Farmville addiction sweeps nation

Meredith Gallagher

I don’t know what it is about FarmVille. Maybe it’s the satisfaction of watching as you harvest your own artichokes. Maybe it’s the joy of finding a stray goose on your plot of land. Maybe it’s the fact that I don’t even begin to understand the allure of the Facebook application that has swept the nation.

Now, to be fair, I myself have never personally used the social networking game, but I have witnessed as many of my friends have been sucked in by the––as far as I can tell––pointless and completely idiotic game. They spend their valuable time harvesting cyber-vegetables and cyber-trees. If they make enough cyber-money, eventually they can buy some cyber-horses and maybe a cyber-cow or two.

From what I have observed, the game obviously has an addictive quality: participants will go on every few hours (or minutes for the hopelessly obsessed) to see if their crop is any closer to being “100%” harvestable. It’s all just a way for Facebook to ensure that its users will log on more often.

Nevertheless, FarmVille has exploded with great success on the scene. As of November, it had over 60 million users, and it’s only been around since June. Users can invite their real-life friends to become their online neighbors; they can even help each other water their crops or shoo pesky gophers out of each other’s farms. It’s some really exciting stuff.

Like I said, I don’t understand FarmVille–or the appeal it holds for teenagers and adults–but I will say this: at least it’s a game that does’t reward people for shooting someone. Maybe, FarmVille will single-handedly turn America’s youth into a nurturing, nature-loving generation. Or maybe not.