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Thursday, January 29, 2009


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Ann Otoole

This is a TOS Violation unless Linden Lab has authorized the transfer.

Hamlet Au

As said above, these are copies of the avatar, not the account.

Mo Hax

I have heard/read practically these same words so very many times and have experienced the same feelings myself early on. It is like there is a second Second Life and if you can survive the first Second Life you gain some new perspective and longevity. I don't feel near the effect of immersion I did the first year. Perhaps it is a callousness. I do have great friends that have rediscovered their real lives and found deleting their account the best solution.

Abandoning Second Life entirely is not always the answer, although turning it down might be. In doing so I have made human connections via web 2.0 and Twitter I might not have otherwise.

Dare I suggest that the closer we live our Second Lives to our real lives the less the need to abandon it entirely. Sure escaping reality is nice but perhaps not disconnecting entirely from reality is key to keeping ourselves in a place we can always live with, come what may, in our Second and First lives.

Morris Vig

@ Mo Hax:

You make a VERY profound point. Thanks for bringing that to light.

Nazz Lane

I'd recently interviewed Nightflower for an article that appeared in the January issue of Avenue Magazine. SL will be just a little less then it could be, with her departure.

Ann Otoole

Sorry about that Hamlet. Skim reading is a bad habit. :P

Anyone having issues with SL needs to make SL their RL business. I guarantee you that it will only be a matter of time before you have no more sl/rl issues.

CodeBastard Redgrave

I would like to correct that Night included no skin in that package, but she does point to the full name of her favorite Blowpop skin and hair in a notecard that is included in the vendor.

Moggs Oceanlane

Thanks for the heads up Hamlet :)

Chestnut Rau

Mo -- You have made a very thought provoking point. Thank you.

Botgirl Questi

Night's been a good friend and collaborator. It's a bit ironic that our "Night vs. Human Comic" had a pivotal scene with her human counterpart's finger poised over the delete key. That was back in September.

You can find that page here: http://botgirlvhuman.smackjeeves.com/comics/462481/night-vs-human-03/

Zoe Connolly

I often think of doing the same. Night's story gives me a little more courage to go forward with my plan.


Very valid points ! This is very interesting way to say goodbye. We will miss you Night Flower.

Alas Zerbino

I don't know Night Flower, but I read this post and then her blog because I've experienced the loss of a friend in SL as a result of her husband only suspecting her (incorrectly) of an "SL affair." And both situations continue to puzzle me.

What I don't understand is how leaving SL leaves the problems behind. When people have extramarital affairs with co-workers, does everyone demand they quit their job? When they meet their secret love at church functions, is it the church that is blamed? Or the library, if that's where they rendezvous? Yes, SL can be an alluring escape from one's problems, but it's hardly the cause of the problems.

@Mo Hax, what you wrote makes a lot of sense to me. I'd never thought about it before, but I agree that the closer you live SL to your RL, the less likely you are to keep secrets that you might one day regret. The same can also be said for any other aspect of one's life.

My heart goes out to Night, to my friend, and to all others who find they must cut off one set of relationships to honor their commitment to another. And my heart goes out to Night's friends in SL who will lose their friend.

Still, I think Second Life unfairly becomes the scapegoat in so many situations like this. But oh well -- who ever said life (or any of its many faces) was fair?

Isadora Fiddlesticks

I have always enjoyed her posts. It was her experiences that is something I've always found myself grappling on, but for the life of me, I could never think of quitting SL for good. Perhaps a good couple of months so I can settle into a new life in RL, but never permanently.

She will be missed, but who knows, she might come back and decide that she doesn't need to hide herself.

Isadora Fiddlesticks

i forgot--Mo's point of view also makes sense.

Extropia DaSilva

'These are copies of the avatar, not the account.'

IF the original creator had found someone or something else that could roleplay Night Flower and IF Linden Labs had authorised the transfer of the account and IF nobody in SL knew this had happened and IF Night Flower was roleplayed convincingly enough that residents believe it to be the same person...well, then it IS the same person.

Two decisions of Linden Lab seem rather odd to me. One is the decision to deny people the right to give their avatar their RL surname, which arguably discriminates against people who would rather not see a seperation between themselves and their inworld representation.

The other is to make transferring one's account to someone else a TOS violation. What happens when my primary dies? I have to die with her? Why, when there might be other meatbrains (and, eventually, artificial brains) that could process my patterns, effectively enabling me to live indefinitely for as long as someone or something is willing and able to roleplay the Extropia DaSilva personae?

As a digital person, I should die only when my patterns are no longer deemed to be worth preserving and running, NOT because of some clause in a contract:(

But then, aparrently it is only UNAUTHORISED transferrences that are violating the TOS. I wonder how complicated the process of transferring accounts is?

Mitch Wagner

I've been following Night's saga with some interest, and I respect her honesty on her blog and her decision to abandon Second Life to work on saving her marriage. I fear she will not succeed -- but it's probably important that she try, make the 100% effort, and if her marriage does fail she can honestly say to herself that she did everything she could to save it. I think being able to say that will be important to her finding eventual happiness.

I think many of Night's problems come, not from Second Life, but rather from the fact that she deceived her husband about it. And it was a significant deception to, not just taking the last glass of milk from the refrigerator and then denying doing it. Had she been upfront with her husband from the outset, she might have avoided later problems.

I think possibly the main reason that Second Life is less popular than expected is because of the nearly mandatory RP -- LL makes it very difficult to use your real name in SL. Only a very small number of people are interested in getting a "second life" -- and Night seems to have joined the vast majority on that On the other hand, I think that a lot of people would be willing to use SL if SL made it easier for them to bring their RL identities in with them.

About a year ago, I dug and dug until I found LL's obscure rules for buying your own RL name as a SL name ("Mitch Wagner" is my name in RL and SL). Over the course of 2008, I used my "Mitch Wagner" avatar as a secondary avatar; I had an alt that was actually my primary identity in SL. But I pretty much retired the alt this month -- now I'm "Mitch Wagner" pretty much all the time in SL.

I still occasionally feel odd about using my real name in SL when the custom is to use a SL name. I feel, at at times, like I'm inappropriately dressed -- wearing shorts and sandals to a business-casual social occasion. However, then I remember how this allows me to easily align my professional identity and my identities in SL, Facebook, Twitter, my personal blog, and other media. So on the whole I think using my RL name in SL was a great idea.

BTW, I fully respect the choices of people who decided to go the other way, and become "digital people" (hi, Extropia! -- is Botgirl on this thread?) or simply keep their RL ID confidential (hi, Zoe!). In RL, we don't walk around with our professional resume, driver's license, and credit record plastered to our backs all the time for anyone to see, why should we feel obligated to do the equivalent when we're on the Internet?

OTOH, I notice that Botgirl seems to be withdrawing from SL, and I wonder if she would have made that decision if she'd gone into SL with her own, RL name to begine with?

Botgirl Questi

A couple comments on Mitch's post:

If Botgirl was never created, it's very unlikely that much, if any, of the interesting work done under that identity would have happened. If the human behind Botgirl was publicly identified from the start, I am certain that she would not have gotten the same amount of attention. Hamlet's "Who is Botgirl" story never would have run. So for me at least, the ability to operate under a pseudonymous identity has been a creative blessing.

On the professional side, it's a bit frustrating. Given the realities of net-connected social life, I operate under the assumption that even telling a couple seemingly trustworthy people who have active online about my real identity will ultimately make it common knowledge. So I've been in quite a few RL business situations when it would be really beneficial to bring Botgirl's "street cred" to the table, but I've held back.

At this point, I'm starting to disclose the connection to a few people I think will keep it to themselves. And if it "leaks" it won't be the end of the world at this point. My aim is to get to a point by the end of the year that my identity is more of an open secret.

As for withdrawal from SL, I think it's more of finding a more healthy balance between creative time spent in various pursuits and escaping from my self-created pressure to keep cranking stuff out every day.

I'd write more, but I'd have to bill Hamlet for my time ;)

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Wagner James Au
Wagner James "Hamlet" Au
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