Monday, January 9, 2012

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
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