It's an unfortunate thing that playing video games still has a social stigma despite how many people do so. My father even has video game consoles, though he doesn't play them very often. Embarrassingly enough, he actually has more than I do. Or did prior to my move, though even then I only had a PS3 and a DS.
When people ask me what I did last night, there's less condescension if I consistently state that I did nothing - with all the implications of a complete lack of a social life behind that statement - than if I were to say that I played computer games all night, despite the fact that I'm able to play computer games with my friends. Not all, in fact a large majority, of the games I play can be played with friends, but some can, and thus there's more social interaction involved.
What I think is even more unfortunate is how even within the limited circle of those who play video games, there's a stigma against those who play MMOs. It makes very little sense to me, really. They justify their bias behind things like how those who play them don't have social lives, and their wasting their lives playing the same thing every day, but I don't buy it. There's certainly people who do play MMOs all day, and only MMOs, at the expense of real life priorities, but the same can be said for other games. And as for the monotony behind playing the same video game every day, I'm sure there are still people who play Counterstrike and that was first released in 1999 - the same year as Everquest. And MMOs by their definition do have a lot more social interaction than your average computer game. Granted, some people choose to ignore that aspect and prefer to play alone, but those other people are still there and there will be some interaction.
Even within the group of people who play MMOs there's cliques that form around the discrimination of other MMOs. If you look at Vendetta Online, there are people comparing it against Eve, since they are both space-based MMOs. If you log into EVE, and mention World of Warcraft, you'll get made fun of. There's a phrase that constantly gets repeated in that game that when an Eve player quits in favour of WoW, the average IQ of both games goes up. If you log into DC Universe Online people will contrast it against Champions Online. I could go on, but I'm sure you get the point.
As far as entertainment goes, video games are relative new-comers, and MMOs even more-so with in that form of media. But when you get down to it, it's a form of entertainment. How does sitting down to play a computer game make me a "loser" when spending the same amount of time watching a movie doesn't? Why should I be discriminated against by people I know in real life for spending my evenings playing video games? Why should I be wary of mentioning to people who do know I'm a gamer, that I play WoW? It shouldn't matter, but somehow it does. If it didn't I wouldn't have had to post the journal I kept of my journey to a different blog to separate it from my gaming blog.
Just a thought.
PS: Shortly after I published this, Rock, Paper, Shotgun published an article entitled "Look, Single-Player People Are Just Better". You aren't helping, guys.