Thursday, March 12, 2009


Welcome to our class blog space for "Visionary Concepts and Developments in Motion Arts".

I invite you to post your Second Life Interviews and conclusions for commentary.
(Please edit out the names first).
See you in class!

Mechthild Schmidt


  1. Interview 1

    Q: or you can type then straight into the chat
    A: ok, but the answer you first question I discovered SL when I enrolled in sJsj
    Q: *sjsu
    A: #2 I like meeting new people and to unfettered by RL
    Q: same as me, only here at nyu
    A: #3 its about the same some people are less inclined to talk to strangers some more
    A: #5 no I think not I can IM anyone who is not around just like in RL you can send a text or email or tweet
    A: #6 that would be a big YES
    A: #7 yes - I am an MLIS student and there are many libraries here reaching out to where people are
    [14:13] A: MLIS?
    A: #8 not sure about that one
    A: #9 no SL expands life for many; visit virtual ability island where those with physical handicaps can experience freedom
    A: #10 a little of both
    A: #11 not I have not and I am not sure if I will
    A: #12 :-) clothes
    Q: your answer to #9...We've discussed that in class. Great point.
    A: yes #9 is a boon for many allowing people to socialize
    A: #13 not much as a student I get some allowance from my instructor but I have spent $30.00 so far this semester
    A: I hope I was helpful
    Q: You were more than helpful. Thank you very much and good luck with your studies.

    Interview 2

    Q: The truth of the matter is, I am new. I am a student at NYU and I heard about SL in class.
    A: ok... so far do you enjoy?
    Q: I do. Except I am unsure of exactly what I am supposed to do.
    A: nothing at all... just look around and decide what to do
    Q: you can do from surfing to heavy business... (real business in real USD)
    A: I know, the possibilities do seem endless. I guess I just need to spend more time on SL.
    Q: Did you design your avatar yourself?
    A: i did the first... then i have improuved buying skins
    Q: How much did you spend?
    A: so far about 5000 $L
    Q: Is that a lot in USD?
    A: but at the beginning you can go with the freebies
    A: not really a lot. about 40USD
    A: in any case i have spent money that i have earned here
    Q: How do you make money?
    A: camping
    Q: I am a little confused. You made money from camping?
    A: yes.... you can do camping dancing, sitting or other, sunbathing
    A: means you spend time in a place not moving
    A: you make linden
    Q: Did you design your avatar to look like you? Or did you go wild with your design?
    A: my ave is almost like me... only younger
    A: here you can search and catch anything....
    A: hair, skin, makeup, dress, shoes skincolour,and so on.....
    Q: may avatar is like me just taller. :)
    A: all ave are taller here.... i don't know the reason why.... but is like that
    A: I hate to cut this short, but I have to go.
    Q: ok
    A: Thank you.
    A: Bye.
    Q: bye

    Interview 3

    Q’s translator: because of the translate
    A: Sorry, I didn't know.
    Q: schon oke
    Q’s translator: already oke
    Q: )))
    Q’s translator: )))
    A: Where are you from?
    Q: germany
    Q’s translator: germany
    A: That is amazing. My favorite basketball player is from Germany.
    Q: novitzkie
    Q’s translator: novitzkie
    A: Yes,
    Q: klasse mann
    Q’s translator: klasse mann
    A: I've never been to Germany but i hear it's wonderful.
    [9:17] Q: ja es kann sehr schön sein
    [9:17] Q’s translator: yes it can be very beautiful
    [9:17] Q: woher kommst du ?
    [9:17] Q’s translator: where are you?
    [9:17] A: I am from the states. I attend New York University.
    [9:18] Q: aha , du studierst also
    [9:18] Q’s translator: aha, so you are studying
    [9:18] A: Yes, I study film.
    [9:18] Q: oh, was feines
    [9:18] Q’s translator: oh, what delicious
    [9:18] A: I want to be a filmmaker.
    [9:18] A: And you, what is it you do?
    [9:19] Q: du wirst also mal später den bond-fil drehen
    [9:19] Q’s translator: So you will later times the bond-fil rotate
    [9:19] Q: )))
    [9:19] Q’s translator: )))
    [9:19] Q: ich arbeite als verkäufer
    [9:19] Q’s translator: I work as a sales assistant
    [9:19] A: What is it you sell?
    [9:19] Q: ich verkaufe kettensägen
    [9:19] Q’s translator: I sell chain saws
    [9:20] A: Really?!? That is very interesting.
    [9:20] Q: naja nicht so
    [9:20] Q’s translator: maybe not so
    [9:20] Q: was machst du in sl
    [9:20] Q’s translator: what do you do in sl
    [9:20] A: I am not sure. I am new here.
    [9:21] A: I just walk around, I guess.
    [9:21] Q: was möchtest du gerne tun
    [9:21] Q’s translator: what would you like to do
    [9:21] A: Explore.
    [9:21] A: What do you do in SL?
    [9:21] Q: ich bin miss of bdsm
    [9:21] Q’s translator: I miss of bdsm
    [9:22] A: bdsm?
    [9:22] A: what is this?
    [9:22] Q: eine sexuelle neigung
    [9:22] Q’s translator: a sexual inclination
    [9:22] Q: dom / sub
    [9:22] Q’s translator: dom / sub
    [9:22] A: ohhh...a little more interesting then selling chain saws :)
    [9:23] Q: ))))
    [9:23] Q’s translator: ))))
    [9:23] Q: rl hat ja nichts mit sl zu tun
    [9:23] Q’s translator: rl has nothing to do with sl
    [9:23] A: So SL gives you freedom that RL does not allow?
    [9:23] Q: genau
    [9:23] Q’s translator: exactly
    [9:23] Q: ja
    [9:23] Q’s translator: yes
    [9:24] A: Do you spend a lot of time in SL?
    [9:24] Q: ja
    [9:24] Q’s translator: yes
    [9:24] A: How much? I get on a couple of times a week.
    [9:24] Q: täglich
    [9:24] Q’s translator: daily
    [9:25] Q: abends
    [9:25] Q’s translator: evening
    [9:25] A: After you get done with work?
    [9:25] Q: ja
    [9:25] Q’s translator: yes
    [9:25] A: And do you interact with people from RL in SL? or have you made new friends?
    [9:26] Q: ich spiele auch fussball im sl
    [9:26] Q’s translator: I also play football in the sl
    [9:26] Q: man lernt hier schnell viele leute kennen
    [9:26] Q’s translator: You learn quickly here is a lot of people know
    [9:26] Q: so wie wir jetzt reden
    [9:26] Q’s translator: as we now speak
    [9:26] Q: und dann kennt man sich
    [9:26] Q’s translator: and then you do
    [9:27] A: In the states football is different from soccer, do you mean soccer or football?
    [9:27] A: I don't mean to sound ignorant.
    [9:27] Q: fußball
    [9:27] Q’s translator: football
    [9:27] Q: kein american football no
    [9:27] Q’s translator: no not american football
    [9:28] A: Just making sure. I didn't know if American football was played in Germany.
    [9:28] Q: das wird auch gespielt
    [9:28] Q’s translator: which is also played
    [9:28] Q: auch im sl
    [9:28] Q’s translator: in sl
    [9:28] Q: und in deutschland
    [9:28] Q’s translator: and in germany
    [9:28] A: You can play sports in SL? I did not know this.
    [9:29] Q: ja
    [9:29] Q’s translator: yes
    [9:29] A: That is cool. I may have to try it.
    [9:29] Q: du musst in deiner suchanzeige den sport eingeben den du machen willst
    [9:29] Q’s translator: you have in your search ad to enter the sport you want to do
    [9:29] Q: und dann einfach gucken gehen
    [9:29] Q’s translator: and then just go look
    [9:29] A: I will next time. Thank you.
    [9:30] Q: gern
    [9:30] Q’s translator: like
    [9:30] Q: ich muss jetzt aber los
    [9:30] Q’s translator: But now I must go
    [9:30] Q: viel spass noch
    [9:30] Q’s translator: viel spass yet
    [9:30] A: Thank you for chatting.
    [9:30] Q: gern
    [9:30] Q’s translator: like
    [9:30] Q: danke dir auch
    [9:30] Q’s translator: danke dir auch
    [9:30] Q: bist sehr nett
    [9:30] Q’s translator: 're very nice
    [9:31] A: ciao
    [9:31] Q: bye
    [9:31] Q’s translator: bye


    Before taking this course, I had never heard of Second Life. Sure the name might have crossed my ear once or twice, but I had no clue as to what it was referring to. Since then, I have made several visits to this virtual reality that so many people call a second home, some quite literally. Oddly enough, I found myself more in a shell in SL. I hesitated before starting a conversation and left others when it failed to take off. I enjoyed flying and discovering but found nothing tangible in which to grab hold to. What was I missing? Maybe a few more experienced avatars had the answer.

    I probably have talked to over 20 people since joining SL. And the general consensus that I've come across is that people go to SL to find whatever is they're missing out of their real life. Sure, like me, some people go to further their studies. Others go for the opportunity to build and create in a world with more possibilities than limitations. But I would argue, at least for now with my limited exposure, that a lot of Second Lifers are there to be more than what their real life offers. A little taller. Younger. Sexier. Or maybe just the same in appearance, but new in existence. We go to start anew. To expand on what we've started. Living in a world behind a computer screen allows people to exist how they see themselves instead of how the world has already chosen to see them. People in second life are more apt to communicate I found. Confidence is higher. Conversations tend to last a bit longer. Similarities are found. Communities forged.

    Now, the flip side of that coin was not addressed in my interviews. Can the time and new found confidence have a negative effect in RL? Which world is more important if people in SL see themselves as more true to their personality than who they have to be in RL? I think those questions delve a lot deeper then my few interactions would allow me to answer. But it's worth contemplating. Overall, from the people I talked to there seemed to be a good balance of RL vs SL, and if anything, their time on Second Life only seemed beneficial.

  2. Visionary Concepts and Developments in Motion Arts
    NYU, DCoM, Spring 2009
    Mechthild Schmidt
    Interview questions in SL

    Interviewee : XXXXXX
    1) How did you discover SL?

    I actually never heard of it until this year. It is part of our final grade for Media Culture Class
    2) What do you enjoy most about SL?

    Creating my avatar self, and getting free things. Most of all, experiencing a world I never really got into before.
    3) Do you encounter people with more ease or less on SL?

    Same, I am an outgoing person.
    4) Does your avatar’s appearance usually resemble your own?

    Mostly…the face is hard to match.
    5) Does your virtual communication and behavior differ greatly from RL? If so, how?

    No, I don’t think so. Perhaps yes, only because I wouldn’t normally go out in public and just start talking unless I bumped someone, or getting agitated in line, as like a person in front of me.
    6) Do you find SL to be a new form of media, impacting our culture?

    Yes, I do. Its like chat rooms, but more intense. People stay on here all day, like it is a 1st life, not 2nd. There lives get so consumed by a virtual world, they forget about the real one.
    7) Do you think SL could offer real-world solutions in areas such as science, education, music, economy, politics etc – or does it have the potential to?

    I suppose so. If many people put their brains together, to say find a cure for AIDS, that would be awesome. Only thing is, its hard to read people when you can see their psychical reactions…its like texting or chatting.
    8) Can virtual relationships + environments let us discover new sides about being human? What would need to change to make this easier, or to make it happen in the first place?

    How can a virtual world let us discover being human? In my mind, that is impossible. However, it is possible to realize maybe different outlooks on say political views while talking to someone else in depth on the subject.
    9) Do you think SL impacts negatively on RL for yourself or others? E.g by time spent in SL vs responsibilities in RL?

    Well for me, its not an issue. I have so many other things in life to worry about I COULD NOT spend too much time in SL. However, I know for many that may not have as much going on it takes over their life…and yes negativity indeed. Why would a person prefer to communicate virtually and not in RL? You cant touch people on RL, you can cry, you cant taste, smell, hear. They basically have found this virtually world to protect themselves from the above senses. If the whole world were this way, it would be emotionless.
    10) Do you typically design and build what you need in SL or do you purchase?
    I get everything I need for free. As stated, this is for a project, so I’m going to do what I need, not extra. Per sour instructor we are not to spend money, and I have found it is not necessary unless you want to own land.

    11) Do you sell things in SL, if so what do you sell?


    12) What items in SL did you buy most often (apparel, furniture, vehicles, buildings, scripts etc)?

    Well I don’t buy things, but I get free things that represent me; clothes, shoes, basketball things, smoke, drink….ect.
    13) How much approximately have you invested in SL?

    About 5 hours in the last 2 months.


    I would like to defer my conclusion until I have had a chance to read and analyze all the interviews that were conducted as a collective.

  3. 1. Through work. I've been assigned with trying to use sl for the continuing educations dept at st mary's university in canada.
    2. flying! and the interaction of course
    3. definitely more
    4. hmmm not really. maybe slightly, but not a whole lot
    5. i think i'm more helpful on SL with everybody. ppl i know and ppl i don't
    6. that's a tough one, see i didn't hear about SL until i had to use it for work. people have heard of it, but i dont think they have all tried it out. it is a new form of media, but depends on how much everybody else we know use it to impact our culture
    7. yes, definitely. like i said this whole castle here is in the name of education to help people familiarize themselves with characters in a play. Its great for simulations and roleplay
    8. hmmm, i'd say it can, but in terms of how we use technology much more than before, and the new sides to that
    9. not for me. for others definitely, did you hear about the wife that divorced her husband for cheating on her in second life? he got married on second life and his wife found out. a bit overboard if you ask me, but yesss
    10. a bit of both. if i don't have time to build it, i will purchase. hey it's not my money! :p this castle was bought but the ramp i made and some of the chairs i made
    11. nope. if i did it would be stuff i've built, but i'm not that great
    12. furniture and buildings. i've also had to dress my bots up so apparel too.
    13. oh well like i said this is my part time job when i'm not in class soo i do 8 hours a week. and the uni gave me i think $200-$300 to spend on everything. we've also rented out the space. i think that came to $40-60

    1. a TV program on artificila inteligents
    2. meeting people. shopping, everything fits... lol
    3. i am dyslexic so it is more difficult for me
    4. um no not really
    5. no. what you get is how i am... straight forward... i see no need to alter
    6. yes.. especially for education
    7. it has the potential... but need controlls
    8. virtual relationships can be tricky... but you do get to know someones personality first without being swayed or off put by the visual. not sure what i would change.
    9. yes it can do... it depends on your own rl circumstances and the controls you put in place your self. the biggest prob is when someone takes sl out into rl
    10. my friend here is an accomplished builder. so we build... but i do buy clothes
    11. yes. um loads... i can't build or script.. i just have the ideas. but poofers, jewlry, furniture.. we have made a cave and a forest for dwellings
    12. clothes.... loll
    13. i can tell you virtually to the penny hold on... i am english... about L5.00 a month sometimes less. not much.

    1. i first joined sl through a furry chat group on the internet
    2. i enjoy creating things, particularly buildings and recreating ancient buildings
    3. More ease, I'm more comfortable chatting to people in SL. I'm quite shy in RL. Although I have found that I'm getting better at talking to people in RL too. :)
    4. No, in RL I'm a man and actually 58. I do have a male AV too who sometimes looks a bit like me in RL.i used to do a lot of table top roleplay games, and liked playing female characters
    5. Yes, I tend to behave a lot more like a female, and I can do things in SL that I wouldn't dream of doing in RL.
    6. Yes, Sl is a new form of media. Although some things like IM are now appearing in other forms of media like MSN chat, etc. i think it is having an impact on culture and allowing easy interaction across the world. i'm in the uk and i ahve made friends from alaska to austrailia, as well as in europe and the uk. i even met one person whoo lives in my home town.
    7. I think it could offer a medium for communication for all of those, as well as for business meetings and seminars and for marketing. I remember sitting in on a seminar a couple of years ago for US Librarians that was partly being broadcast to a RL seminar for Librarians.
    8. Yes, like I said I can explore new sides to myself that I wouldn't dare to try in RL. Like exploring some aspects of BDSM (bondage, domination and sado masochism), and more personal relationships. It offers a safe place to try things out. One thing that I try to be is honest, so if someone does become special to me, or I think they will, I always make sure that they kknow I am a straight male in RL. i have too healthy a liking for my own skin to try some things out in RL. :) and i have learnt a lot about aspects of literature that i read when i was younger that i never suspected.
    9. Not personally. But it does for some people. When I started in SL about three years ago, I was unemployed for about two years. I discovered SL about midway through that. so i learnt a lot fairly quickly. Then Linden Labs cut funding for training in SL. And then got a job. Now RL interferes with my time in SL.
    10. yes to both. :) clothes i generally buy, plus weapons for any RP games i play in SL. Houses and other buildings i can build myself.
    11. no, i've never got around to building for general sale, although i have sold a few bits and pieces. they were generally decorative pieces.
    12. apparel, some furniture. A couple of vehicles. i never bought scripts. i generally picked those up from yadni's junkyard or from the forums. and then tinkered with them if i needed to.
    13. Money, rather more than I would like to calculate. I rented a large area of land for a long time witha friend and eventually took over all of it when she left SL. Timewise, a lot when I was unemployed, and less now that I work for a living.

    SusieQ Rang:

    1. Actually a 16 year old boy told me about it
    2. meeting people from all over the world
    3. oh i meet a lot of poeple in sl... many more and easier than rl
    4. hmm... some. but that isn't important... but i think we all have physical things we like about our RL self that will carry over to SL
    5. Well, I feel that in a virtual environment, you have the potential to be much freer in expression of your likes, dislikes and have more of an ability to experiment with fewer consequences
    6. do you want to upgrade your appearance? grins, that is my hobby and I know where tons of free gifts are...laughing, I find SL and other virtual worlds to be very expanding and having the potential to expand the awareness of both RL businesses and RL communication.
    7. I have talked to many RL business men and women, who are branching out into the virtual worlds. i think that the use of sl or other vr venues for training and meetings, is very concievably the wave of the future. no gas, no travel expenses. videos and voice training sessions... i have been to some good classes in SL and video conferencing is already the norm for many companies. if you can get past the sex and nudity... which can be over represented and really quite silly... you have the perfect venue for meetings internationally. some political figures have sl avatars and politics was quite active during the campaigns. also it is very good platform for charities. charity fashion shows and art auctions...even date auctions are not uncommon but also within the grid is the built in RP games of various types for those that wish to enter into the fantasy further.
    8. well i find that relationships of the virtual type are just as prone to drama as RL. and many come to experience something that they can't in RL, like men being women and shopping til they drop... wearing stilettos and having fun iwht the girls or women being amazons and panthers in the gor jungle capturing and torturing guys. and being strippers and PR consultants and running businesses. there are many of the same evils in a VW as in a RL world and how could there not be? people are going to be people. but sl and vr is a very good option for many that have less mobility and less freedom to meet people in rl... whether because of geography or disabilities there are options in sl that there arent in rl... but rl should always prevail.
    9. well i dont find i spend less time taking care of my business and my friends tend to be online at time that don't interfere scheduling activities just like rl. and in addition vr venues are very good for advertising your rl business. i know many designers and photographers that work sl and rl and artists. they have virtual gallery showings and the opportunity by website to gain rl sales.
    10. i do both. depends on what i want. i do some art and some furniture... but am looking into the sculpts now... i do PR for a few people and host parties and do makeovers. in rl i was a chemist and anthropologist and emt.. my degree is in behavioral sciences and i almost have a master's but became ill and wasnt able to complete it... lacked 1 6 hr course and my thesis. suckie rl sometimes.
    11. well i have sold memory globes and art and a lamp and i get paid for my pr work and my makeovers and hosting parties. i can actually totally support my sl habit with my sl money and have fun shopping too.
    12. well you need them all... it is really hard to separate them... probabaly transportation is what women in general buy less of.
    13. well, the first 6 months i spent none of my own dollars, i made lindens with work in sl but i have a budget of 50$ a month which is very much in keeping of a cheap hobby.

    1. i work for a company developing a competing commercial product
    2. the social interaction
    3. more
    4. no, that is one reason why it is easier to approach people
    5. no, i find the person on the ketbord is the one projecting into sl...they can do so with out consquences (to a reasonanable degree) so they tend to let their true feelings and desires show
    6. yes, i have met people all around the world...friends in australia impacted by the fires....friends in holland, germany, mexico....
    7. absolutely, the ability to communicate in a immersive environment without travel opens up many new opportunities for learning
    8. absolutely....for example...a handicapped person(wheel chair bound) can come into sl and dance! just like you or me, unencumbered...what an improvement to that human condition, that already exists in sl
    9. no, you will find if you take sl seriously for the potential it has, sl and rl are one in the same
    10. actually you dont need to purchase anything to have a rewarding sl experience....the embelishments are up to you
    11. i do not sell anything in sl
    12. none
    13. no money....probably 600 hours

    1. a friend told me about it
    2. going to see the different sims and building
    3. well a lot are rude stuck up ect but there are also lots that aren't that way so i'd say 50 50
    4. not myne it changes all the time. the only par is the black hair.... long story but i love black hair and never had it:)
    1. 5.yes. i act like me but i lie to people when they ask questions about me personal ones ne way
    5. yes in good and bad ways. i have friends that go on at work when they really shouldn't. but you can make money from the game so for some it is a source of income.
    6. yes if people make the sims. there are some already it is just getting people to them. that can be hard. a lot of people liek this game for the cybering i have noticed or rpg's
    7. yes lol.
    8. i can be what i am not on here it is weird. yes it can not for me well i do spend a lot of time on here... but some do get totally lost in it is easy too... being someting u want to be or the rpg u like to play. it really depends on the person
    9. mostly buy im fiddlin with building at the moment
    10. not yet, nothing
    11. apparel :)
    12. lots of time. money i have other avis so bout 400. that is all. not too much.

  4. Interviewed: Viviane Adamski
    1) i discovered sl in a magazine
    2) I enjoy the most to make friends all over the globe
    3) is easier to find ppl in SL
    4) Not at all
    5) No,i behave as the same,but have more opportunities to meet new people
    6) SL seems a new wait to exchange culture
    7) not sure about solutions yet ,but a long term maybe it be possible
    8) relationships seems to be easier inSL. need an effort tho
    9) SL can be very addictited
    10) i usually purchase
    11) i don't sell things in sl
    12) outfits
    13) actually nothing. you can play without spend any money. unless you want something for good