Play4Iran: A Twitter-Based Iranian Political Action Game

Play4IranNow international politics is not necessarily a specialty at ISG, but every once and a while you stumble onto something curious as it pertains to one’s niche. The latest in this regard is a Twitter game and contest by the name of Play4Iran, and while the “game play” is rather simplistic it is actually created for a greater cause: The Green Movement, the Iranian opposition political group.

Seeing games created for a cause is nothing new to the social space. In the past, we have seen a number of titles supporting the environment from Green Patch, medicine from Hive7’s Zen Garden, and humanitarianism from Booyah Societies.

Here is the back story: Leading up to the tenth presidential elections in Iran, back in June, a number of rallies and activities began taking place in support for a reformist candidate, Mir Hossein Mousavi. The general hope was to oust the current regime, but a disappointing loss (due to alleged election fraud) led to a countrywide movement symbolized by the color green. Asking for civil freedoms, the movement, as it was seen by the rest of the world, marked a dramatic and “great cultured civil movement,” according to Iranian sociologist and writer, Kazem Kardavani.

Play4Iran is a Twitter contest game intended to directly support this movement in a digital, and international fashion. The game, as it were, is nothing terribly complex (as most Twitter games aren’t). Players who sign up are placed into a leaderboard system and earn points by completing various actions. Basically, the earning of points is the whole game, and is simply tailored to add a small bit of game play value to the act of garnering support for the civil movement.

Twitter Play4iran

Points are earned in simple ways as well. Registration, green profile pictures (green tone, or adding a green ribbon, candle, or stripe), referrals, “Verified Twitter Account” referrals, and even a few bonus points earned through the submission of pictures to the “Green Wall.”

Created by Twitter users @greenthumbnails and @lissnup, Play4Iran marks, according to them, “one of the most popular ways of showing support for the Green Movement in Iran.” Furthermore, they state that, thus far, “tens of thousands of Twitter members have chosen a green profile picture,” and though it’s impossible to tell just how many people actually do have a green avatar, in general, this little application may be helping out.

The Play4Iran game/contest is scheduled to end on September 23, 2009. Interested parties can sign up at the Play4Iran website.