Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Tech Tuesday: Games for Change on Facebook

More than three hundred million people play Facebook games each month—Farmville 2, Words With Friends and Candy Crush Saga are some of the most popular games on the social networking site. Sheryl WuDunn, author of “Half the Sky: Turning Oppression Into Opportunity for Women Worldwide,” has turned her Pulitzer Prize-winning book into a Facebook game of the same name.

In an effort to take advantage of a global audience, turning the book into a Facebook game raises awareness and funds for girls and women across the world.

“It is probably the most ambitious social impact game ever,” the author said in an interview on The Today Show, “sort of the Farmville for social change.”

The game follows a woman living in a fictional village in India, who goes on various quests with a lot of obstacle, and it is up to the player to help her navigate those quests. There are a number of partners and causes along the way that can be supported with monetary donations, but the most important aspect of the game is its ability to raise awareness of the issues women and girls face in the developing world.  “Half the Sky Movement- The Game” debuted on Facebook on March 4th, and already has more than five thousand followers.

Here at the EMC, games like BREAKAWAY are similarly designed to raise awareness on modern social issues, but the idea of designing and marketing them specifically for Facebook users is a relatively innovative idea—why not try and take advantage of the amount of people utilizing Facebook in a given day to make a difference?

Do you think games for change like “Half the Sky” will be successful on social media networks?

Written by Jillian Casey '15

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