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Class 8: Dublin Virtually LIve

November 30, 2012

CLASS SUMMARY:

The class started with a review of progress on the group projects. It was decided that the presentations would take place at the Dublin Amphitheatre (although group 2 suggested they may need to present at a different location – this will be confirmed next week). Each presentation should last between five and ten minutes. Participants were reminded that part of the brief is to promote your presentation and ensure a relevant audience attends.

Sitearm Madonna returned this week and was joined by Ham Rambler, the creator of Dublin Virtually Live. The slide show can be see here. Ham spoke about the origins of Dublin in Second Life. As an airline pilot he has travelled widely across the real world and noticed that wherever he went he usually found an Irish bar. The notion to develop an equivalent in SL led to him opening the Blarney Stone in the early days of the virtual world. The immediate success of the venture was due to the unique qualities of the Irish bar: a safe, friendly, welcoming environment where people could meet and socialise. This led Ham to develop a virtual replica of the city. He flew an experienced designer/builder to Dublin for a weekend to document Dublin photographically and commence the project, of which the first phase took about three months to complete. The new Blarney Stone was based on the real life Oliver Synge Gogarty pub in the Temple Bar cultural quarter of Dublin. In 2010 Ham brought delegates of the Meta Meets conference in Dublin to the bar and met the owner who told him people from all over the world were visiting the place having first come across it in SL.

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The launch of Dublin Virtually Live was a major event in SL and was also covered by the media in the real world. It attracted the attention of multinational brands such as IBM keen to explore the possibilities of virtual worlds for marketing and promotion. Dublin Tourism also saw the opportunity to promote the city.

The project demonstrated Sitearm’s proposition that ‘We Are All Content Creators All the Time (WAACCAT). Site also summarised the issues around intellectual property and copyright; how to protect what you create and the recent development of the Creative Commons licence. The class discussion ranged across approaches to developing and protecting our content, cost of creation versus the market value of our efforts, alternatives to monetary commerce such as barter and distribution.

Sitearm concluded by reminding us to keep account of the content we create. This becomes more important as we progress in our careers and reputations develop into capital worth.

However, content may not always be what it seems, warns Ham, as he described the hoax of Dublin Coastal Development that was merely a mechanism to promote a new property development company. It succeeded massively, even making the primetime news bulletin on national television.

ACTIVITIES FOR NEXT CLASS:

  • This week is the second assessment point for your blogs so ensure they are up to date.
  • Write a post to your blog reflecting on your own particular contribution to the development of the group project. It is important to consider the shortcomings and failures in addition to the successes. Indeed, there is a greater opportunity for learning when you reflect on what went wrong and how you might improve your contribution in future team projects.
  • Prepare a short presentation to be given in the next class describing your project and the progress made so far.
  • Remember, your project presentation is only two weeks away.

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