|Posted on May 19, 2010 at 3:01 AM|
The white elephant gift exchange (also known as a Yankee Swap in the Southeastern US according to wikipedia.org) is a party game where each guest brings a gift and during the party everyone must swap gifts in a game of stealing and drawing and unwrapping.
But in some ways these parties show a very small part of culture with each exchange. The items are normally inexpensive and often not very useful. The items, therefore, are of some cultural significance and have a story behind them. While it may not seem so when you are exchanging gifts with your next door neighbors, what if gifts were exchanged between people from all around the world? Here are my thoughts:
Create a website where users send in gifts [that fit certain specified criteria] and then receive another gift in return. This gift exchange would allow users a very small sample of other cultures, from small decorations to different tools, and other simple items that are specific to certain areas.
While this exchange could not directly relate to the "white elephant gift exhange" that is set up as a game, users could send in gifts to the exchange and receive a gift for each item sent in.
It may be surprising to see what items you get from Japan when you live in New York, or what you get from Australia when you live in London. You never know, and it could certainly be a fun game to participate in and an interesting community to be a part of.
In order to build the community, it would help if the site could be viewed in many languages and if any chat rooms or forums were translated as well so that users could communicate even if they do not speak the same language.
1. Connects people around the world in a simple, fun, and interesting way.
2. Shares very small bits of cultures from around the world, with other people all over the world.
3. Could create a community of users that can communicate across language boundaries and share culture, knowledge, and information through small item exchanges.
1. Could be expensive to ship items world wide.
2. There would need to be specific guidelines that limit certain items while still leaving possiblities open enough to work anywhere in the world.
That's another new website idea from the Biziden Blog.
Can you think of any other positives or negatives? Would you participate in something like this? What might you send or hope to receive? Share your thoughts here and on the forum!
Thanks and keep on thinking.
Imagine. Share. Create.