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Class 4: Online communities and relationships

February 28, 2013

ADVANCE INFORMATION FROM ELFAY PINKDOT:

12:00 SLT/20:00 GMT: Class will begin at the regular DIT classroom in Virtual Dublin for about 45 minutes.

Then a brief presentation from Elfay Pinkdot from 12:45 to 13:00. You can find her website with links to her other projects and networks here. You can find a recent bio here. The second part of class will move to another SIM in Second Life until 13:30

Today’s guest artist is award-winning  machinima film maker, Iono Allen. See his latest collaboration is here. Please watch it before class begins today if you have time. His work can also be found on the guild page. Yes! there’s a guild for that! The goal is to interact with us and our guests – that means you’ll need to be able to teleport, use basic animations, talk in chat and voice, and most importantly; have your audio working to enable you to hear live streaming. There will be time for Q&A in chat before class ends. It’s social. loose. interactive and (supposed) to be fun! Prepare ahead of time so you can enjoy it and participate fully!

CLASS SUMMARY:

The class commenced with a discussion, continuing from last week, about the regulations and conventions governing the use of online social media tools and how etiquette developed from them. We talked about the differences between places such as Facebook and Linked In and how we deciphered relevant social codes and learned the appropriate behaviour. Participants spoke about their experiences meeting new people in SL over the previous week and how they learned about communities. The importance of having a coherent identity was raised in connection with joining groups.

Guest lecturer Elfay Pinkdot presented the rest of the class. She spoke about the development of her online life – from an early interest in how things around her worked, to a specific interest in technology.

As an early adopter of email, internet access, online communication and residency in virtual worlds, she has a unique perspective on their development. Describing the process of developing her online presence Elfay remarked on how it simply became an extension of her own personality. She also noted that it can often be easier to establish online relationships but that they require the same attention as any other relationship might.

She was able to indulge her passion for jazz by hosting a weekly show in SL for over five years and this formed the basis of an online network that evolved into a community and led to her connecting with other communities. There was some discussion on the organisation and regulation of communities, the rules governing access to SL and their enforcement and the development of behavioural conventions and etiquette.

ACTIVITIES FOR NEXT CLASS:

  1. Post an entry to your blog: discussing the importance of regulation, convention and etiquette in online communities in your context.
  2. Listen to the lecture: ‘From Prosumer to Produser: Understanding User-Led Content Creation’ by Prof Axel Bruns (Creative Industries Faculty at Queensland Institute of Technology) who explains his theory of user-led collaborative content creation.

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