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Friday, November 13, 2009

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Sioban McMahon

"several said they did so... so they could make friends easier. Not for sexual reasons, necessarily, just to encourage basic social contact"


I'd venture that it depends on what sort of friends or contacts you'd like to make.

Chakalak

Just for fun I once made my (normally very skinny) Avatar really really fat. But I wore my cutest outfit, nice hair and skin,... .
Then I went to some clubs with friends and we danced the night away. Almost everyone in the clubs found that superfunny and we all laughed and it also was fun to me. Poeple IMmed me asking if I would be that fat irl but most guys were friendly and had their giggles. To me it was fun to watch my fat avie doing the sexy dances :)
I do that frequentlyfor fun and have no problems socialising then. So I can't confirm. In rl I'm not fat! :)

Jovin

Agree with Sioban - and if it helps, I go out of my way to avoid contact with balloon-breasted Barbies in SL.

Dwarven

Chakalak -

Don't you find it weird that they asked if your were fat IRL? Like it should have any bearing on your avatar? That's the kind of behavior I think we accept too easily because they try to phrase it in a "nice way."

My avatar has been both skinny and fat, male and female. I saw no real difference between a skinny and fat male, but I got avoided like the PLAGUE when I made a fat female av. And that's not just at clubs - it's in general. Even established friends wanted to talk over IM as opposed to avatar-to-avatar.

CyFishy Traveler

Ah-ha! No wonder Beginning gets more IMs than I do . . .

elusyve

The "why" we create ourselves as we do, is a complex and varied as each individual. Some considerations are;

Purpose of the Avatar, for example, someone who models will have moderate sizing compared to someone who dances or escorts.

Social Circles, including peer pressure - I have witnessed and participated in, making myself shorter or taller, wider or thinner, in order to fit in somewhat with the people I most socialize with. So I imagine this is true of huge boobage as well. (altho mine have shrunk substantially since beginning SL..LOL)

Perception.. it is said that perception can be a different truth, to whomever is doing the percieving. Are we creating for ourselves and what we want to be, or are we creating for others and what we *think* they want to see.

(just a side, to the person who said she makes her avie fat because it is funny and everyone finds it "superfunny" I find it sad that you mock a size for your amusement as well as the amusement of others *prepares myself for bashing*)

Caliburn Susanto

I make my avatar attractive (to me) and well-dressed because I like looking at attractive and well-dressed people (and I have to look at my avatar a LOT so I may as well enjoy it!). :-)

If other people find it appealing that's cool, but it's not my motivation for doing it.

Doreen Garrigus

I avoid talking to Barbie Doll avs, too. I like creative people who aren't interested in the whole social climb. Perhaps it is that people approach those avatars that look comfortably familiar or, conversely, those that stand out in some way.

There have actually been a couple of times that I've struck up a conversation with a big breasted avatar----but I mean *really* big. Prim breasts bigger than the avatar's torso. I just had to know what motivated those people.

My avatar, for those of you not familiar, looks like me most of the time. I don't try to make her pretty. I try to make her accurate. I do it mostly as an artistic exercise. My (RL & SL) partner's av looks even more like life than mine does---I helped a little. His (RL) sister thought we'd uploaded a picture of him.

Does this make a difference in popularity? I don't know. I get a lot of attention when I go out in public, because I'm smaller than everybody else. Since I'm not a child av or a pixie or a non-human of any kind, I'm not easily classified, and people get curious. It translates into a lot of friend-ings that I am not motivated to follow up on.

brandon

It's really funny you should be so tolerant of one type of avatar yet so hatefel and spitful of another ones.

I have a group of friends who play Sl and among some are real life girls and they all play with their sliders to max or wear big prim breasts. So your theory doesnt hold up in all cases.

Our campus group is about 12-14 SL players. 5 are girls. All five love breast play and one is what you would call a FA and dabbles in really big avatars.

More than one of them reads this flog from time to time and they really get depressed to see everyone hating on barbie dolls.

We lost one player over harpies being so mean about her choice of looks she quit and hasnt come back.

In closing I think your all a bunch of closed minded basement dwellers. Go suck it.

Effie Emmons

Actually, this all made me chuckle. I have been told by someone in SL that I need a larger butt to attract men in SL. First, I was never out to "attract" men. Second, why would I even want to associate with someone that was that superficial?

My favorite saying in SL is "There is a real life avie, with real life feelings behind every keyboard. Treat them with respect." We all have reasons why we do things in both of our lives... period. Why did I choose to make my RL hair red? Why do I choose to wear the color of nail polish I do? Everything I do is a sum of my life experiences.

Sure some people might change avies from peer pressure, but even when we cave to that, we do because of who we are and the decisions that we make.

With that said and on the lighter side, why does Effie the avie have fairly large bossoms? Because her RL avie does. ~smiles~

Bryony C.

When I was a newbie I tried having a large bosom, only to have an American "lady" tell her friend in open chat that if she were me she'd "get a reduction".
I then discovered Grendel's Children and non-human avatars. Grendel's folk get chatting about interesting avatars, the less human, the better.
In human form I'm often wearing a kimono...kimono don't look good with big bosoms so I'm usually flat chested.
I've made my friends through interest in them as people. SL allows us to show aspects of ourselves that stay hidden in RL.
In my experience those who like non-human avatars are often great fun to be with :)

Doreen Garrigus

Brandon, I don't hate the people behind the Barbie Doll avatars, and I'm not sure anyone does. I do avoid talking to them, most of the time. Here's why.

Your avatar is your representation of self to the world of Second Life. You use it to communicate all manner of things. Your appearance is entirely under your control, so your avatar appearance says more about you as a person than your real life appearance does.

The people who run Barbie avatars are communicating that they've accepted a certain set of priorities. It is important to them to be pretty in an exaggeratedly feminine, artificial, fashion-doll kind of way, and they are willing to spend quite a bit of time and money to achieve this.

Those priorities are not my priorities. I am looking for something different from the world. I can't think of much to say to the Barbie Dolls and I doubt they would have much to say to me.

Noreen Strehlow

I have to weigh in on this only because it was brought up to me in real life that my avatar should have a reduction. Someone who had seen my avatar in a promotional pic for a class I was teaching took offense at the avatar. My boss thought it was pretty goofy that someone would take the time to write to our tech guys as if it was within their domain to ask me to change my avatar.
In actuality, my avatar is not as well endowed as I am in real life so it's really a form of sexual harrassment to even suggest something no one could say to my face. My avatar is thinner than I am and a lot taller for all the reasons people have mentioned above. I have plumped up a little bit and made her a little shorter but when I first came in I tried to make the avatar more like me and got laughed at. I looked like a hobbit!

Dio Kuhr

It's a funny thing, I've got friends who take on a variety of forms, including old, fat, young, pretty, and in-between. I have built nice friendships with huge-bosmed "barbies," mechanoids and other non-humans, kids, even people with slider hair or who obstinately hang on to an off-the shelf noobish look as a political statement.

More often than not, we broke the ice with each other either through rp (which gives you something to talk about besides, "My that sure is a humongous rack you have") or by looking at each other's profiles and finding something funny, interesting, or appealing in what we have to say about ourselves and our ways of looking at things.

My own look is middle-aged, short and a little stocky, almost always wearing ankle-length skirts and tops that show no cleavage at all (and with smallish-sized breasts anyhow, that's no big deal). It's very rare that I get hit on, or even have a conversation begun regarding appearances. After all, my physical appearance certainly is not "hawt" in the conventional mass-market sense of it, and it probably doesn't help that I am usually packing iron even while shopping, nor have I ever been inclined to suffer fools gladly.

But what does get conversations started is my profile. I'll get IM's from people who read something in it and find it funny, interesting, or puzzling. And that's kind of nice because it means you're talking to someone who actually bothers to read the crap you took time to write, which suggests that (A). they are people who look at things beyond the superficial, and (B). they are people who actually are able to freakin' read. Yeah I know sometimes there is a language issue there, but if people try, we can work around that.

Anyhow, I do find the thing about using big ol' temptation bumps as an ice-breaker to be pretty intriguing and enlightening. But, the thing I would really like to see would be for one of these people who like to ponder the social dynamics of the grid to actually analyze and study what people put into their profiles.

Some people put as much effort, and more thought into what is in the profile, than how their avie looks or what they are wearing, And part of what would be interesting, would be for whoever is doing a survey or study to get some kind of data on who does that, and what kind of people use other folks' profiles as an icebreaker or conversation starter.

The population of the gird is a lot more diverse than many people seem to realize--especially those academics who only explore and relate to the grid in a very superficial way. There are as many different ways of socializing and connecting with each other as there are different categories and types of folks wandering around.

I really have no problem with a "barbie" who employs excessive bosomly attributes as a means to initiate and foster social connections. We all come from different places emotionally and otherwise, and hey, we gotta do what feels right and works for us as individuals, right? Does it get you the kind of results you're looking for? If yes, then knock yourself with them sliders, babe, and the laws of gravity be damned.

But I would be curious about the demographics of the people who follow that path--just like I would like to know more about the people who go to great creative efforts in making their profiles interesting> I am curious if there are any patterns to how these tendencies shake out.

Yep, that would be fun and possibly useful stuff to know more about.

Delinda Dyrssen

I made mine smaller now less newbe guys hit on me and my Tshirts fit better. :-)

Gahum Riptide

I made Gahum tall and athletic not to meet people but to be visually appealing to me. As I have to look at him wherever I go, his look is what *I* want to see. In fact, I think Gahum's look is intimidating, but it's not like he has a scowl or even wears weapons.

I've got friends who run around as fauns, elves, vampires, occasional goblins, barbies, skinny guys, girls with curves and It's a wonderful thing.

Mitch Wagner

My human SL avatar is very muscular and wears jeans, snakeskin boots and a T-shirt most of the time. He has long, flowing auburn hair.

In RL, I'm balding, fat, and middle-aged.

However, in RL I'm working hard to lose weight and get fit. I don't really have any interest in bulking up, though. I just bulk up the avatar because I think he looks better that way. Maybe I'll try a more slender shape at some point.

I can't do anything about my hair in RL. It's balding, so I cut it down to about 1/8", because I think any longer looks bad. When they invent an inexpensive and *effective* hair restoration treatment for men, I'll be first in line. I was always vain about my hair, back when I had it.

I started wearing jeans and boots my first few weeks in Second Life, and it was only a few months later that I realized that's how I dressed almost every day when I was in my 20s.

Another similarity between my avatar and me: We both wear eyeglasses. Same style, too.

My copper robot avatar, which I wear when I'm hosting the Copper Robot interview program, or researching it, is enormously tall. I didn't notice it, but a few guests pointed it out to me, and said they found it intimidating (they were joking about it being intimidating. Or maybe they weren't). At some point, I'm going to ask the creator of the avatar if he'd be willing to make me a human-sized one.

Aliasi Stonebender

Hm. Dunno how to put it. my regular human avatar isn't really Barbie-ish - the breast slider IS up high, but because the sliders in SL are absolute, not relative. I've deliberately made my avatar an eight-foot Amazon, so those sliders have to be high to be proportional. She doesn't look excessively endowed, just very tall (especially with folks who've paid attention to their height and tried to make something more realistic).

While there's certainly warning signs that "I won't like to talk to this person", the avatar isn't usually one of them. text-messaging speak (ur there? "lol" even when something isn't remotely goddamned funny) is MY usual one.

SL is a fantasy land in many ways, even with the business inroads. If I have a preference away from Barbies, it's only because freaks are more interesting - even the ones with prim breasts. ;)

AnnOtooleInSL

It is simply impossible to make my avatar any more attractive than it is already.

:D

j/k

Chakalak

@ Dwarven:

Yes, that's weird a bit.
I think most poeple suppose that the person behind the avie looks somewhat similar...
I think that's the case for very few poeple only (James Wagner e.g. ;)).
Personally, I just try to make good looking or fun avies.

Emilly Orr

I'd tend to agree with Sioban McMahon, and Dio Kuhr--I won't go out of my way to talk to anyone who looks like the typical surf bunny lounging at the Playboy Mansion--bottle-blonde hair, tanned oiled skin, glossy blue eyes, waist you could snap in half with two fingers--but these days, there really aren't a lot of folks who bother to look like that. And the only reason I avoid them is not so much appearance-based--it's because I find, time and time again, that these people are the ones who can make a sentence out of five letters--"u r? lol" and can't spell in their profiles. I'm a snob about intelligence, I like to find some.

That being said, I've made two--just two--shapes in my entire time on the grid for sale. I felt compelled to make both of them, and they're still in both my stores. One's a tall, thin waif with large eyes, small breasts, and thin hips; the other's designed for neko skins, and is a plump and rounded tabby-cat.

I've sold the thin shape, Millicent. I haven't sold even one of the Tabby.

Now, I will say, that even for a shapeshifter, whose species and form change at will, I generally keep to a humanoid look. And back when I escorted, that look had *much* larger breasts and hips. But I'm not there anymore, I'm not dancing any more (though I'm contemplating returning, just for the income). Now, it's just me--generally short, endowed but not overly, generally ice-pale, multicolored or cat. I get people who like the look of the day, but I've never had people--even when I was dancing--offer to friend me for my breast size.

Arcadia Codesmith

If you look at the earliest known representations of the human form in sculpture, dating back to prehistory, there is one common unifying theme -- bodacious ta-tas.

To tell the truth, I got tired of messing with sliders some time ago and I usually just toss on the first free/cheap off-the-shelf shape in my inventory that looks anatomically plausible.

DD+ cups that stand firm and proud without significant engineering support do not meet this criteria.

Appearance matters to me to the extent that if you're going to be a grotesque parody, it should be because that's what you intended, not because you don't know any better or can't be bothered. If you want to be a tramp, be a polished, high-quality tramp, hold your chin high and have fun.

Arwyn Quandry

My avatar is similar to myself in body shape - not very curvy at all. I've always had a problem with the typical looks - big boobs, tiny waist, huge hips. Being a Gorean roleplayer, I do get grief over my shape not being curvy, and have to adjust nearly all my clothing down by an extreme. I really get annoyed with designers who don't allow you to scale their skirts down or make no-mod clothing.

I made my shape myself, and will not alter it for anyone. If I change it, it's because I felt the change was needed. I have some roleplayers trying to get me to add some curves, but I'm not comfortable with that, and refuse to do so. My shape is a reflection of who I am, and no one can change that.

In skin color and facial features, I'm nothing like my avatar, who is dark skinned while I'm rather pale, and has high cheekbones and regal features while I'm a bit plainer looking.

Winter Jefferson

My avatar is beautiful because he *made* me make him that way. I didn't have that much of a choice really, YOU try telling a 227 year old clothes horse that you don't want him to fit into those Zaara jeans.

Thaumata Strangelove

(Allow me to repost the comment I just left on the original P&P post... I'm disappointed to see NWN doesn't check things like this more thoroughly, what with all the chatter about protecting IP! - Thau)

I'm surprised to see that you haven't given a photo credit for the woman pictured in your post here. Her name is Lilith Lunardi and that image is marked as All Rights Reserved in her Flickr stream. (Here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/lilithlunardi/361598616)

I am curious (and also doubtful) as to whether you asked her permission to use this work, and also if you WOULD have asked permission if her avatar were demure instead of provocative. Guess that's one argument for NOT creating a large-breasted avatar - even the blogs won't respect you for it.

(I have emailed Lilith with a link to this article, as well as the NWN article which links back to it and uses the same image. I'll be interested to hear her thoughts on this.)

amarisa001

think that is cute come meet me at the fighting ring

Dingus

Nope, I like to create an avitar that resembles more so my own shape, If people don't want to be friends I'm fine with that, If It's only the characters appearance that they like, they can beat It. I guess It helps that I'm a loner anyways and an anxious person so I'm used of not having friends on games, they make It more fun yes, but that would be a fake friendship thinner than paper. Unless of-cause you use skype with them and actually become long distance friends over time. I just can't stand the big chest teeny waist and large hip avi's, not a whole lot of people have that naturally and seems pretty perverted to me, puts me off even wanting to know the person behind such a character.
The unfortunate part Is I'm still trying to figure out a way to make my kemono a little bigger since they look like they're based off of the standard asian anime character. Not being racist, It just looks like It's based off of It. Anywho, that's a thing. I just don't like falseness In body types/shapes to look sexual...attractive..

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