Jaffe’s Response to Second Life Criticism

If you haven’t listened to episode 65 of Across the Sound, do it now.

I sent an audio comment to Joseph with a clip from a “best of” cd from a local radio morning show.  In the clip, the DJs discuss Second Life in a way that I think may be indicative of many of the uninitiated.  They view it as a sort of geek’s paradise.  Someplace where you’d find the Comic Book Guy from The Simpsons.

I think it’s sort of easy, at first glance to see Second Life as such. 

But, with further inspection, and with a little immersion in the experience and an open mind, you begin to see the truly great opportunity of Second Life.  To realize that the person you’re talking to in world is sitting on their computer, somewhere else in the world, talking back to you, engaging with you, is a stunning thought when you’re actually participating.

To be able to meet with people from across the globe that you’d probably never meet, is amazing.

To lower the guard and take down the barriers that people often feel due to status, money, success, etc. is incredible.

Will things go bad at times?  Of course.
Will people abuse the system.  Obviously, it’s human nature.

I think, though for those of us who are truly interested in using these tools for communication, for community, etc. (if only we could harness that power for good!), Second Life will continue to evolve and show its value.

Do I understand everything about Second Life?  No, of course not.  I’m still a newbie, still learning and not able to spend the amount of time necessary to truly become a “power user.”  For example, I don’t understand the concept of food, drink, drugs, etc.  That’s a little far out for me, but as I get more involved, grow and become attached, maybe I’ll be the one selling hot dogs on the corner.

I think that so many things that have become “standard” in American and world culture started with the vast majority being skeptical.  Usually, when the thing involves technology, it’s dismissed as something geeks do.  But in this world of people wanting to get more connected, meet new people, build communities…Second Life is going to fill that need.

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Jaffe’s Response to Second Life Criticism

7 thoughts on “Jaffe’s Response to Second Life Criticism

  1. adele says:

    What about interacting with real people? What about blogs, e-mail, phones,.. ISn’t there a more personal way to meet other people? Why hide behind a personality that isn’t yours, meeting people that don’t exist? Is the virtual reality really more interesting than the real world?

  2. Adele:

    Thanks for the comment!

    I agree that real, in person interaction is preferred. But, sometimes that personal interaction isn’t possible.

    There are elements that are hard for me to get my head around, and people that use it for “escape” aren’t the type of people I’m referring to. If you, for example, go to Crayonville Island, you can connect with like-minded people and more often than not, the first question is, “What is your real name?” In places like that it’s not a matter of hiding behind a fake identity, it’s about having a central gathering place that would be impossible to replicate in the real world without LOTS of money.

  3. Shawn says:

    The concept of Second Life is a frightening one. To feel the need to meet and interract with people like this represents a kind of paranoia and is actually very anti-social. You will no longer need to go anywhere to do anything or meet anyone. Meeting people in real life however, may become more difficult. Also, there will be much about Second Life that will make real life seem dull and intolerable for some I suspect. Social skills in real life are more than just saying the right words. It also requires one to have one’s attention focued on your surroundings. In a game like this, people will become more and more passive. Real Life may seem pointless and unimportant. There are controversies surrounding this kind of gaming and I suspect we will start to see the ill-effects of this technology in the near future. Not to mention how many people will lose their life savings.

  4. Shawn:

    I agree that there are elements that are tough to get your head around about Second Life. I think that the argument that some people will take it too far can’t be used to discount it because that can happen with anything.

    I think there is probably much to be determined about how it can be useful to marketers, but I do think there is value there…we just haven’t found it yet!

    Thanks for the comment!


  5. Matthew Ota says:

    In a nutshell, I call Second Life “Get a Life”. Why spend time in a virtual world when the real one is out there.

    I view Second Life as detrimental to society.

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