There's something quite disconcerting about listening to an 85-year-old woman using words like 'Ventrilo' and 'TeamSpeak' to extol the wonders of World of Warcraft. After nearly 5 years of covering Australian gaming, like many others in the industry I'm still in awe of how far we've come in just the last 18 months.
The IEAA (Interactive Entertainment Association of Australia) recently held a press event to launch the results of their survey entitled Interactive Australia 2007. Covering 1,606 households and 3,386 individuals, it is a follow-up to the Game Play Australia report published by the IEAA in mid 2005. Along with Jeff Brand, Associate Professor of Communication and Media at Bond University and radio personality Wendy Harmer, the IEAA asked 85 year old Irene Hunt to talk about her experience as a self proclaimed "games fanatic". Clearly nervous about having to follow on from Wendy's well-received lead in front of an assortment of 60 journalists and industry professionals, Irene steps up to the mike and says;
"I still find it very amusing, the horrified looks that my so called peers, friends and relatives sort of give me when I say I play computer games. They think I'm mad… I just say they don't know what they're missing out on. Just go back to reading your recipe books girls."