The Debate

Every where I go I see a debate on who is an actual geek, or nerd, or gamer. No one has the right to call anyone else a poser or a “fake”. If they claim to be a geek, then they are! They may not be into the same geeky things you are, but they can still be a geek.

I never understood how people can simply rule out other people from a fandom because they don’t fit a certain mold. Its absolutely ridiculous.



After I posted this blog posted as a link on Facebook, a discussion began that fits with this article. The participants have allowed me to put the conversation here.

I have edited out anything that doesn’t pertain to the subject at hand.

The Discussion

Xenos Markus O’Sullivan The one caveat I would have to have: Those who say they are gamers, but have played naught but Call of Warfare: Duty Front (see what I did there?).

Likewise, gamers who know naught outside Sports Games.

I mean, I’ve been gaming since the fourth generation of consoles-and I own consoles from EVERY generation but the first. I’ve played virtually every major franchise that has hit-Mario, Sonic, Tomb Raider, NiGHTS: Into Dreams, Metal Gear: Solid, Twisted Metal, Grandia, Final Fantasy, Zelda, the list goes on and on.

I’m not saying you have to have played ALL of those to be a gamer-I’m just saying that playing a Seventh Generation FPS does NOT a gamer make!

I mostly say that because f*** all, man, I’m tired of hearing about how “Hardcore” a gamer some college jock is because he plays Modern Battlefield: Call of Honor.
E. L. Knight I disagree Xenos. If you enjoy video games then you are a gamer.

This what I mean by someone calling out someone else in a fandom.

If you enjoy just sports games, then that’s what you enjoy.
Gary Reed I kinda agree with Knight. They’re just “Sports” Gamers to those of us whom play a broad spectrum of genres. But who really cares about the labeling. I miss the classic RPG’s and the 2d side-scroll mega mans. That 3d mega man was one of the most god awful games ever….of all time.
Xenos Markus O’Sullivan My point is, there is a major difference between enjoying games and being a gamer, just as there’s a difference between playing an instrument and being a musician.


E. L. Knight Perhaps, but that’s not an apt comparison. The difference between what you call a gamer and what I am calling gamers is nothing more than semantics.

Casual Gamer and Hardcore Gamer. Its all the same, just varying levels.

A more apt comparison would be a reader. Whether you read Science Fiction, or Fantasy, Fiction or Non-Fiction, they are still all labeled as readers.


Xenos Markus O’Sullivan  And I would still disagree, even on the reader. I know people that read, aye-but only reading 2-3 books a year (if that many) does not make you a reader. I (prior to getting back into school) would read that many in a week. When I was living in Africa, I’d read that many in a DAY.

And it’s a fine comparison; by your standards using readers, any Joe Blow with a guitar that knows two chords is a musician. Course, by MY definition, a musician is someone what actually writes and/or performs music-even if it’s just for his wife and kid (before you ask, that’s about all I perform for these days-my radio days are long behind me, and it’s doubtful I am I’ll play in a gigging band any time soon; but not a month goes by I don’t have a new song going on).

You COULD say it’s semantics, or varying levels, or what have you. “Casual Gamers,” as you called them, in my eyes, and that of many of my peers (my wife, Fluffy, etc.) are not Gamers. Just my two cents. (Also for the record, music is my life-I eat it, drink it, sleep it, breath it. I told my loverly wife the other day [after dealing with particularly bad arthritis pains that day] that if it gets to a point I can’t play anymore, I’m putting a bullet between my eyes)

Gary Reed  :D I’m a man of many interests. Geek: Lil bit. Avid read: quite. Gamer: Prefer PC. Comics: Was too poor a kid to afford them. But the thing is, it’s all dependant upon the time you can afford to place into it. If a had a full year open I could read for months at a time, as well as game. The Point is, people hold a high interest in games, or reading, or other things. I’m a PC gamer (PVP a lot. Hack and Slash not shoot em’ up) I’m an avid reader. I can devour 3-5 books per week. But it depends on how high an interest you have in it. I’d like to game and read more, but don’t have the time to devote to it. On my MMO, I’ve got from hardcore pvp’r to a casual gamer. Though my interest remains the same, People seem to measure only the time you place into it, whether it’s there or not.

Jonathan Smith Because it’s early and I thought I’d try my hand in this debate, I would have to say I agree with Gary above me. I consider myself a gamer, but I seem more like a casual gamer than a full-fledged gamer ’cause I barely get enough time to play them like I used to when I was little, but I hold a massive interest in them. I also believe that it should be based on interest level. By those standards, if you have a high interest in playing games, then you are a gamer. If you have a small interest, but still an interest nevertheless, then you are more a causal gamer than a gamer. If you have no interest at all, then you are not a gamer in any sense of the fashion. That’s how I view it.

Jonathan Smith Way I see it, a casual gamer is still a gamer, thus why “gamer” is attached to the title. They may not be a big gamer or play games often, but if they play them and enjoy them even every now and again, that still constitutes them as being a gamer. If you do not enjoy playing games, then you are not a gamer. Once again, though, that’s just how the logic plays out for me, personally. I’m not trying to offend or irritate anyone. Just thought I’d give my opinion is all.

2 thoughts on “The Debate”

  1. From my time in the Science Fiction and Fantasy/Horror community, attending cons, speaking at them, organizing the art shows, etc. All of fandom is naturally based on exclusion, on it being a substrata where certain people, who in regular society are spurned and cast-out, suddenly become the arbiter of who and who is not a true Geek or Nerd. When I was a boy anyone who could think, do math and read was a “nerd” or in Chicago it was “duper.” When I went to live in California it wad nerd, only recently has the term Geek (a guy who bites the heads off of chickens in a freak show!) been applied to tech heads. I was a nerd, a fan of Star Trek when it first was aired, a fan of Star Wars when it first came out. A fan of Batman and other shows, like Dark Shadows, etc. I was of course a gadget lover, as was my Dad and Grandpa. I loved to take apart transistor radios, I was all over the first pocket calculators, because I hated slide rules. So in a sense I was a hyper-nerd or perhaps a Pre-Nerd…and an aspiring Geek. For years I felt alone. Then I found out there were others like me in the 80’s having Lovecraft Conventions, Sci-Fi cons and sharing information about technical developments. I felt I found a whole planet of like-minded people. I went to all the cons I could. And there I found always a phalanx of people who were smarter, more nerdy and in control of the entire nerd brigade. You had to impress them or get in good with them in order to maintain a place among them. Luckily I had a rapier wit and was the life of any party I attended since I was a nerd who was also edgy and nearly a juvenile delinquent mentality, which impressed the other nerds who talked big, but couldn’t act big. So I carved out a place. Then in the late 90’s everything just seemed to fall apart…No more big Fantasy Cons, or Horror Cons…The gamers and the henati lovers had their own rooms and parties. Star Trekkies were outcast from those who loved Star Wars, etc. People split off from one another. They seemed to be more and more cold and even cruel. Now things are reigniting again with Steam Punk and Comic Book conventions. A new generation of sci-fi fans is developing who are aficionados of everything. But I guarantee you there will be Super-Nerds trying to run shit again…Just ignore them. They have no true power over those of us who love the world of imagination…


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