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Aug 06, 2007



Interesting. Among poets, there is a real distinction made between pieces written primarily to be read on paper (screen, what-not... in the mind of the reader) and that which is meant to be performed. Slam poetry, for example, is meant to be performed.

I would love to see a "virtual slam" where elements of voice performance could be combined with actions that are related to the VW space. How could you shift/flow your avatar, for example, while reading? And alter your voice? What about moving/teleporting the whole audience with you from place-to-place on the service as part of the performance?

I agree that the Web is a place for both performance and product. I would argue, though, that sometimes a blog *can* be a performance, in many ways. It's not real-time, but, then again, Woodstock took 3 days...


@andy That is a really interesting point regarding the difference in certain art forms and how they are meant to be performed. I often explain the fact that the avatar mode we use at the moment is a form of puppetry.
The expressive potential is still closer to strings on a puppet than to full human expression. However that restriction can lead to interesting approaches to performance.
I love the idea of moving the audience with you as opposed to changing the set. It is similar to the difference between a film and a play, yet adds something that is only practical in a virtual world.
I do agree also that other forms of more published material are a performance. There are many shades of live and nearly live. The time difference between sending and another receiving may be very short and the interaction is close enough to live to fell live to all concerned. After all the virtual worlds, or satellite TV all have a latency. The real world does too with the speed of sound and light :-)
So I wonder how live and error prone does something have to actually be to feel live and have that performance aspect at its core?


Intersting...I think that the exploration of "Liveness" is worthwhile but I'd focus on another trait ..

A live concert is more live when the performers improvize like the grateful dead , less live when peformers sing or play fixed arrangements and even less live when they lip sync over their music. The "good" of liveness comes from advantages of context or particular inspiration they might be feeling...

..but sometimes its fun just seeing people saying boring things live...talk shows where even if the responses are somewhat scripted we can see a bit of a persons personality showing thru via posture, inflection, eye movements...there is more to a jay Leno interview that what is said..just the "live" walk up to the chair allows some expression of personality.

And, I think that the differences of behavior patterns make for social engagement...a friend who is always losing his keys or a instance mate in WoW who cant make a jump across the void are social actions (mistakes or ineptitudes).

"liveness' can be inconsistently of outcomes or trait like repeated irrationalities. ... so that MoB can seem more live (even though they are still algorithms) when their random behaviors can have fat tails or even a glitch feels more live at times.


Meta thought
Computing has created others states of time between live and recorded.

Message forums like these are sllooow live conversations. IRC is fast but not quite real time depending on how quick a scroll and response the people involved choose (respond between phone calls or after putting something on the stove etc)

I think "almost real-time" games...perhaps turn based with timers or live with speed limits give games an opportunity to expand the notions of "live" ..

live can happen very sloowwwwly and in the backround too. (was chess by mail a live game? I think so)


@shander The context of the liveness does add a huge dimension to things. Some performers clearly like to perform from safety, using the same content yet, like a play, find depth in that performance and subtle differences in each rendition. Others are more freeform, seeing where the performance will take them. The performer of the same material each time will risk personal boredom and staleness, the freeformer will risk drying up and no performance at all.
Those shared live experiences, little vignettes of comedy such as not making a jump or losing the keys are all very important and just as live. Those are the moments that it would be great to be able to capture, just as we capture moments in photos. They are hard to described, and even more of the moment than a long live music performance. "That time we ...." (I am trying not to slip into "one time at band camp" :-) )
Very often in a business context the performance is expected to be on script. This is why when performers, that can do, go off script they often gain additional respect from their peers.
I like to see the same subject matter performed several times, such as the talk show example, to see those inner workings of how someone might adjust to keep things fresh for themselves.
Likewise I like to see this at work. Roo and I do similar pitches both in virtual worlds and around them. Each one may or may not have elements of the rest of the current web trends in them. To us its the same material, yet I think we both try and deliver it differently every time yet consistently. "You must get bored saying the same thing?". Strangely, not. In someways its the same thing in other ways every performance is completely different.


I am disturbed by the use of the handle epredator. That term is now firmly associated with paedophiles and makes me sick.

I guess you are a middle aged, middle class, white male who has never suffered at the hands of these inhuman beings and sees its use as a joke. Believe me its not funny


Right on Poppy! Sick sense of humour or just sick, the result is the same.


I have to say that my handle is one that I have used for years. The fact that some of the media have hijacked it to refer to some people (and I am parent and I do care alot) is not something that I view as the same thing.
I used the handle predator as a non naturally recurring comment in code when I killed bugs. e was was added in the online dot com days of e-business.
I did not see 20th C fox removing a sci fi cultural icon that my handle predates.
However, you are entitled to your opinion.
We need to remove the offenders as upstanding members of society. So please focus the efforts on that.
This is not the place to continue this element of the conversation so please stay on topic.


I thought this was meant to be an open discussion forum and not one where we just follow your lead.

If you had called yourself Nazi in 1930 you would not have continued using it throughout the holocaust so why is a term associated with paedophilia more acceptable?

Why continue to glory in that title now that it is being used to focus on and target sick individuals and make the world safer?


@poppy grey
Although your concern about protecting our children is of utmost importance in an era of increasing security concerns, it is a bit ridiculous to expect epredator to cater to your personal fears, especially in the context of Terra Nova. Next thing I know you'll be coming after ludogrind because it sounds lewd. Yet ludogrind has nothing to do with porn, except maybe the hot night elf. But any such interpretations are entirely user created, especially given her fully clothed status. Not typical in an Azerothian setting.

In an attempt to bring this derail somewhat back on topic it is interesting to note the work of liveness in a cross-border legal jurisdiction context, the woman "arrested in the US for trying to lure her young internet boyfriend to Australia" in particular. News.com.au has the story,">http://www.news.com.au/story/0,23599,21997186-2,00.html">story, a surreal one at that: basically a 31 year old Australian woman and her 17 year old American boyfriend met in World of Warcraft. When the two planned to meet in North Carolina, the woman was detained by police before the two could meet and return to Australia to be married. WoW Drama has more. According to US law (North Carolina) the case is clear cut: underage minor is 17 years old or younger. However, in Australia the age of consent is 16, the age of the teenager when the relationship first started. This fact has little bearing: American territory, American law. Yet it seems quite a bit of cultural and legal lag at work here. A natural outcome of an increasingly global village? Yet my questions are general: Under which jurisdiction should a cross national metaversal case be tried? These conversations are hardly new for the folks on Terra Nova, foretold for years now. When a relationship occurs in cyberspace- somewhere in the meataverse between Australia and North Carolina, which laws apply? If you say its obvious that United State's laws apply, would the case be different if the boy had flown to Australia instead? What factor does the age of consent play and the fact that the US is in the upper tail? See here. Yet no extra-Azerothian unspeakable rapes in cyberspace occurred. From the sound of things only l'amour de WoW. Yet what kind of sane adult would fall into such an American trap? Seems like another example in which the legal system is ill-equipped to deal with metaversal relations given the minor disparities in law and the major consequences following such behavior. Any thoughts?

Sorry if this takes us further off topic...was not my intention. I had planned to talk about performance culture in relation to machinima and the origins of the demo record function which it seems has offered great possibility for archiving the virtual worlds in which we live just becoming evident through events such as Blizzcon and the EQ fan fare that noone heard about. But the right to speak in cyberspace trumps all. Epredeator is hardly offenssive, especailly for those unaware of the term and the context in which the name appeared. Another example of contingency based social norms...


@Shander: "Computing has created others states of time between live and recorded." You just blew my mind. Thanks. Now it's all over my keyboard. Seriously, though... I'm gonna chew on that thought for awhile. 3-points.

@Poppy: 1) Context is king. epredator's comments here have been civil, intelligent and interesting. I didn't even come close to your interpretation until it was brought up. 2) Predators aren't just associated with the vile scum who prey on children. All humans who eat meat are predators. Many animals and fish are predators. I understand that the word has negative implications for some, but it has other meanings, too. "Nazi" only has one. 3) I'm pretty sure that an actual internet predator wouldn't use that handle...


@andy Every Monday, nearly, at 4PM SLT (maps to California's Pacific Time)in Second Life, Secundo Dharma and various do a poetry slam worth checking out at the SLiterary reproduction Globe Theater.

I rarely make it, but there is a thriving poet and appreciation contingent in Second Life!

On a more limited stage, on the server Landroval in Lord of the Rings Online, Fridays see a weekly "Battle of the Bards" and Saturdays a storytelling contest -- all text, but a valiant RP effort at the least.

People will add art to the social game in any game, given a chance, I think.


@shava "Battle of the Bards" sounds a great use of LOTR, people using the context of the environment but finding a new performance direction. As you eloquentlty say people will add art to the social game :-)
Maybe, as per my previous post about PvP in business where I suggest business is just a game I should add that business is also an outlet for the artist?


I think there's a lot of real time creative expression in the general chats of WoW.

EVE, and games like it, make the manufacturing part of the real time game.

In SL, and as I understand it, back on IRC, Gorean Kajira dances are performed- a mix of rote, pre-prepared expressions and real time performance.


The diachronicity of performance (i.e., that it happens through time) is a key issue in theories of human action, so it's great to see the importance of recognizing it in virtual worlds (and the limits of atemporal approaches) talked about here. For anyone who is interested in the school of thought called performance theory, which seeks to account for this processual, iterative quality of performance through time, there is a lot of great work, including that of Victor Turner (here and here), and Richard Bauman (here.





@thomas thanks for those references, I think a certain online book company will be getting some more business from me :-)
I know that expressing the nature of the live performance seems to have become increasingly important as I explain to my business collegues they "why" of the metaverse.
It is easier to deal with the polarization of pure performance and pure recorded media (such as a bill board) to start with. This then prompts people to think about the grey areas that exist between those poles.
Many people will have only considered one pole (probably the nice building/advert/recorded nature of things).
That makes this subject even more intriguing :-)


@Ace I guess the ideas of resource usage and manfacturing are integral to many elements of many games. EVE takes the concept a bit further. I think the unusal element woudl be where the manufacturing was a craft or art rather than a collection of menu clicks.
When the crafting of the result is done in real time with a degree of manual dexterity. We see some of this in the collaborative non game building in things like Second Life.
We may see a rise in live performance manufacturing as a craft/art form using the sort of technology credited with removing that art in the first place (namely the computer) as a vehicle?


This thread is so confusing to me that i need to tell myself , three times , steering to my bedroom mirror : Woodstock = good, H.G.Wells' " The War of the Worlds " = good .

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