This sounds like an interesting subject. I would consider myself part of the 'online' games culture, as I havent had fun with an offline game for a while. I find these days I really dont enjoy all these 'later' titles, even if I do enjoy online play, just for playing competitivley.
Today compared to when I was young, this culture has become rather humourous. Many 'Net Speak' or 'Leet talk' phrases/memes have popped up, and only because of the digital world that many people now have as a part of their lives. Whats great is that, because alot of people enjoy gaming these days, most of these people undertsand these phrases, derived from elements of gameplay, simply because its like a common language between everyone. In a world full of hate and war (still would you believe :( ) gaming, and online gaming is a form of unity between anyone who plays. You may get the odd t*** who refuses to get along, but mostly online competitors play with a friendly outlook, and through the gore and killing and blood gushing and violence that may occur in an online game, the game usualy ends with a 'nice game' 'well played' 'you owned us, nice one' attitude. The slang and gaming jargon that comes from the digi world, is understood in the real world too, and can make for funny conversation sometimes!!
The internet brings people together, which Is what i think the world needs. We are all human after all. I wasnt expecting such warm reception from the different parts of the world on socom. But in general people play together nicely. And yes you will always get the one who will try and start a fight, but the better always overcomes the bad.
I think the internet is becoming an essential these days. More and more people are seeing its benefits, and having fun with it. As well as this though there is always a bad side. You will get gamers who really dont have anything else to do, and live on their PC's, and in their PC world only, that dont know what other joys in life there are. WOW players for e.g. I have never known a WoW player who wasnt playing it 99% of the time... i sometimes feel games promote 'living in your digital world' so as to keep you blinded from what is actualy happening in the world. like the TV itself.
I certainly dont play games as much as i used to. I just feel they arent as good as they used to be, and the more realistic they become the more undesirable they get for me. like ive said before, i dont like violent games, they make me sad, that you would want to kill some-one and look at what their brain looked like if it was blown to bits. This is why I love fantasy games, but I havent come across any good ones for years.