Cultures in Second Life

What is really possible in Second Life, regarding „Change“, with a capital C? And especially in my fields of interest: that is intercultural dialogue and conflict resolution.

I signed up for SL after the Imagine seminar, but I had some computer problems in the beginning. Since a week or two I can walk and fly around without much technical problems. After my first encounters with other avatars, I felt it was not much different from an average bar… But I realised I just had to look for the right places (and those are definetely not in the „most popular places“ list in the search engin!). After Fraukes post on Better World Island, I went to have a look, but I never met anyone there.

Then last week I discovered a group of (future) mediators, who plan to use SL to facilitate trainings with people from all over the world. But they also have real ambitious plans: host Real Life mediations in SL…! You are not in the same place, but there is still the visual aspect.
Still, the thing that really interests me, is the intercultural apsect. What is actually possible in SL, apart from facilitating a training with people you know through RL. I mean, in SL you look like you want to. And these looks, even if you can change your appearance any way you want, ae not really connected to RL cultures. So do intercultural issues matter?

This afternoon I chatted with a teacher from a learning center in SL, who suddenly made remarks about what I wrote about my avatar in my profile (about communication in SL and intercultural possiblities). He told me he always reads peoples profile, because that is the only way to learn anything about another avatar: it is the closest you get to someones real colours! 🙂

Maybe I’m taking SL too serious, or maybe I still have to find out the use of SL in intercultural dialogue myself! Do you have any experience with this?

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2 Antworten zu Cultures in Second Life

  1. fraukegodat schreibt:

    Hi Anne-Claire,
    Writing from Berlin tonight 😉 Very intersting questions. Actually, I haven’t been back to SL after my initial adventures: RL hit me full speed!

    I might meet up with Allison later on this week: thanks for connecting us!
    Maybe more later…

  2. Olasofia schreibt:

    Hey Anne-Claire

    yes great questions.

    I have now had my first experiences of being in SL with SKYPE at the same time.
    It is really quite an experience. You can have all the voice communication going on and see the 3-D movement and expression too, and allow imagery from all kind of architecture and landscape to be hitting your retina, working on your sub-conscious.

    Literally speaking.. you can feel light and airy conversing with others on a beach or warm and cosy in a tree house or all business-like round a meeting room table.

    Or speak with others under the falling rain in the rain forest.

    I met with Andy who showed me around his island. He writes on
    (he is focused on cybernetics and systemiche beratung and is connected to a great group of people who have also a presence in SL)
    We sat on a magic carpet and flew about the island.

    He told me he has done business this way. Inviting his clients there and talking with them while flying around on the magic carpet.

    Now I have met Andy’s avatar, I have a sense of him not just through voice but how is avatar moves around and how it looks. It says something about him just as mine does about me. So as and when we meet in RL it will be more than just a phone call or just SL meeting.

    Well we are interested in how to run World Cafe there so will be very cool to explore this with those who are interested. If you want to, feel free to join the group in there called:
    we are meeting every 3 weeks in mini field-trips there 😉 Any one is welcome to join us who feels excited about the possibilities.

    We dont know enough so far to handle sceptics 😉 But the good questions are worth reflecting on as we learn more, and yes the sceptics in life have an important and valueable role. *smiles*

    How to link this back to RL so it is grounded and these worlds dont become too disconnected?

    I must say after a while in SL I go outside and i think. Wow the Real World. What a beautiful thing it is.

    But speaking by phone and dipping in and out for a quick meeting on a magic carpet or in the rainforest, well it definitely leaves me with a different feeling.

    Well ok that is enough from me, i could go on and am definitely rambling now!

    All the best and hope to see you in there or in RL soon and you too Frauke.. am looking forward to read the article you posted here on virtual worlds.


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