No One’s Driving This Ship

This week we discuss the role of critics in the virtual world community, recent decisions from Linden Lab, who really controls Second Life and more.

This week’s topics include:


Bernhard Drax (Draxtor Despres) is a musician, new media producer, and machinima journalist.

Karl Stiefvater (Qarl Fizz, formerly Qarl Linden) is visual effects artist, software developer, and interactive designer extraordinaire.

Thank you to our sponsor, Pretty Feet!

About Kim/Gianna

Kimberly Winnington (SL: Gianna Borgnine) is the Emmy nominated owner and CEO of Sand Castle Studios, LLC, a company dedicated to helping organizations maximize the full potential of virtual worlds and social media by creating interactive, social, and 3D experiences. For the last 5 years, Kimberly has helped SCS clients stay ahead of the curve and is a respected resource for information on current and developing trends, social media, and immersive experiences.
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9 Responses to No One’s Driving This Ship

  1. Crap Mariner says:

    I agree with Draxtor that there is waste everywhere.
    Thank you for leading by example by cutting Reed from the podcast.

    -ls/cm, intimidating member of the community

    • Draxtor says:

      I don’t say it often enough Crap but your comments are ALWAYS very welcome in their insightfulness as is everything you do creatively on the 1000 other networks out there. This comment though MADE ME ALAWS wet my pants….in a gooood way! Have a good weekend!!

  2. Proactive Communication, Collaboration and Effective Leadership Are Key!

    Let me start by saying I agree 100% with Draxtor’s call for an “Adult” approach to the future of Virtual Worlds and specifically Second Life. It’s a huge challenge though, as these spaces are populated with a vocal group of people who tend towards emotionalism, rather than reason and feel strongly that whatever they “believe” has more weight and validity than any facts that may exist.

    I also agree that Second Life has been horribly undersold. This ties into the first topic, as anyone who would otherwise consider doing business in Second Life, is put off by all of the whining, griping and constant predictions of doom & gloom.

    Esbee’s and Charlar’s departure will remain a puzzle, without a clear road map by the Lap regarding their future product strategy. People leave companies every day, due to changes in the market and the company’s needs.

    Proactive, postive communication is the key to this and most of LL’s other challenges. Whether or not SL is “dying,” LL pulling back from reporting SL Stats sends the wrong message to the user community. If things are bad, let’s hear some inspiring communication about how we can ALL make things better. If things are good, let’s hear more about the wonders and successes in-world and what LL is going to do to facilitate future opportunity and success for everyone!

    As pro Second Life & Virtual Worlds as I am, I share the opinion that neither the platform nor the community are ready for a huge influx of people. One of these “not ready for prime time” issues is certainly user names.

    Rod Humble’s Decision on Last Names is frankly, puzzling. In my opinion, the BEST thing that could happen would be for LL to assign each verified user with a “permanent” account number and allow people to choose BOTH a First AND Last Names. If people want to share a last name with someone else, let them voluntarily choose the same last name! If someone wants to be called “DufusIAm Stupid,” let them.

    Relating to user accounts, what I WANT to see is shared user accounts, where machine ID’s / MAC Addresses are used to uniquely identify users and multiple “Alts” can share inventory. I believe this would be something that would be a tremendous improvement for both uses and vendors. I would like to see this discussed in an upcoming segment of Metareality.

    Second Life truly is a beautifully chaotic world. However, as someone who is a Master Citizen Planner, Charrette Planner/Facilitator and two term Elected Official, and has 20+ years of IT planning experience, I have seen first hand the benefits of effective strategic planning, zoning and communication. My experience has taught me that almost every challenge, that is not engaged proactively, with community-driven citizen and stakeholder participation, ends up costing far more money/time than it should have!

  3. Pam Broviak says:

    Your show seems to be the only conversation that regularly and, in my opinion, correctly identifies SL as a place and compares it to our offline places. Your show is also very interesting to me because you always express frustration and surprise at how negative and critical people are towards SL and the Lab. If I replaced SL or the Lab with a city name or “our local government,” your conversation becomes one I have heard all my career among local govt professionals. It has convinced me there will always be what we affectionately refer to as “government haters” who will never be happy with whoever is “in charge.” I am also very interested by the Lab’s response because it is like watching a group of people take over management of a city who have no idea what they walked into. And yet it frustrates me because I know there is help out there for them – many of us who work for cities hang out in Second Life, but they don’t yet realize how similar to us they are.

    As Valiant, who also seems to be involved in local govt, said in his comment, adopting a planning approach similar to the one we use with local government would probably have some benefits. I too have been involved in these efforts – it is really the only way to get consensus and is closer to a democratic approach without giving up total control. If only the lab would reach out to their users, I’m sure they would find people like Valiant and myself and many others who would be very interested in helping with that type of effort. But as you also point out many times, the Lab seems to retreat the more people complain so not sure they can be convinced that a comprehensive plan would be beneficial.

    And at the risk of sounding like a broken record, it would also help if they would eventually just set up a structure similar to that in local government to deal with some of these issues like economic development, planning, zoning, etc.

  4. Pingback: WHAT IS THIS CRAP? » And imagine how far we could fall

  5. Vanessa says:

    - Draxtor is correct, in that the spin that has been added lately in SL arguments is enough to make anyone dizzy. It does nothing except create insecurity, panic and generates yet more unfounded rumours
    – I suspect many of those people ‘losing money’ in SL are doing so partly because of their outdated business models. Instead of looking at this, the cry goes up that SL is dying. I see many successful events, retail events, successful sales and entertainment. The people running these events probably have an new approach to their business
    – Kim, we all know that the basic tenet of propaganda, introduced so successfully by PJ Gobbels last century, is still used so successfully today. “Repeat anything often enough, and they will believe”
    – ceasing the release of performance stats by Lindenlab – I’m sure this action was discussed in depth, pros and cons weighed, possible community reactions discussed. Lindenlab would have been aware of the speculation this would create, yet still thought it the best step to take. I prefer not to be a doom forecaster, and wait and see.
    – People have always been intimidated by the rabble mob, this is why group think is so useful. It never needs to make any sense, just intimidate, distort, abuse and exile you for not agreeing with it.
    – the indignant ‘community’ outrage by a screaming minority is tiresome and old. Not surprising that round tables have been cancelled.
    – Don’t run yourself down Kim – I’ve never seen you throw the hate around like so many do. The disturbing thing to read is many commentors inability to actually read or listen and respond to what you have actually said, rather they are listening to you, distorting it to fit some weird world view, and then abusively launching on a self defensive rant. All the negativity I have read about what you have said falls into the same hysterical category: distorting and misrepresenting any positive support for Lindenlab as fangirl ramblings; dismissing anyone who can not actively hate on Lindenlab, and bawling about freedom of speech. There’s too many positive things in Secondlife at the moment to dwell upon the squalling for too long.

  6. Medhue says:

    Well, I’ve had more conversations with Charlar than I have with all the rest of the Lindens combined. Everytime I heard people complain about LL not listening, I would respond about my experiences with Charlar, but not naming him. So, I can’t say that letting a guy like that go makes me enthusiastic about LL communications. Dang, I even pissed on him, lol. He used to wear this mesh tree as his avatar. During a mesh user group meeting, some1 commented something about me eating Nyx Linden, because of my mesh Werewolf Avatar and my animations. Charlar commented that he was changing into his tree, just incase. My Lycan AO comes with peeing animations, and what does a wolf do to a tree? I lifted a leg, and commented that I have animation for everything, as I kicked grass at him.

    I hope Esbee’s and Charlar’s alts will still have a Secondlife.

  7. Medhue says:

    **Short version directly from the Mesh User Group Meeting, lol***
    [12:16] Medhue Simoni
    Can we talk about that scope, It seems somewhat unclear to me

    [12:17] Mumbles (charlar.linden)
    yeah, I think I confused some people with it — but I’m not sure how.

    [12:18] Mumbles (charlar.linden)
    We can talk about it briefly here, since that was our last item.

    [12:18] Mumbles (charlar.linden)
    Drongle had some good thoughts, as did Nal.

    [12:19] Medhue Simoni
    lol, I’m just a wolf looking for more bones

    12:20] Nyx Linden
    Nyx Linden notes that robot bones do not taste good to wolves.

    [12:20] Koli Contepomi (sahkolihaa.contepomi)
    lol Nyx.

    [12:20] Mumbles (charlar.linden)
    Mumbles changes to tree form, just in case…

    [12:21] Medhue Simoni
    I have an animation just for that tree

    [12:21] Mumbles (charlar.linden)
    Mumbles sighs

    [12:23] Medhue Simoni

    [12:23] Mumbles (charlar.linden)
    Mumbles pets the nice wolf

    [12:23] Mumbles (charlar.linden)
    DO NOT pee on me

    [12:23] Mumbles (charlar.linden)
    back to scope

    [12:23] Nal (nalates.urriah)

    [12:23] Ima Mechanique
    Charlar, canines are known for doing different things to trees

    [12:23] Mumbles (charlar.linden)

    [12:23] Medhue Simoni

    [12:23] NyuNyu Kimono

    [12:24] Mumbles (charlar.linden)

    [12:24] Mumbles (charlar.linden)

    ***My tribute to Charlar****

  8. FYI, Wizzy Gynoid created a formal Wackadoodle group in SL.

    Need an invite, qarl?


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