Mark Colvin starts to get Second Life

mark_colvin I like Mark Colvin’s style of journalism a lot – PM is arguably one of Australia’s best sources of current affairs to be found, and its ongoing success is at least partly due to its host. He also happens to be pretty tech savvy and is one of Australia’s more engaging people on Twitter.

Today, PM looked in depth at Second Life and virtual worlds more broadly. Specifically, Colvin interviews Thomas Malaby, whose recent book has garnered a lot of attention for its in-depth ethnographic analysis of Linden Lab.

The fifteen-plus minutes of interview is more than worth listening to for its insights, particularly for the newer virtual worlds user. For the more experienced, Malaby still provides some great thoughts on avatar as personality, addiction, the health benefits of virtual worlds and quite a bit more. Listen to the lot here. The shorter version broadcast on PM can be found on the same page.

A big thanks to Wolfie Rankin for the heads-up.

Update: Mark Colvin has now blogged his thoughts on virtual worlds here.

Pool: the ideal Second Life tie-in opportunity for the ABC

I received a press release from the ABC’s Radio National, who have launched collaborative content creation site called Pool.

It’s a joint initiative between RMIT University, University of Technology Sydney and the University of Wollongong and runs on the open source content management system Drupal. The call is on for people to contribute their words, pictures, sounds or video with the ability (via a Creative Commons license) for every participant to download the work of others to build or collaborate on. It’s another plunge into participatory media for the ABC – something that’s been explored in the ABC’s presence in Second Life.

I contacted the ABC to ask about any potential tie-in of the Pool initiative with Second Life and at this stage nothing’s planned in that regard. There seems to be some obvious collaborative opportunities for Pool that involve Second Life, or indeed any virtual world, so here’s hoping for further exploration of that.

One way to drive that exploration would be to join Pool and start contributing material from your virtual world life…

Peter Rowsthorn gets virtual

Last Friday night, ABC show Can We Help covered the topic of virtual worlds, with host Peter Rowsthorn being shown around Second Life by the RMIT’s Lisa Dethridge.

Watch it in full here:

Uploaded by Wolfie_Storr

Thanks to Wolfie Rankin for the heads-up!

A year ago on The Metaverse Journal

We provided a blow-by-blow account of the Four Corners episode on Second Life and the in-world Q&A with Four Corners reporter Ticky Fullerton.

Australian business interest growing in Second Life?

In the next two weeks I’m involved in two separate events that have the same purpose – to raise awareness of the opportunities that Second Life presents. The first has a corporate focus and the panel discussion involves key people from Telstra, REA and the ABC involved in their respective Second Life presences. The second one is also business orientated with a communications flavour.



In both cases, there’ll be up to a hundred representatives from Australian businesses, most of them medium to large operations with varying understanding of virtual worlds. A while back we wrote about Australian business taking a ‘wait and see’ approach – this may still be the case but there’s certainly no shortage of forums where SL is being presented as an innovation option.

ABC Island gets Melbourne Cup fever as well

ABC Island is getting into the Melbourne Cup spirit as well, running a fashions on the field event tomorrow evening at 7pm (1am SL time) at the Melbourne Laneways section of the island.


From the announcement:

“So dress to impress and join in fashions on the field, history of the Melbourne Cup and compete in the race that stops all SL.

Prizes will be awarded for best dressed and the race winner.

We will also be launching our new design competition*, ‘Your Own Piece of Melbourne’ with a nights accommodation in a deluxe room in an icon Melbourne hotel (valued at over $250) up for grabs.”

I find it interesting that both Telstra and the ABC have events at exactly the same time – is it competition or collaboration?

Librarians Forum another successful ABC Island event

As mentioned previously, the new comedy on ABC, The Librarians was the impetus for a forum held on the Melbourne Laneways section of ABC Island. The build itself featured aspects of the TV show, utilising one of the Laneways buildings previously unused.


More than thirty people attended, including a respectable cohort of librarians. There was some interesting discussion of library stereotypes and fairly general agreement that another successful Australian comedy has been born.

‘Librarians’ tie-in on ABC Island this Thursday

Australian made comedy The Librarians makes it debut this week and there’s a tie-in event scheduled on the Melbourne Laneways section of ABC Island.


The full info from the notecard I received:

“DATE: Thursday November 1st

TIME: 7:30pm AEDT, 5:30pm (WA) 1:30am SL time (PDT)

The Librarians, is a new six-part comedy series from ABC TV, based around the highly-strung head librarian of an outer suburban Melbourne library.

This new social satire premieres on Wednesday October 31 at 9.30pm AEDT. Or if you can’t watch it live, you can view it online at 10:00pm.

Then on Thursday night, in conjunction with the ALIA, Emerald Dumont – a librarian avatar from the Australian Libraries Building – will host a discussion.”

CSIRO launch seminar series on ABC Island

The ABC Island Ampitheatre has started playing host to CSIRO scientists. Each week in September there’ll be a seminar. Tonight’s featured Dr Peter Clifton, a researcher in Obesity and Diabetes at CSIRO and co-author of the CSIRO Total Well Being Diet Book. He presented on “Anti-Aging; The Prospect of Human Life Extension”.


More than 40 people attended so you can expect next week’s will be popular as well. To find out details of upcoming events, join the ‘ABC Friends’ group in-world.

ABC and SLCN meet

I’ve had a heads-up that the ABC’s Lise Robbiani is making an appearance on SLCN’s Tonight Live with Paisley Beebe. It’s showing at 6pm SLT on the 26th August (11am Sunday 27th AEST).


Lise is heavily involved with ABC Island and both SLCN and Paisley Beebe are Australian.

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