I’d probably be stuck working deadend jobs or at least something I wasn’t entirely happy with for the rest of my life.

    So I went back.

    I studied hard, ignored any minor hardships or difficulties, did well and graduated. I then went on to the career that I wanted and have been much happier ever since.

    Perhaps a little ironically it is in the games industry.

    The point of the story?  Playing too many games in college is symptomatic of other issues and not the cause. Anyone who thinks otherwise is looking for a scapegoat as it is easier to eliminate symptoms than provide a cure for the underlying issues.

  13. mredria says:

    I failed most of my classes in my last years of highschool because I liked to read more than I liked to do school work. Where the hell is that on the scale.

    -I apologize-

  14. nightwng2000 says:









    (Note that the years of the articles vary, but many still hold true today.)

    "You might find it alarming that one of the top reasons for college drop-outs in the U.S. is online gaming addiction – such as World of Warcraft – which is played by 11 million individuals worldwide."

    Tell ya what, Sparky, YOU do the same Google search -I- just did "reasons to drop out of college" and see what OTHER articles YOU get.

    If I had the HTML knowledge to post a picture of Kitty from That ’70s Show saying "Dumbass!", I bloody well would right about now!  And, yes, I know it was Red who usually said it, but it was even more funny when Kitty said it.  😀


    NW2K Software

    Nightwng2000 has also updated his MySpace page: http://www.myspace.com/nightwing2000 Nightwng2000 is now admin to the group "Parents For Education, Not Legislation" on MySpace as http://groups.myspace.com/pfenl

  15. thefremen says:

     I did poorly in High School because of IRC.


    If I was born in 1990 I would have done poorly because of WoW. If I was born in 1900 I would have done poorly because of obsession with Ham Radio. It’s not Ham Radio or WoW’s fault that there are lazy people who take up time sink hobbies and don’t know how to moderate and work on what’s important instead of what’s trivial.

  16. SeanB says:

    no no no, it’s the games fault for giving them something to do. Without WOW, they would have been so bored that they would have aced all their classes.

  17. locopuyo says:

    I have a friend who plays WoW all the time and he dropped out.  It wasn’t because he plays WoW all the time it’s because he’s too damn lazy to go to class or do his homework.  I think that could be said about the vast majority of drop outs.  I aslo know a guy I thought was too stupid to be in college, but he worked hard and studied all the time and did really well.  


  18. asmodai says:

    What a load of balls…

    When I was at university, I had crappy grades and bad attendance because I spent most of the time at the campus pub…

    Natural evolution of doing a chemistry degree when you really enjoy working with computers… \= |

    Besides, since when did lecturers really give a crap about the kids who don’t want to learn..?  Hell, my organic chem lecturer gave us the speech on day one including the words "if you aren’t here to learn, you may as well f#ck off now".  Very fiery Irish woman… =)

    If wankers are blowing their college time on WoW, sucks to be them, they need to take responsibil…  Oh, hang on, we’re asking people to be responsible for their actions, that’s obviously not going to happen… *rolls eyes*

  19. barra_sadei says:

    Get facts! Opinions and correlations prove NOTHING! At most, the can show a link, but it cannot determine if A causes B directly or indirectly! (Also, for those who don’t know, this is why it can’t be proven that smoking causes cancer… because we need human test subjects, and putting a human’s life at risk is kinda taboo/illegal…)

    It’s like those people that sued McDonald’s because they got fat eating too much… Kinda.

  20. NovaBlack says:

    ” …concerns by University of Minnesota Duluth officials that compulsive World of Warcraft play was causing some students to flunk out. ”

    No.. lack of commitment to studying something, and a personal choice to spend time playing games rather than study, leads to students flunking out.

    Geez. take some personal responsibility.

    its like me shouting ‘ Its not my fault im obese and have no willpower, the 20 meals a day cause me to get fat, blame them!’

  21. MaskedPixelante says:

    Wow did not cause me to drop out of college.

    The fact that I sucked at what I chose caused me to drop out.

    —You are likely to be eaten by a Grue.

  22. Austin_Lewis says:

    So…. parents are suggesting that their now-adult offspring are failing because of a videogame?  Considering that a large portion of the college experience is living AWAY FROM YOUR GODDAMN PARENTS, I fail to see how what they think matters. 

    Of course, everyone’s gotten to see someone fail out because they’d rather spend that time playing a game.  Shit, even now, when I work for myself, there are some days when I want to stay in my shorts all day and play some COD or maybe some MDK2 (just got my Dreamcast back out).  But I don’t.  There’s a decision that needs to be made, and that decision is either A) Be productive and still find time to game or B) screw that hard work that some college courses are and play games.  This all comes down to personal responsibility, not ‘games made me do it’.

    I’ve seen a case recently of so-called ‘Video Game Addiction’.  Essentially, a local school had a kid who skipped an entire week of classes (15 credit hours/semester, or about five classes, which met about 20 times all told in that week) so he could play WoW.  When his parents came to see him after getting a call from the Dean of Students (because the kid’s parents were footing the bill, he signed off on letting them see his grades and other academic indicators), they removed every CD, DVD, Cartridge, and anything else he could game on from his room, as well as closing out his credit card they paid for.  Next time he was seen, he was twitching in a dorm lounge.  People though he was going through withdrawl due to the games.  Long story short, they took him to a doctor, turns out he was going through withdrawl because all he’d had to eat or drink in the last week had been sugary, greasy, or CAFFEINATED, which had caused him to twitch. 

    I thought it was hilarious, honestly.

  23. kattrick says:

    He told me that everyone is constantly trying to get him to go out to bars and such and party all the time and he mostly refuses that and studies instead. He’s acing all his classes, still plays on his xbox occasionally while the rest of his classmates are failing miserably. Apparently the college sells themselves off as being fun and full of social events though, so I think the failure is in the schools trying to entice students to study there by promising all kinds of activities and events (aka parties) and its just sending the wrong message out.custom dissertation | Write admission essay

  24. kattrick says:

    I just started playing WoW during my first freshmen semester of college (admittedly probably not the best time) and am going to pull away with at least a 3.2, most likely a 3.5 (higher if i get a little lucky in my WRA class). I’ve taken time to study and do other things. custom dissertation | admission essay writing

  25. flickerflame says:

    WoW didn’t cause your friends to drop out. Your friends’ addictive personalities and/or lack of self-discipline to schedule in study/work time caused them to drop out. If not WoW, it probably would have been some other product or time-sink.

  26. zel says:

    I agree with you. People tend to treat games differently, but the truth is anything other than studying in college has to capacity to affect you negatively. When my sister went to UF to study her and her friends went out almost every night to the swamp or the purple porpoise and other bars and such. Often came home drunk, studied very little, smoked an aweful lot and generally did very poorly. I once went to visit and being the geek of the family she had some friend that had PC problems so i went to go fix up their PCs and they tried to pay me in weed, WEED…  wtf?  I don’t even smoke, not interested in weed at all and they were so non-chalant about it as if everyone pays each other in bags of weed around there. These kids had rich parents tho their place was packed with TVs and comptuers and crap and there was literally weed on everything from the kitchen counter to their computer’s keyboard, it was a freakin mess.

    My friend at work recently sent his oldest to tallahassee to study and he’s doing fine and he is an avid gamer but he actively balances his study and social life. He told me that everyone is constantly trying to get him to go out to bars and such and party all the time and he mostly refuses that and studies instead. He’s acing all his classes, still plays on his xbox occasionally while the rest of his classmates are failing miserably. Apparently the college sells themselves off as being fun and full of social events though, so I think the failure is in the schools trying to entice students to study there by promising all kinds of activities and events (aka parties) and its just sending the wrong message out.

    No doubt unregulated time spent playing WoW is not a good thing for a college student but I think the real problem is too often young adults have this view that college is basically about parties and having a good time and somehow you learn by osmosis. At least thats the problem my buddies kid sees where he is.

    but hey, its easier to just blame video games…


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  27. Cerabret100 says:

    True, but that could be a condition of any "time-sink" hobby.

    I just started playing WoW during my first freshmen semester of college (admittedly probably not the best time) and am going to pull away with at least a 3.2, most likely a 3.5 (higher if i get a little lucky in my WRA class).  I’ve taken time to study and do other things.

    Amazingly this is actualy an improvement, as in high school i had homework issues and NEVER studied (yet i still managed a respectable 3.4)

    While wow has more chance to addict people due to it’s interactive nature, i’ve seen people self destruct on many other things.

    As long as you keep a leveled head, i doubt simply touching the game for an hour or so a day would cause your friends sitations, though i understand the apprehension of playing it.

  28. DeepThorn says:

    Only stupid people, politicians, lawyers, psychologist and other nut jobs could come to the conclusion stated here, saying that games cause the drop out.

    Lets do some real research, what was the drop out rate before games?  Okay, still it was a big lower, but what else has changed since then?  Well the requirements to get INTO college are a HELL of a lot easier than they used to be.  There is a girl from Kentucky that I know that wouldn’t pass a GED test who made it into college, and shortly later dropped out.

    Some of these colleges will accept anyone willing to pay them money, and if they don’t pass a class, GREAT more money as long as they still plan to finish their degree.  Oh, you failed the course, well, if you know how to talk your way out of a paper bag, you can still get a business or general studies degree with a C average.  You don’t have to be book smart, you can be street smart and make it through college.  Hell, you are prolly more likely to get a job in the business world if you are street smart instead anyways, especially with those greedy idiots…  they have proven any dumbass can run a company like EA, AIG, Ford, GMC, and so on.

    I love that someone can justify asking how something happened to a person with no expertise and take that answer without further research or proof for something like this.  Amen said she was addicted to Mario.  Does that mean she believed she was? Yeah.  Does that mean that a psychologist would say that about her?  Most likely, any licensed psychologist worth the $100 or whatever an hour would never say she was addicted to Mario.  Of course some professionals say the 12 step program is a great program as well, so who knows what people will say if enough money is in front of them.

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  29. ZippyDSMlee says:

    ya spots takes alot of money away from the education system you can have both but until we get over sports fever in a education system then we will never grow as a society….

    I still think taking all the low preforming schools as long as they do nto overlap regoin wise  and combining them in a national academy would be the best thing we can do, hell with sick a system it would be K_C and you could easily put in vocab and start it on the high school level get people into those maintanace,electrical,pluming and other vocab jobs then if they want to further their education they can.

    With such a system based on teaching skill and grades not tenure and new age hooky you will create a edu system able to to get people into jobs in any economy and any market environment.

    Pirates,Shearers,Lenders and downloaders are not a market that can be taped by the mainstream.
    I is fuzzy brained mew =^^=

  30. jccalhoun says:

    I’m a grad student at a Big Ten college and it is true that only tenured full professors make $100,000+ and think about it, most profs are in their 40s before they get tenure if not older.  I’d say 2/3 the course in our department are taught by grad students who are making $12,500 a year.

    On the other hand football and basketball coaches make more than a million a year.  Our school has been going through basketball coaches like crazy and guess what, the last 3 coaches are still getting paid $100,000+ a year severance packages as is the former president of the college.

    The notion that football and basketball are cash cows is mostly false.  There was a book out 5-6 years ago whose title I forget that showed that while the alumni may pay for building a new stadium or arena, most college athletic programs lose money.



  31. collegedj says:

     Show me one professor with a six figure salary and I will show you 15 visiting associate professors who make less than 60k. Criticizing professors for their salary is not a wise point of attack. 

    Sports teams make a bundle for their universities. Yes, they cost alot. No, they don’t directly contribute to the intellectual environment of the campus. But they are cash cows. Sports teams bring in a ridiculous amount of alumni donations for the school. Look at any of the statistics for recent national championship winners in any of the major sports. The next year they receive more alumni donation, more applicants, and better applicants. Now this only means that sports teams are justified where they are cash cows. If they are not profit turners (small liberal-arts colleges and community colleges), then their budget should be cut. 

    Public universities are getting better in every single field. In psychology, the best research is done at the large universities. In philosophy, Harvard has lost it’s edge ( I never thought I’d see the day). Warren Buffet teaches at the University of Nebraska. Yes, the quality of undergraduate education is better at the ivies and the 2nd tier ivies (those awesome liberal arts colleges) but they significantly lag in terms of research. Most authors of articles in scientific journals come from large state schools. They have the resources. They have the funding. They have the large amount of subjects (compare doing a psychology experiment with a subject pool of around 4,000 at a liberal arts school versus doing a psychology experiment with a subject pool of 15k or more) needed for the best studies. 

  32. ZippyDSMlee says:

    I agree to a point, it would not be to hard to cut the fat in the EDU system by using the governments(state and fed) and cooperations buying power to pre buy slots the collages would have to follow strict guidelines or be fined and lose that extra money, they get a ton of money upfront with a contract to cover those who are sent to them, for thos that get a steady well paying  job(over 40K a year) 5-10% of their income is garnished in some way to pay back into the system I belive we have enough resources to pull it off but the nation will have to realize your going to have to overhaul the EDU system in order to create a taxable society with a destroyed blue coaler/middle class, education spurns on creativity  and intelligence its worth it to make EDU a focus for all but the bureaucracy  in place at the collage level dose not want it the bureaucracy in place at the governmental level sure as hell dose not want a smarter populace…

    I am not so much for "all free" as much as what is really best for society as a whole we can balance the profit made by government and industry to rise up the masses to make both government and industry better of course I well know the machine in palce dose not want it and will fight against it.

    I ranted over the EDU system being overhauled into a nation wide academy system


    Basically take all but the best preforming schools and place them under one banner with one common administration focus on raising skills to a certain level and leveling them their cutting out all the bad, if a school wants to keep its localized "structure" or "flavor"  and receive government assistance its going to have to have a higher grade average than the national academy, other wise its simply not funded by the state nor the fed and either has to make do on tis own rep and revue sources or disspaer.

    Sports will be drastically reduce to seek the needs of eduction, if real sportsmen are found and are able to maintain a level of education they can be moved from the region based teams to the state based team of the best of the best, only the state based teams and the gov funded independent teams can travel out of state…there is no need to spend millions on spots on the small regional level its maintained as a a higher end sports club but a sports club non the less, the better members will move up the ladder and get into the most optimized team for the whole region .

    By doing it like this the sports "lobby" will bank on their own collages putting even more money into EDU system and if they do not wish to look foolish they will maintain a decent level of edu…its really win win as the sports lobby can bank roll their best players and act as mangiment, those that make it big can pay off the "debt" owed to the collage it would be a gov regulated capped amount to get out of of bad contracts you bascily give them a a 300 day notice and depending on how poisonous the "relationship" you can get out of it thos that are simply stuck in a bad contract with their collage debt they can opt to have the government pay it off in part removing that debt but they will have to work for the govs collage of choice for a year to recoup some loss they will be staff,coaches or players in another place for a short period of time. IMO its more optimized and efficient than the horrid high school to collage and collage sports system we have now.

    Pirates,Shearers,Lenders and downloaders are not a market that can be taped by the mainstream.
    I is fuzzy brained mew =^^=

  33. ZippyDSMlee says:

    and vocab itself, collage should be about not only higher education but founding and refining work skills, I am not saying everyone needs the highest education possible rather extended education that refines what they are.

    Think of it as a individualized track program that tries to match people with their better skills, you give them a wide enough lane as so they can get vocab start a job after 2 or 4 years and then for those that want it try and further their skill into a higher degree.

    What I want is a system thats able to take a kid from high school enhance whatever skills they have either on a 1-4 year fast path 2 that should handle the majority of basic to mildly complex jobs and those that want a BA and what not are on the long path for 6ish years. This just makes a better work force IMO altho befor we do anything with vocab and collages………we need to overhaul the K-12 system…..it is a joke….

    I so love my Grade school experience…after being held back once they decided they were not goign to teach me anymore in the last bit of the 4th grade and gave me the answer books…between the teachers annoyance with me and the bullies I had a complete breakdown on the first day of 6th grade and never went back…I really wish I had a normal schooling experience and really wish I had a chance at collage….I am broken and half crazied as well as being disabled..not to mention almost in my mid 30s no matter how smart one might be there are cracks you can fall through to never see the light of day…then again there are cracks in any system all you can do is make it as wide as you can without lowering its quality.
    Pirates,Shearers,Lenders and downloaders are not a market that can be taped by the mainstream.
    I is fuzzy brained mew =^^=

  34. Lazier Than Thou says:

    This just in:  For profit company trying to make money!

    Geeze, would people please stop saying that a company trying to make money is a bad thing?  I mean, seriously.  That’s what they do.  That’s their job.

    Furthermore, I don’t know about you, but I’ve been following Blizzard games for over 10 years.  At no point in the past have they said anything false or given me the impression of falsehood.  Why in the world would they start lying now?

    If I’m not mistaken, they’re a publicly traded company.  They are legally bound to tell the truth or they can have some serious problems on their hands.


  35. GrimCW says:

    they claim they only count active accounts, but they don’t show evidence of it.

    and with the way game company PR has been lately its hardly worth its word :p i mean, do we all actually believe those commericals with the famous people actually PLAY the game?

    if they did i would think Blizzard would’ve given access to custom content for those people, and they’d be found and hounded on whatever servers they played upon. not to mention Starcraft 2… its not down to 3 games for money… nooo, its like that for…. story? yeeahhh

  36. Lazier Than Thou says:

    According to http://www.blizzard.com/us/press/080122.html (old press release of Blizzards, back when they only had 10 million world wide), they only include active accounts.  So if you had an account, but let the subscription payment lapse or simply canceled, they wouldn’t have counted your account.

    However, there are also quite a few people who multibox, as well as people who share their account with a spouse, child, or whatever.  Ultimately, the final and correct numbers of how many people actually play would be ridiculously hard to get ahold of, so we can just go by the accounts currently active(which is around 11 million world wide).

  37. GrimCW says:

    if its anything like EQ2 you can have multiple accounts on one e-mail.

    i’ve admittedly got 2, since soloing is a bore, but i’m no botting machine that sells my spare account :p like i said, my max chars 72.. well 73 as of 5 min ago but yeah.

    but it also helps the second one is also a shared for my GF’s chars :p so i dunno if that counts as 1 player with 2 accounts or 1.5 players with 2 accounts…

  38. Austin_Lewis says:

    They’ve probably had 11million different accounts since it was created.  But to be fair, how many people had multiple accounts?  How many people played for a bit and then got bored? 

    What would be really indicative of how popular it is would be seeing how many different IPs were logged in the last 2 weeks.

    Or maybe how many different email accounts had been used to creat an account.

    I don’t really know how you create a WoW account, it didn’t appeal to me.

  39. ZippyDSMlee says:

    Yes K-12 is a joke filled with new age inept teaching.
    Pirates,Shearers,Lenders and downloaders are not a market that can be taped by the mainstream.
    I is fuzzy brained mew =^^=

  40. collegedj says:

     What makes you think giving everyone a college education would raise all of our society? What makes you think a college education is for everyone? The only reason college graduates earn more on average is because their degrees mean something. Academic pursuits aren’t for everyone. That is already evidenced by the fact that community college is widely available. If going to college becomes expected from every high school graduate, then our drop out rates will increase. Vocational schools are probably the most effective way for the non-college person to advance themselves. Vocational schools should be promoted, not college. I don’t know where you get the idea that everyone is equally able to succeed in higher education. It’s not our education system. It’s a fact of life. There is a spectrum of ability (probably a bell curve actually). College shouldn’t be available to everyone. It should be available to those who can succeed and actually use their education. Are people really better off going to college for 2-4 years just so they can half-ass their classes and get a job that doesn’t really require college educated people anyway (salesmen)? I don’t think they are. The British system has it right. Government funding for higher education is available to the top 25% of high-school performers. The fight for funding is fierce among high-schoolers. The people who get the funding and go to university are highly motivated, bright individuals. The people who don’t get funding go to vocational school or just get a job. Rich kids who don’t need funding go to college on their own dime. 

  41. SS says:

    if the last paragraph criticizes the laziness encouraged in the K-12 system i guess i agree.  Kids are taught to be lazy in K-12.  Freaking whole culture of laziness.

  42. Valdearg says:

    To make college free or cheap would require a huge leap of Faith in Humanity. Nobody does anything for free. The Professors will still want thier 6 figure incomes and schools will still want thier sports teams and other non-essentials. You can’t lower the cost of school without dramatically lowering the quality of Education or Dramatically raising Taxes.

    For Example: Compare the Quality vs. Cost of an Ivy League School vs. a Local State School. The differences are Tremendous. With the increased cost of an Ivy League Education, there is generally a better education. (Depending, of course, on how much the student in question applies themselves.)

    They money has to come from somewhere. I used to be an idealogue like you, Zippy. In fact, I still kind of am, but I’ve abandoned the possibility of free anything after realizing those points. I guess you could call me a "Realistic Idealogue."

    Other than that, I agree with you in regard to screwing all the PC crap in K-12. Its up to the parent to instill the fundamentals of hard work and the importance of school early on in a child’s education, and then it is up to the child to understand the potentially high cost of not doing well in school. If the child fails early on, Hold him Back a year or two. If he doesn’t learn that school is important by High School, well… The world needs ditch diggers, I suppose.

  43. ZippyDSMlee says:

    uuhhgggggg…. we have a high drop out rate because the jump from high school and collage is killer becuse they do nto coddle you like in high school no fluffly PC teaching system that grades do not matter, plus you have a social economic system that places undo stress on the collage student you have to work to 2 or 3 times as hard to stay in… while it might be PCisih of me I think we should focus as a society to make collage as cheap or free as you can, any student with fair grades gets 6 years to cram his ass full of higher education past that they need to pony up something be it doing odd jobs for the collage or community or getting a part time job.

    If you move to make collage free or cheap we will raise up society  and from that wealth of educated people we will be better off, but befor we go there

    tenure .needs to be bombed back down to questionable courses as it was meant to protect the mind expanding thought provoking teachers from getting fired not the to protect the bad ones. K-12 needs to get back on track with functional semesters and courses non of the PC new age bullocks that dose not work(new math and such) focs the system on skilled teachers that can teach and fire the ones that can not and give bonus to those that can raise their kids scores.
    Pirates,Shearers,Lenders and downloaders are not a market that can be taped by the mainstream.
    I is fuzzy brained mew =^^=

  44. strathmeyer says:

    "WOAH! Lets seem some data to back that little claim up, mr Commissioner."

    Yeah, you’d think that if WoW addicted college dropouts were a huge problem those of us in college who play WoW would have heard something about it.

  45. Canary Wundaboy says:

    But wouldn’t that just skirt around the issue?

    Trust me, I know it’s in our nature to immediately go into "Videogame Defence Mode" but she kinda has a point. WoW caused 3 of my buddies to drop out, and several more to royally screw their studies. It’s why i refuse to even try the game. If this is simply my experience, then how likely is it that WoW has caused so many?

    Sure her figures may be produced from thin air, but Id take any bet that WoW has caused a serious amount of educational failure at every level.


  46. JustChris says:

    "WOAH! Lets seem some data to back that little claim up, mr Commissioner."

    No can do. The study was compiled by a college dropout.

    I haven’t read the entire thing, but it sounds like the conclusion was derived from additional questions in the survey. Maybe such as "what do you consider to be the biggest cause of low grades?" And parents might guess "well my son plays a lot of video games so that could be a reason." And then those guesses are collected as "solid" conclusions connecting them to dropout rates.


  47. SeanB says:

    WOAH! Lets seem some data to back that little claim up, mr Commissioner.

    Had she said the dropout rate was caused by lack of attention to studies, because of online gaming, then i wouldn’t be mad. If we cant blame herbalism for drug addiction, then we cant blame games for dropouts.

  48. Neeneko says:

    Considering the FCC’s depressing record both extending well past it’s madate to control things it isn’t supposed to AND ignoring it’s actual mandate.. perhaps her attention would be better served elsewhere anyway.

    (for the record, the FCC is SUPPOSED to stop consolidating and hoarding of spectrum, which it has not been doing, and has ZERO authority to regulate actual content which is what it has been doing)

  49. smblion says:

     She’s retarded. First of all, what magical expertise does this FCC woman have that somehow makes her an authority figure on video games or education? Stick to regulating radio waves please.

    People struggling in college are going to look for escapes in any number of places. You don’t blame the method of escape for the problem. The problem (drop out rates) have actual causes, and they have nothing to do with video games.

    Can we please stop putting idiots in positions of public authority? Please?

  50. TheEggplant says:

    Me thinks some researchers need to read a little Stephen King story called "Hearts in Atlantis".

    Just sayin’ is all.

  51. zel says:

    Yes people will go nuts and obsess over wow and EQ, i knew a guy that lost his job and his wife over the original EQ and spent 800 bucks for a priest so he could res himself anytime he died to save as much XP as possible. I don’t argue that however I don’t think any gov’t intervention should occur unless the student is using gov’t subsidized loans or grants(which many prolly do). Even then it should be limited to something of the effect of cancelling the money if their grades fall. People need to learn to regulate themselves and not rely on other people to regulate them.


    I am a signature virus, please copy and paste me into your signature to help me propagate.

  52. TaoJeannes says:

    Before everyone jumps into requisite outrage over this, note that all Tate is saying is that people need to make responsible choices with the options available to them. Playing WoW to the point of dropping out of college (And let’s be real, it DOES happen) is NOT OK, and until someone suggests forcibly regulating a student’s play time, we should all be on board with that message.

  53. zel says:

    "MMO’s, is a buncha bots with bots who have more bots…. :p"

    but they are all paying accounts, whether a bot is using it or not 🙂  obviously they aren’t account for the multi-boxers hehe.

    I agree with you though, i seriously doubt there are a full 11 million humans that actually play it in a fairly active manner, though i’m sure 11 million unique individuals have played it at some point since inception.


    I am a signature virus, please copy and paste me into your signature to help me propagate.

  54. GrimCW says:

    "such as World of Warcraft – which is played by 11 million individuals worldwide."


    he believes those numbers? there as bout as accurate as a poll taken from 15 people then averaged.

    half the game, like most MMO’s, is a buncha bots with bots who have more bots…. :p

    as for study problems… if your dumb enough to blow study time in a game, thats just dumb. the game’ll always be there.

    i mean cripes i play EQ2 (another game for bots) for example, and i’ve never made max level in it. I’ve had it for over 4 years now and not one character is over 72.. in fact most of’em ain’t over 33.

    not because i’m no good at the game, but because i simply play it till i’m either bored, or have more important things to do. Nice thing i found bout EQ2 was its rather solo gamer friendly if ya don’t have time to grp up. Thing is, as with others, ya drop out, and come back say.. 4 months later, your stuffs still there waiting for ya, just pickup and go. there no need to constantly be in the game like some seem to think, not even to enjoy it, if anything it gets stale.

  55. Kroiky says:

    I think having 59% of parents say that the internet has been a totally positive influence on their kids is pretty damn good.  Does she expect the internet to have nothing except that ‘explosion of educational resources’? 

  56. elal says:

    Is there something I’m missing here? College is not mandatory, and usually, people going to college are adults. Therefore, it is their own responsibility to make sure that they pass the class, not the government’s.

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