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Wednesday, November 15, 2006

Unitarian Universalists in 'Second Life' video game.

For the true geeks out there, here are some links to Unitarian Universalist places and events in the make-your-own-reality video game "Second Life." A character named Bizarre Berry is offering an Intro to Unitarian Universalism this Thursday; another character named UU Guru offered a film featuring UU young adults back in September; and someone has built a UU sanctuary — photo here — which I assume is where these events take place.

Never heard of "Second Life"? Here's a Business Week cover story about the phenomenon. (There's a booming economy inside "Second Life" with real-world effects.) Confession: I've learned about "Second Life" entirely through so-called dead tree media and haven't played the game. Who has the time? Rob Walker wrote about it for the New York Times Magazine last month and just last week Matt Gross wrote a travel column about it, complete with housing and dining tips! Atlantic Monthly subscribers will also be interested in Jonathan Rauch's long article about the future of video games: he's looking for the emergence of fine art in the genre.

("My virtual life," Business Week 5.1.06; "Selling to avatars," Rob Walker, New York Times Magazine 10.1.06, reg req'd; "It's my (virtual) world and welcome to it!," Matt Gross, New York Times 11.3.06, reg req'd; "Sex, lies, and videogames," Jonathan Rauch, Atlantic Monthly 11.06, sub req'd)

Update 11.19.06: Oh, yes, see also the first — and very excellent — article I read about "Second Life": "Does your life suck?" (Camille Dodero, Boston Phoenix 7.17.06).

Copyright © 2006 by Philocrites | Posted 15 November 2006 at 7:28 AM

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h sofia:

November 15, 2006 12:11 PM | Permalink for this comment

What a coincedence; I just learned about SL this past week and created an account in order to find out the cost of the land (answer: too much). One needn't buy land to build a life there, but it does seem pretty time consuming and I don't want to spend the money for playing. It's fun to know at least there is a UU community there.

Scott McNeill:

November 15, 2006 09:05 PM | Permalink for this comment

Last Thursday, a few of us first years at Meadville talked about this and considered getting into it to offer some UUism. It's good to know that other folks are doing so already.

Dan Kennedy:

November 17, 2006 08:51 PM | Permalink for this comment

One of the best articles about Second Life was by Camille Dodero of the Boston Phoenix. You can read it here. No registration or subscription required.


November 18, 2006 08:42 AM | Permalink for this comment

Of course! Thanks, Dan. When I was racking my brain trying to remember how I first learned about Second Life, it was the Phoenix story I was trying to recall. As soon as you mentioned it, I could even remember where I read it — Emmet's on Beacon Hill — and the feeling of growing amazement.

(I also enjoyed Dodero's account of how she finds subjects to write about in the 40th-anniversary edition of the Phoenix, which otherwise felt a little like the Neil Young concert film "Heart of Gold," which I saw last night — a fine boomer nostalgia trip. But Susan Ryan-Vollmer's piece on covering gay marriage, in which you show up, too, was great.)


November 19, 2006 10:16 AM | Permalink for this comment

Christine Robinson reports on her visit to the 50-member UU Church of Second Life.


December 16, 2006 03:51 PM | Permalink for this comment

Christine reports that the UU Church of Second Life meets every Thursday — and that its 80 members are discussing trying to affiliate with the UUA as a member congregation.


January 27, 2007 10:36 AM | Permalink for this comment

Christine reports on the continued growth and vitality of the UU church in Second Life.

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