Honestly, I can’t say I really disagreed with any of the points made in Gamer Theory. It made a lot of associations that I had never thought of before, as well as reaffirmed quite a few I knew to be true but had never seen put down in writing (or typing, I suppose).
Nevertheless, the presentation of the reading, at least in my opinion, was a huge turn-off. We addressed this a bit in class already, and I’m glad we did, because actually the way the text was presented deterred me more than it did attract me to the text. I could see the usefulness of the paragraph-by-paragraph comment system, but at the same time I imagine this could be executed a tad more smoothly and seemlessly. My biggest issue with the form was that you had to continuously click those arrows to keep reading. There was not shortcut, you couldn’t hit the right arrow key on the keyboard, you couldn’t scroll — and if you had been multitasking and/or simply couldn’t keep your mouse hovering constantly over the annoying little arrow, every five minutes was a distraction from what you were reading because you had to pull yourself out of the text to go to the next segment.
Also, considering that commenting had been disabled for sometime now, the effectiveness of the system seemed to have been lost.
The argument could possibly be made that “Well, you have to turn the pages of a book — that takes more effort and yet no one seems to mind it.” True, but first off, the pages in a book don’t end after every brief paragraph, so you’re not turning the page nearly as often. Secondly, books are not written in hypertext, a medium with the supposed ability to “break free from the constraints of the page and redefine linear text.” Books can be forgiven because linear, page-based text is all they will ever be able to display. They are archaic and simple, but hypertext has new expectations going for it because it incorporates new technology and potential. I expect more out of a hypertext because I know for a fact it is capable of doing more, and when a hypertext simply mimics page-based linear text (in an admittedly very frustrating way), then I’m made to feel quite disappointed.
Also, as someone mentioned, getting from, say, page 001 to page 010 (in the same chapter), or even page 040 (which would be in another chapter) was a massive hassle. In a book, flipping back to, say, 5 or 50 or even 500 pages ago isn’t to difficult. You simply just thumb to that general area and then look a little more closely at the page numbers. This text’s system, however, is more analogous to shutting the book, pausing, reopening it to the table of contents, finding where it is you want to go… then finally thumbing to the page you want to go to. Admittedly, the steps take a lot less time because the internet finds the pages faster than your thumb can, but the excessive amount of steeps it took to get to a page that as not in the group of 5 pages you were looking at at any one time was a huge pain. It would’ve been nice to at least implement a “Skip to page…” button or something!