Canned Chat


The other day Nathan convinced me to let him play this online battle game with a few of his friends from school. Honestly, it looked pretty cool—with wizards and orcs and elves and stuff—kind of a Lord of the Rings motif.


But when one of his friends would not admit defeat, I asked Nathan what he was saying.


“Oh, things like, ‘I have not yet quit the field of battle.’ ” Or, ‘Can we talk terms?’


I said, “This is Andrew talking? Sense when does he talk like that?”


“Oh, he doesn’t dad,” Nathan replied. “It’s canned chat. There are only a certain number of phrases available to use and that’s all you can say.”




Canned Chat?


Whoever heard of such a thing? At first I just thought it was cheesy, but the more I thought about it the more it seemed significant—at least as a commentary on our culture today.


Turns out, you see, that parents won’t support their kids playing on some of these sites when people can just say any crude thing they want. So the makers of the site came up with this ‘safe’ canned chat approach.


Pretty clever on the one hand.


Pretty sad on the other.


Know what it reminds me of?


Some churches. I’ll follow this up tomorrow. For now, it’s midnight and I’m through!