Beta Comments & Critical Reflection

In this second round of comments, I worked on offering various pathways of directions, articles, and encouragement, as well as constructive criticism on each student’s project. I contributed scholarly articles, engagement with the project, encouragement, paths in which they can dive down in terms of research, and ways in which they can enhance engagement for their digital artefact.

I engaged with each post by referencing aspects of the contextual blog post as well as the video to shape my opinions and concerns on each person’s DA. I also offered extensive research to mediate less explored points or enhance their analytical framework.

Beta 1: https://jmayfarrington.com/2019/09/20/prototyping-the-lets-play-shuffle/

I recommended primarily scholarly articles for Julia. I firstly mentioned Mersel’s ‘Viewing Let’s Plays: How Audiences Interpret The Commercial Role of Let’s Plays on Youtube’. Her DA shifted from a stream to a YouTube upload, and she mentioned in her Beta video that research I offered on her pitch regarding the Let’s Play subculture were helpful. I then suggested Mersel’s paper, as it aims to assist in understanding the role of Let’s Plays on Youtube, her chosen platform. By understanding the role of Let’s Plays on the chosen platform, she may hopefully be able to gain greater engagement, which she mentioned was an issue when she began to stream.

This was the main direction I suggested in my comment. By building on the research I had previously provided, I determined this research was best for the paratext she’s exploring. I also mentioned her inclusion of the triangulation approach suggested by Mitew and Moore (2017) as a framework for her analysis.

From Julia’s DA, I learnt a significant amount about the demand of Final Fantasy Let’s Plays on Twitch. They’re a lot less infrequent than I thought they would be, considering Final Fantasy has such an extensive fanbase. 

Beta 2: https://kianaspaige.wordpress.com/2019/09/20/going-afk-back-online/

For Kiana, I recommended two scholarly articles. Her beta was engaging, however it appeared there seemed to be an analysis missing. I suggested building a scholarly background for her analysis and ensuring she has an adequate framework for her discussion to prevent it from feeling unstructured.

I recommended detailing the distinction between cyberbullying in multiplayer games (e.g. MMORPGs like World of Warcraft) and games with a multiplayer feature (e.g. GTA), and that this could also be a point of discussion in her podcasts.

I recommended two scholarly articles to create more of an analytical framework. I also prompted Kiana to think about who her audience is, and how she can curate her feedback towards them. I also suggested she spend time in curating her analytical framework, and illustrating how she will go about her post structural analysis as there was not much evidence of one in her post and video.

Beta 3: https://chrisblogsuni.wordpress.com/2019/09/20/the-beta-bcm215/

I recommended Chris a scholarly article as well as a few links to case studies. It seemed lacking in depth, academic direction, and examples to help the reader grasp the concept. I recommended curating a basic framework for analysis, as well as adequate case studies and materials that reflect engagement with lecture materials.

Chris provided an example regarding a Runescape player who spent over 50,000 pounds on the game, so I prompted him to look further into this, as well as investigate other ‘horror stories’ in which players have spent an exorbitant amount of money on microtransactions, and the way it has negatively impacted the industry. Particularly the mobile games industry at that.

For Chris’ post, I recommended King et al’s ‘Unfair play? Video Games As Exploitative Monetized Services’, Zendle & Cairns’ ‘Loot boxes are again linked to problem gambling’, and Evers et al.’s ‘The Hidden Cost of Microtransactions’, as they provide theory on the physical, financial, and psychological effect of microtransactions. I’m not entirely sure what Chris’ analytical framework entails, but a psychological post structural analysis may be a good starting point.From my research into microtransactions, I also learnt how far loot box obsession can go, and how closely its tied with gambling, which is evident in the materials I recommended.


As a whole, I felt I learnt to give feedback in a more constructive and convivial way, as if I engaged with each project more, as opposed to simply giving constructive criticism or encouraging the use of a particular format, I detailed why this was a great idea for the type of project undertaken, and what would best benefit each person.

In the future, perhaps I would focus on other avenues not solely scholarly related. For most of my comments I suggested diving into various scholarly literature, so maybe in the future I could work on recommending more of a mix between scholarly and media articles or case studies.

-Til next time,


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