The Revolution Won't Be Televised, It'll Be A Game

Illustration for article titled The Revolution Won't Be Televised, It'll Be A Game

Think FarmVille meets real world activism.

Online site Armchair Revolutionary is a social game that hopes to tap into the millions upon millions who are playing games on places like Facebook to create crowd-sourced, viral activism.

According to USA Today, Armchair Revolutionary users can participate in activities that include quizzes, voting, volunteering for tasks, uploading photos and donating to projects.

"We have combined several different models and integrated them in a way that we consider to be the ultimate platform for shaping the future, for making positive change in the world," says site's president, Ariel Hauter.


Advisers for the site include film producers Lawrence Bender (Inglorious Basterds) and Scott Burns (The Bourne Ultimatum), among others.

Each year, the site will develop up to 250 projects based on social issues, and here are the first few projects:

Hack Your Body: With a goal of preparing the public for the genomic revolution, the project includes the making of a documentary about mapping personal genomes. Software will help consumers analyze their health history. Users start by taking a quiz about genetic research. They have the option of donating to the production of a short film.

End of Darkness: This project aims to finance the launch of a for-profit company that will sell low-cost solar kits to the world's poor, starting in India. Users start with a quiz and a donation option.

Make Waves: Users can help create an ocean activism game that promotes sustainability of the seas. Players would own and maintain a 3-by-3-foot plot of the ocean just as they would a virtual plot in FarmVille. A player's actions could help reduce habitat destruction, overfishing and pollution.

The progress of users will be ranked, just like in online games and will earn rewards for their hard work.

Digital Download: Join the Armchair Revolutionaries [USATODAY]

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The funny thing is, putting people in chairs and telling them that they're helping a cause by doing nothing will cause them to keep on doing nothing.

Honestly, I think only a sense of powerlessness can truly lead to social upheaval.