Saturday, February 15, 2014

Are There Real Life Relationships in Second Life?

 The meeting of two personalities is like the contact of two chemical substances: if there is any reaction, both are transformed.

C. G. Jung

          Recently, I was approached by someone from Real Life (RL). 
          Now, remember, I’m an avatar in Second Life (SL).  When someone comes looking for me I get curious.  (Significant Other does too, keeping a sharp dividing line between the two worlds is one of our few rules.)
          This someone is named Jamie Stratton and he works for Back2Back, a television production company, located in Brighton, England.   (All those years I spent living in London paid off because I could communicate with him and he understood me.  You’d have to have had grown up in Brooklyn to appreciate this.)  He and his team are researching into relationships which blossom online, through avatars, and successfully develop in the ‘real world’. The programme is part of a series for Sky Living which is a positive exploration of the more unconventional ways that people meet their partners.
            Jamie’s trying to get in touch with British users of SL or similar sites to try and understand how the communities work and how avatar relationships develop. He wondered if I might be able to help find some British couples who have recently met or gotten engaged on SL for their documentary. 
(It’s nice to know someone is reading my blog besides my six loyal readers and me.) 
Well, it turns out I can help Jamie.  I know several couples who fit the bill and a few other people who may know others.  I sent the requests and Jamie’s contact details out to them.  (Please someone!  Answer the man!  SL hasn’t had any decent press in a while!) 
Now, I’m going to ask everyone else to help out if they can.  (Don’t give me that!  I don’t ask for much from my readers!) 
The episode, currently untitled, that Jamie is presently casting for will be included in Love Across the Divide which is part of a series for Sky which focuses on the more unconventional ways that people meet.  And, I guess I have to admit that meeting inworld and then falling in love in RL is a bit unconventional. 
Jamie is looking for three couples based in Britain.  Two of these couples will have already met inworld and are now either married or together in RL.  The third couple will have met in SL but not yet in RL.  Eventually, the production company will want to meet these couples in RL for filming purposes.  (Nothing against the rest of the world but Jamie’s travel budget is a tad tight at the moment.) 
Previously, I’ve blogged about friendship, trust, and social life in SL.  But, I haven’t really touched on love or permanent relationships.  I’ve encountered these inworld and met people who were recovering from broken relationships.  I think it’s time that I start looking into this more closely.  (Don’t worry, I won’t turn this into an Agony Aunt type of blog!)
But, that’s for the future!  Here’s the ask for today.
If you, or if you know someone, who is in a relationship that began in SL and moved into RL then please contact Jamie.  If you’re about to take the big step from SL to RL, or know someone who is, then please contact him.  The only other requirement is that you be somewhere in Britain.  (I leave it to you to figure that out.)  Straight and gay couples are both welcome and Jamie hopes to have representation from both groups. 
Jamie’s email address is .  Please reach out to him if you’re interested or have questions.  Feel free to contact me if you’d rather.  I’ll pass your queries or comments along to him. 
BTW, Jamie is also starting to hang around SL as he does his research.  (Remember what I said about his tight travel budget?)  To prepare for this story, we met in Beau Belle Village in SL.  Inworld, Jamie presents himself as JayFrederick.  If you see him wandering around on the Grid, reach out say hello and invite him over.  Remember, we were all noobs once. 
Jamie and his team present an opportunity for SL to receive some favorable publicity when there really hasn’t been any for a while.  More importantly, this programme will be about its residents and how we all relate to each other.  Let’s not miss this opportunity to show the others in RL what they’re missing.  We’re all not a bunch of unemployed community college dropouts living in their parents’ basements outside of Detroit (or Watford) pretending to be something we’re not online.
I’d like to thank Jamie for approaching me with this request and taking the time to meet with me for this story.  (Significant Other also says this request falls properly within our rules of engagement for SL.) 
And, in closing, I’d be grateful if anyone who could help out here would!  It’s for all our benefit! 
My Twitter handle is @webspelunker.  Please feel free to follow me and I’d be happy to follow you.
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.    
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.


Pep said...

I could do with a free trip to California. Let me have a word with one or other of my harem that lives over there to check that they would be willing to ham it up for the cameras.

Pep (I can write the script and they're all ex-wannabe actresses, so it shouldn't be difficult to fake something for a sensation-seeking documentary maker.)

Pep said...

PS If you want to get a feel for the editorial direction of Back2Back, other "documentaries" they have made include "Jews on Bikes" and "Shaun Ryder on UFOs".

Anonymous said...

Pep does NOT represent the majority of British SL users and clearly is a moron with ego issues. 'Harem' indeed.

Pep said...

There's no need to get abusive just because you were spurned.

Pep (certainly doesn't represent the majority of British SL users; he has an IQ of well above room temperature!)