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Democracy hits SL!

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mikka Luik wrote:

The only one off the top of my head would be the CDS so would be interesting to hear of others.

 

Thank you for the mention, Mikka!

 

Someone mentioned earlier that putting up a sim's worth of teir would end up with the "experiment" ending within a month; to that I'd like to point out that even with our ups and downs, the Confederation Of Democratic Simulators (portal.slcds.info) has managed to last for twelve years now since our origins on the Anzere region.

 

Far from closing, in 2015 we added a sixth region to our estate.

 

On a personal level, I'm not sure that democracy would work particularly well as a means of running the entire secondlife grid, but we at the CDS have managed to make it work for our estate.

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We seem to agree that SL is not a democracy. What type of government does SL actually have? A one party state system like China? 

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A real problem with SL is that most peeps can't help but wish to tamper with things. It's human nature to do so, and if their only way of doing so would be to form a government system  that gave them that ability to do it, then that's the way they will go.

But if SL was liberalized instead, the benefits would become apparent, not the least of which would be the growth of the game, and perhaps even end up changing human nature for the better as a consequence. imho.

More restrictions, more laws would all be a disbenefit for SL and register negatively on the bottom line. Less restrictions and laws would have the opposite effect.

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I agree that SL as a whole is not now and cannot be a democracy.  It is an asset to a profit oriented corporation who over the years have arbitrarily changed the Terms of Service, not to the benefit of its users.

But, as Han Held points out, we in the Confederation of Democratic Simulators (CDS) have existed as a democracy within the bounds available to us of SL, for 12 years now.  It has many challenges and it doesn't appeal to people who aren't interested in group dynamics or politics all that much, but to those who enjoy being a part of how things are run, like to work within a group to create something bigger than themselves, or who simply want to find a place where they can be useful to a community, it has proven to be sustainable.  

There is something compelling about working out how to make democracy work in a virtual environment where many real world cultures and expectations come together. Around the real world, democracy has manifested itself in various ways, and this experiment of the CDS has become its own version as well.  When it was begun, nobody thought it would last longer than 6 months.... but here we are still!

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Bree Giffen wrote:

We seem to agree that SL is not a democracy. What type of government does SL actually have? A one party state system like China? 

The closest equivalent I know of is feudalism - the Crown has infinite powers but various lords and barons have a large degree of control over their personal demesnes, including the ability to make money from them, as rewards for sending the Crown money.

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Actually, in 2004, some SL residents did just what you describe.  The Confederation of Democratic Simulators is the result of that experiment first at Anzere then at Neualtenburg which was later named Neufreistadt.   Today the CDS consists of six regions, four full regions and two homestead regions:  Neufreistadt (amoung the oldest private islands in SL), Colonia Nova, Alpine Meadow, Locus Amoenus, Monastery, and Friedsee.  

The citizens of CDS elect officers to administer and pass laws.   Generally it has done well, but alas it does struggle in todays weak SL enviroinment.  Still it is solvent, enjoyes beautiful sims and many highly motivated community members who build, keep beutiful houses, maintain the sims, engage in planning for the sim and their own projects.   

Benefits to the CDS are a voice in the operation of the estate, a chance to actually administer an estate without owning one, an opportunity to be part of a democratic experiment in a virtual world, participate in encouraging art and creativity and just gaining many new, inteligent friends from all over the world.

So if you are at all interested, check us out in world or on the web at:  http://portal.slcds.info.  Of on FB.  

Our sims are open to all visitors for walking, riding or bicycling.  We have many interesting publich buildings to tour.  

So come visit, hang out at one of our meetings and experience the only democratically governed estate in Second Life that has been going strong since 2004.  

Yours, 

Tor Karlsvalt

Chancellor of the CDS

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