Posts tagged ‘second life’

InWorldz Relay For Life: History Made.

Today marks the day that Relay For Life entered another world. For the last 7 years Relay For Life has been a part of Second Life. Today it as stepped into another world, the virtual world of InWorldz. Today History was made. More in the link.

InWorldz Relay For Life: History Made..

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Second Life: A Glimpse into the future of Humanity?

Second life is a very compelling topic for anyone who has ever heard of it. For those of you who aren’t aware of this phenomenon. Second Life is a virtual world, which was created in 2003 by Linden Labs. It is a game, but this game does not have levels, aims or goals, it is simply there for its users or residents to live out their second lives.

I came across SL a few years ago, before I went to university, sitting around my laptop looking for games to play. It never crossed my mind that I was looking at something that would have such an impact on life. It wasn’t until recently it popped up once again in one of my lectures. Second Life had made an impact on Journalism! Second life had several ‘inworld’ newspapers which have made such an impression on the journalistic world that it has caught the eyes of theorists, Bonnie Brennon and Ekira dela Cerna, who wrote an remarkable eye opening article called ‘Journalism in Second Life’.

With that discovery, I started to wonder; where else has this phenomenon had spread to? What else has Second Life created or change? In Brennon and dela Cerna’s article, they explored Postmodernism in SL and the subject of creativity within journalism as well as the ‘blurring of the line between the real world and the virtual world.’

There are a number of issues have developed in Second Life:

Capitalism

Second Life has a growing economy and actually uses money called Linden dollars or L$ after its developer. It didn’t take long for many stores began to profit off  the need for virtual goods,  offering clothes, furniture and other items in exchange for L$.  It is possible to get a job within SL such as hostesses, dancers and DJs as a way of earning L$.

Body Image

In Second Life, users are able to edit their ‘avatars’ to be any shape and size. This could be a serious topic

Second Life 'Resident'

when dealing with body image between men and women. Many ‘residents’ are skinny, tall and have the ‘ideal’ body within this virtual world. It is quite rare that you’ll find someone who doesn’t have the ideal shape.

Relationships

Within Second Life it is possible to have a relationship, get married and even have virtual children.  Sexual activities are also possible within SL, but have been heavily regulated (due to several individuals trying to sue Linden Labs) and have been given its own piece of land or map space for mature content.  The most infamously known relationship within this virtual world is that of a British woman who divorced her husband because he was having an affair within SL. It is possible through this virtual space on your computer, for users to feel betrayed and have true feelings even though it is a game.

Creativity

Those who use Second Life have shown a remarkable kind of creativity. Many have shown skills in virtual building, entrepreneurship, tailoring, music and others. There are now schools and universities within SL that teach the basic to an  advance level of clothes making, building and other courses needed to survive within this virtual economy.

Schedule from Caledon Oxbridge University in SL

Then there is the point that others just want to socialise:

Resident BreeElle Adored comments, ‘It is a venue to meet a large variety of people I would never in real life get a chance to know. And learn more about other beliefs and cultures.

Another Resident Dave Horngold says, “To me SL is just a big chatroom.”

Whatever the reason, Second Life is making quite an impact on our society, it has been featured in literature, parodied in films and have even made its mark amongst our society (having been sued several times).

Futurist Ray Kurweil famously stated, “One day we will leave our bodies behind and uploads our brains to the virtual world to explore the universe at the speed of light.”  Although we are not yet able or ready to upload our brains and leave our bodies behind, Second Life might be a primitive version of what might be around the corner.

References

Second Life’s Economy

Relationships, Marriage and Partnerships

Caledon Oxbridge University

New Journalism in Second Life

Second Life and the Body