US President says games can be a catalyst to inspire
President Obama has made a surprising move by endorsing video games during a recent live web chat on YouTube.
The President said he was convinced to reconsider the attributes of video games, thanks to a meeting with Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg.
He said the concept of vocational education got a bad reputation because of the perception it was pulling people into blue-collar jobs, but now he believes that those classifications have worn away.
“Look at Mark Zuckerberg. I was sitting next to him at dinner a couple of years ago, and he said he taught himself programming primarily because he was interested in games,” said Obama (transcription by VentureBeat).
“If we set programs in high schools that engage kids because they get it, they won’t be just sitting there slouching in back of rooms while someone is lecturing.
“Given how pervasive computers and the internet is now, how integral it is in our economy, and how fascinated kids are with it, I want to make sure they actually know how to produce stuff and not simply consume stuff.”
Getting US children in programming is considered any important task if new start-ups are to be formed and a new generation of tech-savvy youngsters are to enter the workforce, there by lifting the country’s economic growing.
Obama’s acceptance may come as a surprise to some, given the recent call for tighter gun laws and video games yet again being drawn into the debate. Only last month, the President called for new research into the effect of video games.
Obama’s 47-minute video also touched on immigration, copyright and piracy, among other things.