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Friday, January 04, 2008


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I guess selling colloidal silver isn't going to go over very well unless I start a "Blue Meanies" RPG. Drats.

Caterin Semyorka

Funny, I haven't experienced any negative reactions since turning blue, except for Satan who now hates me.

CyFishy Traveler

I once met a gal who had blue skin with a faint leopard-like spotting on it. I thought it was gorgeous, and told her so.

I personally gravitate toward unnaturally white skin (a holdover from my initial days in CyberGoth form) which doesn't get too many bad reactions. But a pale pastel might be fun to play with at some point.

I simply don't get tuning somebody out because of how they choose to look. I'm much more interested in how they act and express themselves.

Laetizia Coronet

Being a black girl - as in having a natural African skin colour and shape - in SL hasn't brought me many problems at all. Not even when people see the white guy in the profile. Some do use what Americans refer to as the N-word (it is very exceptional though), and someone recently called me a 'negro' which I found humourously archaeic, reminiscent of ML King days.
But certainly, I have seen people react to green or purple avatars and most don't go beyond the 'Why?' question. Too bad... Hamlet, time for another 'All about my avatar', featuring an off-colour resident!

Sophrosyne Stenvaag

I'm paper-white and winged, and have never had any trouble beyond the occasional noob asking if I'm a vampire.

But then, there's a practical segregation in SL, it seems. I never run into discrimination, harrassment, or general stupidity, though I hear so many stories about rampant idiotic behavior.

I think there's a lot of self-selection that goes on, and woe to anyone who stumbles into an idiot zone - but that's just speculation.

Faerie Hax

I wear coloured skins all the time - usually either Blue/Aqua or Brown/Orange (and wings to match) and I haven't come across any direct harrassment about my looks.

But I do remember that when I first changed from a "normal" skin I noticed a massive reduction in the number of people saying hello.

It took a bit of getting used to, but now I think this is great because it acts likes a filtering system allowing the shallow people to filter themselves out! It does sometimes (but not too often) mean that I can be surrounded by people all ignoring me - but if it happens its just that they're all not my type!

Now when a random stranger wants to talk to me I know that they are much more likely to be the sort of interesting personality that I want to know!

A friend introduced me to a new acquaintance of hers who said to her in open chat "I prefer my women to look more RL" but when I asked him: "In a world where you can be anything, why would you want to be like everyone else?" - his only reply was: "ummm I guess I see your point". It was clear to us both that he didn't (and I don't think my friend has seen him since either).

And yes, we both totally ignored his use of "my" =^.^=


Cyn Vandeverre

Ideally, we'd do a blind test -- set up the viewer so that we can't see the way the avatar looks, then put on a skin/outfit handed to us under some innocuous name "Test skin number one" for example, and then go about our business. We wouldn't know if we look peculiar, or a strange color, or are a floating plywood cube, or whatever.

Then stats or impressions of people's reactions to us could be taken without the user pre-judging what reactions would be, because they wouldn't know.

Harle Armistice

Sometimes people see what they want or expect to see, drawing the wrong conclusions about patterns of events.

SL has the unique way of portraying personalities and likes/dislikes visually. You can tell a lot about a person just by looking at their avatar. How creative they are, versus how much weight they put in mainstream fashion(within SL or outside of it, which are becoming two totally different concepts). Whether they're mature or immature, friendly or stand-offish...

And it's something that everyone in SL, whether they realize it or not, as a pretty easy time picking up on.

So when you have a girl who has purple skin as opposed to normal skin, most people will draw their own conclusions about the kind of person they are. I don't think it's a matter of dislike so much as personality incompatibility. As Orchid herself related, she viewed the kind of conversation she got as 'petty,' which is perhaps a good indication that the people in question drew the wrong conclusion about the kind of person Orchid actually was.

I don't think of it as 'racism' or discrimination, so much as a sort of self-imposed generalization that happens to be uncannily accurate.

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