Monday, May 3, 2010
Addiction To Second Life?
Location: Mixed Reality Event
Last night, I had the chance to listen as Wagner James Au moderated a panel with Philip Rosedale, Cyn Linden, and Jason Springarn-Koff, director of the documentary Life 2.0. The film screened at Sundance this year, and I'm looking forward to seeing it.
The topic was addiction. My own definition goes as follows.
Over the 3+ years I've been in SL, I have met individuals--never educators, I'd add--who spent enough time in-world to begin degrading their real-life jobs and relationships. That's not a definition from the DSM, but it seemed addictive behavior.
If the individual were making money or creating art, however, I'd make an exception. One of my neighbors draws for hours on end and is beginning to get noticed in the East Coast art scene. He's following his bliss and hearing a muse's call, something that, as a writer, I appreciate.
But I'd be curious to know what other experienced SLers consider the marks of addiction to the virtual world. We joked last night about being addicted to breathing, since we do it so much.
At a certain point, however, many other activities cause harm. What then are the harmful side effects of spending too much time in SL? And how much is too much?