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Accepted Paper:

Designing Marktes, Designing Play: on the Creation and Management of Affective Markets  
Nikita Sorgatz (Deutsches Zentrum für Hochschul- und Wissenschaftsforschung)

Short abstract:

This paper wants to help to "[nail] down what it is that the ‘market’ is performing” (Nik-Khah and Mirowski 2019, 269) by looking at the diverse market design practices found in the game industry and the valuation and valorization processes they enable.

Long abstract:

A core insight of Science and Technology Studies is that technical devices are used for different purposes by different social groups (Feenberg 2017, 639; Pinch and Bijker 1984, 415). Those uses can radically depart from the uses intended by their creators. One site of such a re-purposing of markets are games. Ranging from simple bartering to complex simulations of the global economy, games contain a wide variety of markets. Market mechanisms like the Gale-Shapely-Algorithm are used for a variety of purposes from matchmaking to the prevention of unwanted player behaviour. These markets are designed by people from a variety of professions, bringing with them different design criteria and goals. In order to contribute to "[nail] down what it is that the ‘market’ is performing” (Nik-Khah and Mirowski 2019, 269), this paper will give an overview on the diverse uses of markets in video games (including as calculative devices as well as affective (Picard 1995; Schüll 2012) and data generating devices). Because games can contain different overlapping market mechanisms, which are — for lack of a better word — “real” to different degrees, this paper will also add another wrinkle to the multiple markets problem (Frankel 2015). Finally the paper will touch on the work and expertise required to govern, manage and maintain large video game economies after their launch, which includes a variety of scoring and classification practices.

Traditional Open Panel P339
Algorithmic market design as provocation for STS studies of the market
  Session 1 Friday 19 July, 2024, -