For the Win
In the virtual future, you must organize to survive
At any hour of the day or night, millions of people around the globe are engrossed in multiplayer online games, questing and battling to win virtual "gold," jewels, and precious artifacts. Meanwhile, others seek to exploit this vast shadow economy, running electronic sweatshops in the world's poorest countries, where count...more
by Cory Doctorow.
David was a hip, streetwise, golden-hearted teenager. He was a native of Mumbai. He was talking to his friend Ravi, who was slumped in a booth in the corner of the teahouse. Ravi was from San Diego; he had never been to India before.
"I read this great book recently," David said. "It's called For the Win, by a guy named Cory Doctorow."
Ravi perked up at this. He had heard of Doctorow. Didn't he have some blog where anti-corporate hips...more
This is the multinational, multicultural story of how the future workers of the world might be unionised, told via the interlinked lives of disenfranchised game players who are being abused by their employers in one way or another.
“He hated it when...more
I actually liked this a lot more than I thought I would. I expected it to make me cranky, but I really enjoyed reading it. When I thought hard about it, though, it was missing something... revelatory, I think, that's keeping me from rounding up the rating. In my heart. (And on Goodreads.)
One thing I knew right away, though -- it really is overlong. This story doesn't have to be 500 pages. To its credit, there isn't any thread or character I imme...more
Interspersed with their quest to throw off the shackles of oppression and very vivid and frightening lessons on economy and just how fragile the global financial system is and how based on sh...more
"Heavy-handed" is the word one would use for Cory's books. I applaud the clarity of the writing--there is no way to mistake what Cory's trying to say--but if there's one thing that turns me off, it's preaching. Lit...more
Cory Doctorow writes educational YA. No, come back! Stop running! I'm serious- and it's not a bad thing!
Argh. I lost another one.
Anyhow. Basically, FTW explains the economics and mechanics of labor unions in the framework of MMORPGs (Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Games). It's cool, it's- as I said, and I know it's the word of death- educational, and it's fun. Oh, and here's another adjective: intense. Doctorow doesn't pull punches; Littl...more
In the meantime, I'll tell you the most important thing you need to know: It is not possible to read a Doctorow book without learning something. For those who claim otherwise, you sir, are a liar. The topics are so wide and varied too: technology, social movements, unions, economics, hedge funds, security, business,...more
This is a "combine two things" book. Sometimes that works, this tim...more
Let's get this straight. I still adored this book. Cory Doctorow = the coolest, geekiest author you will ever have the pleasure of reading. He never fails to challenge my beliefs in a non-offensive,...more
I suspect there are several factors that account for his popularity.
First, not too many authors are doing near-term speculative fiction. The geeks amongst us a...more
Some people have strange jobs, like weed farming, snake milking, and dog food testing. The people in For the Win have less bizarre jobs, but they are still pretty unique. MMORPGs (Massively multiplayer online role-playing game) are computer games in which massive amounts of players interact with each other. Surprisingly, MMORPGs has a huge effect in the real-world economy. The characters in For the Win are gold-farmers who demand better wages from their bosses. They are not literally gold-farmer...more
There are plenty of reviews that give their two cents on the plot and characters, so I'm not going to go into too much depth about that. As far as the writing goes, I was very disappointed. First, as othe...more
my only critique is that it's all so pat and doable... like, yeah, we all get together and make this happen! which isn't very true in my experience with organizing. but maybe i'm just too used to losing.
Enter the 2010s, and a whole bunch of politicians who seem to have read those same novels and used them as a guidebook.
'For the Win' is about youth, it's about tech, it's about...more
But then come the little things. The first acronym not used correctly one will happily overlook.
Then comes the chapter dedicated to t...more
5 stars for the politics (It has changed the way I view things, and I like books like that).
Cory Doctorow always impresses me (well except for Down and Out in the Magic Kingdom, I never understood that one, but that might be the fact I have never been to Disneyland).
His books are always well-written and gripping tales that challenge my thinking. In this book we followed the lives of gold farmers in a not-to-distant future (I imagine about ten years...more
This book is set in the massively multi-player gaming world. I've heard about gold farmers before -- people in less-developed countries who make money by accumulating gold and other items for richer people who want to level up without doing the work. In this book, the gold farmers form a union,...more
For fiction, a 3.5,because I have harsh standards. It's a good book, but the writing is mediocre. But it has a geeky knowledge of of so many things close to my heart; it sure as hell is informative and enter...more
He is an activist in favor of liberalizing copyright laws and a proponent of the Creative Commons organization, using some of their licenses for his books.
Some common themes of his work include digital rights management, file sharing, Disney, and post-scarcity economics.