I’ve been taking a long break from Second Life again – just when I was getting momentum on the Kipling Rock project, distractions from First Life cropped up. Nothing major; mostly it was lots of new episodes of favorite television shows, family stuff on the weekends, midweek choir practice, and afternoon naps!
But I’ve kept up with blogs and SLUniverse, and ran across this reminder of an underused feature:
Linden Lab is now marketing itself as "Makers of Shared Creative Spaces". And they even might have created a "shared creative" space by accident. It could become the intersection between the in-world SL experience and the web. It could also become a multiplayer interactive online narrative. I am talking about the SL profile feed with its snapshot function. Most people havent realized its potential and they are not even using it. But lets start from the beginning.
Can I seriously be talking about the SL profile feed – this feature that never got adopted by the SL users? The SL feed is what you get to see first when you click on someones profile in the viewer. Its basically an overview of past status updates made by a resident. When Linden Lab acquired Avatars United in 2010, they integrated pieces of that social network for avatars into the Second Life platform. As a result the profiles of the residents switched to a web-based layout and SL profile feeds were added. However up to now the majority of SL residents doesnt write any status updates and their feed remains empty. Most of the time youll find automatically generated entries like "Xyx resident changed their display name to Xyx+".
I agree with Estelle Pienaar here – the profile feed (with snapshots from within SL) doesn’t get much play, but when I’ve used it or interacted with other residents, it’s been a lot of fun.
As part of my New Year’s resolution to get back up to speed, I’m going to be using my profile feed more, and playing around with narrative, too.