Last week, YouTuber Strasz released a 30-minute video essay that’s part documentary and part love letter to a pioneering virtual world that he was once a fond and active member of, called Active Worlds.
Consisting mostly of first-person coverage of his exploration of AW, it’s a fascinating look at what many people (myself included) consider to be the first virtual world with user-generated content—launched way back in 1995, well before Second Life debuted in 2003! Although AW never reached the success of SL, it was still a pioneering virtual world, where users could set up an avatar, build anything they wanted, and form communities.
What is so interesting about Active Worlds, besides its longevity, is that unlike websites which eventually get taken down and discarded, much of the original construction from its earliest days still remains in place, much like a prehistoric insect trapped in amber for scientists to pore over. I think it’s a wonderful documentary, and I can recommend it highly if you’re interested in the early history of the metaverse.
As I mentioned, Active Worlds still exists today, at the ripe old age of 27 (although it has a daily user base in the single digits). You can create an account, download the client software, and explore! Here’s the website. You can also see all my blogposts about Active Worlds here (including this one).
DID YOU KNOW? 14.5% of Manitobans are of Ukrainian ancestry, as well as 13.4% of Saskatchewan residents. In the last census of 2016, there were an estimated 1,359,655 persons of full or partial Ukrainian origin residing in Canada (the majority being Canadian-born citizens), making them Canada’s eleventh largest ethnic group and giving Canada the world’s third-largest Ukrainian population behind Ukraine itself and Russia. (source: Wikipedia)
DID YOU KNOW? You can donate to the Canadian Red Cross’ Ukrainian Humanitarian Crisis Appeal, and the Canadian government will match individual Canadians’ donations up to $10 million? Money raised will enable the Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement to respond to humanitarian needs generated by almost eight years of conflict (since Russia annexed Crimea in 2014), as well as preparedness and response efforts due to heightened tensions in Ukraine. The support could include preparedness, immediate and ongoing relief efforts, long-term recovery, resiliency, and other critical humanitarian activities as needs arise, both in Ukraine and surrounding countries, including supporting populations displaced.Please donate today!
You might be surprised to learn that current events in the real world are often quickly reflected in the virtual world! The war in Ukraine is no exception, and in almost no time at all, Second Life content creators have responded! This blogpost will showcase FREE clothing and home/yard decor to allow you to express your feelings about this unwanted, unnecessary, heartbreaking war.
For example, the Haus of De Vil is giving away both men’s and women’s long-sleeved T-shirts with the slogan Slava Ukraini (which means Glory to Ukraine, the Ukrainian national salute). Both men’s and women’s shirts come in wide variety of different sizes to fit just about every avatar, whether you have a classic/system or mesh body!
The creator says in his descriptions for these free items:
With the current deplorable situation I have taken a temporary side step from my usual way of clothing creation to bring a series of T shirts to vent my frustrations.
I am appalled by the vile behaviour of Putin and his cronies bringing war to Europe once again. We must stand strong with Ukraine and show our support unwaveringly in whatever ways we can. We must also remember at this time that many of the people of Russia are not in support of his behaviour and it is only with the government we need aim our disgust.
To those in the Ukraine, friends and families, I wish you the best.
Couture Chapeau is giving away a free, full permissions Ukrainian flag on a flagpole, as well as a (copy, modify, but no-transfer) We Stand with Ukraine banner for your virtual home or yard. Just visit the store and click on the blue-and-yellow box indicated by the red arrow below:
Teleport to the MKN store and click on the large box on the front counter to pick up another free women’s outfit to show your support for Ukraine:
The Pray for Ukraine outfit (T-shirt and sweat pants) comes in sizes to fit Maitreya Lara; Meshbody Legacy and Perky; Belleza Freya; Slink Hourglass; and INITHIUM Kupra mesh bodies. The Jumpov sneakers are a free fatpack group gift from VERSOV; the VERSOV group is free to join, and there are seven other free group gifts in their store.
Speaking of VERSOV, there are a number of Russian and Slavic content creators in Second Life, many of whom are shocked and appalled by this war. For the love of God, do NOT take your frustrations out on them! The small amount of money that people can earn from SL might be making all the difference between having no money or having some money to buy food, so please, don’t be an asshole, okay??
In light of recent events, the owner of Mossu – Stephen Mossu (akirakiyoi) has put together a list of content creators that may benefit from your love of shopping, that could help support their real life situation during this unexpected and disruptive time.
The Second Life community has always shown solidarity in times of need and here at Seraphim, we would like to pass on this resource to you. You can find the list ☞Here☜
Please note: Seraphim is not the creator of this list and we are in no way affiliated with any of the designers listed or the owner of the list. Any questions, comments or concerns should be directed to Stephen · Mossu (akirakiyoi)
Given the unprecedented situation in the Ukraine, I’m sure these businesses would appreciate your purchases even more than usual!
If you wish to provide financial support, Two Moons Gardens is donating the proceeds of their Inspiration Garden (249L) to the International Red Cross for use in their care of refugees and victims of acts of war. The garden, pictured above, is located on a special sim where there are freebies and 10L items to purchase to support the Red Cross’s efforts in addition to donation kiosks.
There’s actually a huge sales area with discounted merchandise on sale from various vendors, from which the proceeds are going to the International Red Cross! For example, you can pick up a L$1,000 gift card for Alli&Ali Hair Designs for only L$700.
UPDATE March 6th, 2022: Another fundraising event in Second Life is Love to Ukraine, running from March 5th to 19th, with all proceeds going to NBU (the National Bank of the Ukraine), Voices of Children, and the Ukrainian Red Cross.
Among the many items for sale at the Love to Ukraine event, I picked up this Peace Pack of knotted T-shirts by Miss Chelsea (L$199):
And I have some more free gifts to show your support for Ukraine. Princess Stuff is giving away this lovely minidress in the yellow and blue colours of the Ukrainian flag: