Saturday, May 16, 2015

Whom Are Our Friends in Second Life?

If a man does not make new acquaintances as he advances through life, he will soon find himself alone. A man should keep his friendships in constant repair.

Samuel Johnson

          My recent fourth anniversary of blogging about Second Life (SL) got me thinking about all the folks I’ve met inworld and especially those whom I’m fortunate enough to call friends.  (I’ll ignore Significant Other’s wondering aloud if they’d admit publically to being friends with me.)

          The communities that I visit in SL are all comprised of individuals. 

          Each with their own unique personality and characteristics.

          But, one common theme across all of these folks is that they all have friends themselves.

          Which led me to today’s question, “Whom are our friends in SL?”

          Some may ask if we even have friends in SL or, if we do, are they even real?

          I’ve written about friendship in SL before.    

          Today, though, I want to look more closely at what makes up our friends inworld.

          Obviously, I believe that we can have SL friends and these friendships can be as real as those in Real Life (RL).  (In order to be balanced, contrary to Significant Other’s observation, I do have RL friends too.  Although, I must admit, many of them just don’t get SL.  Their loss!)

          So, I’ll start by using myself as an example.

          No, don’t worry, I’m not about to bore you with a long list of the names of my SL friends or their numbers (Again, to keep the record straight, I disagree with Significant Other that I have more SL friends than RL ones.) or their numbers and how long we’ve been friends.

Instead, I want to talk about the types of people who are my friends and why we are friends.  (I’ll take Significant Other’s advice and not identify my SL friends here to avoid causing them any embarrassment and risk losing them as friends.)

          My SL friends are people whom I’ve met along the way as I’ve explored and blogged about my inworld experiences. 

          My SL friends are people whom I share common interests or experiences.  (And, yes, people who laugh at my bad jokes.)

          My SL friends are people whom I’ll look for when I rezz inworld or who look for me when I do.

          Come to think of it, isn’t this a lot like what determines whom our friends are in RL?

          What are the characteristics of our SL friends?

          Are they like us?  (Significant Other shudders at this one.)

          Do they help us not only in our SL lives but our RL ones as well?  (I’m presently reading a great book in RL recommended by a good SL friend.  Another SL friend helped me find someone to interview for a story whom I’d been looking for.  Help can be very small things!)

          Are our SL friends supportive?  (Like all those who helped me when I had a recent personal loss.) 

          Do we share confidences (at least SL ones!) with our SL friends?

          Do we do things with our SL friends that we would never dare to do in RL and laugh about them later?

          Do we miss our SL friends and feel a sense of loss when they disappear inworld and we never see them again? 

          I could keep going but I think you get the idea.

          Do you have friends in SL?

          Why do you have them?

          Was it planned or did it just happen?  (I was the latter, I thought I’d be the lonely explorer inworld only to turn around and to find out that I had all these friends!)

          Do you need your SL friends?

          Where do you think your SL friendships will lead?

          Will they be ongoing inworld?

          Will they cross over into RL?  (I’ve met many who have and some who have even gotten married!)

          Or, will they become something else entirely?

          These are just a few thoughts about our friends in SL.

Probably, the best advice I can leave for everyone is that, as in RL, we should never take our friends for granted and always hold them close!

As always, I’m grateful to all inworld for their kindness and time in stopping to talk with a stranger who was passing through their lives

My Twitter handle is @webspelunker.  Please feel free to follow me and I’d be happy to follow you.

I can be found on Google+ as webspelunker Ghostraven.

My flickr Photostream is located here.

On Skype I’m webspelunker Ghostraven.

I welcome feedback from readers, please either comment on my blog or e-mail me at . 

          If you would like to read about my other adventures in Second Life
please click here.

          Open roads and kind fires!


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