9 Years Later, Virtual Democracy Experiment in SL Still Thriving (Comment of the Week)
Neufreistadt in 2006 (from this post)
Last week, an SLer named Tor Karlsvalt stopped by New World Notes to offer his update on Neufreistadt/Neualtenburg, an ambitious experiment in virtual democracy on a cooperatively-owned simulator created to look like an old Bavarian city 9 years ago -- a project which was subsequently wracked in internal strife and, ironically enough, a DMCA trademark dispute which I wrote about in 2006. According to Tor, Neufreistadt still thrives in another version, not just on a single sim (which is how it began) but on many:
"Just browsing through your old articles and found this one pertaining to a period of Neufreistadt history that is now more part of the 'national myth' of CDS than anything relevant today," he wrote in the post's Comments. "Neufreistadt is still in SL and not in any danger of disappearing. This Oktoberfest we traditionally celebrate our founding, just as was done during the time of Kendra and Ulrika. This Oktoberfest will mark the ninth anniversary of the foundation of Neualtenburg. Yes we were renamed, but alas the citizens of Neufreistadt were on the land while our prominent members left to form a different group, Port Neualtenburg, which has since closed back in 2008." Here's what's happened since then:
"Today, Neufreistadt refers to itself as the Confederation of Democratic Simulators." (Tor Karlsvalt is himself the self-described Chancellor of the CDS.) "It includes five regions: Neufreistadt, Colonia Nova, Alpine Meadow, Locus Amoenus and Monastery. It does, owing to its nature as a resident owned and governed simulation, succumb to periodic upheavals. Still it has remained through all its trials and challenges. We are today, democratic and independent of any single benefactor or group of benefactors. We do have problems. But they are out in the open for all to see. Currently, our sims are having trouble covering all our tier. Still, we have over the years, prepared for these times and remain in excellent shape for the long term. This September 21st, the CDS turns 9 and begins to plan for its 10th anniversary in Second Life. To be sure the CDS has evolved and changed, but the Neualtenburg Projeckt lives!"
Pretty fascinating stuff. I had assumed Neualtenburg had gone defunct as most real life experiments in collectively-owned democratic experiments do, but in Second Life at least, in continues on.
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