It's really not that hard of a concept. Many people look at gaming like an escape from life, and it is. But only because there is something to escape to. There is something to GAIN. I have actually learned a lot about interacting with others from playing Multi-player games.
I played Final Fantasy XI for a good 4 years, and when I left that game my character(A Tarutaru named Nimrod) had almost 340 Days PLAYED TIME. As in I am logged in, playing the game. During that time I met and knew at least over 200 people and became friends with at least 50 of them. Time passes and those friendships waned in and out, but with the release of Final Fantasy XIV I have actually found myself playing with some of those very same people. I am SUPER excited to play with them again too.
While I was playing Final Fantasy XI I overlapped that with playing World of Warcraft for a good 5 years. I had countless guilds, friends gained and lost. I still keep in contact with a select few of them and I wish them the best like I would any other friend. One of those friends is going through some really rough times(<3 Dumers!) and I worry for her and hope things look up for her just like I would any real friend.
I've gained a lot of experiences from these games. A lot of ideas were passed around and critical thinking skills gained. I had a position of leadership from time to time, allowing others to better themselves by looking towards what I had to offer. Many of us are gamers, and I love that. Not only is that what I grew up with but I've learned a lot from it.
So to everyone who still doubts the value of gaming, take a long look at what there is to gain from it. You might be surprised at what you find!