The Gamification of Beer

Beer Smack by | Jun 2015 | Issue #101

Beer experiences aren't always about what you're drinking. Sometimes they're about riding a trusty New Belgium bike around Fort Collins, like Todd did a few weeks ago.

It’s Friday night. You order a beer at a bar, use an app to tick it on your list, snap a pic, broadcast it on social media, and then refresh to see how many people liked it. Many of us (including us, on occasion) are guilty of this practice, which we call “the gamification of beer.”

The worst is seeing groups of people walk into a bar, immediately whip out their phones, and start ticking the night’s beers and liking each other’s brags. Really?!? What happened to just ordering a beer, enjoying it and your surroundings, and physically sharing the experience with the people around you?

Experiences like this are hollow, and ones that will never have any substance. Sure, you might get some digital reward from it, but come on, it’s just a stream of brags that doesn’t really matter. No one really cares, either. And despite its name, social media is morbidly anti-social. Its victims are living heads down and missing the world around them as they attempt to garner digital acceptance from people they’ve probably never met and never will. Meanwhile, their followers (also victims) suffer from FOMO (fear of missing out). Ironically, everyone misses out.

We, as a society, have essentially replaced the human touch with touch screens, turning the enjoyment of our (beer) lives into a game where there are no winners. So try this: the next time you visit a bar or brewery, talk to somebody about what they’re drinking. In person.

Respect Beer.