March 30, 2006

Living in Game Space

Open Source, a public radio show that initiates conversations on the internet and carries them onto the airwaves, just aired a discussion about Second Life. Discussion revolved around identity, love and making money in this new kind of online environment.

Listen to "Living in Game Space"

Posted by at 11:06 AM

March 23, 2006

Article on "Cybersmearing"

Laura Gurak, director of the Internet Studies Center here at the U, is quoted in Duluth News Tribune article on the phenomenon of "cybersmearing." From the article:

Terence Banich had been outed as a bad tipper, and he didn't even know it.

He popped up on the cheapskate list at, berated by a server at a Chicago restaurant for leaving a $3 tip on a $200 bill.

Informed of his tipping infamy, Banich said if he had left such a measly gratuity, it was a mistake, a misplaced decimal point, and he's sorry for it.

But Banich, a Chicago lawyer, also said he was none too pleased that a waitress had lifted information from his credit card -- his name -- and posted it on the Internet.

Banich had effectively been cybersmeared, and he's far from alone.

Full Article

Posted by at 10:21 AM

March 6, 2006

Blog Story in Pioneer Press

Nora Paul, director of the Institute for New Media Studies here at the U is quoted in a Pioneer Press article by Dave Beal entitled "Cutting through the blog fog". From the article:

But now, after several years of revolutionary rhetoric in each venue about the wonders of the blogosphere, doubters have surfaced. Suddenly, they are questioning the accumulated wisdom of the boosters.

It's boom or doom. Like so much of what pings around in today's vast media echo chambers, odds are that neither of these visions will stand the test of time.

Full Article

Posted by at 12:53 PM

February 14, 2006

Making a Living in Second Life

There's a story on Wired News about several people who make money through their work in Second Life, a MMORPG. From the article:

Grinnell's shop, Mischief, is in Second Life, a virtual world whose users are responsible for creating all content. Grinnell's digital clothing and "skins" allow users to change the appearance of their avatars -- their online representations -- beyond their wildest Barbie dress-up dreams.

Within a month, Grinnell was making more in Second Life than in her real-world job as a dispatcher. And after three months she realized she could quit her day job altogether.

Now Second Life is her primary source of income, and Grinnell, whose avatar answers to the name Janie Marlowe, claims she earns more than four times her previous salary.

Full Article

Posted by at 9:22 AM