Second Life and the web blur… and this is a good thing.

A week ago, there was no web presence for Swedish Second Life projects by organizations. Now there are two (in addition to this here blog):

  • Second Sweden has a blog, used for announcements and event reports — for example, with shots from their recent ABBA night. (In Swedish)
  • So Else, an “intercultural movement in Second Life” started by Swede Lukas Mensing, also has a blog. There is no specific Swedish focus, but Swedish culture is represented at the events held by So Else.

Natalie Moody/Therese Åhs, a Swedish in-world live music performer, also has a website up, where she posts her schedule and writes about herself.

A couple of conclusions:

The barriers between the web and Second Life are blurring. Not only is it getting easier to access media files already published to the web inside Second Life (Quicktime video, images, news feeds), there is a flurry of new services that are providing web 2.0-like social services, like social bookmarking and web/SL instant messaging.

It’s a good thing that these barriers are blurring. The web and the metaverse/Second Life have different strengths. The web is by far the most efficient means of disseminating textual information and documents, or accessing calendars and mail. The metaverse provides a far richer and more intuitive means of live communication, both between individuals and groups. As 3D virtual worlds go mainstream, I suspect we’ll see a division of labor: We’ll simply choose the tools that do the job most effectively. This means, for example, using a blog to alert people of social events in Second Life — and it makes sense, because we are not in Second Life all the time (at least most of us arent:-)

I think there is one likely source of friction in all this: some of Second Life’s early adopters, the true believers in the metaverse, are romantics, and are wishing for an independent metaverse, where the rules (and identities) of the real world don’t apply. All this blurring is going to be a challenge when new adopters of Second Life, who see the virtual worlds mainly as a pedagogical and communications tool, will demand real, verifiable idenitities from the people they interact with. It’s mighty hard to know who to trust in Second Life right now, not without getting real-life assurances as to whom you are dealing with. I think that in the future it will be difficult to be anonymous in Second Life if you also want to interact with real-world organizations and their presences in SL.

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12 responses to “Second Life and the web blur… and this is a good thing.

  1. “It’s mighty hard to know who to trust in Second Life right now, not without getting real-life assurances as to whom you are dealing with. I think that in the future it will be difficult to be anonymous in Second Life if you also want to interact with real-world organizations and their presences in SL.”

    Couldn´t agree more.

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  7. very nice blog, thanks for posting and good comment :)

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