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在校生による新ブログ【Idea Canvas】7

DATE : 2020/11/22

 最近のニュースの傾向

 最近ではポジティブな内容のニュースを探すのにも一苦労をするようになってきた。11月19日にも東京都で新たに534人の感染が確認され、過去最多を更新したとの報道があり、世の中は向上することよりも、とりあえず現状を耐え抜くことを強いられている。先の大統領選での演説でトランプ前大統領は ”COVID,COVID,COVID” と連呼し、常にコロナのニュースしかないことを批判していたのが印象的だった。もちろん私は感染者が増加する中で警戒すべきではあると強く感じるが、せめてここでは連日のネガティブなニュースから解放される場にしようとポジティブなニュースについて調べた。

 

 その結果出てきたニュースが、日本で出没が相次いでいるクマを追い払うロボット狼が開発されたというものだった。クマと遭遇して住民が死傷するケースも中にはあったようで、対応策の少なさに住民の不安は高まっていた。そんな中、北海道の機械部品加工会社がクマを追い払う狼を開発した。赤く光る眼、そして大きな音で威嚇する機能を持つこの狼は、クマと人間が互いに程よい距離感を保ち、共存するための機械として期待されている。

 もう一つ比較的大々的に報道されていたのが、野口聡一さん搭乗の米SpaceXの宇宙船「Crew Dragon」が打ち上げられたニュースだ。このミッションは、最終的に個人顧客を宇宙へ送り出すための第一歩として注目されている。確かにこのようなニュースはコロナに比べたら緊急を要するものではなく、霞んでしまうだろう。宇宙船の打ち上げに関しても、普段ほどのインパクトは報道に感じられなかった。しかし、このような状況下で、まだ多くの報道されていない出来事に命を懸けて打ち込んでいる人々の存在に私は気付かされた。

 

精神的な負担も大きい中、私たちは今まで通り前に進み続けなければならない。常に張り詰めた空気を味わっている私たちは、自然と自分自身を追い込んでしまう。これは自殺数にも顕著にあらわれており、2019年まで10年連続で減少していた自殺数も増加している。最近では電車内でもよくピリピリしている人を見かけるが、これも例外ではないだろう。私はポジティブなニュースが増えることで、相乗効果となって社会全体がすみやすい場、また挑戦しやすい場になっていくと思う。私たちは、厳しい状況の中から、ロボット狼やSpaceXなどの自分の興味関心を追求しつつ社会に貢献している人たちのように、この先の予測不能な時代の中で、自分の確固たる軸を持ちつつ、臨機応変に時代に即した対応ができる能力を私たちも身に着ける必要がある。今の社会のネガティブさには簡単に崩れてしまうのではないかという危うさすら感じる。ピンチから切り抜けるには、必ず変化が必要であり、その変化を起こすポテンシャルはすべての人間が平等に持っているものだと私は感じる。感染拡大という窮地を脱出するためにも、目的を見失わず、粘り強さ、強い意志、そして柔軟な対応力を持った、今後も苦境に抗い続ける人間を、今社会は必要としているのではないだろうか。

 

参考文献

東京都 新型コロナ 新たに534人感染確認 過去最多を更新

https://www3.nhk.or.jp/news/html/20201119/k10012720301000.html

出没相次ぐクマ、ロボット狼が撃退 光る眼と大きな音で威嚇

https://jp.reuters.com/video/watch/idOWjpvCCIQ5AATEMYB7RMWDETVOU52E1

Japanese Town Deploys Growling Robot ‘Wolves’ to Protect Residents From Bears

https://www.goodnewsnetwork.org/robot-wolves-help-people-bears-japan/

野口聡一さん搭乗の「Crew Dragon」、日本時間11月16日午前9時27分打ち上げ

https://www.itmedia.co.jp/news/articles/2011/16/news053.html

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A respite from Covid-19 

Since I wrote my last article about COVID-19, Japan, seemingly jealous of America’s daily record setting, decided to set some records of its own. The last 2 days have seen the most daily new cases in both Tokyo and Japan as a whole, increasing in succession. The coronavirus is a dark cloud, looming over us all. In far too many cases, it has done irreparable damage and changed peoples lives, often for the worse. Our suffering may not compare to those on the front lines, to those who have lost loved ones to this pandemic, or are themselves struggling severely from the virus or events caused by the virus. However, as a student, as a teenager living through this virus, I would like to take a look at how young people are coping with this, a global pandemic. So, today I’m going to take a little break from the coronavirus, and escape from reality. Open my eyes, look down to the screen and see…

            Released on June 15th of 2018, Among Us spent a few years flying under the radar. Until 2020, and the coronavirus. Stuck inside, bored, and looking for content, YouTubers, Twitch streamers and other media influencers took it upon themselves to start playing the multiplayer social deduction game. Since then, it has exploded in popularity. Easy to play, with simple concepts, design, and interface, as well as the ability to connect and interact with friends, even from the confines of one’s home, Among Us is a place of comfort and respite in these turbulent times.

            Now, to be clear, I’ve never played the game myself. But I think that the importance of games, and other substitutes for face-to-face social interaction cannot be underestimated. No doubt, face to face social interaction is the optimal choice, but the pandemic has forced us to seek out other pathways. Zoom, Google Meet, and other video conferencing software has been available for a while. They have proved indispensable during periods of lockdown and social distancing. But while they are all effective means of communication, it can be difficult at times to stimulate enjoyable and entertaining interaction just by calling a friend.

  Recently, schools in New York were closed again. Thousands of kids, and teenagers will have to resort to online, remote learning, stuck at their homes for hours on end. Torn away from the socially vibrant environment that schools are, loneliness can be quick to set in. The coronavirus has robbed us of some essential elements of humanity, togetherness, community, and social interaction. Not only are students being deprived of their normal education, they are also missing out on hours of time with their friends, with peers of their own age. To help fill this void, many have turned to online games.

For a long time, video games have had a negative image in society. ‘Video games cause violence’, ‘Kids are spending too much time inside, on screens’, and many more headlines dragging games through the dirt have made their rounds of the internet, and the world. However, there is no evidence that violent video games have any link to increased violence in the people who play them. Multiple studies conducted over the years have proved that. As for the issue of screentime? Well, we are now in a time of crisis. For months at a time, students around the world, now on orders from their government, are stuck inside, and in front of screens. Indeed, we at Kaetsu had the entirety of our first term this year online.

            Enter Among Us. Or Animal Crossing. Or Minecraft. It can be tough sometimes, when you’re feeling down, or lonely, to call someone, and just talk. However, having some common objective and engaging with the ‘fun’ aspects of these remote interactions can make reaching out and communicating much more appealing. With Discord, or similar voice call software, games can become the focal point of social interaction, conversation, and fun. They can help people escape from reality, and alleviate their stresses and anxiety. 

  Being ‘with’ someone, being able to feel their presence and their company from a distance is hard, even with the technology we have today. Social games can help with that, making it easier to feel that you are with a friend; that you are together. Building a house together in Minecraft, completing common goals, fixing a generator, completing tasks, watching your friends’ back in a battle royal, and having them watch yours. These augmented interactions can enhance the quality of the engagements you can have with your friends, and help take your mind off of the world.

  Moderation, of course, is key. But in the situation that we find before us, with a solution seemingly months, even years in the future, why not take a little break from the struggles of the real world, and go somewhere where you can have fun, interact with friends, and relax. Long before the pandemic, games were popular as means of entertainment and socialization. Gaming is a major industry, making over 150 billion dollars in 2020. However, it seems that the true value and psychological effects of gaming are still a mystery. 

We want to hear from you. What kind of games do you play? Have they helped you during the pandemic? If you have any comments, feedback or questions, please go to https://twitter.com/the_idea_canvas and leave a comment!

https://www.bbc.com/news/health-46749232

https://www.nature.com/articles/s41380-018-0031-7 

https://www.theguardian.com/games/2020/jul/22/playing-video-games-doesnt-lead-to-violent-behaviour-study-shows

https://www.mensxp.com/technology/games/82518-study-finds-playing-video-games-can-make-people-happier.html

https://www.reuters.com/article/esports-business-gaming-revenues-idUSFLM8jkJMl

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