SocioAnthro SIG
Transcript for the Online Reading Group

The following meeting took place in WorldsAway's Hotel Silicon on 27 March 1998.

In attendance (by order of appearance):
iona: T.L. Taylor
DrJanet: Janet LeValley
Nina: Nina Wakeford
Edith: Lelah Conrad
debc: Deb Cowden
Henri: Henrich Schwarz
Bruce: Bruce Damer
Phillip: Phillip Jeffrey
Wendy: Wendy Sue Noah

A note on editing:
This transcript was compiled with the help of Bruce Damer. There is a bit of a difficulty in WA in that one must keep saving messages as there is no on/off trigger for logging. I think we have a complete log here, but let me know if you notice any omissions or problems with it. I have also decided to leave the log as is, not correcting misspellings or taking out any emotive notations. Finally, several people did not have time to rename themselves from the generic names the system provides (i.e. Avatar 2153) so I have gone ahead and substituted their first name for easier reading. ---- T.L.Taylor

[Small talk and the usual chair issues (g) have not been included in this transcript. It begins with the official opening of the meeting...]

iona: okay, let's start! (grin)
DrJanet: okay
Nina:  Intros!
iona: we are having an informal get together after, so we can chat more then
iona: (grin)
DrJanet: Phil, are you okay?
Nina: Jerry = dissertation mania
DrJanet: I remember that disorder.
DrJanet: LOL
iona: can one other person help me by keeping a second transcrip?
Nina: Me too, urggh
DrJanet: I will keep a transcript.
iona: thanks(grin)
Nina: I'm taking photos
iona: okay, let's do intros (grin)
DrJanet: Great
iona: thanks nina (grin)(bow)
iona: also, i think a good convention...
iona: is when you haven't finished your thought...
DrJanet: Can you send me 1 photo 
DrJanet: later, please?
iona: to use elipses to signal you are continuing (grin)
Nina: will pass whole album to iona
DrJanet: What is an ellipse?
iona: last time we got multi-threaded a bit much (grin)
Nina: to post/distribute
iona: sounds good nina
Edith: ...
iona: ... janet (grin)
DrJanet: (grin)(grin)
Edith: ellipses=...
iona: okay, how about we start over in the corner with edit? (grin)
iona: edith, even (grin)(bow)
Edith: Kay!
Edith: I'm Lelah Conrad, former academic libn...
Edith: now reading teacher...
Edith: internet explorer...
Edith: and happily involved now as guide on a WA world...
Edith: nice to meet you all, and am very interested in topic!
iona: (grin)
DrJanet: Welcome
iona: deb, you want to go next?
debc: sure...
debc: I'm deb cowden, job hunter, journalist, former accountant....
debc: jill of all trades.  Glad to be here!
iona: (grin)
DrJanet: Welcome
iona: (pokes bruce)(grin)
Henri: hi all
iona: heyya (grin)(bow)
DrJanet: Henri, 
DrJanet: welcome and have a seat.
iona: perfect timing, we just started (grin)
Edith: Hi Henri!
Henri: sorry had car trouble
DrJanet: Cool look! (grin)
Bruce: hi all
iona: np
Bruce: sorry, should I introduce myself?
Phillip: hi henri
iona: please do (grin)(bow)
Bruce: I am bruce damer, inhabitant of these worlds for some 3 years..
Bruce: cofounded Contact Consortium as a forum for the development of this medium..
Bruce: hosted several conferences on subject so far..
Bruce: wrote a book called avatars..
Bruce: suppose you could say I have gone native :) :)
iona: (bg)
Bruce: thats all folks!
iona: great to have you with us bruce (grin)
Edith: (bow)
Bruce: thanks for forming this SIG!
DrJanet: Welcome, Bruce
iona: bruce has been the guy to give us our listserv and webspace (grin)(bow)
DrJanet: Thank you, Bruce! 
Bruce: you are the 5th SIG Of the Consortium, you are very welcome..
Henri: hi bruce
Bruce: you make the org what it is!
iona: (grin)
Bruce: We are a true virtual org :)
Henri: I figure I am next ? ..
Bruce: Just has another big SIG meeting in-world
DrJanet: Yep
iona: yep (grin)
Bruce: Please see
Bruce: sorry!
iona: s'ok (grin)
DrJanet: (grin)
Henri: I am Heinrich Schwarz ...
Henri: anthropologist of technology at MIT ..
Henri: mostly interested in virtual environments for collaborative purposes...
Henri: but not only ..
Henri: glad to be here.
iona: (grin)
Edith: (wave)
Henri: (grin)
Nina: Hi Henri, my turn?
iona: (nods)(grin)
Nina: Ok, I'm Nina Wakeford, usually on the faculty
Nina: of Sociology, University of Sheffield, UK
Nina: ...oops...
iona: (g)
Nina: now at UC Berkeley until Sept...
Nina: as visiting prof...
Nina: doing research and writing on cultural aspects of technology...
Nina: and trying to keep graduate students...
Nina: writing about it too, eh iona?..
iona: (g)
DrJanet: (g)
Nina: Very glad to be at second meeting. The end
iona: (grin)
Henri: (wave)
iona: well, i am t.l.taylor...
iona: graduate student in sociology at brandeis university...
iona: writing my dissertation on embodiment in virtual worlds..
iona: and spending more time at the keyboard than anywhere else these days (g) (shrug)
DrJanet: Sounds familiar
iona: glad to have you all here (grin)(bow)
DrJanet: (wry grin)
iona: (g)
DrJanet: Phillip???
DrJanet: Are you going to hold that chair all day????
Phillip: Am I next?
iona: oh, (chuckles) i thought you were going next janet (grin)
DrJanet: Oh sorry
iona: (g)
DrJanet: I was busy worrying about 
DrJanet: Phillip.
Phillip: Hi my name is Phillip
iona: (lol)
Phillip: My avatar refuses to cooperate so I will stand :)
iona: (g)
DrJanet: Phillip, 
DrJanet: give me the chair.
Phillip: I am a undergraduate student here at the GMD.FIT.CSCW in Sankt Augustin, Germany
DrJanet: Maybe I can help.
Phillip: My research lies in investigating social norms and conventions that may exist in virtual environments
Phillip: such as virtual worlds
DrJanet: Phillip, you may be interested in my paper, Doing it in Cyberspace
DrJanet: I talked a lot about the 
DrJanet: culture of our world, 
DrJanet: norms and holidays and 
DrJanet: etiquette, etc.
Phillip: I am a student intern here at the German National Research Center for Information Technology
iona: (grin)
iona: k, nono?
NONODEADKITTY!: oh sorry (grin)
NONODEADKITTY!: Alexa Arlen, pion (relax)(jump) interested in anthropology/psychology/sociology of life in virtual 
worlds [among other things (veg)] and contact consortium member (grin)(grin)
Phillip: I would be interested in the paper thanks.
Phillip: CSCW-Computer Supported Cooperative Work
iona: w/b edith (grin)
Edith: (sorry!)
iona: and finally, janet, our author (grin)(bow)
DrJanet: WElcome
Henri: it seems we need more chairs
DrJanet: Yes and 
DrJanet: Philip, if you will give me your chair, 
DrJanet: I will help you
Wendy: Thank You
iona: hello there (grin)(bow) we are doing intros right now
DrJanet: There. (grin)
DrJanet: I am Janet
DrJanet: I am a world manager 
DrJanet: for both WorldsAway Dreamscape
DrJanet: and also WorldsAway Club Connect.
DrJanet: I have been cultural director for Fujitsu WA worlds for 2 and a half years
DrJanet: My doctorate is in East West Psychology and 
DrJanet: I am professionally active in Anthropology and Cyber conferences.
DrJanet: I am also in charge of the 
DrJanet: MA and PhD degree programs in 
DrJanet: Computer Mediated Consciousness at Greenwich
DrJanet: University, a distance education university, 
DrJanet: department of Consciousness Studies.
DrJanet: I started a non-accredited distance education 
DrJanet: program in WA Dreamscape, 
DrJanet: Kymer International University.
DrJanet: WE have three departments, two of which are grass roots projects.
DrJanet: And I am very happy to have this privilege of 
DrJanet: meeting togwether with all of you here.
DrJanet: Thank you for coming and participating.
DrJanet: (bow)
Henri: (bow)
iona: thank you janet (grin)(bow) and it looks like we have one more person?
iona: who is our mystery guest here? (g)
Wendy: Is that me?
iona: yep (grin)
DrJanet: (grin)(grin)
Wendy: Hello Janet and gang - it is a pleasure to be here
Wendy: My name is Wendy Sue Noah and I am the World Manager for a new upcoming WorldsAway world...
Wendy: Club Connect!
DrJanet: LOL
Edith: Hi Wendy!(grin)
iona: ah, welcome wendy (grin)(bow)
DrJanet: My illustrious colleague at CC
iona: (g)
Bruce: welcome wendy, a true pioneer in this medium!
Wendy: Oh, I guess I'm not such a mystery guest, after all!
Phillip: hi wendy
Bruce: founder of the WEAVE SIG, Women Entering Avatar Virtual Environments
Henri: incognito today?
Wendy: Thank you to Bruce Damer for inviting me
iona: well, whew, welcome all, good to see a nice turnout (grin)(bow)
DrJanet: Yes, though we had a bit of trouble with the chairs.  
iona: our reading today as you all know was janet's paper on alternate embodiemnt
iona: (g) i think we will always have chair issues (grin)
Nina: can we start with questions?
iona: i thought i'd just open the floor for comments
iona: yep, sounds good (grin)
DrJanet: Good comments can be spoken 
Nina: Janet, I was interested in your phrase...
DrJanet: and bad ones need only to be thought. (grin)(grin)
iona: (g)
Nina: multiplicity of body = multiplicity of self
DrJanet: yes
Nina: hasn't there been a lot of research to suggest
Nina: that multiple selves can exist without multiple bodies?
Nina: or am I misunderstanding?
DrJanet: Yes of course there has been such research and 
DrJanet: I agree with it.
DrJanet: However, 
DrJanet: what I meant to state was that
DrJanet: in externalizing our multiple selves
DrJanet: into actual bodies (pizel in this case)
DrJanet: we free each of our selves
Nina: Ah, I see.
DrJanet: to act on the environment and differentiate 
DrJanet: and develop further, 
DrJanet: not altogether as separate entities, but certainly more so, 
DrJanet: in my understnding, 
Henri: Now, I am getting confused, Janet ..
DrJanet: than is achieved when the selves are fighting for control
DrJanet: (g)
DrJanet: of one body.
DrJanet: Confused?
DrJanet: Elaborate?
Henri: Do you mean to say that it is pre-existing selves that get embodied?
Henri: rather than what I thought you meant ..
DrJanet: I think it is 
Henri: that in each different embodiment ..
DrJanet: pre-existing selves that are not 
Henri: we would develop new selves
DrJanet: fully differentiated, but only partly differentiated, 
DrJanet: that we project into the 
DrJanet: in a virtual world,
DrJanet: that then have the opportunity to 
DrJanet: develop more fully, 
DrJanet: to construct their own 
DrJanet: body-based experience
DrJanet: separately from the 
DrJanet: ratava body to some extent
DrJanet: (though obviously still affiliated).
iona: this strikes me as akin to turkle's ideas about
DrJanet: These 
iona:  working out or through to some degree
DrJanet: more fully differentiated selves
DrJanet: act on the environment and become more than the 
DrJanet: original ratava 
DrJanet: selves
DrJanet: projection that gave them birth.
DrJanet: Then, through multiple 
DrJanet: selves dialoguing, 
debc: But what is the rebound effect on the ratava?
DrJanet: we are able to integrate our selves more fully.
iona: (good question deb (nods))
Henri: thanks
DrJanet: I cll that rebound effect seepage.
DrJanet: And I am interested in it because this 
DrJanet: is how I believe 
debc: Couldn't it be used to deliberately change one's self?
DrJanet: personal growth can happen with the '
DrJanet: virtual development as a tool.
DrJanet: Absolutely.
Nina: What are the differences in 3D/text worlds in this? (Less of a pixel body in MUDs? Different personal 
Nina: growth?)
Nina: Question for everyone really
DrJanet: That is a good question and 
DrJanet: I have only a bit to say on this.
DrJanet: I have some experience in one MUD
DrJanet: so I do not have enough 
DrJanet: to comment on, academically, 
DrJanet: but from my research data, 
DrJanet: it appears tht people do not come in here 
DrJanet: to intentionally change their lives.
DrJanet: It just happens.
DrJanet: And part of the key to this seems to be the 
DrJanet: necessity of watching one's self
DrJanet: (in all its multiplicity) 
Henri: Psychoanalysts would say they may come in
DrJanet: onscreen and being able to analyze it.
Henri: to change even if they don't know consciously
DrJanet: They do come in, from that perspective.
DrJanet: Yes.
DrJanet: But they are not aware of it usually.
iona: that is a provocative statement janet..
DrJanet: Not until later.
iona: that the ability to gaze at yourself..
iona: is what is crucial in this process...
iona: though here then muds are not the counter..
DrJanet: It is something tht is raised 
iona: but first person worlds
DrJanet: in so many interviews I have done in Dreamscape.
Nina: Good point iona.
DrJanet: Yes.
iona: though i have found people...
DrJanet: I do not mean to imply that MUDS do not give one the bility to gaze at oneself, though.
iona: how feel the third person perspective..
DrJanet: To some extent, they do, to imaginative participnts.
iona: lends a sense of puppetness, though they often don't see this in muds...
iona: i'm personally finding it very hard to come up with...
NONODEADKITTY!: takes more effort though in a MUD or first person perspective world I think
iona: a structured understanding of this.
NONODEADKITTY!: to see yourself
Nina: Puppetness and sense of pixel body...
Nina: I'm wondering...
Nina: if anything is lost..
debc: There can be a freedom in a third person perspective.
Nina: experientially or analytically...
DrJanet: To really answer this well, 
Bruce: first person perspective can yield more social immersion
DrJanet: I think we would need to 
DrJanet: (gulp)
Nina:  by placing the pixel body as an 'actual' body...
iona: i'm interested in those two comments that went by...
iona: on the difficulty in muds...
Bruce: immersion in place, committment to the dialogue
DrJanet: set up a more quantitative experiement, with controls.
iona: and the freedom question...
iona: (lol) nina!
Nina: what is committment/responsibility to the pixel body if all is multiplicity (and often play)?
iona: oh, that was janet who said that (g)(shrug)
DrJanet: Because all experience is body-based and 
DrJanet: having a pixel body still 
DrJanet: lends a different 
DrJanet: body to the selves equation.
iona: i was actually a bit confused at times in your paper janet...
iona: as sometimes you seemed to be putting what i would term identity plays...
iona: in with embodiment (ie plastic surgery vs putting on a cape)
iona: i wonder how you seperate the two?
iona: (granted their connection is quite complicated)
DrJanet: I would separate them only around the issue of 
DrJanet: how intent is involved.
DrJanet: Even in an avatar world
iona: hmm, not sure i get that
DrJanet: with avatar bodies, 
DrJanet: there are those who experience the avatar self as a cape
DrJanet: so to speak.
DrJanet: They put it on and roleplay, 
DrJanet: a cynical enactment.
DrJanet: Sometimes they fall for their role and 
DrJanet: other times they do not.
iona: hmm, okay. i will have to think on that a bit
Henri: According to what you said before ..
DrJanet: Well, me too (grin)(grin)
iona: i wonder, i think it was both deb and edith had a comment about muds?
iona: (g)
Henri: no matter how cynical the role ..
Nina: But what about the concept of audience reception?
debc: well, naturally I would prefer text....
NONODEADKITTY!: I had a comment about muds, but I forget what it was (grin)
iona: (g)
Nina: I mean you might try to 'be' a woman, but no-one 'gets' it?
iona: prefer text because?
Bruce: you might try the voice experience in Onlive Traveler (anyone done it?)
iona: (lol) happens often enough nina (g)
debc: I am able to move more and do more with text.
iona: (nods) yeah, reed riner was here last time...
DrJanet: Yes, I have heard others say that
Edith: the people on my mud think so too
debc: I tried was...different.
iona: and commented on how dead and frozen we all seemed compared to a mud
Nina: So bodies are more mobile in text?
DrJanet: and perhaps it depends on familiarity but more likely it depends on 
Henri: (tell us, Bruce
debc: Much more mobile!
DrJanet: how different strokes work for different folks.
DrJanet: (grin)
Nina: I like the blinking in OnLive
Edith: they think you can never reveal as much in graphics as in text
Nina: I tried to get the faculty here to take it seriously
iona: it is a fascinating question, how people fall on this
Nina: for French conversation class
Phillip: I have briefly used Onlive also but I actually prefer not using my voice
iona: when reed and i went to his mud after our last meeting...
Bruce: Voice can be a real bandwidth hog but it is a very socially immersive experience..
iona: i have to say, i felt as if i'd been released from a strightjacket a bit (shrug)
Bruce: but it is difficult to record the sessions!
DrJanet: Hmmmm
debc: Voice with headphones really rocks.
iona: (we have an invitation there after btw)
Nina: I wonder if all cultures find increasing voice = increasing social immersion.
DrJanet: I have never tried it but that would be interesting.
iona: but what is embodiment via voice?
Nina: I wonder what deaf communities would find most socially immersive?
iona: in a mud, i can type iona hugs you, in online, i would say that??
iona: i can enact on a mud, even in here
debc: :when YOUR vice is coming out of a pixel is more YOU.
DrJanet: Certainly.
Bruce: In south africa, we used Traveler where kids could not read..
iona: remember, it is quite interesting that diapaulo (who did online)...
debc: whoops, voice...bad slip.
iona: made a strategic decision to leave off the bodies
Bruce: Steve dipaola has a very interesting short treatise as part of our siggraph 97 panel..
iona: yes, maybe like phone sex you mean?
Bruce: if anyone is interested?
iona: yeah, that was a fascinating talk he gave bruce
debc: Hrm, I use my body in phone sex.
Nina: Steve D recommended companies took socio/anths seriously
iona: he has a great term called coupling the pair
Nina: I like him.
iona: (nods) yeah, phone sex is a great example of complicating the voice question
Bruce: Steve is a visionay, a great character designer and writer on the subject of immersion..
Bruce: in worlds, trade-offs with voice, POV etc.
Nina: Being devil's advocate here...
debc: I don't like my head floating around without my body.
iona: maybe we can get him in here for a reading session (g)
iona: i can't quite tell who said that, was it phillip or deb?
DrJanet: It seems to me that 
Bruce: Just spoke with him yesterday, he will help out with Avatars98, especially if it is in-world!
DrJanet: voice would maybe benefit a world 
Nina: Immersion seems to depend on resources (skill, money, time, pixels, bandwidth), no?
DrJanet: which is intended to 
DrJanet: extend the waking world, 
DrJanet: but not a world like Dreamscape which is a 
Bruce: Objects and property are very important to immersion, look at Active Worlds..
DrJanet: world apart from waking world.
debc: Voice also puts up barriers...accent and such.
iona: agreed bruce
DrJanet: yes
Nina: Pixel bodies can also 'work out' to be more socially desirable as they become richer...
Bruce: where people become attached to their locations, as people do here to their Turfs.
iona: well janet, we both know how mushy that line is (g)
Nina: but does this change transformative potential?
Phillip: I also agree
iona: if anything wa has more f2f meetings than most places (lol)
iona: hmm, what do you mean socially desirable?
Edith: lol iona
Nina:  Well look at us 'clones' here compared to the 'worked out' bodies...
iona: i would say it's not just attachment bruce, but objects lend a materiality to the space..
iona: and materiality is useful for embodiment
Nina: I sense cultural capital in more complication (further from the default/norm).
iona: this is why i'd distinguish chat rooms from worlds
Edith: yes
Nina: What is the materiality of a pixel body?
iona: oh yes, the cultural capital part is key
DrJanet: The pixel body is just as material as the 
DrJanet: ratava body in waking world.
iona: (chuckles) well, i could give ya my 4 theoretical points, but i won't bore ya (g)
DrJanet: LOL
Nina: But the ratava body is being de-materialised in the cultural arena (ads would have us believe)...
Bruce: yes, cultural capital, sense of space, belonging, stuff, competitive nature of owning..
Nina: What is happening here?
iona: but i think the autonomy of objects and others is key in creatign embodiment
Bruce: the coolest objects or space, pride, greed, all the human motivations lend..
Bruce: a committment to being int he space and therefore embodiment.
iona: de-materialized? how so?
DrJanet: We are being re-materialized here, I guess.
Bruce: (opinion of a rank amateur!)
DrJanet: That is a very fscinating point.
DrJanet: (bow)
Nina: I mean that the ads have picked up on being postmodern...
iona: (grins at bruce)
Nina: fragemented, the peformative...
Nina: and regurgitate it back to us...
debc: BUT, we are being materialized guided (again) by the imaginings of a few.
Nina: maybe just in CA?
iona: (lol)
Edith: heh
debc: err, rematerialized.
DrJanet: yes
DrJanet: OL
Nina: So we are supposed to be able to avoid our..
iona: yeah, i take a dematerialized position pretty skeptically
Nina: material bodies in 'real' (ratava) life
iona: at least, it's not what i find in my interviews (shrug)
Nina: More please iona.
DrJanet: Clarification?
DrJanet: You take the 
iona: heck, what in the world are people doing when they have sex online (lol)
DrJanet: idea of our
DrJanet: being dematerialized skeptically?
iona: yeah, i don't think most people walk around in their day to day life...
iona: feeling disembodied (shrug)
DrJanet: My ratava is far more 
iona: it is actually quite hard to be so i would say
DrJanet: disembodied than 
DrJanet: are my avatars.
iona: how so?
Nina: I get more backache being an avatar than in the rest of my life.
DrJanet: I am at the computer about 17  hours each day,.
Edith: hee
iona: (g)
DrJanet: I often do not take time to 
DrJanet: do any of the things that would 
DrJanet: bring my body into my attention.
Nina: But I feel more material in other senses in 'everyday' life.
DrJanet: Yet my avatar bodies receive attention from me.
DrJanet: I live in them.
iona: yeah, but i'm not sure that is the norm  though it depends on the space
debc: My body tends to demand attention...which avatars cannot do.
DrJanet: For me it is like this and for 
Nina: What about cross-culturally? 
DrJanet: many others I have spoken with.
Nina: Tamogachi demand attention...
iona: i mean 17 hours
Nina: feeding electronic pets...
Nina: you know.
iona: i find lots of people trying to negotiate having two bodies at once..
DrJanet: 17 hours is not a record
Bruce: Is it Minsky's Society of Mind extenting out into a swarm of digital prosthetics?
DrJanet: even among our customers.
Nina: eh, Bruce?
iona: and coming up with interesting ways to move through the shifts back and forth
Edith: hmmm...
Edith: but doesn't sound healthy to me
debc: Why stop at two?  Multi-moo!
iona: prosthetics is a fascinating word bruce
iona: (chuckles) yep deb, definitely!
Nina: Sandy Stone talks about prosthetics too.
DrJanet: I have more than two, of course, 
Henri: nice rhyme, phillip
DrJanet: but it is difficult to be real in too many.
iona: i find again a mix of people who use that term
Nina: What is the norm for those users who only spend say 30 mins a day on this?
Bruce: Yes, are we creating societies of exo-mind, where mind prostheses call our attention..
DrJanet: I do not know.
Nina: Is materiality function of time spent online?
iona: versus seeing their av as separate in some way from themselves
DrJanet: Most people spend more than 30 minutes
iona: (though ultimately they are often quite ambivalent)
Phillip: that comment was't phillip
Bruce: as our stomachs, sex drives, need for tribal assurance, all do in the in-body society?
iona: interesting question nina
Nina: Janet, you  mean most users of WA?
Henri: sorry, deb, then
iona: (g) deb and phillip have a blurred boundary over there
Edith: i think there is a difference...
Edith: between people who think they live here...
DrJanet: most DS users.
Edith: and people who are looking for communication/contact.
DrJanet: Yes, that is true.
iona: ah, interesting distinction edith
Edith: i for one...
Edith: have been, as you know, lloking..
iona: though the live here folks tend to be drawn to the comm as well
debc: Hold on...people believe they live here?
Edith: for good conversation...
Edith: but not for a life in virtual reality!
NONODEADKITTY!: I know people who live in hotel 
DrJanet: I live in Dreamscape.
iona: (g) deb. well, dontcha live on a mud?
DrJanet: And I have interviewed many avatars whose
DrJanet: ratavas connect charges are in excess of 
DrJanet: 1000 dollars per month.
Edith: yikes!
debc: Hrm, usually I have a place where I store myself, thought sometimes I am a street person.
DrJanet: I have spoken with many who have spent 2 days and some three days
iona: i guess i wonder janet why on this you seem to want to lend _more_ embodiment to the av..
Edith: get a life is taking on a new meaning, heh
Henri: 1000 dollars?
DrJanet: inworld without leaving.
DrJanet: yes
Edith: sounds like addiction to me
iona: versus a shared amoutn. is it part of nina's earlier point, about the moment we live in?
debc: I don't consider that living though.
DrJanet: It is not addiction
Phillip: when one's virtual life begins to adversely affect one's physical life
DrJanet: That is very simplistic.
DrJanet: The same could be said then of 
DrJanet: waking world life, 
Phillip: is that the signs of an addiction?
DrJanet: that it is an addiction, 
DrJanet: that breathing is an addiction.
DrJanet: It is not unhealthy across the board to 
Edith: well, you have to breathe...
DrJanet: spend days in here or 
Bruce: Avaddiction, all things in moderation as the (ancient) Greeks used to say..
NONODEADKITTY!: but virtual living is more of a choice 
Nina: Do we want to reserve some priviledges for biosocial  eg breathing?
iona: yeah, the addiction model never strikes me as entirely satisfying 
DrJanet: even nearly all of one's life in here.
DrJanet: I have friends in Dreamscape, 
Nina: Or let it go completely, as I think Janet has (?)
DrJanet: for example, who 
NONODEADKITTY!: and I think if ya choose virtual over real then you're addicted 
NONODEADKITTY!: but what do I know 
DrJanet: are terminally ill, who are Quads, '
DrJanet: who have serious burns, etc, 
Bruce: Like teens on phones all day?
DrJanet: who have a full and very very healthy 
DrJanet: sense of themselves inworld, but who 
Bruce: Vicarious remote living.
DrJanet: for quite obvious reasons
DrJanet: do not prefer the 
DrJanet: severe 
DrJanet: dependency of waking world.
debc: what is RL but a lonely hallucination?
DrJanet: This is not that unusual as you might think.
iona: (lol)
DrJanet: Exactly.
Edith: hmmmm
DrJanet: You can decide that 
DrJanet: for you personally, 
DrJanet: the waking world is more 
iona: skeptic in the corner over there? (grins at edith)
DrJanet: healthy, 
Edith: yup
DrJanet: but you cnnot decide this for others
DrJanet: because it is not true,\
DrJanet: I for example have 
Edith: but of course we do decide for others all the time...
DrJanet: many serious allergies
Edith: some of us are teachers...etc
DrJanet: life threatening reactions
iona: i guess i am just not finding people in such polemical positions
Henri: lol
DrJanet: to the waking world.
DrJanet: For me, I have a great deal more freedom in 
iona: all inworld or all offline. mix of both which is hard to sort out usually
DrJanet: the virtual world.
DrJanet: That is true for many many people here.
debc: So, VR becomes an equlizer of all things physical?
iona: this is one thing that concerned me about your paper janet...
debc: gotta get a new typist, equalizer.
iona: i have to confess, your ww examples could be read in a devastating fashion
DrJanet: How so??
iona: well, they seemed to be examples of fairly impoverished ww lives, environs, etc....
iona: and i think it fits all too easy with an escapist stereotype
DrJanet: Not everyone has an impoverished waking world life, 
DrJanet: but there are many many for whom DS is a richer experience and 
DrJanet: affords more opportunity.
DrJanet: It is not at all about escape.
DrJanet: It is about choice.
DrJanet: Choice for enriched living.
iona: hmm, i think we have to be careful about these terms..
DrJanet: In what way?
iona: richer or more. again, this move to priveldge it this way..
Henri: never heard you so sceptic, taylor
Edith: when i think of enriched living..
Edith: i think of a balance of some sort.
iona: strikes me as overlooking the more more mundane, yet interesting moves people make
DrJanet: That is based on your choices and 
iona: (grins at henri) she brings it out in me (grin)
DrJanet: what you have to work with.
DrJanet: Obviously, 
DrJanet: not everyone has the same bag of options.
debc: Why put value judgements on at all?
iona: (just noticed nina crashed)
DrJanet: I put value judgements on because the 
DrJanet: people I have interviewed do so and I am a researcher.
DrJanet: I try to report.
DrJanet: Not find politically correct data.
DrJanet: (g)
iona: (chuckles) we will have to have a comparison session when my stuff is written up janet (g)
Bruce: just stretching, sorry!
iona: (grins at bruce)
Edith: (grin)
Henri: I'd like to come back to the question we had earlier
DrJanet: (grin)(grin)
Henri: on the importance of  self-observation
iona: i think we find many of the same things, but nuance them a bit differently 
iona: yeah, let's henri
Henri: I found that the most
Henri: interesting point in Janet's paper
Henri: How exactly does the self-observation
Henri: and analysis happen?
Henri: is it the back and forth
Henri: between the different selves/roles
Henri: or whatever you want to call it?
Henri: It does seem that this points does implicitly
Henri: priviledge the waking world somewaht
Henri: 'NO?
DrJanet: How so?
Henri: (sorry didn't meant to shoult
iona: (g)
DrJanet: (g)
iona: good point henri
Henri: you talked about a dialogue between avatar
iona: i've noticed that too, always implicitly though
Henri: experience and ravata thinkin
Henri: that goes on when we watch
DrJanet: Yes, I went into this 
DrJanet: a good deal in a previous paper.
iona: noticed it in this paper i mean
Henri: isn't it always the ravata self then 
iona: the locus of the birth as you call it is always ratava
Henri: that does the observation / analysis?
Henri: right.
DrJanet: That is a good question, 
DrJanet: especially since the ratava is 
DrJanet: comprised of many selves, 
Henri: good point
DrJanet: though perhaps not so exlicitly manifested as those in 
iona: this is the thread i link to turkle
DrJanet: avatar embodiment.
DrJanet: But at some level it is 
DrJanet: difficult to say with certainty who is 
DrJanet: doing the observation because 
iona: seems to me then, that despite your term of polycentric is much more centrally structured
DrJanet: for exmple, 
DrJanet: my avatars, 
iona: than might appear at first glance
DrJanet: Oracle Uni and my alters 
DrJanet: certainly have re-integrated 
DrJanet: (in more developed capacity) 
DrJanet: back into the collectivity that is my 
iona: ah, so fascinating, that the avatar could see with ratava eyes
DrJanet: ratava self(ves) and 
debc: Ravata is creator...but do avatars become differentiated from ravata?
DrJanet: so how does one distinguish?
DrJanet: Avatars do become differentiated but they are also constantly 
iona: depends on the world and form of embodiment i think
DrJanet: re-integrating.
iona: yes, true
iona: in degrees though (shrug)
NONODEADKITTY!: some of my avatars take on a life of their own sometimes (relax)
iona: right
debc: but your avatar would cease to exist if you so chose...ultimately you are ravata.
DrJanet: Your ratava cn also 
Edith: yes
DrJanet: cease to exist if you choose, 
NONODEADKITTY!: but sometimes they do stuff that I don't expect , it's weird 
DrJanet: so you are not ratava at thebase of your reality.
NONODEADKITTY!: catches me off guard sometimes (react)
Henri: what for example
iona: yeah, that is a fascinating thing phillip
NONODEADKITTY!: they say stuff that I would normally censor (shrug)
DrJanet: Yes
iona: or act
DrJanet: mmmhmm
iona: or even move (g)
debc: for sure on the act.
iona: (g)
iona: i will plug an article nono wrote on this exact topic (grin)
DrJanet: (g)
Phillip: like my avatar now (won't do what I say and sit down)
iona: speak kitty! 
NONODEADKITTY!: kitty don't wanna speak (relax)
iona: (lol) phillip
iona: oh, okay (grin) well, the gist of it was about how avatars can take on lives of their own..
DrJanet: Kitty prefers to meaow (grin)
iona: and develop in unexpected ways, in relation to social interaction (something i as
Edith: i've heard writers say this..
iona: a sociologist think is key (grin))
Edith: about characters they've created.
iona: yeah edith?
NONODEADKITTY!: I got avatars who turned evil cuz of who they hung out with (grin)
DrJanet: Yes, Mary Watkins speaks about this a lot
iona: (lol)
DrJanet: in Imginal Dialogues.
debc: well sure, writers were immersing themselves in text long before vr.
Phillip: do our avatars exist when we are not in our virtual worlds?
Henri: and readers too
DrJanet: Yes, mine do.
iona: and if you buy the idea of symbolic interactionists...
DrJanet: They exist in the dream realm 
iona: you are bound to see how this could be
Bruce: speaking of writers, we have a large-ish archive of web-writings on this at:
DrJanet: when my ratava sleeps.
iona: in some worlds. i like muds for that reason...
NONODEADKITTY!: I've never dreamed about my avatars
iona: you can find someone asleep
NONODEADKITTY!: that I remember anyway
Henri: thanks, bruce
DrJanet: I dream frequently 
iona: no? i've dreamt graphic avs, muds avs, the works (g)
DrJanet: of my avatar's lives and emotions
Bruce: web tour?
DrJanet: interesting
iona: ah, i just saw the time! (grin)
DrJanet: I m so sorry but I must leave.
iona: maybe we should conclude for this session?
DrJanet: I have an appointment in Dreamscape 
Henri: time moves fast, didn't we talk about this last time?
DrJanet: with the Luau host and need to leave.
Bruce: will someone post this to the SIG site?
iona: those who would like to head to the mud, hang around (grin)
iona: (lol) yep henri
Bruce: It was great dialogue and food for future thought!
DrJanet: Thank you everyone.
Edith: Thanks, all!
iona: thanks for allowing us to discuss your paper janet 
DrJanet: Such interesting issues were raised for us to 
Henri: yes, was wonderful, I enjoyed it.
DrJanet: continue at fuure discussions.
Edith: Thanks janet, especially!
DrJanet: So did I
iona: (grin)(jump)
Bruce: thanks Janet
iona: thanks to all of you for coming (grin)
DrJanet: Thank YOU all.  (bow)(bow)

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