Fortnite: fun, work, neither or both?

August 5, 2019

I was interested to see the reaction to the young feller who came second in the recent Fortnite World Cup.

The BBC interviewer told him: “You’ve taken a while to convince your mum this is real job.”

Jaden agrees, but to be honest, it’s taking me a while to be convinced too.

Can it count as a job if your ‘income’ comes in one fell swoop, before you’ve even left school? Is a lottery winner now a ‘professional gambler’?

But I’m not just being a moany old middle aged grump. I’m worried that the message becomes: Money means job means useful work.

Jaden also said: “She [mum] thought I was spending eight hours a day in my room wasting my time.”


The unspoken inference is that ‘but now she knows I wasn’t’. If it seems hard to argue with that, it means we’ve accepted nothing is a waste of time if a ton of dosh comes out of it. It’s also suggesting that playing computer games, and maybe playing in general, is not ‘useful’ unless you’re earning from it.

Which means: if you’re living a frugal life, and choosing to make the most of life’s free gifts, then you’re not useful.

Money forgives all sins, and frugality comprises them.


So has Jaden ‘made it’? Do we now look upon him as we look upon other self-made millionaires? As a go-getting bootstrapper?

Or as a kid who got lucky and now needs to make sure he enjoys the rest of his life? I wish him well.

His mum, on Jaden’s future: “Playing video games and eating takeaways, Jaden’ll be in his element.” Sounds legit.