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John McKnight
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Diane and Andy, well said! Maybe the full article (which I've just pulled from my uni library connection) makes a case for why SL/virtual worlds/games are different in kind from other forms of social activity, such that they're treated as (at least potentially) pathological per se - but I suspect not. Now, being active in a church group would make for an interesting comparison, wouldn't it? BTW, Diane - I clicked through to your LJ, and an old post of yours on EVE Online just answered a question my dissertation committee asked. I owe you lunch :)
Toggle Commented Sep 1, 2011 on Virtual Life Satisfaction at Terra Nova
The "toxic immersion dilemma" concept strikes me as odd. Surely the proper frame of reference is a person's life as a whole. Would there be a similar framing for someone who had a crap job, but derived sufficient-to-them overall satisfaction from a rewarding family life, or someone with a lousy marriage, but great job satisfaction? Nobody has it all: a good life is stitched together from disparate pieces. Adding a very satisfying piece to compensate for less satisfying ones isn't a problem, it's a solution.
Toggle Commented Sep 1, 2011 on Virtual Life Satisfaction at Terra Nova
I've been involved in a running debate among my friends on this issue: it's definitely a matter where reasonable people can differ. I have two Google profiles, one for work and one for friends, the latter under my universal online name. One, I want to be able to close down my work email at times, without making myself unavailable to my friends, and two, if someone's looking over my shoulder at work, they don't need to see what I do in my private life. I'm identity transparent - I don't "hide" my other profile from anyone who's got any business knowing, but I do believe in keeping private and professional distinct. When I received an invitation to Google+ on my social account, I declined: Google's identity policy would have me risk losing my email account, Blogger login and access to other services. It's not worth it. Given their disastrous handling of privacy issues with other services, I actually trust Google rather less than Facebook: I've *seen* them give me inappropriate access to other people's messages, and I've already gotten Google+ social spam from people who place me in "circles" I'm not interested in being in. From their perspective, I'm not convinced that my data is less mine-able and marketable if I call myself "Opensource Obscure," "John Smith," "IP Freely" or "John Carter McKnight." And, more and more, I'm seeing people, even my undergrads, taking privacy management seriously and segregating accounts and identities online. Companies in the data-selling business would do well to recognize and at least plausibly pretend to support this trend.
Toggle Commented Jul 12, 2011 on Google+ to Second Lifers: Get Real at Terra Nova
[reposting - TypePad seems to have eaten my comment earlier] Excellent call to action, Lisa! I'd look at Japanese dating games as a genre and possible model: it should be *really* easy to embed good information and smart behavior into a dating-game mechanic. I've got to chide you for your dismissal of Second Life, though: it is *highly* educational, particularly for middle-aged folk, as to what's available and personally interesting sexually. As anthropologists, we can't afford an ivory-tower disdain of cultures that don't reflect positively on our own status. We need to look at what regular folk are doing and why (and yes, I'd argue strongly that the people in SL sexual subcultures are indeed regular folk). It'd seem that understanding what adults are actually drawn to doing sexually online would provide important insights for designing sex-ed games. You've raised an important, and I think, do-able challenge. [ETA: fantastic suggestions and resources from Ren!]
Toggle Commented Jun 14, 2011 on Where Are All the Sex Games? at Terra Nova
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Jun 14, 2011