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Nimue Galatea

An interesting question

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Ponder this. And don't hate me for asking.

If I were to build and open a small museum dedicated to Carl Sagan, his greatest musings, his life, and his guidance for us as a species (so sorely needed at this juncture in the history of humanity), would it not stay somewhere really far down the line, in terms of traffic? While places dedicated to sex and mindless shopping would infinitely stay at #1? Higher spheres of thought - place #100. Vanity and narcissism - #1. What does that say about us as people?

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Well, yes. No.

It may say more about how people choose to "use" this platform than anything else. And, while it's certainly true that the audience for schlock, sex, and garbage entertainment has always been, and always will be larger than that for *cough* more "refined" and "cerebral" things, it's also true that an enjoyment of both elements of human culture are not necessarily mutually exclusive?

I think you're setting up a false dichotomy. I know lots of people who pursue sex and romance and shopping and are also interested in the other, more thoughtful things. I don't do sex here, but I certainly do shopping. It's not my main thing here, but I enjoy it, and I'm not really very embarrassed by that -- in part, because I'm self aware enough to acknowledge that it's shallow and consumerist and narcissistic, etc. But it's pretty harmlessly so. And doing those things doesn't prevent me from doing other things that you would likely see as more legitimate.

Also, with regards to sex -- well, it's not exactly trivial or peripheral to the human experience or culture. Yes, someone who spends all of their time in pursuit of sex is probably pretty dull, but there are lots of people here who use sexuality as a means of exploring their sense of selfhood and identity. And that's not mindless at all.

There is no shortage of intellectually challenging things to do in SL: art, literature, dance, music, conversation, history, and learning. It might be nice if these were somewhat more popular than they are, but they are still pretty integral to the place.

 

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31 minutes ago, Nimue Galatea said:

Higher spheres of thought - place #100. Vanity and narcissism - #1. What does that say about us as people?

I'm someone who loves to customise my avatar and I spend a lot of time (and L$) doing so, as well as taking photos of it and blogging about it. I tend to listen to a lot of high-energy trance music (or pop such as Lady Gaga) while doing so.

I also just finished my second re-read of Michio Kaku's Hyperspace, and spent last night - after I'd been out for a meal and drinks with some good friends - on that final chapter while listening to Brian Eno's Before and After Science.

What that tells me about myself as a person is that I'm interested in doing one thing in Second Life and another thing in Real Life. It also tells me I'm a reasonably well-rounded human being who has eclectic tastes that I indulge as and when I feel the desire to.

Edited by Skell Dagger
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Deep thinking takes a lot of effort, while shopping is rather more relaxing if you come to SL to unwind. 

One thing about SL museums.. a lot of them are built just like a real world museum, with little or no exploration or interactivity. If there was a sim where I could walk amongst billions and billions of stars, surf nebulae, and find Carl Sagan quotes along the way, I'd go there a lot. 

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2 hours ago, Nimue Galatea said:

Ponder this. And don't hate me for asking.

If I were to build and open a small museum dedicated to Carl Sagan, his greatest musings, his life, and his guidance for us as a species (so sorely needed at this juncture in the history of humanity), would it not stay somewhere really far down the line, in terms of traffic? While places dedicated to sex and mindless shopping would infinitely stay at #1? Higher spheres of thought - place #100. Vanity and narcissism - #1. What does that say about us as people?

ehm ... i had to google this name, didn't know anything about it ... so if i had seen something like "carl sagan museum"  in search it wouldn't really have my direct interest... in rl i'd perhaps look deeper seeing it at google or so, but inworld not that fast.

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Also, I'm with Scylla. I love Carl Sagan, but it never occurred to me to use SL to pursue my interest in his work. It occurred to me to use SL for things I couldn't easily do in RL.

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4 hours ago, ThorinII said:

I think such a Carl Sagan Museum would gather less traffic than the International Spaceflight Museum or the Star Trek Museum (though I don't know if that still exists), but it definitely would be worth a visit (or several).

I loved the Star Trek museum, even though there were no 'live' characters, and sure, the Enterprise could have been better. In fact I would have lived on it if rooms had been available.  But I miss it as it was a fun place to chill out and fly a shuttle.

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2 minutes ago, Madelaine McMasters said:

I don't foresee a future for a humanity that's not interested in sex.

Because otherwise, where will all the little avatars come from?

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On 3/30/2019 at 2:07 PM, Akane Nacht said:

One thing about SL museums.. a lot of them are built just like a real world museum, with little or no exploration or interactivity. If there was a sim where I could walk amongst billions and billions of stars, surf nebulae, and find Carl Sagan quotes along the way, I'd go there a lot. 

Sounds like a good subject for an experience in Sansar.

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The thing with a museum, even if it's a topic you're really interested in, an individual is likely to visit it only once. Ever. But we shop every week day.  So the lack of traffic in a museum isn't necessarily because so few people are interested, it's just that once you've seen it, there's no reason to return, unless you are offering something else besides static exhibits. 

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On 3/30/2019 at 5:48 PM, Nimue Galatea said:

What does that say about us as people?

Maybe that we can’t conceive Sagan having done his fair share of sex & mindless shopping.

I can. I have a vivid imagination.

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1 hour ago, Dave23McMasters said:

Yes, though Mom claims her pregnancy was virgin, via parthenogenesis.

I understand there is a button for that although I have never used it.  :P

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1 hour ago, Matty Luminos said:

The thing with a museum, even if it's a topic you're really interested in, an individual is likely to visit it only once. Ever. But we shop every week day.  So the lack of traffic in a museum isn't necessarily because so few people are interested, it's just that once you've seen it, there's no reason to return, unless you are offering something else besides static exhibits. 

Last I knew many museums still had "gift shops". 

If the exhibits are varied and rotated, it could still be worth return visits. It wouldn't have to be just about Carl Sagan and there is no reason he can't be honored by it. Give it a general theme like space, name it after him, erect a permanent exhibit in his honor and the rest of the exhibits would be rotated in and out. In other words, it could conceivably be done much like real life museums do. It would all depend on how much time, effort and money the curator would be willing to invest.

Edited by Selene Gregoire
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I think museums, galleries, and educational exhibits are a fine thing, and I'm glad people are motivated to create them in SL.

I agree that, if you build it, you shouldn't expect to get a lot of traffic.  Whether that says something about humanity as a whole, or just those of us who use SL, I couldn't say.

One of my friends built an enormous art museum that contains literally thousands of works by famous artists, along with information on the works and the artist.  Creating, staffing, and maintaining it is a labor of love, and there's no way that she'll ever make back what she's spent on it.  Someday, I'm sure that it will disappear...but while it's there, it's worthwhile in and of itself.

Another acquaintance recently invited me to HIS labor of love.  It's a sim that's set up for superhero BDSM roleplay.  Now, that's not my thing at all...but I have to admit, it's a refreshing twist on the usual BDSM places, which pretty much all look alike.  Whether or not his creative endeavor (and I think that it's very creative, in its own way) will make any money is, again, an open question.

I'm just glad that SL provides scope for both of these, and so much more.

(If you do make a Carl Sagan museum...how about a wing for Richard Feynman?)

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1 hour ago, Lindal Kidd said:

One of my friends built an enormous art museum that contains literally thousands of works by famous artists, along with information on the works and the artist.  Creating, staffing, and maintaining it is a labor of love, and there's no way that she'll ever make back what she's spent on it.  Someday, I'm sure that it will disappear...but while it's there, it's worthwhile in and of itself.

SLurl? I absolutely love to visit museums in SL.

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On 3/30/2019 at 7:01 PM, Madelaine McMasters said:

I don't foresee a future for a humanity that's not interested in sex.

Your scope for "mindless"ness might be a little narrow, Nimue!

I suppose that the latter is true. The perspective I temporarily adopt in this thread is one that visitors to SL tended to develop in the past, coming to view SL as a giant sleaze fest; leave and never look back. Reviews like these ones from Mmorpg.com exemplify this perspective:

Quote

Mostly everything in this game is based on Escorts, hookers, prostitution and <snip>... oh and porn... hardcore and soft. The "Roleplay" of this game is to be a Strip club manager/bouncer or to be a Stripper/escort. Yes, there are other places that could be fun but there are no people in them. Mostly everyone hangs out at sex clubs, stripper joints and freebie shops. The coolest thing I found when I did a search for "Sci Fi" was a place called "Doomed Ship" which later on I found out it was a Alien tenticle sex fetish club. I think it's a shame to have wasted all the talent of that area on "tenticle sex". Yes, you could or can make anything you want but make sure it has to do something with Strippers and sex and you will get lots of traffic to your parcel no problem.

Quote

As many other reviews have pointed out SEX is the mainstay of Second Life. Everything revolves around sex in some fashion. There are very few things in the Second Life universe which don't eventually lead to sex or to porn or to even worse things. So if you want to take cybersex chat rooms to the next level, go check out Second Life. If you want to actually play a game, find something else.

Quote

The game is ok for what it is, it simulates real life. Should call it a sex simulator though, I couldn't find a single place in the whole entire game that wasn't a strip club or a whore house.

Those reviews are a decade old, though. Here's a good review, to balance out the negativity:

Quote

WARNING: This game requires an I.Q. higher than 80, an imagination, and the ability to do things without your hand being held. If you don't possess these then you need not apply-- go play WoW. If you do have the requirements, be prepared to spoil the point of every game you've ever played with the concept of Second Life. You will never go back to a normal, linear, closed game ever again(and if you do it doesn't last long before you back into SL). And for the record -- I don't spend money, and I don't RP in SL. Join a community that you're interested in.

I have a hard time expressing myself, forgetting what I'm getting at...

On 3/30/2019 at 3:07 PM, Akane Nacht said:

Deep thinking takes a lot of effort, while shopping is rather more relaxing if you come to SL to unwind. 

One thing about SL museums.. a lot of them are built just like a real world museum, with little or no exploration or interactivity. If there was a sim where I could walk amongst billions and billions of stars, surf nebulae, and find Carl Sagan quotes along the way, I'd go there a lot. 

All of that is true, and I'm glad you're revealing this side of things to me, one I didn't see before. But it makes total sense. I asked a friend, that still occasionally plays SL, the same question I posed in this thread, and his response was "people are just stupid". I could have been content with that point of view, but I wanted to possibly make a fool of myself but be open to other points of view by asking here, also. It's true, that we come here to unwind and do things we cannot in the 1st life, so there is much more to it than at first meets the eye.

On 3/30/2019 at 1:15 PM, Scylla Rhiadra said:

Well, yes. No.

It may say more about how people choose to "use" this platform than anything else. And, while it's certainly true that the audience for schlock, sex, and garbage entertainment has always been, and always will be larger than that for *cough* more "refined" and "cerebral" things, it's also true that an enjoyment of both elements of human culture are not necessarily mutually exclusive?

I think you're setting up a false dichotomy. I know lots of people who pursue sex and romance and shopping and are also interested in the other, more thoughtful things. I don't do sex here, but I certainly do shopping. It's not my main thing here, but I enjoy it, and I'm not really very embarrassed by that -- in part, because I'm self aware enough to acknowledge that it's shallow and consumerist and narcissistic, etc. But it's pretty harmlessly so. And doing those things doesn't prevent me from doing other things that you would likely see as more legitimate.

Also, with regards to sex -- well, it's not exactly trivial or peripheral to the human experience or culture. Yes, someone who spends all of their time in pursuit of sex is probably pretty dull, but there are lots of people here who use sexuality as a means of exploring their sense of selfhood and identity. And that's not mindless at all.

There is no shortage of intellectually challenging things to do in SL: art, literature, dance, music, conversation, history, and learning. It might be nice if these were somewhat more popular than they are, but they are still pretty integral to the place.

 

You are right. Thank you for showing me my nearsightedness while not making me feel bad about it.

Edited by Nimue Galatea
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