Australia ABC and Second Life – User Generated Humour?

I presented on Crucipod at an AIIA lunch a few months ago so apologies if it’s getting boring but I will keep coming back to user generated *humour*, how you set up Purpose, and how you define Rules within your social network.For those of you who didn’t attend: Apple didn’t find this manipulation of their…

I presented on Crucipod at an AIIA lunch a few months ago so apologies if it’s getting boring but I will keep coming back to user generated *humour*, how you set up Purpose, and how you define Rules within your social network.
For those of you who didn’t attend: Apple didn’t find this manipulation of their iconic brand image funny.
Today in Second Life I saw this (you can see the ABC logo in the background). Be warned, the preceding link is a SLurl and takes you in-world, not to the website:

That’s my beautifully coiffered head and gorgeous wings you can see in the foreground. 🙂 And the ABC logo in the background.

Grey areas are challenging – I saw these crucifictions and thought they were funny. But not every single one of Aunties fans shares my humour. If this user generated *art* appeared on your companies installation in Second Life, you’d probably ignore it, wouldn’t you? Or would you get a lot of complaints and have to ‘handle’ it?? Pendulum is swinging – it’s getting harder and harder to police political correctness. And if your company uses the ‘net to push the edge of censorship through viral video, you can’t get pissy if your consumers create content around your brand that mimics that. Not that Auntie ABC would ever have a naughty content. Yeah, right. Anyway, it depends how heavily you are promoting the ‘company for the whole family’ concept, and how much of your brand you are willing to hand over.

Back to Social Networks. Define your purpose clearly. “This is an online community for families” is one thing, but follow it up with a fluffy bunny and pink carnations look-and-feel. Or as a very smart cookie (hi Sarah!) muttered the other day, don’t use a Gaming Fan Site style sheet on your website. Mixed messages have to be eliminated. Remember, we the consumer are stupid, or at least, we will go with the message that suits our purpose. Also, keep layering your rules and regulations. Its part of the social texture. In this case, ABC have a Newcomer Welcome Rules Board AND a more indepth terms of service. Always a good idea.

Here’s the full rules for your perusal -and I love it when I see apparent dichotomies like points 1.2 and 1.3 together. 🙂

Terms and conditions for use of ABC Sandbox

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Second Life is not a stayer in my opinion. It’s simply not got the attibutes – and I’ve been involved with as many dud virtual worlds (lucky me!) as successful ones – it’s materialistic, focussed on image, sex and corporate installations. But it’s a great testing ground for seeing how this stuff works and doesn’t work. Think of it as a focus group – in February there was only 3000 Australians on there. (Ngaire, do you have more recent stats??)

But keep an eye on Coke and World of Warcraft. They are doing some really really interesting campaigns. So are Habbo – can’t find their stats but I think they have several hundred thousand Aussie teens signed up. There were around a 1000 on this morning (9am Sunday). Incidentally, ABC and Second Life list the members that have been banned from the site. Not something I recommend (not sure if Linden Labs allows ABC to turn that option off), but that’s a story for another time. 🙂

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One Comment

  1. Stumbled across this post this evening and I wondered about your second last paragraph. Here we are some four years later and both Second Life and ABC Island within it, are still chugging along nicely.

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