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A study has concluded that casual gaming is the most popular online entertainment activity, with streaming video and social networking following behind

There are all sorts of things you can do online and if you have ever wondered what most people do online for entertainment, you are not alone. From reading sites like DailyTech, to watching videos on sites like YouTube or visiting social networking sites like FaceBook, what entertainment activity is most popular online? You might be surprised by the answer.

A study has concluded that the most popular online activity for entertainment is playing casual games. The study doesn’t mention some things people do online for entertainment, like searching for images of Britney Spears’ latest outing whilst going commando, which is sure to absorb significant time online.

What the study does say is that the year-over-year growth rate for casual gamers is 79%, making casual gaming significantly higher than the growth rate of social networking at 46%.

"The casual gaming industry cannot rest on its laurels," James Kuai, a research analyst at Parks Associates, said. "In order to counter the growing competition from other online activities, the industry needs to continue to grow its fan base and find ways to better monetize its existing audience."

Streaming video is fast catching up to casual gaming as one of the most popular entertainment activities with a 123% year-over-year growth, which could perhaps be attributed to some less family friendly entertainment activities online.

"Despite the growing popularity of YouTube, MySpace and Facebook, gaming remains the king of online entertainment, driven largely by casual gaming activities," said Kuai. "Gaming also has business advantages. Unlike sites for social networking and video streaming, which rely solely on advertising revenue, casual gaming has more mature and heterogeneous revenue models, including web-based and in-game advertising, try-before-you-buy, subscriptions, and micro-transactions."

Parks Associates might be onto something. The study comes only a few weeks after Nickelodeon announced its intention to invest $100 million in the casual gaming market over the next two years alone.

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By Gul Westfale on 8/18/2007 7:28:22 AM , Rating: 3
i thought that looking at porn was the most popular online activity...

RE: really?
By KentState on 8/18/2007 8:32:45 AM , Rating: 2
I guess it depends on how you categorize entertainment. That's what the article was looking at.

RE: really?
By Griswold on 8/18/07, Rating: 0
RE: really?
By mars777 on 8/18/2007 1:32:39 PM , Rating: 2
After reading your sentence i wish i was in "category of: 18-49 years of age, oversexed but underfucked males" because in that way I'd avoid being in your category.

RE: really?
By Gul Westfale on 8/18/2007 6:20:06 PM , Rating: 2
you know me well... have we met?


Yeah, a study
By mindless1 on 8/19/2007 2:23:47 AM , Rating: 2
Everyone who participlated in this study, raise your hand.

When I get an uninvited popup or email asking for feedback for a study, I close, or never even open it.

Who are these people? They're your mom or grandmother playing online scrabble or some other puzzle or word game. The quote in the article about monetizing this is just ignorant, they'll play the simple online game and that's it, at the very most a 'site might place another advertisment or two on the page but if they're those annoying animated GIF or Flash, it'll just end up annoying enough to drive casual gamers away to another 'site.

RE: Yeah, a study
By Cheapshot on 8/19/2007 4:31:35 AM , Rating: 3
Actually "A Study" doesn't have to mean there are individual participants per se... it could include, and probably does include user statistics from game servers and developers tracking.

Much like Televisions statistical sampling - the same can be done with commercial servers of the various games, IM software, email, video hosting sites etc...

As far as monetizing games... its a done deal... Many companies have already jumped on the band wagon to integrate ads into games. Soon, while your getting ready to frag some Krall near your flag, you'll look to the left and see a virtual billboard telling you to take Ridilin for your ADHD.

RE: Yeah, a study
By mindless1 on 8/20/2007 7:55:51 PM , Rating: 2
There's a difference between wanting to, and trying to monetize, and making a profit at it for more than a brief period. As I'd already stated, people may just move on to another less annoying game 'site as there is a difference when ads are integrated into games in that they have your money for the game and it becomes a loss of that value or great hassle to try and return it. WIth the free online games it's but a few clicks of a mouse without any loss to just say "no".

By Rugar on 8/18/2007 7:26:43 AM , Rating: 5
I think Britney going commando has crossed the line from entertainment to horror. It's like watching a train wreck that takes years to develop rather than seconds.

Damn that Tower Defense Game!
By Imaginer on 8/18/2007 11:19:15 AM , Rating: 5
You know it has contributed to the numbers. ;)

By kyleb2112 on 8/18/2007 6:09:58 AM , Rating: 2
Sounds like they were damn selective on what qualifies as "entertainment".

RE: Entertainment?
By Alexstarfire on 8/18/2007 11:00:02 AM , Rating: 2
Well they said that streaming video was catching up do to "some less family friendly entertainment activities online." I'm assuming that is including porn.

By thebrown13 on 8/20/2007 1:24:24 AM , Rating: 2
Easy, fun, addicting, multiplayer online games still don't exist. Why is that?

By rushfan2006 on 8/20/2007 9:11:01 AM , Rating: 2
I wouldn't be surprised in the least if this study was actually accurate. Online gaming has grown in popularlity by leaps and bounds over the last few years - a large part of that is the rise of MMO's going more mainstream and "casual player" friendly (anyone hear of those I forget the names...some like World of something...and some Forever Quest game or something like that.... :) ).

Porn is highly over talked about IMHO -- because its sex and sex is a large part of our lives as human beings (let's just be honest here)....however with the younger crowd porn is "cool" but as you mature most of us, it's no longer holding this "taboo mystique" it once had -- like anything you've seen plenty off it's no big whoop anymore.

So unless you are a teenager, a sexual deviant, or just never had any for real -- I don't think porn is this huge draw that we mill away hours on hours of our free time each week, let alone each day.

casual, guys. casual.
By nekobawt on 8/20/2007 11:45:00 AM , Rating: 2
A few of us seem to be confused by the definition of "casual gaming." They're not referring to picking flowers in WoW while you chat up hawt elf chixx0rs as opposed to going on massive raids against big scary beasties. They're talking about going to yahoo to play Noah's Ark or Bejeweled for a few minutes. Even if you only play for an hour a night, an MMO is significantly more involved than playing Bingo at

WoW Humor
By EODetroit on 8/20/2007 9:48:36 AM , Rating: 1
Oh Em Gee another Raiders vs. Casuals debate! (If you play WoW its funny).

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