[iDC] from Charlie Gere: An Inconvenient Youth and Second Life

Ana Valdés agora158 at gmail.com
Sun Feb 25 17:23:21 EST 2007

I had an short sejour in Second Life last year. As an old (I am 53,
old in age and old playing, since 1997, when Ultima Online was
launched as beta) online gamer I was interested of the idea of a
simulation, I was a bit tired of allt those medieval or
science-fiction simulations as Everquest, World of Warcraft or Project
I builded a house in SL, a friend helped me to build a house and a
garden. It was very similar to the Sims, when you have a dollhouse you
must populate with dolls and furniture. When the house was built we
went shopping, after ten warehouses where the same bed, couch, chair
and lamp, we gave up and my friend, who is a smart Photoshopper and
technic, made a copy of my own Maroocan couches and carpets. I live in
Sweden, the shopping tour was as to be prisoner in IKEA after closing
time, a nightmare.
After the house was clear and we bought a script who gave me the
opportunity to see my avatar cross it's legs and smoke looking at the
fire, we went into an architectural safari. After 100 copies of
Stonehenge, Eiffel tower, firebrandstations, Cape Canaveral, Le
Corbusier and Frank Lloyd Right, we tired.
Now was the time to test the "action". I wanted to gamble, after ten
trips to different casinos and play coinmachines in the same machine,
rendered and cloned from the same first machine, I tired as well.
Went to a lot of sexshops, not  more naughty than you see in Amsterdam
red light district or in Tokyo's backyards. At that time I was
I joined several churches, ten's of groups to read poetry, to discuss
politics, to empeach Bush, toi fight against Le Pen, etc, etc.
After six months of walking around empty shopping malls, half crowded
stores, crowded discos where you see avatars dancing to techno disco,
I decided SL was not for me.
I closed the account and now I watch the hype with a lot of curiosity,
where is the action and the interaction in SL?

On 2/25/07, patrick lichty <voyd at voyd.com> wrote:
> Without being too lengthy, I effectively agree with most of the
> criticisms leveled at SL to date.  But, as a cultural researcher, I also
> feel that "for the moment" my involvement constitutes an interest in
> what I feel is a culturally significant event.  Whether it is beneficial
> or not, solipsistic (I believe that it probably is), etc. is more of
> interest to me phenomenologically.   In other words, I almost feel like
> I'm a contact reporter on-world, so I can have that experiential
> knowledge of the community and the hype, etc.
> I firmly believe that SL may rank up there with the Network PC in
> cybercultural terms, but it is surely interesting to see how people are
> adopting it and why, etc.
> Great place for research.
> However, the place where I feel like SL does have the greatest value is
> in its structuring of community. As mentioned before, it feels so much
> like the mid-90's Rhizome, that it's incredible.  Small, tight-knit
> community, idiosyncratic creative methods, no aggregating 900 blogs,
> etc.  That's the thing I like.
> Patrick Lichty
> - Interactive Arts & Media
>   Columbia College, Chicago
> - Editor-In-Chief
>   Intelligent Agent Magazine
> http://www.intelligentagent.com
> 225 288 5813
> voyd at voyd.com
> "It is better to die on your feet
> than to live on your knees."
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