Producing Meetings in Second Lifes Virtual World

Of the many people I (Mike) met at Meeting Professionals International (MPI) MeetDifferent conference in Atlanta this week, the only person I really had mixed feelings about meeting was Dan Parks of Corporate Planners Unlimited. I think it was last year when I was doing a bunch of work in Second Life. I produced a few meetings and actually was on the cover of Successful Meetings Magazine for the meetings I produced there. We had a virtual office and really spent most of my time showing meeting planners around to some venues. Dan at the same time was working on a large Meeting Community mansion in Secondlife and was a moderator for MeCo Community. Somehow our streams crossed and I stopped going to the MeCo forums. But planner Jessica Levin introduced us and I am glad she did. It was great to meet Dan face to face and he even gave me a very nice cigar! Take a look at this short video of what Dan has accomplished in Second Life. Have you been to a meeting in Second Life yet?

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Social Networking Wars?

This year I made some changes in my life which have freed a ton of time for me. Email management, staying away from the many social networking sites like Facebook, twitter, second life etc…. I saw this video today and thought it kind of hit the nail on the head.

Though as full disclosure, right now as I finish writing this post I added 2 friends to Facebook and Twittered a few times today. So I am still involved but as the character on the video below I am not a slave to these sites. I was spending much more time following links and responding to folks on these sites before. Where I do see the effectiveness of these sites to get information and share information I also see you can miss out on real life.

Take a peek at this video and tell me what you think.

New Media Solutions for events

techcrunch New Media Solutions for events

Today I heard Techcrunch 40 was taking place online. I heard about it on Twitter. I wondered if I should drive over and check it out. But then quickly found out over twitter that it was around 2k to attend the conference. Plus it was sold out. But as I learned all of this I also leaned I could just listen live to the conference via a Twitterer who posted a link to a live feed from Justin.tv. So I can listen to the whole conference live from my office. Amazing.

Here is the link

Last Friday I also found a friend playing live at a coffee house via twitter. She was streaming her audio and video via UStream.tv. On the Ustream chat feed I found out she was also being simulcast in Second Life to around 30 people whose avatars danced and enjoyed her music. Pretty fantastic to see the reach events and concerts can get with these technologies.

How do you think these technologies could be used to enhance live events?

What is TechCrunch?

TechCrunch40 is a conference with a simple format: Forty of the hottest new startups from around the world will announce and demo their products over a two day period at TechCrunch40. And they don’t pay a cent to do this. They will be selected to participate based on merit alone. In fact, we’re even offering a $50,000 cash award and lining up other in-kind services and awards from a generous group of corporate sponsors.

A group of 100 additional companies will also demo their products in a DemoPit adjacent to the main presentation room.

The conference was originally called “TechCrunch20″ but too many great startups applied for us to select only 20 presenting companies.

New Media Madness

If you are not sure about some popular technologies which are filtering into corporate communications.

Blog. A shortened form of weblog, a blog is a Web site that displays regular journal entries. While the earliest blogs were largely personal, thousands of corporate blogs exist today—more than 8 percent of Fortune 500 companies have one. A blog that uses video posts, rather than text, is called a vlog.

LinkedIn. A MySpace for the business world, this online networking Web site allows users to post profiles and search other user profiles to make professional contacts, search for new clients or recruit for open positions—the basic membership is free.

Twitter: A micro-blogging site. Keep in touch with your community by micro-blogging by 140 characters. Its a crazy new way of communicating. Several conferences are using Twitter to give out alerts on goings on.

Podcast. A downloadable audio (and sometimes video) file, often used to disseminate news stories, tutorials or radio shows. Users can subscribe to regularly recurring podcasts via RSS [see below].

RSS.Stands for “Really Simple Syndication.” RSS feeds are offered by media outlets and enable them to automatically update and distribute their content to anyone who has subscribed to their feed.

Second Life. An online, virtual world that boasts over six million users with its own currency and economy. A user’s virtual self is called an “avatar.”

SMS
Stands for “Short Message Service.” SMS services allow users to exchange text messages over wireless networks. Works well for disseminating real-time information updates, like changing traffic or weather conditions, to mobile devices.

Web 2.0
Coined in 2003, the phrase usually refers to online tools and communities that employ a model of multiple-user collaboration rather than static, informative content.

Wikis. A type of Web site whose content can be easily edited by users. The most well-known wiki is Wikipedia, an online encyclopedia that any Web visitor can add to or edit, but wikis are suitable for many collaborative projects.

Source

Panels in Second Life-

cocacola1 003 Panels in Second Life

Crayon a New Media Marketing company is holding panel discussions in their Second Life amphitheatre. Today they had some executives from Coca Cola and Campfire. I came in late but really enjoyed the talk plus the interaction between the audience. The panelists used the voice feature while the audience used chat during the presentation.

As you usually sit in a conference and ask questions at the appropriate times to the panelists, here in Second Life you can discuss the topic with the other attendees any time. Either one on one or as a group. But this can make for some interesting situations. As the topic of censorship in Second Life came up on the panel and how technology is sometimes moved along by adult entertainment, it was pointed out that one of the panelists was sitting in a not so flattering pose ball on her chair. That with censorship she might be able to be on the panel. The panel obviously was reading the chat because they started to laugh at the comment.

When can you get that interaction at a conference? Do you have another example of how New Media helps communications?

How do you start the conversation

What is the best way you start a conversation? Through your website? Forum board? Wiki? Through your Blog? Twitter? Through your podcast? Talkshoe? A favorite Social media site like – Myspace, Facebook, Linkedin? Ning? Gather? How about virtual worlds like Second Life or Kaneva? How about Flickr?

So many options to connect. I am interested in your favorite way of connecting?

If Real Life was like Second Life.com

Saw this on EricRices blog and had to share it. Secondlife comes alive:

DIE HARD Q&A Session Second Life

I saw this an thought it was interestng how Bruce Willis was involved with promoting his new Die Hard movie in Second Life. The movie 300 had done this recently and now Die Hard. A replica (or avatar) of Bruce was made and a question and answer session was held. Watching the clip below it is obvious Bruce really did not know what Second Life was but they had a huge turnout.
One interesting attendee MTV’s LarryCarroll Carnell, -who also attended the movie 300 Q&A, and came along again for this event. As well as giving it a great write-up on MTV News (syndicated to VH1), Larry also entertained the crowd with his distinctive blend of humorous banter and human pyrotechnics (which is to say, he talked a lot, then wandered to the front of the stage and exploded) What other movie question and answer period has something ike this?

bruce+willissl DIE HARD Q&A Session Second Life
The Bruce Willis Avatar (looks a little stiff to me)

bruce+willisrl DIE HARD Q&A Session Second Life

Bruce Willis in Real Life (Also the guy from the 1980′s show Moonlighting which I have never seen)

Geeks in Secondlife, who would have thought?

crayon 001 Geeks in Secondlife, who would have thought?
Found this article on www.seattlepi.com while I waited for coffee with crayon to start this morning. Though I am not a huge fan of Best Buy I wondered how the Geek Squad would fair in Second Life. I brought it up in Coffee with Crayon and the group asked questions like. Isn’t there a best buy 3 miles from everyone?” “If my computer is broken how do I get into second life?” It was interesting to see a group of new Media marketers flame the idea so quickly. I think if they do have office hours and keep it staffed it could be beneficial. I mean small tech questions can be answered. You get a visual of a person so it is better than the phone. Or is it?
I guess the worst part of this is I did a search in second life to find Geek Squad Island and I couldn’t find it in there. This goes with my main problem with Best Buy they don’t usually do what they say they will. Maybe they are still building the Geek Island. If you find it email me.

Best Buy offers help in ‘Second Life’

By JOSHUA FREED
AP BUSINESS WRITER

MINNEAPOLIS — The online world of “Second Life” is about to get even geekier.

Best Buy Co. Inc. plans to open Geek Squad Island, a spot in “Second Life” where its Geek Squad technical support workers will offer free computer advice

The virtual world will have regular office hours (6 p.m. to 3 a.m. EDT, seven days a week). The online characters will wear white, short-sleeve button-down shirts, black pants and, of course, a badge.

Best Buy said many of its Geek Squad agents already were a part of “Second Life,” a virtual 3-D world where people can gather and interact.

Some of the Best Buy’s plans sounded as if they would fit in with the “Second Life” vibe of wandering around and seeing what’s there to see. But others resembled Best Buy’s core business of selling tech toys, like the “Future Home” that will include an interactive exhibit showing new home technology.

The company said it would hold regular events on Geek Squad Island, and offerings will evolve as Geek Squad agents add to it in future months.