Archive for August 6th, 2013

It is that time of year again. The time of year in which sociologists join together in a city and then occupy themselves by playing bingo and going on scavenger hunts. Of course, some ASA games are more equal than others. As I argued last year:

The problem with an ASA bingo card is that the ASA experience is inherently unlike the game of bingo.

Bingo is played in a room full of [smoke and] other people, each with randomized cards listening to eliminate enough numbers to win. Without doing something radical like emailing Kieran to ask, I assume that John Siracusa’s bingo cards for Apple keynote presentations provided the inspiration for the original ASA bingo card. The first of these, in 2006, included a standard card in addition to twenty randomized versions allowing different chances to win. (Incidentally, none of them were winners.) The beauty of Siracusa’s keynote bingo was that individuals in the audience could conceivably follow along, checking off events until somebody won and shouted “bingo!” in the middle of Steve Jobs’ introduction of some new product. (As far as I know, this has never actually happened, which is unfortunate.)

Which brings me to the solution. What we need is not an ASA bingo, but rather an ASA scavenger hunt. In a scavenger hunt, everybody is free to seek the items on the list in any location and order they choose, making this format perfect for a large conference like ASA.

Click here to download the official 2013 ASA Scavenger Hunt!

The 2013 ASA Scavenger Hunt Rules:

  • The 2013 ASA Scavenger Hunt is open to anybody who is attending this year’s ASA conference in New York. Your status as an undergraduate, grad student, assistant professor, or “famous” sociologist will not affect your chances of winning.
  • Record the dates, times, locations, and/or session numbers for the items on the list between Friday, August 9 and midnight on Tuesday, August 13.
  • Items may be double-counted. This means that if, for example, you attend an Author Meets Critics session in which somebody in the audience is wearing a tie and you bail because it is boring you will have covered items 7, 11, and 5. on the list.
  • The person who submits a form accounting for the most items will receive… something! This is a very exciting opportunity and your chances of winning are high!
  • The winner’s name could be posted on my blog, unless the winner doesn’t want his or her name associated with a scavenger hunt, in which case the winner is welcome to choose a suitable pseudonym.
  • I will be playing along and will keep you posted on my own progress throughout the weekend. If nobody enters I will privately declare myself the winner and treat myself to ice cream.
  • If you would like to discuss your own progress on Twitter, use the hashtag #ASAHunt.
  • Have fun!

If you want to double your fun, last year’s inaugural Scavenger Hunt form can be found here, though the only thing you will win by playing with last year’s form is satisfaction.


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