Continuing on my series of interviews with avatars I bump into on the grid -- the first was Ludo Merit, now my former neighbour from Grote, who was able to sell that great piece of land to a nice Canadian lodge-builder, but is still looking to sell this other nice piece by October 30 as she has to rearrange her holdings.
Looking up what else could be found about this creative personage Ludo, I found another blogger, Bixyl Shukhran, who interviewed her first -- and I was astounded to find an entire blog with regular profiles of avatars that I had never heard of.
Imagine, you're in Second Life eight years, you think you know all the blogs (well, maybe not all the fashion blogs, but the news-type blogs), and suddenly you find this: SL Newser, which has been around about two years.
So I contacted Bixyl and gave him some written questions which he answered -- then he invited me over to his partner's home on Sherkin Island and we chatted (keep scrolling) (Some lines were removed as off-topic or RL related and some confusing chat is re-arranged).
Prokofy: You have an impressive body of work with... how many interviews? Hundreds? Avatars from all walks of life. How many posts have you done, and what kinds of avatars do you seek out?
Bixyl: Thank you. I've lost track over how many people I've interviewed in my five years in my writing about Second Life. But yes, I believe it is well over a hundred. As for who I seek out? All kinds of people whom have done something newsworthy in my opinion, from artists to sim owners, to event organizers, to builders, and sometimes ordinary residents whom got caught up in something or stick out in interesting ways.
Prokofy: Based on these many interviews, what are you finding about Second Lifers? Do they tend toward fantasy or reality? Are they 20-somethings or 50-somethings? Do they play other games and view SL as a game or are they not gamers and see this as a chat room? Can you make any characterizations?
Bixyl: People come here for all kinds of reasons, and once here engage in a multitude of activities, many more than one. The majority are looking for a break from reality of some kind, such as role-play areas or combat sims. Though there are still many whose reasons are solidly grounded in reality, such as teachers whom use Second Life to educate, and there are people whom use Second Life to hold virtual meetings in peer groups such as therapy. Ages vary greatly. I've met people who were in their teens, and others who were grandparents. As for games, a number of Second Lifers play those outside the Grid such as "World of Warcraft." My virtual neighbors have their own WoW guild, as well as their own "Minecraft" server. Others are not really gamers, though my observation is that most of them do things here that you can't really do in a chat room.
It's difficult to pin down what consists an "average" Second Life resident. The Grid's been described as a "community of hobbyists." Not every one of us is, though you're not going to find many who sit around and wait to be entertained. Those who stick around here learn how to find their entertainment, whatever it is.
Prokofy: I notice with a lot of your interviews, you enter into the lives of your subjects, i.e. the Native Americans who had the vision quest. What have been the most moving and most intriguing of such experiences on the grid?
Bixyl: To begin with, that article was written by Grease Coakes. He did quite a good job, as well as making some new friends. A number of subjects I've interviewed, I've continued to be in touch with as well.
The most moving experiences? The Vietnam Wall certainly counts as one. It's a shame that sim faded away. Another was when a friend, Delinda Dyrssen, passed away. I've also covered a couple funerals, the more famous one being a member of both the Tombstone RP and the Burn2 communities. Even though it was a virtual bonfire, I don't think I'll ever forget it. Then there was one Iraq veteran who showed me the virtual memorial which had his late comrades on the wall, and described how one by one they fell.
On the more positive, I've met a number of people with disabilities in real life, on occasion severe ones. Here, they're able to go about normally, sometimes achieve great things.
Prokofy: We are constantly hearing that Second Life is dying, the number of islands sold is decreasing, people are going out of business and moving to alternatives. Are they? What are you hearing from those you interview?
Bixyl: Yes, I've heard that as well. While Linden clumsiness has driven some out, it's my observation the majority of people closing their sims are doing so because of the economy. Sims are not cheap, and when a household has to cut back on expenses, things like this are often among the first to go.
When the economy bounces back though, people will probably be slow to return. Linden Labs has had a way of getting under the skin of many residents. I've heard of some looking at the Opensim worlds as an alternative and setting up places there. But after a while some shut their places and I've heard of others quietly moving back to Second Life and setting up shop again under new names. While the Opensim worlds have a small base of faithful fans whom insist they are the future of virtual worlds, so far it isn't happening.
Long term, I've heard people say Second Life will be having serious problems keeping their numbers unless the Lindens "wise up." Of their decision to split their focus on projects besides Second Life, there's been a mixed reaction. Some called it the beginning of the end, seeing Linden Lab as abandoning the Grid once they find something that can appeal to the "dumb masses." Others see it as a smart move, feeling much like the Macintosh computer, Second Life would have a better future if the company behind it found something that appealed to the general public much better.
Prokofy: Many of your stories are so interesting precisely because they don't involve the usual round of SL drama. They aren't about what the Lindens are doing or not doing, or about what this or that powerful or influential group in SL at large is doing. Do most people just not care what the Lindens/forums/cool kids are doing? Or do they?
Bixyl: When watching the news, I don't pay much attention to the Hollywood articles other than what movies are out. I guess I felt news should be about, news. While people are curious as to what technical moves the Lindens are up to such as Mesh, I haven't sensed much of a desire to know about SL celebrity gossip. A few of my stories involve drama to some extent, but not many.
Prokofy: Have you ever tried to interview a Linden?
Bixyl: On several occasions I tried to get in touch with one for an interview. I never got a response.
Prokofy: You mention that you have a "working class" background, not a background in journalism. What moved you to move from "working class" to "intellectual" work, if you will?
Bixyl: I've always had an interest in keeping up with the news, at least since 1979 when the Iranian Hostage Crisis started. Some of my relatives kept telling me to be wary of bias, not trusting the media. But I've always like to write, as an adult writing a number of stories, though never got one published.
When I began coming to Second Life regularly, I wanted to know more about it, and soon came across blogs and newsletters, among them Second Life Newspaper. One day they asked for reader submissions, so I sent them a few. Well, the owner JamesT Juno invited me to write for them regularly. Steady employment on the grid and an audience for my writing, not to mention I'd go up from keeping up with the news to helping to report it. It was an opportunity too good to pass up.
I'd just gotten this fox avatar a few weeks before as first one after giving up my newcomer look. So I became known as the "fox reporter."
Prokofy: You opt to craft your interviews into news stories with a literary flair, rather than just post a raw transcript as so many do (including your humble correspondent). What is the advantage? And do you think people want to see the long, raw transcript or not?
Bixyl: Perhaps it's from having a hobby as a writer for years beforehand, being used to "crafting" the information into something more easily read, though to the point, and having the goal of avoiding bias. Perhaps it's not always reached, but it's always a goal.
Prokofy: What tips do you have for people doing interviews if they want to get beyond the raw transcript and the problems of the SL interface itself (i.e. repeat questions, people talking past each other, crashes, etc.)?
Bixyl: Yes, crashes can be a pain. I've had to redo one interview of a storeowner for the purpose of an advertisement because of one. There have been a few times the conversation got a little broken. When it's an interview for an article,
Prokofy: How do you discover people in SL? How do you find out new things? Do you search randomly, fly around randomly, or how does it work?
Bixyl: Flying around randomly has led to a few interesting places, though I didn't meet much of anyone that way. Blogs and newsletters were how I found out about places where people hung out, such as Luskwood where I got my start.
I have had some happy accidents. For instance I found out about the Yamatto when looking at a friend's profile. One landlady I met when a friend invited me to dance with her at a club. And one friend I met by accident while at the SL6B. Word of mouth has led to some interesting places as well, and I sometimes meet new friends though mutual ones, like real life I suppose.
Bixyl Shuftan: Well, I'd the head reporter of the Newser; there are four others, Gemma Cleanslate, Grey Lupindo, Xymbers Slade, and Grease Coakes
Prokofy Neva: Oh, that's how you're able to do so many interviews! Do you pay your staff or are they volunteers?
Bixyl Shuftan: Yes, I pay them
Prokofy Neva: Also what year did the SL Newser start? Do you take advertising?
Bixyl Shuftan: June, 2010 and yes: two levels, advertorial articles and sponsorships
Prokofy Neva: What made you decide to get into the crowded SL blog/news biz? Are the "advertorials" marked as such?
Bixyl Shuftan: Yes, they're marked in the "tags" in the bottom of the article. I pay the staff per news story, plus a bonus every month. At first, I paid everyone the same rate we were when we worked for JamesT Juno/Dana Vanmoer; later on, I gave everyone a small raise
Prokofy Neva: when you say you worked for them, did they have a publication? Or the same one?
Bixyl Shuftan: Yes, it was called Second Life Newspaper. It was started in Fall 2006.
Prokofy Neva: It's interesting, I've been in SL 8 years, read everything and blogged a lot myself, and I had never heard of you, it shows you how it can be hard to follow everything or even things that are right up your alley
Bixyl Shuftan: by JamesT Juno .... yeah, it can…as for what made me get into it, I thought I explained, but I can again ....In real life, I take pride in keeping up with the news
Prokofy Neva: Yes, I saw what you said, but I guess I mean -- you didn't fear competition? You didn't feel dwarfed by NWN or the Alphaville Herald? Llet me think, Second Life Newspaper, was that the tabloid? or I guess that was called the Avastar. I recall Dana Vanmoer
Bixyl Shuftan: The Herald was the one that called itself a tabloid, at leas it was they whom Dana called our "arch rivals". New World Notes, I took them more seriously. But am I afraid of them, the answer is no. Lately, the Herald has been updating very little, so in a sense, our competition with them may be coming to a close. By the way, if you want, I can sed a tp over. Currently I'm at the home of me and my partner Jasmine.
Prokofy Neva: yes send a TP and I can then get a photo
Bixyl Shuftan: Of course
Prokofy Neva: oh, I agree about the Herald, they never post at all. Well, "Fear" is too strong a word. What I mean is that you might feel as if it is just too much hard work to attract readers
Bixyl Shuftan: Good evening, Prokofy. This is my wife Jasmine, she's away for the moment.
Prokofy Neva: Hi Bixyl.
Bixyl Shuftan: Well, against New World Notes, yes, it can be hard work. But I suppose in the end, the readers are better off for it.
Prokofy Neva: I would have thought that Hamlet would have run out of ideas years ago, or else found some better big, it's funny he's still there. And he does find new topics
Bixyl Shuftan: Oh yes.. we always find something new
Prokofy Neva: is this your horse? Well I always seem to find something new to say about SL, but I do feel I am repeating myself often!
Bixyl Shuftan: Jasmine owns most of these, but I help with the feed. On occasion, I'll look back at an old subject. And sometimes a location has a special event
Prokofy Neva: Do you have this whole island here
Bixyl Shuftan: No, we own a few parcels of it; our friend Nydia Tungsten owns it. I've known her for a few years.
Prokofy Neva: When you do your interviews, do you rewrite them into a prose article, so to speak, or do you use the chat transcripts? there are different schools of thought about this
Bixyl Shuftan: Yes.
Prokofy Neva: does it take you awhile?
Bixyl Shuftan: At first, I used the chat transcripts, but after some time, I would edit them into an article, for smoother reading.
Prokofy Neva: well you are a better writer than I am, I just don't take the time; I guess I'm often eager to get the post done.
Bixyl Shuftan: very little gets left out , well, thank you
Prokofy Neva: but you're right it makes for smoother reading
Bixyl Shuftan: I can be a bit eager myself. Something gets posted every day. But sometimes, a piece has to wait a day or so.
Prokofy Neva: well I couldn't post every day these days, and I think in terms of my "avatar on the grid" interviews, I literally wanted to have just people I ran into. Not so much think, "Who would be interesting to get? Who hasn't been covered?" but just whoever I run into -- and one thing leads to another
Bixyl Shuftan: There have been occasions I've done that
Prokofy Neva: for example I ran into you by first bumping into Ludo Merit, then looking to see, did anyone else cover her and her projects, and you had
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): I'm back
Prokofy Neva: Hi
Bixyl Shuftan: Once when writing about the Meeros, I ran into someone who was a reader, and he told me about his home estate, which had recently been repossessed
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Oh hello there
Bixyl Shuftan: welcome back Love
Prokofy Neva: You know I've followed the Meeros at a far distance
Bixyl Shuftan: Prokofy, this is Jasmine
Prokofy Neva: I see them sometimes on my tenants' parcels. Hi Jasmine
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Please, lets go over and grab us a seat
Prokofy Neva: I could get a picture of you standing or stting together
Bixyl Shuftan: I've never owned a meeroo, I wrote about them when there was a big problem though. Xymbers, who did own some wrote more
Prokofy Neva: have to see how the view of these turns out, they all look like scraps to me due to my poor graphics card
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): It is a chair believe it or not
Bixyl Shuftan: Yeah, only recently have I been able to see mesh myself. So it was a challenge for me to get the right picture at times
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): I had a paw in that.. one of my avatars was mesh rigged
Bixyl Shuftan: Although sometimes the flaws were good for a laugh
Prokofy Neva: I didn't see mesh for a long time. Well, for that matter sculpties, I tend to just stay with my old prims.
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): I think I have a prim seat…hang on
Prokofy Neva: well I zoomed in then I could see the chairs properly
Prokofy Neva: are these horses a lot of work?
Bixyl Shuftan: A friend reccomended the Cool VL viewer to me. It's not Linden approved, but it was reccomended by someone I trust, personally and professionally
Prokofy Neva: Ok I will try it maybe for that other world where i can't get the search to work. I heard Cool viewer got rid of bad views of things, yes. But can you even log on with it if not Linden approved?
Bixyl Shuftan: I wrote on it once, yes, as it's not banned like Emerald was.
Bixyl Shuftan: they don't approve it, but they don't disapprove either
Prokofy Neva: I see. So now, did you ever have someone when you interviewed them, they got mad at how it came out? Or controversies? You seem like a very amicable fellow.
Bixyl Shuftan: very seldom has there been any problems
Prokofy Neva: Do you have rules for yourself in interviewing people?
Bixyl Shuftan: Well, I try to avoid "gotcha" questions, as they're somtimes called.
Prokofy Neva: How do you mean?
Bixyl Shuftan: Once, I was investigating a product called Voodoo, which was supposedly like Redzone
Prokofy Neva: Yes I heard of that
Bixyl Shuftan: I sent the guy a notecard, telling him I was writong about his product, and there were charges by Greenzone. I told him I wanted his side of the story, but not all the questions might be to his liking. He went head and told me I could come by to talk to him, and I did, asking him a number of questions. In the end, I told him the article might not be to his liking, but he would have his side of the story given. And it was
Prokofy Neva: It's hard to get all the sides of the story in Sl sometimes. Do you read SLuniverse.com or the official forums?
Bixyl Shuftan: Yes, it's not always easy
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): No it's not hard to raise the horses
[Bixyl Shuftan: I read them on occasion
Prokofy Neva: Seems like a lot of mouths to feed!
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Well it's the traits you try and breed into the horses; the better the traits, the better the sales.
Prokofy Neva: well I don't know if I'd have the patience for that, I have my hands full with my chickens and fairies
Bixyl Shuftan: I also keep up with New World Notes, Daniel Voyager, and a few other newsletters and blogs
Prokofy Neva: believe it or not the sion eggs still sell
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Sion eggs?
Prokofy Neva: sion chickens
Bixyl Shuftan: /me chuckles a bit, "Well, being a fox, the chickens might not last long with me."
Prokofy Neva: hahaha. I had a fox who kept coming to kill them in fact
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): we have 3 hens left...
Bixyl Shuftan: The sion chickens were the first of the breedables that made it big
Prokofy Neva: yes it was a brilliant concept… Were you in The Sims Online? or any other games before SL?
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Lucky, Plucky and Mary...
Bixyl Shuftan: Yeah, too bad they were so fragile, no I wasn't. Sorry .... I did log onto Worold of Warcraft the same time I came to SL though
Prokofy Neva: well we had pets in Sims Online, with rares and frenzies about the rares too
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Ok hun, take a moment and wipe your mouth..your drooling over this chicken talk
Bixyl Shuftan: I believe I read something about it
Prokofy Neva: hahahaha
Bixyl Shuftan: /me chuckles at Jasmine, and gets a hankerchief
Prokofy Neva: Are you trying to have a business that pays your tier or your bills?
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): With the horses?
Prokofy Neva: well with your island or with the newspaper… I mean not your whole island but your land
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): In time they will start paying for themselves, I help manage 14 different sims including this one, manage a club and work on the rare commission
Prokofy Neva: You should give me an SL Newser dispenser so I can put it on the infohubs I have with the other papers
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): plus do the rare story for FurAffinity
Bixyl Shuftan: Sure, and thank you, just a moment ....
Prokofy Neva: 14 sims, you mean rentals?
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Yes I work with Nydia Tungsten
Prokofy Neva: are they homesteads or full prim?
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): there's 3 that are homesteads, the rest are full sized sims
Prokofy Neva: do they create a lot of work for you?
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Depends.. only when there is a griefer (which is rare) rentals or stopping the rare neighbor fights
Prokofy Neva: or do you have it down to a science? What rental system do you use?
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Nothing my friend is a science… things change too much
Bixyl Shuftan: The Newser runs an occasional advertorial for Nydia. There have been some events on her lands that are genuinely newsworthy as well.
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Here we use the rental boxes, other sims, they use the same system but gathered at a central area
Prokofy Neva: but do you use Hippo or which of these systems?
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): hippoRENT
Prokofy Neva: I won't use that one, I'm using the very old Hank Ramos open source script but it has problems
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Never heard of it, must be before my time
Prokofy Neva: Bixyl, do you ever have readers write and say, "Oh, you should interview this person." Or do you get many readers' letters?
Bixyl Shuftan: As a matter of fact, yes
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): I tell him that all the time
Bixyl Shuftan: and we get a few reader submitted articles.
Prokofy Neva: does the inworld profile thing work for you? I mean that thing where you can write on people's profiles. What do people say when they write in?
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): I've tried it with limited success
Bixyl Shuftan: And sometimes, someone will greet me either in-avatar, or in IM to say hello
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Most don't even know it is there
Bixyl Shuftan: It's a similar story for me. I don't really use it, I've been sticking with IMs and notecards, or facebook posts in some cases.
Prokofy Neva: I have tenants writing on there and I don't read it right away
Bixyl Shuftan: I use Facebook to help advertise the Newser
Prokofy Neva: Well that's interesting, because there's this theory that Facebook is anaethema to the SL avatar
Bixyl Shuftan: Which is, how I got on it to begin with
Bixyl Shuftan: Not necesarily
Prokofy Neva: You came to Second Life via Facebook? Does that really happen?
Bixyl Shuftan: No, I came here in December 2006, when I finally got high speed Internet
Prokofy Neva: you mean you got on to Facebook in order to advertise your paper
Bixyl Shuftan: Yes
Prokofy Neva: so do you think a lot of your readers are on Facebook as their RL selves?
Bixyl Shuftan: A number are, yes. This includes a few neighbors.
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): the nutty one from across the street?
Bixyl Shuftan: /me chuckles, "I meant virtual neighbors, like Shockwave."
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Oh
Bixyl Shuftan: Myself, well, all of my writing in the past few years has been under my SL Name
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Psst
Bixyl Shuftan: so I made that my Facebook name as well.
Prokofy Neva: do you ever think to link your RL name? Well. there are some griefers who go around reporting SL avatars on Facebook to get them banned.
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Griefer.. people that are too smart for their own good and way too much time on their hands
Bixyl Shuftan: I've been giving it a little thought. It's not exactly a secret among my real life friends what I do here. I have a few coworkers in real life who read the Newser, although mostly for the cartoons.
Prokofy Neva: There's some idiot on Twitter constantly harassing people about their avatars on Facebook, I can't imagine why he would bother with this
Bixyl Shuftan: What's his problem?
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): My real life family knows what I do here, raise horses, manage "places" harass the local news reporters and create the random thing
Bixyl Shuftan: Or is this guy not worth mentioning?
Prokofy Neva: Well I wonder why he is so ferocious, he's one of the anklebiters I have on Twitter… Do you feel as if SL is shrinking?
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): He thinks that places like Facebook and Twitter are for the normal folk, actual people
Prokofy Neva: well, SL is real
Bixyl Shuftan: Normal? Heh, I had a coworker who dyed his hair green one month, then red, then yellow, in real life
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Do I feel that SL is shrinking? Not so much as shrinking as becoming less populated
Prokofy Neva: I see it has like 2,000 less islands or something. I keep reading how it is dwindling. I never feel this on the mainland myself but it is in Tyche's reports.
Bixyl Shuftan: It seems to be very slowly shrinking. With the persistantly bad economy, people have been cutting back.
Prokofy Neva: How do you think overall business has been?
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Well when I log in, I can see the daily amount of people online.. it used to be well over a million people... now just 50 to 60 thousand people
Prokofy Neva: you think there is a direct tie between their RL and SL? Because one theory says that in tough times people go to the movies move and then they could do SL more. You know, the official SL viewer never shows that anymore
Prokofy Neva: just today I got a tip on where I can get that off the site; and there's a little device to get it too
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Phoenix Firestorm still shows that
Prokofy Neva: well they must draw it in from that site
Bixyl Shuftan: Well, writing is a hobby of mine, and my biggest audience has been here
Prokofy Neva: Bixyl, was writing a hobby for you in RL?
Bixyl Shuftan: Yes
Prokofy Neva: what do you write in RL? If you don't mind saying
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): I write fiction
Bixyl Shuftan: I've been writing most of my life. As a kid, stories just for fun, that I'd show a few freinds.
Prokofy Neva: That's great! Do you go to any writers' groups or readings in SL?
Bixyl Shuftan: In college, a few peices of fiction. On occasion. I list the times of Book Island in my Events This Week
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): I can honestly say that I've never been to any writer's groups
Bixyl Shuftan: I go to a few of their events
Prokofy Neva: You know there's a fair number of them in SL. Not sure I even have been to Book Island
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): But the pieces I have submitted have been nominated to be submitted to anthologies
Prokofy Neva: I went to some big bookstore recently but all the books were in the form of links to the Internet
Bixyl Shuftan: It's worth a look, Prokofy
Prokofy Neva: ok. Do you go to live music at all?
Bixyl Shuftan: Yes
Prokofy Neva: what are your favourite performers
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Oh Yes, there is several artists here in-world we partake. Seth Regan. Better known as Mankind Tracer
Prokofy Neva: oh yes I've heard him, he's great. I think it was at SL Birthday
Bixyl Shuftan: We were at the Luskwood 9th, if you want the most recent example ... Oh, I have a few. Besides Seth Regan/Mandkind, there's Debi Latte, Jaycatt & Frogg
Prokofy Neva: oh that's just my favourites, Frogg and Jay and Debi. Those are the only ones I have gone to at all lately
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Debi's been asking about you Bix...
Prokofy Neva: What made you decide to be a furry on SL? Had you heard of furries before?
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Oh I can answer this one
Bixyl Shuftan: In real life, I'm something of a sci-fi nut
Prokofy Neva: Do furries and sci-fi go together?
Bixyl Shuftan: Yep, remember Animated Star Trek?
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Well i'm a normal person from the time I get up till the time I go to bed.. I come here to a place where I can be anything... why be a human all over again ?
Prokofy Neva: Hmm, you know I don't know about animated Star Trek. I didn't watch it that much
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): I just want to stand out
Prokofy Neva: Well, SL has to feel comfortable. For me, if I had a furry avatar, I'd be all like hot and sweaty
Prokofy Neva: : )
Bixyl Shuftan: in The Animated Series, one of the characters ws Lt. M'Ress, a Caitian
Prokofy Neva: What I would come back on if I started all over would be a dragon maybe
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Don't knock it till you try it
Prokofy Neva: I will have to read up on animated Star Trek
Bixyl Shuftan: As for "Furry," I didn't even know of it as a genere until an uncle sent me a website, "Here's more of your weirdo sci-fi stuff"
Prokofy Neva: it's funny, I didn't realize "furry" and "sci-fi" go together. I tend to think of furries as like natural beings in the forest
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): And you still have time, go be the dragon you would like to be
Prokofy Neva: and Star Trek is all like the future and technology
Bixyl Shuftan: I suppose it also goes well with fantasy
Prokofy Neva: well the closest I came to dragoning it was this summer I had a little vacation getaway I made because I couldn't take a very long vacation in RL. And I put a dragon's tail on the wall out of the Library lol
Bixyl Shuftan: /me chuckles
Prokofy Neva: and then I found a dragon's tail from that dragon place where they have the palace and all
Prokofy Neva: er not tail dragon's *bell*
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Seriously.. here you can be whatever you want to be. You will be the same person sitting behind your computer screen.. it's just your appreance here that you would like to see yourself being..
Bixyl Shuftan: I have a few dragon avatars. You might have seen one or two in my cartoons.
Prokofy Neva: I will have to look up your cartoons… Well I don't feel right unless my avatar is a certain way though, it's a feeling.
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Ah the same with mine then
Prokofy Neva: sure your avatar on the screen could be anything, it could be one of those new petites. Have you seen those?
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): no
Prokofy Neva: they are these really dinky people, tinier than tinies. And they are norms. I first starting seeing them on foreign sims
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Oh I think I have
Prokofy Neva: they would be like a Ken and Barbie doll type all dressed up. And they would be miniature
Bixyl Shuftan: pixies?
Prokofy Neva: and it was made possible by mesh
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): I partook of the Twisted hunt and meet a lot of micro people
Prokofy Neva: no not pixies, not fairies, although I'veseen them too. These are people who are norms, only norms in miniature
Prokofy Neva: and they have little tiny furniture and such
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Mesh
Prokofy Neva: I had some as tenants and I was afraid I was going to step on them and smush them. I couldn't even *see* their house
Bixyl Shuftan: I've heard of the pixies, haven't heard of micro humans as mass-produced avatars
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): He should meet Lomgren then
Bixyl Shuftan: Oh yes
Prokofy Neva: well they just take themselves and shrink them
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): the fellow is only 6 inches tall
Prokofy Neva: ok I will note Lomgren
Bixyl Shuftan: And he was around when I began coming to SL regularly, in 2007
Prokofy Neva: well I should get back to my job it's so late and I have to get up early too
Bixyl Shuftan: I did an interview of him, if you want ... oh okay
Prokofy Neva: oh if you interviewed him, then I don't have to! In fact, I think I can now retire from Sl blogging!
Prokofy Neva: : )
Bixyl Shuftan: /me laughs. Go ahead and interview him, the articles a few years old
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): SL blogging?
Prokofy Neva: Well I think my interests are different than yours, I follow more the politics and economy, I try to figure out what the SL economy is doing like it's a third-world country
Prokofy Neva: to be a good interviewer as you are, you have to let the subject talk and blossom
Bixyl Shuftan: I suppose I do to some extend, but my focus is the people, places and events. And thanks for the complement
Prokofy Neva: yes well I think that's a gift, for me, I want to find out things of interest to me, but to be successful I think you have to follow what those people and events are as you say
Prokofy Neva: What's your favourite place in SL?
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Home. Here
Prokofy Neva: East or West, home is beset.
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Home is where you rest your head
Prokofy Neva: What about you Bixyl?
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): home is where the heart is
Bixyl Shuftan: Besides home, interesting question. I have a small number of places I keep going to
Prokofy Neva: are they in your picks?
Bixyl Shuftan: You know I haven't updated them in a while. I'll check again
Prokofy Neva: well tell me their names
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): You better.. not a one picture of me in there
Prokofy Neva: ahaha
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): >.> hehe
Bixyl Shuftan: /me grins, "I'll get to it, Love"
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): You know what they say about every successful reporter?
Prokofy Neva: ?
Bixyl Shuftan: Oh, I go to a few favorite clubs. Club Zero Gravity, Angels Beach, Cutlass
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): There is a nagging wife
Prokofy Neva: hahah. I don't know any of those places. Do you like them for the friends you have there or the actual locale?
Bixyl Shuftan: Mostly the friends, though they do look nice.
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): No I don't nag, but from time to time I do offer suggestions and my opinions
Prokofy Neva: I'll have to go see
Bixyl Shuftan: I've also ended up going back to my first hangout on occasion, Luskwood
Prokofy Neva: Oh let's see I'm banned from Luskwood. Which is annoying because Frogg & Jaycatt play there
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Why are you banned from Luskwood?
Bixyl Shuftan: What happened?
Prokofy Neva: I think it's because Michi Lumin doesn't like my blog? Or because of some disagreement 8 years ago ? About the group tools.
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Well if you can speak to Michi, come to some agreement then the ban can be lifted
Prokofy Neva: it's when the Lindens were reforming the group tools, and there were disagreements about whether to have socialism or capitalism, I was for capitalism, she was for socialism, just to reduce a long story to a phrase
Prokofy Neva: oh, I don't need to be unbanned from Luskwood. It's ok. If Luskwood couldn't ban me, how would they forge their sense of identity! And if I need to see frogg and Jay I could go on an alt, although they have my alts banned too lol but they play other venues so it's all good
Bixyl Shuftan: Heh, they're the oldest community, furry or otherwise, they'll find a way to keep an identity
Prokofy Neva: True, that!
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Has no one ever heard of "Forgive and forget?
Prokofy Neva: oh, no, I think things like an argument about the group tools in some Linden meeting eight years ago on some arcane aspect of their changes is just the thing to keep alive forever! lol
Prokofy Neva: Well, I don't ban them from my land, let me put it that way! I just don't have time to go around banning people, and I don't use Ban Link
Bixyl Shuftan: They go to Bay City on occasion
Prokofy Neva: and I only ban people who actually physically grief my land as a rule
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): I've only had to ban a very few.. they are given a choice
Prokofy Neva: choice?
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): stop the activity and fly right per sim rules OR Ban
Prokofy Neva: hmm, well I gave a squatter that option yesterday. Come and pay rent, or... I blow your prims
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): In my case.. they are banned not from a single sim.. it's 24 sims
Prokofy Neva: they opted for prim return
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): err 14 sims
[Prokofy Neva: well yes bans start to add up; see I don't have a system like that being on mainland. I'm not going to go around to hundreds of dinky parcels and type in names
Prokofy Neva: What does Bixyl mean?
Bixyl Shuftan: years ago, in the 1990s, a girl I dated talked me into joinng her gamer group; one of the games was "Star Wars"; "Bixyl" was the name I made up for an alien character
Prokofy Neva: oh! so it's like your science fiction stories. I see. Well I should get going I've taking a lot of your time. You were kind to have me over at a moment's notice
Bixyl Shuftan: Yes, I later made a few stories around the race I made up ... the character's race
Prokofy Neva: I appreciate you taking the time to answer on the notecard
Bixyl Shuftan: welcome, and good luck…the original Bixyl was feline
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): When you get time, go read some of the stories I have submitted to FurAffinity
Prokofy Neva: OK
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): http://www.furaffinity.net/user/jazzydawn/
Prokofy Neva: thanks I will check that out.
Prokofy Neva: so I will contact you next week
Bixyl Shuftan: Me too, and good luck
Prokofy Neva: It was nice to meet you Jasmine. I guess you two have fun!
Prokofy Neva: : )
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): Likewise, it was a pleasure meeting you too
Prokofy Neva: see you soon
Bixyl Shuftan: We will but it's almost time for bed
Prokofy Neva: : )
Jasmine Dawn Shuftan (orasine): thanks for the warning X3
Bixyl Shuftan: see you Prok