Saturday, December 8, 2012

Pull Up A Chair, Let’s Talk

Tatty Soup

“What a bunch of losers,” a friend said when I told her about Second Life (SL) and how close we become to those around us in this virtual world. Losers we may be, in the eyes of those who are not residents but there is something that connects us all in SL.

Lately we have seen a number of old-time residents either leave us or become gravely ill, many of whom contributed greatly to this virtual world. I have heard their names, read their blogs, and heard friends mention them many times. But I have never met them, inworld or off-world.

It is in my nature to be concerned with those who are suffering and to grieve those who are gone. However, when we are talking about SL residents the feeling is somewhat different. There is a sense of deep loss for a partner in crime, an accomplice, someone who understood the magic of SL, who wandered through amazing sims and recognized that this is an extraordinary place. Yes, there is a common denominator among old-time SL residents. They are dreamers. Despite the hurdles, despite the technical limitations, the countless problems, they stay on. When one of them goes, SL is poorer, weaker.

I know there are many who believe that SL is a lost cause. I do too at times. But, if nothing else, SL brought new friends to my life, even if I didn’t know them, even if they didn’t know me. Yes, friends, because they were part of this chain of people who are strongly passionate about making SL a special place, a chain whose rings go from complete strangers to acquaintances, from virtual friends to very real friends we share our lives with. And that is when the virtual is distant or cartoonish no more; that is when we worry and are saddened.

I guess what connects us is the fact that we are stubborn enough not to forget our humanity.


  1. Last night i took a look at my old Myspace page from 2007. It was laggy and clunky and kludgey but i realized that there were photos posted there about my old Secondlife that I had lost. My hard drive from 2007 crashed sometime between then and now and I lost all those old pics. There's something about SL in those old pics from when I was a noob that is missing now. It might be a naivety or innocense that is missing now.

  2. Don't worry about "outsiders" - many intelligent and informed people nonetheless told me that "the World Wide Web is a fad" "will never be more than a niche market" and similar statements.

    They also tried to steer me to Novell because "that's where the code is" and "TCP/IP is a bad protocol."

    It took 7-9 years to convince them they were wrong. Nowadays I really wouldn't bother.

    Don't sweat the people who don't understand human connectivity.

  3. Honour and Whiskey - Thank you <3

    Wizzy - Yes, you are absolutely right. There is a different feel to Second Life nowadays. I think some of the magic was the fact that we were very happy with the smallest things, which were in fact absolutely fantastic achievements!

    Miso - *nods* Still today, people who know I am in SL have no clue what it is all about. I find that perplexing. If anyone ever told me about something in such an enthusiastic way as I do tell them, I'd certainly be at least curious to check it out. There is this apathy that baffles me.

  4. Far from being the past it's our future... It is a marvellous locus for inspiration, creativity and... writing!
    My sister is a genuine resident and she inspired this story:

  5. Honoré, wow! Loved your writing. Thank you for posting the link. :) I share the same feeling; it is our future and what an extraordinary future it is, for all aspects of our lives!

  6. A very old friend (RL) said recently..."please! no more busty robots..i aint got enuff fuel for outaspace.....yet"

    So...those of us that do have enough fuel, sure, we shoot around the metaverse meeting fellow explorers... It is an elite club, to belong you just have to have a bit of guts.

    Great post.

  7. Anonymous12/10/2012

    Well said. x

  8. "I guess what connects us is the fact that we are stubborn enough not to forget our humanity."

    Well said.

    It always annoys me when people say it's just pixels, but it's more than that. It's about the people driving the pixels and avatars, what they say and what they do. I feel my life is richer for all the experiences and people I've interacted with in SL.

  9. Soror - I so agree with what you said. In many ways, we are pioneers.

    Whither - Thank you. x

    Victoria - Absolutely, Victoria.