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Cummere Mayo
Posts: 106

Why is it the most believable Women avatars Men and Men Avatars Women?

This kinda goes along with a couple of other posts i've been reading about.  But, I don't care so much the why people play cross gendered chars, its why IMO the most believeable avatars in SL in terms of looks, personality, roleplay, everything, tend to be those played by the opposite gender?

Thats not to say that women avatars actually played by women are brutish, manish, maculine things, or that men that play men are feminine, slender, and hypersensatized. Though there are those like that most people can make their avatars look really good.

Its more... I dunno.. the little things?  The small details and accessories, the style and detail of emoting, the little personality quarks that can make a charactor almost the stereotype but still shine out from the stereotype.  The avatars that can really suck you in and almost make you fall in love with the avatar itself. I really don't know how to explain it any better.

I have had seen this some in other games I played before SL, but nothing like in SL.  Its gotten to the point where if a player can make their avatar imitate RL really well I just assume that they are cross gendered.

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Registered: ‎05-20-2009

Re: Why is it the most believable Women avatars Men and Men Avatars Women?

Reply to Cummere Mayo - view message

If I read you correctly, Cummere, you are saying that you think the most "realistic" female avatars are men in RL, and the most "realistic" male avatars are created by RL females. If that's what you mean, I'd be curious to know on what you base this assumption. My experience is that I meet "believeable" female avatars who are female in RL and believable male avatars who are male in RL. I do know some pretty good female AVs who are men in RL but I don't think it's a clear-cut "female AVs are best done by men RL, and vice versa." As I said, I'm interested in why you think this is so.

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Ravin Draconia
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Re: Why is it the most believable Women avatars Men and Men Avatars Women?

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Well, I don't know what you base this on, what facts or data or what. I think, though, that what you are referring to is subjective. Very simply, it isn't realism, its cues. That is, women know what women pay attention to when they see a man and men know what catches a man's attention. People respond to all sorts of cues and triggers from others, both physical features and behaviour patterns, consciously and subconsciously. And so men and women who have avatars of the opposite gender know what to put emphasis on.

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Griffin Ceawlin
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Registered: ‎12-15-2009

Re: Why is it the most believable Women avatars Men and Men Avatars Women?

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.. IMO the most believeable avatars in SL in terms of looks, personality, roleplay, everything, tend to be those played by the opposite gender ..

In your opinion (or, your experience) is key there. In my experience, limited in this area as it is, the opposite is true.

Thats not to say that women avatars actually played by women are brutish, manish, maculine things, or that men that play men are feminine, slender, and hypersensatized.

This statement provides great insight into your perception of men and women in general. Do you really find men to be "brutish"? And are all of the women you meet hypersensitive?

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Suspiria Finucane
Posts: 8,577
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Registered: ‎11-10-2009

Re: Why is it the most believable Women avatars Men and Men Avatars Women?

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Ravin Draconia wrote:

Very simply, it isn't realism, its cues. That is, women know what women pay attention to when they see a man and men know what catches a man's attention.

I see, so you're saying it doesn't matter what women pay attention to when they see other women or what men pay attention to when they see other men?

I suppose next people will try to tell us that only women can paint men and men can only paint women. What a load of bull.

An artist can portray any subject, be it female or male, animal or plant etc.. It makes no difference whether the artist is female or male.

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Starchild Magic
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Re: Why is it the most believable Women avatars Men and Men Avatars Women?

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I'm not sure that the believability of an avatar is really defined by the gender of the person controlling it. I think it's more about the reason they're here.

If someone is here to live an idealized fantasy life, their avatar is going to reflect that, whether the av's gender matches the person's or not. Likewise, if someone is here just to be social, or for business or education, they're more likely to have more realistic avatars (in my experience, at least).

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Relm Foxdale
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Re: Why is it the most believable Women avatars Men and Men Avatars Women?

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The way I read this, you think I'm a guy, don't you? :-)

I suspect one would find certain trends in MTF and FTM avs. After all, most of the people behind those avs are creating their ideal. Of course, people do the same when they play the same sex. But statistically speaking, one might find that more large-breasted female avs are actually men than are small-breasted avs, as large breasts tend (not across the board, just tend) to be preferred by men. By the same token, the less feminine-looking female avs are more likely to be girls in RL.

I've met very few people who I suspected of being the opposite sex in RL. Of course, maybe I don't run in the right circles. I know one who plays both and crossdresses in RL. Neither of that person's is realistic as anything at all. I met a male once who I found to be female when I checked the profile, and I think I must have felt compelled to for some reason, so there must have been a tell. Then there's one female av who I suspected of being a man because she looks like a blow-up doll (almost literally), and her profile would suggest she's actually a woman.

Also, you may be thinking of actual MTFs here. Transsexual men very often have to be "more feminine" than a born-woman could, to cover up for the traits that aren't so feminine. I can go out in no make-up and crummy clothes and still be thought female, but most transsexual men have to put more effort in.

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Re: Why is it the most believable Women avatars Men and Men Avatars Women?

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On the whole, i take the opposite view.

Some female avies created by men are quite realistic looking.   However, others practically scream, "that's a  man":  the triangular body shape (strangely, some men still cling to this look even when creating female avies), the too narrow waist, the mammoth boobage, the over-done 'sexiness'.  Of course, one can't know for certain whether it's a male/female behind the avatar.  Neither does one sex or the other have the monopoly on poorly crafted avies.

I have a couple of female friends with male alts and with them i also notice that the appearance is a little 'off'.  It seems to me that the jaw is a little too rounded, etc.  Or perhaps it's just 'cos i know they're RL females.

So much for looks.  When it comes to how they come across, how they express themselves, etc., some are good at playing the part, some are not.  Some can carry off it off, some can't.  I guess you've encountered the ones who are good at it.  Lucky you. 

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Rakim Zarco
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Re: Why is it the most believable Women avatars Men and Men Avatars Women?

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Playing any role in sl, you have the ability to be so minutely detailed in your appearance.  I think that is what would make some one stand out if they are playing an av of the opposite sex.  All of those little minute details that the opposite sex pays attention to.  Many of these minute details can sometimes be taken for granted and go unrepresented in sl by a certain number of people,  and then celebrated and exaggerated by others.

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Lorna Volitant
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Re: Why is it the most believable Women avatars Men and Men Avatars Women?

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I think that you have a good point. I believe people are capable of multiple sexual identities and can easily switch between gender roles in a gaming environment, because of the masking and disguising capability of the image and gesture technology, the clothing and animations etc. This makes the job easier and can enhance any latent gender traits that the player already possesses.

I Know plenty of women in SL who are men in RL and they play the role very well on the surface, although they have some fallibilties when it comes to conversing about certain experiences that they cannot replicate or imitate, i.e. pregnancy and childbirth related experience.

I like the fact that SL plays with concepts of reality at all levels and can be a transformational environment.