Qual Blog

Thursday, October 26, 2006

welcome area listening and talking

when i first arrived in the area, the most promient discussions that i noticed were centered around one of two things. firstly, there was a lot of discussion of being new to the game and how to do certain things within it. for example, one pair was talking about how to build things they wanted, like a house. secondly, and somewhat strangely, i noticed twice that there were avatars discussing people they both knew. they found it funny that they had met the same person within the game and briefly discussed a party the person had thrown.
i ended up having three seperate conversations with either one person or two, depending. the first conversation was with a male avatar who approached me first. he said hello and asked how i was. after i responded, he replied there was nothing going on there and he was going to bed. the conversation lasted all of thirty seconds. i then began walking around, and in all honesty, tried to locate the most normal looking avatar in the room. i approached another male avatar and said hello. he responded and we began talking about the relative quiet of the location, even though there had to be at least 30-40 avatars in the immediate location. he said he was just relaxing before bed and the began editing his appearance without saying anything. it was another abrupt end to a conversation. i walked away again and stopped in front of a female avatar and a male avatar who was standing a little ways behind her. she said hello to me and told me she was new to the game. i said i was somewhat new to the game as well and began the "this location is boring" conversation for a third and final time. she replied shd hadnt been to many places and then the male avatar chimed in saying that we should come to one of his parties because they arent boring at all. he told us that we should go explore the area and i asked some question that some random person who i couldnt even see (or find) answered. it was an odd experience. i looked around but this name and answer just appeared out of the air. i ended up kind of just dropping the conversation and said goodbye.
all three of the conversations were somewhat uncomfortable. i cant really get past that these are just total strangers who could be anywhere and anyone. you could be talking to anyone-- which is discomforting. lets face it, their avatar could look like anything and it doesnt mean a thing about who they are. it makes me nervous to think that we have to say we are doing a study and that they may ask where i am from or what school i'm affilated with... and then i'll probably lie. anyway, i think it will be interesting either way. i liked speaking to multiple people within the location and it was reassuring to be approached twice and only have to start up the convo once.

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