Monday, January 22, 2007

More Press for Club Penguin

Canadian-grown Club Penguin, a social-networking/gaming site for the under 12-set, has been getting a lot of press lately, perhaps in response to growing concerns about the ill-effects of "advergaming", or perhaps in the wake of the now-defunct Deleting Online Predators Act (DOPA), which sought to ban kids from chat and social-networking online. NPR did a recent story outlining the site's safety features, while it's success is also attracting the interest of advertisers seeking to capitalize on the social-networking craze. While Club Penguin mirrors many of the same features found in Neopets, possibly establishing something of a "genre" for kid-oriented MMOGs, it's most distinguishing feature is that it is ad-free! (for now at least). The site received the Editor's Choice Award for 2006 from the Children's Technology Review, and has held onto the number 1 spot over at Miniclip since April 2006 (one month after it's launch). While I haven't started researching the site in any meaningful way as yet, my initial impression is that this will make a promising case study for my thesis (for the privacy and IP issues alone, if not for the commodification aspects). Here are some links to media coverage of the site (as provided by the site itself, so criticisms are few and far between in this batch...more to come, I promise):

Globe and Mail
Post Gazette
Wall Street Journal (reproduction)
Business Week
And here's a link to the Club Penguin Q&A

Some additional resources on advergames:
Children Now report
Shaping Youth coverage
Kaiser Family Foundation report

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

i love club penguin and nicktropolis! whoever thought of them is a genuis!