‘Avatars’ offer virtual alternative at climate summit
More than 10,000 people are in Bali thrashing out action on global warming, but those who couldn’t make it in person are here virtually — some in the form of dragons and action heroes.
Hoping to widen the debate and cut down on carbon emissions from air travel, Oneworld.net, a left-leaning website, has taken the UN conference here on climate change to the online virtual world Second Life.
The website has brought together everyone from a US congressman, who travelled virtually as a 3-D animation, to anonymous participants hailing from Japan to Turkmenistan and Romania.
Second Life, which has drawn millions of users since it was created in 2003 by San Francisco-based Linden Labs, is a fantasy land in which users mingle under assumed identities as “avatars.”
While most delegates in Bali opt for formal attire, users of the site, http://www.oneclimate.net/, pick the virtual likeness of their choice — ranging from purple hair to outfits befitting action heroes.
more at MSN