Friday, July 15th, 2011
29

Google Is Gamifying Reading!

Oh perfect, Google News has announced a revolutionary new product: badges for your Google News Reading Activity. See now when you prove you are Good At Reading, your Google Teacher gives you a gold star for the day.

Actually, no gold stars: the badges range "from Bronze to Ultimate," which… that's not really a coherent scale? I think folks just think no one knows what "platinum" is anymore and why it's "better" than gold. But come on. It's not like I'm suggesting maybe rhodium should start showing up in the metal-based scale of BADGIFICATION.

Anyway, R U going to READ MOAR now that Google gives you REWARDSES??? LOL, GOOD LUCK, READY, SET, READ!11!!!1!

29 Comments / Post A Comment

katherine (#10,025)

I am legitimately scared of the badges I am going to be awarded once they inevitably branch out into subject-specific badges (all achievement systems do eventually, in games and elsewhere). It's all for work, I promise!

Matt Langer (#2,467)

Nice pivot. They're really disrupting the news space.

Moff (#28)

Finally, a reason to read!

katherine (#10,025)

Also, "Ultimate"? Does somebody at Google News play Puzzle Pirates?

jolie (#16)

WE DEMAND AN AWL READING BADGE ON THE AWL

boyofdestiny (#1,243)

WE ALSO DEMAND AN AWL ON THE AWL

jolie (#16)

@boyofdestiny WE'VE ALREADY DEMANDED AN AWL ON THE AWL

boyofdestiny (#1,243)

@jolie I'M JUST TRYING TO FORM A COALITION

@boyofdestiny Back my motion to mug this place up and I'm in.

whizz_dumb (#10,650)

@jolie Would an Awl reading badge be a bloodshot eyeball? It's difficult to make a graphic of an ocular migraine.

mjfrombuffalo (#2,561)

@jolie I'M STILL WAITING FOR MY NEWSLETTER

boyofdestiny (#1,243)

I don't use Google News, but I use Google Reader? Does that count? There's a lot of very silly stuff in my Google Reader.

SeanP (#4,058)

I'm personally going for "plutonium" certification.

@SeanP nah, Polonium-210 is the one you want

ericdeamer (#945)

I'm a 10th level Mage with like a shitload of hit points on Google News.

C_Webb (#855)

Everyone knows that the only reason people read is to pass standardized tests. Duh.

IBentMyWookie (#133)

@C_Webb Or to make boys notice you on the train

C_Webb (#855)

@IBentMyWookie That's why I'll never get a Kindle. How can anyone tell how smart you are with a Kindle? Librarian glasses go only so far.

Matt (#26)

Fuck this. Pizza Hut used to give X-Men Personal Pan Pizza Kidz Packz. Jean Grey-shaped blue crayon or GTFO.

whizz_dumb (#10,650)

@Matt that personal pan pizza at the end of the reading rainbow was a very effective incentive as a nine-year-old.

Pierce (#3,939)

Can I put these on my CV?

katherine (#10,025)

@Pierce Sure, although I'd suggest sticking the badges in the margins as not to cover up any of the text.

jfruh (#713)

Is this like the March of Dimes thing we did in elementary school, where you got people to sponsor the books that you were going to read over the summer anyway because you were a nerd, and then we cured polio?

C_Webb (#855)

@jfruh They still do this, except to raise money for the school (tough times in public ed and all). Annoying as hell when you have to cough up a check because your damn kid won't stop reading.

MollyculeTheory (#4,519)

Only two more badges to go and I'll have completed my set of lanthanides!

HiredGoons (#603)

This is really about Gawker.

areaderwrites (#592)

Christ, like I want everybody to know that the entertainment section makes up almost the entirety of my Google News reading…whoops…

john.rambow (#703)

I would love to earn a badger, bronze or otherwise.

The Kobo app on the iPhone pops up Xbox-style achievements at what seem like random intervals, which startled the hell out of me the first time it happened.

They're really patronizing, too–like, "Congratulations! You've just added a book to your library! Good for you, buddy!"

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