[extropy-chat] second life question

Bret Kulakovich bret at bonfireproductions.com
Mon Dec 4 14:14:02 UTC 2006

Hi Spike,

My timetable and yours synch up. Though I think the BBS occupancy of  
the early era was more like 20%+ SciFi, but that could have just been  
where I was. Still remember copying the audio coupling modem program  
out of Byte, or whatever it was, to get the TRS-80 up to 300bps from  
110. sigh.

Anyway - two major points of SL - the first is the environment is  
shared and you can add to it, not just participate in it. They have a  
scripting language and a modeling program that lets you add to  
things. So its a good comparison to earlier MUDs that let you code in  
LPC to create content.

The other point is that I'd wager the gender balance is visual only.  
Sure, better than it was in the 80s, but they are just avatars. Guys  
In Real Life as they say.


On Dec 3, 2006, at 4:29 PM, spike wrote:

> Since the subject of second life is popping up here, I have a  
> question or an
> observation.
> I first saw email and the bulletin boards in fall of 79.  Looking  
> over the
> contents I noted that it was about 10% Star Trek/SciFi, about 10%
> dungeons&dragons/fantasy, about half lonely hearts, and the  
> remaining 30%
> was serious science, engineering and everything else put together.   
> Being
> single and 18 years at the time, I thought the lonely hearts bit  
> was cool,
> but I soon found that the participants were about 80% men.  Of the 20%
> women, about half of them were gay men.  The few hetero women there  
> were
> worshipped as the goddesses that they were.
> Fast forward ~15 yrs, www showed up.  At first a lot of that was  
> used for
> porno and lonely hearts, but with more actual women this time.
> Forward another 5 years to around 99/00 when Pleasure Palace came  
> along.
> Interactive avatars, real-time chat, intentionally set up for  
> lonely hearts,
> still mostly men but a better ratio than before.
> Looks like in some ways Second Life is an extension of Pleasure  
> Palace, more
> polish, more real estate, more content, less likely to crash, more  
> choices,
> better graphics, etc, yet much of the bandwidth is used for substitute
> meat-world social interaction and lonely hearts.  Most importantly,  
> this
> incarnation appears to be approximately gender balanced.
> Could this be?  Or is it a trick?  Am I the only one who has  
> noticed this?
> spike
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