Tuesday, 3 March 2009

Meeting 6 - Protest In SL

The topic this week was ‘SL protest: is it effective?’
We first shared experiences we had of being involved in SL protests and what we felt had been achieved.
These experiences ranged from demonstrations over the bombing of Gaza to a protest against a contents thief.
Plot Tracer has written an article for the RL journal Red Pepper which includes details of protests carried out by SLLU and comments on their effectiveness.

Some of the observations and questions :-
:it seems to be important to have a clear objective
:getting attention in RL seems to be a key
: I wonder . . . is it more important to be disruptive?
: or more effective to be imaginative?
:maybe disruptive enough just to get attention but not enough to be considered harassment?
: just the feeling of being able to do something with likeminded people may be enough
:not feeling like a lone voice in the wilderness can help prepare you for further action sometimes too
:a tool to get info out
: also about recruitment

There was a view that the other thing sl can be great for is getting info out to a large blogging community which can then get picked up more widely and that new media gives us lots of opportunities for awareness raising. We discussed the special opportunities offered by sl e.g. being able to create whole ‘theme parks’ or virtual museums
(We were diverted into an interesting discussion about the offer made to the woman who had recently given birth to 8 babies being made an offer to work in the porn industry.
Which led to musings about whether women in sl working as ‘escorts’ should form a Union.)
When we discussed the possibility of protesting about the rape sims in SL the whole debate around this issue was aired again. There were genuine differences in views about how effective such a protest would be. There are also differing views about the freedom in sl to enact any sexual fantasy. (See notes of previous meetings for more on this debate)
While not all were keen on the idea of an actual protest at a rape sim there was agreement on the need to air the issue and to try to provide information on the emotional risks involved.
Scylla has done a lot of work and a great job drafting information for female newbies in the form of a Survival Kit. We discussed the best format for presenting this. Everyone is encouraged to add to and comment by going to:-


Oh and thanks to Ellie we now have a peaceful garden, should we add a hot tub?
We didn’t have time to agree a topic for next week but it is International Women’s Day. Maybe this could be our topic for the meeting on the 8th March at 12 noon SLT.

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