thelastday

Susanne Berkenheger

The Last Days of Second Life

The Last Days of Second Life

Abstract:
Cultural Heritage of Second Life Threatened by Destruction! Art Project appeals to UNESCO After a five-month expedition through abandoned sectors of Second Life, the group of literary explorers “The Last Days of Second Life” has returned safely to First Life. In roughly 30 individual reports, the explorers are describing how the early avatars might have lived in the now deserted zones. Their presentations include descriptions of prehistoric objects from the beta-phase of Second Life; they introduce islands that were completely forgotten (i.e. the recently deleted island of the First-Life-News-Agency Reuters) and point to antique objects that are acutely threatened with destruction. The explorers are especially worried about the vast dying-off of islands and their ancient buildings that has occurred in Second Life between 2008 and 2009. “Of course we understand that more space is needed for new developments. Nevertheless, one should consider that already today many fascinating structures have disappeared. This means that Second Life is losing a part of its history. The historical buildings from the gold-rush years of Second Life will never again be built. Never again will virtual buildings reflect so vividly what people had hoped for and so often did not receive from this new virtual world.” Therefore, the explorers are suggesting that all completely preserved building complexes from 2006 and 2007 in good condition should be protected as historical monuments under cultural heritage laws. Supporters of this suggestion should register at the blog “the-last-days-of-second-life.de” A first success was scored at the preventive demonstration against a (possible) closing down of Second Life that took place on October 11, 2009 at the Linden Lab Headquarters: The virtual world still exists! Main participants in the research were the project leader Susanne Berkenheger as well as Anne Albrecht, Anna Szczesny and Klaus Ungerer.

Biography:
Susanne Berkenheger born 1963, grown up in stuttgart. student of literature (ma), writer, net artist, mum. stuttgart -> nuremberg -> rome -> munich -> berlin selected works: 2005 ?the bubble bath\” – exhibited in the netherlands media arts institute (amsterdam) – supported by die höge (bassum) 2002 “die schwimmmeisterin” – supported by deutscher literaturfonds (darmstadt) and migros kulturprozent (zürich) – exhibited in haus der kunst (munich) – 2nd prize literatur.digital (dtv/t-online) 1999 “hilfe!” – 1st prize ettlinger internet-literaturwettbewerb (ettlingen) 1997 “zeit für die bombe” – 1st prize pegasus (ibm/die zeit)