Music Monday – Fresh jams for Community Manager Appreciation Day

Anna Calvi's new track will be the highlight our CM Appreciation Day tunes

Happy Community Manager Appreciation Day! It’s important today to not only recognize the CMs running online communities, but the entire teams it requires to successfully pull it off. The customer service reps and moderation teams that are the foundation for what a community manager does deserve credit for keeping the high level processes chugging. Thank you to everyone at Metaverse for all of the hard work you put in keeping communities active and thriving!

So today, to give some love to all of our peeps, I’m streaming some great tunes to make your work day just a little more enjoyable. Look forward to tracks from:

  • Anna Calvi
  • Bear Hands
  • Andrew Belle
  • Cold War Kids
  • The Radio Dept
  • …and as always, much more!

To get down on this set just click this link. It will download a .pls file, which will open a stream in iTunes or music player of choice. Or, if you want, just plug this URL directly into the “Play from URL” option:

I’ll be streaming until 6pm Eastern.


Music Monday – NYC Edition

We’re back to it for Metaverse Mod Squad Music Monday! I spent the last week in my favorite city, New York. This week’s Music Monday playlist is inspired by that wonderful place… with songs either about, or written by artists from, New York City. And a couple cool tracks thrown in just for fun. Featured artists:

  • Yeah Yeah Yeahs
  • Simon and Garfunkel
  • The Magnetic Fields
  • Yeasayer
  • LCD Soundsystem
  • The Polyamorous Affair
  • And more….
To get down on this cool set just click this link. It will download a .pls file, which will open a stream in iTunes or music player of choice. Or, if you want, just plug this URL directly into the “Play from URL” option:

I’ll be streaming from 12:30-3pm Pacific Time.


Avatar – Part 2: Origins of the word

Excitement continues to build for the theater release of James Cameron’s upcoming epic, “Avatar,” on December 18th. The film is a 3D science-fiction action movie starring Sam Worthington as Jake Sully, a paralyzed Marine who becomes reborn as an alien species – his “Avatar.”

While it’s uncertain exactly how the movie intends to use it, Cameron’s use of the word “avatar” is probably different than the one we encounter in our industry and the hype surrounding the film inspired us to delve into the word itself. This three part blog series will explore the use of the word avatar as we know it, the origins of the word and the varying cases in which the word “avatar” has been applied.

In the first part of this series we discussed the word avatar and gave the modern definition as a graphical representation of one’s self, personality or alter-ego while engaging in online communication. Avatars take on many forms in the computing world, but the word itself dates back thousands of years.

The word “avatar” comes from the Sanskrit word अवतार (avata-ra) which means “descent” or “coming down from far away.” The idea comes from the Hindu religion, where it implies a descent from a higher realm of spiritual being into lower forms of existence. Many of these ancient avatars were said to have had special powers and were used for certain purposes on Earth. This concept dates back to 500 BC and earlier, used for years in oral traditions before being recorded in an ancient Hindu text known as the Garuda Purana.

The Gurada Purana tells of the ten avatars used by the god Vishnu to perform special tasks in the human realm. Vishnu’s avatars, known as Daśāvatāra, took many forms such as a tortoise, boar and even the Buddha himself.

It wasn’t until thousands of years later that the term avatar as we know it made an appearance in the realm of the metaverse. Arguably the first use of “avatar” in computing games comes from Ultima IV, an RPG released in 1985. The player is tasked by the character Lord British to become the Avatar, a shining example of spiritual enlightenment to ensure peace.

It is interesting to note the theme of limitation used to describe the Hindu avatars. Avatars were a “lower form” of being, limited in what they could do in comparison with their godly nature. In many ways our avatars are limited versions of ourselves. Even though they escape aesthetic barriers, they are not granted the level of function that we have as physical human beings.

Read More: Avatar – Part 1: Defining the Modern Avatar and Avatar – Part 3: Future of the avatar

Rocking the Metaverse introduces live music to Twinity

For about the last month, Koinup has been sponsoring the Rocking the Metaverse tour, the 1st ever cross-world music tour. Fittingly, the tour ended today in Twinity, making it the first ever live music event to hit the somewhat new virtual world. Twinity has a realistic take on virtual worlds, modeling its spaces after real world locations with the first being a replica of Berlin. A virtual Singapore and London are also on the way.

Dizzy Banjo rocks out in Berlin

Dizzy Banjo rocks out in Berlin

Second Life music stars Dizzy Banjo, Grace Mcdunnough, Slim Warrior and DoubleDown Tandino have been traversing the metaverse, bringing live music to Second Life, OpenSim, Metaplace and now Twinity. It’s been a groundbreaking tour, bringing fans of the musicians in Second Life across several virtual world platforms and now introducing the live music event to Twinity.

Folks in the virtual world business that I’ve talked to in the past sometimes speak of a future where there are no individual virtual worlds, just one main interface that all users connect to and interact. While this virtual “new world” will likely never come into existence as it is envisioned, Rocking the Metaverse is a good demonstration of a way that seperate clients can link and share content.

And as for Twinity, there is no news yet but I suspect the tour stop today will lead in to more live music events for the platform. Live music has been such a big part of the virtual world landscape that it seems only natural it should be brought into a fledgling one, especially one that is realistically modeled after real world locations. Imagine seeing your favorite band playing a concert in Singapore and you don’t even have to leave your laptop. While this may be the final stop for Rocking the Metaverse, it certainly isn’t the final stop in expanding the live music experience in virtual worlds.

Chase Straight

Music Community Manager

The Electric Panda Blog