Making Giving A Game | July 23, 2010

Normally, every couple of weeks or so, Wellington city centre is inundated with collectors for a specific charity; they cover the streets to such a density that I have to walk past three on the brief walk from the bus stop to my workplace. It seems to have been longer than usual since this last happened, so seeing the Women’s Refuge out today I naturally gave them a couple of dollars. Walking past another collector I revelled in the immunity from further collector attention that my two dollar Women’s Refuge sticker gave me. It was then that it occurred to me that these guys are missing a trick with their singular sticker design.

Mars Rocks!

If they had five different sticker designs then the whole thing would change. First of all, giving once would no longer give me immunity – “I’ve given,” I’d say, flashing my badge. “But you haven’t got one of these stickers!” a second, third, fourth or even fifth collector might say. Also, as we all know, the collecting urge is strong in humans. Give people five stickers to collect and some will go out there and get them, giving to charity five times in the process. Even more fun, you could have a rare sticker, carried by just one collector, roaming obscures parts of the city. Then finding them, and communicating that with others, would become an event!


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  1. I’m glad I discovered your official blog. Been catching up on a few of these items as I get free moments. I like your thoughts on gamifying-stuff. Very Jesse Schell-ey type stuff.

    Comment by Matt Warren — August 9, 2010 @ 8:10 pm

    • Seeing a video of Jesse Schell’s talk at DICE 2010 was a revelation for me. I’d never thought of game design in such broad terms before but I was certainly thinking along similar lines. Encountering this thinking has certainly encouraged me to get my ideas out there.

      Comment by jonbrown1975 — August 10, 2010 @ 12:16 am

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