You may want to catch up on the Dr. Jane McGonigal talk before reading this.
I want to start by saying I hold a great deal of respect for Dr. McGonigal, her passion, and her drive. However, I believe her premise as stated at SXSW contains fundamental flaws.
She believes that ARG's should exist to provide a gaming environment over our life that creates a sense of happiness (read accomplishment or self-actualization) by allowing us to 'know the rules.' We get points for doing the designed tasks and achievements. Basically, she contends that life is unfair, many of us are 'bad' at it, and that by having gaming rules overlaid upon our life all this will change. Game designers can design you into happiness.
That's great if you're a designer.
However, I hope people will think twice, three times, and more about handing over their sense of worth to any designer, no matter how talented and benevolent. No one knows what you want more than yourself. Generalized metrics can help point our way, but surrendering our sense of self to an automated construct that restricts our ability to customize individual modes and measurements of success isn't one step removed from tyranny, it is tyranny.
And dismissing corporations as only the money people that allow designers to create whatever they want is foolishness. I think we can confidently accept that the company funding the project also gets a say in the rules and thus gets to make the rules we must then play by.
So if you want to make life a game, you better first make damn sure you like the process of design that creates the game. If it isn't democratic and wholly responsive to the voice of the gamers, count me out. I can make up my own rules and live up to them just fine.
I'll be quite happy doing so.