Sunday, March 27, 2011

I just finished For the Win by Cory Doctorow.

 For the Win is about various people who work inside games, based on the "gold farmers" and "mechanical turks" that exist today.  Usually, these tasks are done in poorer countries, under bad work conditions, for low pay, etc.  Doctorow takes that world and then suggests they use the power of modern networks to unionize and turn the tables on the bosses who control them and the game companies that try to prevent them from working.

Doctorow's strength is that he writes easy to read, moving text.  His weakness is the one note nature of his thoughts, and the huge chunks of exposition he likes to stuff into his stories.  In this book, anyone on the union side is good, anyone who owns anything or is a boss of any kind is bad, and there are no complexities to be dealt with, no depth to any characters or situations beyond this.