Update to Immersiva

      Kiana Writer (Madpea) and I wrote a joint proposal (which you can read below) in an attempt to get Linden Labs to help us keep our projects within Second Life.  We were hoping that Linden Labs would see us as worth supporting considering that it would only cost them the unmarked-up expenditure of a region which for them is next to nothing.   And Second Life is littered with unused Linden Land.  To actually pay us for what we do would be considerably more.  We felt it was a long shot but figured that there was no harm in trying, and we might be pleasantly surprised.  Unfortunately Linden Labs declined.
     I have always tried to see things from both sides over the years and, if possible, balance the slagging of Linden Labs with some positive things.  So in their defense I will say that they may have feared setting a precedence by giving land free to us.  
     It is hard to explain how I feel about their rejection.  I think somewhere inside I had hoped they were aware of what the residents did, but watched from afar.  I am a bit naive.  There actually were Lindens who did know the community at one time like Pathfinder Linden, Blue Linden, Teagan Linden and so on but they are now long gone.  With each turnover of a long term Linden a root of the Linden tree was severed.  As more and more go there are less deep roots to keep the tree grounded.  To me it feels like our Linden tree is now only held down by noob Lindens whose roots don't go deep enough, and one day a strong wind will come to topple that tree.  I think what has changed for me recently is that I no longer am loyal to the one large tree but rather to the growing forest around it.

 All is not bad though and I hope to relay some good news very soon.

January 1st, 2012

Recently the estates of Dusan Writer were closed down.  Two of the projects that were supported by Dusan as a patron were a region called Immersiva an ever changing narrative created by Bryn Oh and another region hosting Madpea a successful games oriented experience headed by Kiana Writer.
Unfortunately neither Bryn nor Kiana are financially able to afford to maintain a region in Second Life and have relied on the generosity of Dusan as a patron.
     Bryn Oh has been creating in Second Life for four years bringing engaging content to the residents in the virtual world as well as garnering positive media coverage of the platform outside the "walled garden".   Bryn is an active member of the art community working as a member of the LEA (Linden Endowment for the Arts) to encourage artists to make use of this medium.   Example 1 (the path) 2 (the avatar games)
Bryn Oh is the ghost artist of a Toronto oil painter.  Bryn's interest in virtual worlds began as an attempt to create an artist unaligned with a RL identity. The idea was to see if a pixel character could become successful and accepted as an artist in first life alongside flesh and blood ones. I see what we do in virtual worlds as the frontier to a new medium with the capability to create unique forms of art.

So far Bryn's work has been shown at
Nuit Blanche, the World Expo in Shanghai (Madrid Pavilion), with IBM, in movies such as "My avatar and me" or in projects with people such as Cannes winning director Peter Greenaway (Big Bang) and artist Stelarc.   A Web3D Conference presenter in Paris, France as well as profiled on RAI TV in Italy and Art21. Bryn exhibits in various Universities worldwide and is also on the syllabus of many. Currently Bryn is the subject of three Thesis works and has just received a New Media grant from the Canadian Government.   The government grant is to produce a 30 minute machinima (Bryn Oh is even mentioned in this wikipedia definition under sound) and an exhibit in a museum or gallery which would incorporate Second Life using virtual reality headsets and incorporating scent and wind for an narrative created on Immersiva.  In September Bryn was written about in Vogue magazine (Italy) and exhibited at a museum in Rome(RL -Museo in Commune) of Second Life work.  Over the years Bryn has created positive media coverage for Second Life as an artists medium and has created quality content for the residents of this virtual world as seen by the numerous destination guide entries you, Linden Labs, have posted.  I have included a reference from director Peter Greenaway.

       Kiana Writer is a Finnish storywriter, who started MadPea in 2008 completely from scratch. She could see the potential SL offered to make her stories become a reality. Facing serious difficulties in her rl, she escaped to SL to share her experiences and guidance to a small group of people at first. Introducing different topics of life in her games and making people unite and solve problems together got people interested straight away. MadPea’s potential was immediatelly noticed by Orange, who became sponsors,  giving MadPea the space to create.  After Orange’s departure, Dusan Writer generously wanted to take over the sponsorship, so that MadPea would have a home.
MadPea has been providing high-quality entertainment, immersive and interactive stories and adventures for tens of thousands of residents and have been collaborating with hundreds of SL landowners with grid-wide hunts to help boost their traffic and raise awareness of their businesses. The following MadPea games and attractions have been featured in the Destination Guide:  Firefly (made for Orange),  The Kaaos Effect (made for Orange) , MadPea HQ on Orange, Reaction (made for Sigma-Aldrich), Notes from the Voyage (made for MacMillan Publishers), MadPea Circus (in collaboration with Dusan Writer), Devil's Labyrinth, Hoshi Island, MadPea Base, Virtual Medical Doctor, Dead Man's Hand Hunt,  Lost Souls Hunt, Peaster's Castle, Peatonville Asylum, MadPea Social Area and  MadPea Winterland.
     The MadPea creations have been blogged, photographed and filmed in numerous places.  MadPea Crew consists of several talented artists, scripters and community managers from all over the world. The plan for the MadPea Island was to collaborate with artists such as Bryn Oh, Madcow Cosmos, Eolene Uralia, Photon Pink and Scottius Polke to create a fresh new approach into community living inside a world of quests.
     MadPea is not only about games, our active community is one of the biggest ones in Second Life. We have nearly 4000 members and the numbers keep rising. We have help available to players 24/7 and offer support to those who are new to SL. We arrange events daily allowing people to communicate with each other and meet like-minded people.
What we are asking is for Linden Labs to provide both of us our regions at no cost for a year’s duration to continue our work here in Second Life which benefits both of us as creators and Linden Labs who will benefit from high caliber content created for its users.  After a one year duration the opportunity to be considered for ongoing support upon review of our achievements over the supported period.   It is our hope that Linden Labs will recognize our contribution to the health of Second Life and will see this proposal as an investment in its own future.

Bryn Oh
Kiana Writer


Clairwil Oh said…
I am dismayed to hear this news. I, like you, hoped that there was a group of Lindens who were committed to the social experiment that the digital world has begun. Of all the artists in LL, I was certain that Bryn Oh was the most likely to be recognized as a pioneer and evangelist for the medium. I am very sorry to hear of this setback. it's a loss to every single SL resident, almost like the loss of an important public art museum in the physical world. What a shame. - Clairwil Oh.
Seraphim Placebo said…
peraldi Writer said…
So Sad and Sorry, i will do my best to try to help you. I love u so much Bryn.You're my lil fairy♥
This is really unfathomable. What a shame.
Rose said…
You need a sim !
Anonymous said…
Dear Bryn, I totally agree with all that you said. It's all so sad and with nonsense. Culture is so often not considered, and the hard work that produce it, seen like a "game" for kids.. all this is simply crazy and self-destructive. I hope that the whole artists community will stay united in this blind and hard time. Big hugs! ^^
Anonymous said…
My heart aches to read this, dear Bryn. And I'm angry all over again at the short-sightedness and coldness of those who govern this little world. Your works have been among the most special things I've encountered in SL and I hope someone is able to help.
Loquacia Loon said…
Sorry - the above was me.

Iggy O said…
Good luck with your future plans, and thank you for the moments of unalloyed wonder.

I hope that you will consider hosting your fine work on an OpenSim grid connected by hypergrid. I see that, not closed grids, as the future of this technology.

Though I have recently returned a major project to SL after an offer of sponsorship, I maintain my home base elsewhere, given the cost of tier in SL.
Alana said…
Please keep creating! Im am a Finnish Sl-resident also, and have been since end of July 2010. Wish I could help somehow.

There are new game grids popping up, maybe one of them could host a world for you. LL seems to have no vision other than keeping the money sucking stuff, like vampire games, going.
Bryn Oh said…
Thanks everyone for the kind words and I really do appreciate them. I have not given up on the idea of Immersiva coming back, I just wanted to let people know how things were progressing as I have not posted for a while. I am really starting to see what you mean by closed grids not being the future of this medium Iggy.
Heidi Dahlsveen said…
Although I do not know you, I know your work. And like others find it to be sad news. Personally I do not think Opengrid etc is a solution for this kind of masterpiece. I think this work best in the interaction with avatars who does not only consists of "hard core artists and creators".

I am an optimist and hopefully it will be solved. If not I have a sim.

Mimesis Monday AKa Heidi Dahlsveen
Unknown said…
Bryn I am very sorry, but all is not lost.
Also I'm closing my islands.
I'm moving in another world
If you are interested I personally know the owners of this platform.
they told me that they would be very happy to accommodate you free.
Also they give you the chance to try the platform for 3 months importing textures, objects and anything else you absolutely free.
If you will like the new world, you'll be, with island for free. If you do not like you can save the island and put it on your computer and transport it to other worlds.
If you are interested please contact me.
I Am Alice Mastroianni in SL, but you can mail me alicemastroianni (at) gmail.com

Rowan Derryth said…

This is something I've been talking about elsewhere, recently. I'm not surprised they turned you down, and I think as things stand, it was the right decision precisely because of the precedent issue.

However, I strongly feel there needs to be a Linden-sponsored archiving programme, in which artists like yourself (and non-profit and/or educational programmes) can apply to become part. It would be a tax write-off for them, if they set it up right; through gifts-in-kind for example.

This is something I plan on writing more about, but meanwhile I hope a solution comes clear.
Sally Caves said…
I think letters should pour into Linden Lab excoriating them for their profit-driven lack of imagination. You have been a pioneer in the SL art world. Your blog is heavily visited. You've made books out of the art you built here. Your unique style, your building talents and your creativity have helped friends of mine see Second Life as more than just an uncanny valley of cheap textures, shadowless houses, poorly designed vampire rp sims and malls. You've inspired me and so many others. I've brought my students to Immersiva, and can no longer do this. :( The Linden Endowment for the Arts is a joke if they don't find another patron for you (one month to visit something like Second Libations and it all comes tumbling down?) Of course, having a patron like Dusan was a marvelous stroke of luck and one not every artist is gifted with. I'm sorry he has left the scene. Even so, it would be lovely if they returned to their original habit of ginving discounts to educational, artistic, and other non-profit users. At the very least, SL should fully open its gates to other VWs. Other VWs, however, need to become as attractive and well-visited as SL. Everything seems to revolve around money. :( :( I hope the future sees a grand, interactive communion of open virtual worlds, because I'm getting sick of this closed one. Sadly, I'm still addicted to it, the way I am to Wegman's, which beats out all the competition in my area because of its superior product. But if it loses its product, if it decides to get rid of peaches in order to stock more soda, it's only natural for people to look elsewhere. Bad analogy, but there you have it. Hyp.
Sally Caves said…
Thank you, Rowan. I agree with your suggestion. You finished your comment while I was spending time on my rant. The point is to find solutions and not rant. Please do write.
The only record of so many magnificent worlds is in the machinima some of us have been fortunate enough to record.

Not good enough. Lindens need to support their cultural treasures.
Bryn Oh said…
You are right Heidi, I personally feel the presence of avatars exploring the artwork is a defining element of this medium. Thanks Alice that is a very kind offer. You are right Rowan and I think LL should give a lifetime achievement region each year to a deserving person with the first one being given to AM Radio. Considering that their own collect the crystals game thing uses a dozen sims that alone would be 12 years of awards. What I would be happy with is a public statement by Linden Labs saying that should Second Life ever need to close, they will allow residents to leave with our inventories so that we may go settle on another grid. I think just the peace of mind that would create for residents would spur both the economy and creativity.
Hypatia thanks that is great to know you brought students there. Unfortunately I am part of the LEA committee so it would look pretty shady for me to get any LEA land. I am very hopeful that something will get done though. I have had some very rewarding messages from people today.
Natsuki Morigi said…
It is very sad that feel unable to help such a champion of Second Life as yourself. from what I read in your post and the comments above, I am still hopeful that we residents of SL can continue to see and experience your art in the near future.
Best wishes
Indigo Mertel said…
Bryn, I have thinking about this since your first post.

If we could get together 30 people to form a group, each owning a quote of the sim, it would be less than $10/month to keep Immersiva open. Even less if more people joined. I would support such initiative.

How about giving it a try? I'd like to have a chat with you about it.
Pam Broviak said…
I was wondering why the creators would not want to just move over to Opensim and set up in another grid like OSGrid or one of the commercial grids? It's so much cheaper and all the features seems to be similar to those in SL (except for physics in some grids).
Rowan Derryth said…
Heya. Ok, I took the time to blog about that idea, finally. It isn't as fleshed out as I would like, but maybe the conversation can get started.

Your work has always been an inspiration to me, Bryn. I know your talents and dreams will find other places to take root and grow.

Plant a new tree. :)

Take care,

P.S. And if you ever want to learn more about how you might use the hypergrid and Opensim to continue your work, please just ask. I'd be happy to share what I know.
colleen3k said…
Oh Bryn!

You are one of the shining stars in virtual art and culture--Fearless Nation Loved having your amazing work featured on our Artist sims in November!

I had to move Fearless Nation out of SL too. The expense, the hassles, the viewers that don't work with the servers.

Try SpotOn3D--That's where I moved Fearless Nation. It looks and feels just like SL, uses and easy viewer (and Phoenix viewer too). A Full-Prim sim is $67 USD per month. The membership to own land and build is only $2.99 USD per month. The people there are a REAL community, helpful, kind, cultured, and they would LOVE to have you and your amazing artwork there.

In fact, I will give you a sim space to get started. Come into SpotOn3D (soon to be renamed WebWorlds), and I'll set you up with a creative space on my sims. Art is a VERY important part of our program.

Contact me if you are interested...Please give SO3D/WebWorlds and try and rediscover artistic freedom, community support and affordability in the Virtual.

Colleen M. Crary, M.A.
(Anya Ibor in SL and SO3D/WebWorlds)
Founder and Executive Director
~ A 501c3 Non Profit Organization ~

SO3D: http://3Durl.com/map/spoton3d/Fearless%20Nation%201/169/76/38 (Contact Anya Ibor inworld)
colleen3k said…
Bryn's work is featured in a video by PookyMedia of the November Event:
Bryn - Thank you for your years of great artistic experiences. We were honored to offer you a sim. I understand though you're going to stay exclusively in SL and try and crowd source it's tier payments. That's a great option and I sincerely hope you succeed. Let us know how we can help.

If you ever do decide to expand your artistic story telling outside of SL, please let us know. There are many reputable opensim platforms that can offer you additional options either completely free, as SpotON3D has offered, or low cost.

There are lots of options Bryn to spread your wonderful vision beyond just one channel. As I say all the time - we don't watch just one TV Station, Listen to One Radio Station, or go to just One Web Site. Its the reality of the 3D Web experience as its evolving and changing and no one person, company or group of people will own it.
Katy Cosmos said…
Maybe if the request for the free land that MadPea and Imersiva need were to be supported by the names of all the members of the two groups (as in a petition)would carry more sway with the Lindens? Is it worth a try?
Bryn Oh said…
Thanks everyone and all the info on OSgrid, spoton2d/webworlds and others have been really helpful. I am going to try to have a presence in virtual spaces outside SL as well as attempting to remain in SL. I love the SL community and want to stay here but this whole experience has shown me that if I am serious about my work I need to ensure that it is preserved on other grids as well. It is a bit daunting to think of the amount of work that requires combined with what I already need to accomplish but it is what it is. My long term goal will be to preserve my work on a few of the most stable grids which I will have to identify. I hope to have an exciting blog post on monday or tuesday with a new idea for keeping Immersiva alive. There have been a great many people offering support and it has been very encouraging for me. Thanks to all of you.
My said…
Hello, Bryn,
Im so sorry to read about your misadventure. I had few trust into Linden Lab. Now I have none.
I just found a web page collecting money for your project (http://www.indiegogo.com/Bryn-Oh), but I found no reference to it on your blog, so I'm suspicious about it. Is it ok to make a donation by this page?
Mylene Renoir
Anonymous said…
The question nobody seems to be asking is why Dusan Writer withdrew his support so suddenly. Did he give any explanation? Bryn, you are right about its setting a precedent. You were so lucky to have the trust and appreciation of a generous donor. In support of your case, though, I'd argue that you are in the middle of completing work for a time-dependent grant you got. To withdraw support for you in that endeavor is not LL's fault, but Dusan's. Perhaps, like all the rest of us, he felt the pinch of our flagging economy?
Bryn Oh said…
Oh it wasn't Dusans fault in any way. He has been the dream patron for three years and I really can't complain at all. And I don't fault Linden Lab either, I took a shot at trying to get them to help without much expectation and the responded as I expected. But you never know so it was worth a try. It also brought up a lot of discussion which is always good. In the end the onus is on me to complete the grant and if I stumble along the way then the fault really is mine because I should have planned better. I took Immersiva for granted as existing for when I were to have an exhibit and that was a mistake.

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