This Akoha thing has some potential to be a grownup craze, somewhere between grown-up Pokemon Cards and a real-life Second Life.
Basically, it's a card-based game where players do kindnesses (at least in version 1.0) to others and score points for doing so. Being the recipient of a kindness (e.g. a small gift) enmeshes you in the game as you have to log into the Akoha site to acknowledge receipt of the card and the kindness. Then you can track where the card has been…and it's now yours to play on someone else…but they you're out of the game unless you buy some more cards.
And like any good Pokemon game, there will be ways to buy a bigger deck. (And for organizations to commission special decks and use them in promotions….) Going Pokemon one better, once you amass enough points, you will get the power to design new cards (“missions”).
There's something attractive about the idea of channeling power-madness towards acts of kindness, but I can also see this getting out of control. And I can image some social attacks: a small gang gets together and pass cards around to each other without actually giving away cups of coffee in order to amass points, but perhaps there's a rule limiting the number of cards you can inflict on one person.
The FAQ addresses some of the obvious questions, including “Doesn’t Akoha turn sincere acts of kindness into insincere ones?”
It seems like one of the founders of Ahoka is Austin Hill, who've I've known since before the Zero Knowledge days. I don't know whether to be peeved or relieved that he hasn't sent me a deck yet. Mostly relieved, I think. Although it might be fun to design a card that said, Represent someone pro bono in a foreclosure action.
For the insultingly low payment of $15 dollars per hour?? Have you lost your mind??
What? There has been lots of interest in the program?
Oh… never mind.
I’m waiting for an adult version of Bokugon.