The hard-core boardroom of Geekdom and familiar play-gems, displaying specialised toys and slightly altered legends. This is where Christmas wishes come true, at low, low prices.

The factory owner confessed that his biggest problem to date is the emergence of low-fuss iPad generation, before reappearing with a beam and challenged be to form a rock band with 4 iPads.

My confusion was addressed in the factory classroom, where I was taught about the US launch campaign for Rockband with Disney starlets Aly and AJ. This Ps3 and Wii game controller comes in the form of either a pink heart-shaped guitar with purple zebra print or a baby pink base with red skull and crossbones motif.

In the Rockband classroom, I’m shown the consequences of a cultural difference. Apparently battery-placing conventions in China is different to the US and the UK. Eventhough it was correctly labelled, customer would still accidentally short circuit their guitars, causing exploding batteries that burnt through cloths. 80,000 guitars were return that year.

The factory vice-president proudly recounted a story of when they produced a generation with five buttons and patented it in the US a few days earlier than Activision Blizzard, Inc. the producers of Guitar Heros.  The extra two keys over an earlier week claimed the counterfeit factory a successful lawsuit against the big boys.

The factory planning team were greatly puzzled about guitar sales differences between the US and the EU. They indulged in my hour-long lecture that included a live itunes demonstrations, of the differences in idol aspirations of teenagers on either sides of the pond. Watch out Europe, the joystick factory’s coming to town!

Written by Lisa Ma

Lisa Ma socializes activism. Combining ethnographic research and speculative design, Lisa creates platforms of engagement from surprising insights and processes that deeply resonate with the global technological community. The emergence of clicktivism – to protest at the click of a mouse – is trivializing activism. Lisa argues that although activism doesn’t necessarily benefit from technology, we need to evolve how activism contributes to technological societies. To illustrate this, she designs dilemmas and creates social events that are perceived as activism but function as services.

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