Virginia Tech Gaming and Media Effects Laboratory Director James D. Ivory argued that research on social dimensions of games needs to address the full range of games that are being played online in a presentation at the annual convention of the National Communication Association in Orlando, Florida.  The presentation, titled "Past and Future Directions in Research on Social Dynamics of Video Games," was part of a panel named "Leveling Up: A Discussion of Emerging Trends and Suggestions for Future Research Involving Video Games."  Among Dr. Ivory's points in the presentation was that while some online games have been researched extensively, others are primarily researched in terms of the effects of their content despite the amount of play conducted online.  Dr. Ivory also noted that some heavily-researched game categories are the types of games that are being used less and less according to market research, while increasingly popular game formats are understudied.

The panel session also featured Anthony Limperos of the University of Kentucky, Ed Downs of the University of Minnesota-Duluth, and Nicholas Bowman of the University of West Virginia.  The session's general topic and its presentations were loosely based on a forthcoming piece in Communication Yearbook co-authored by the panelists.