I will not name sims in this entry – but you may recognize some of the situations. If you do, that’s great. Maybe you can help make a difference. If you don’t, congratulations! You may be a resident of a wonderful region.
Right, then, on with my rant. I’m tired of stifling my thoughts on what I consider to be appalling behavior in city group chats. The regions I follow, by and large, need new residents. Occupancy rates are low, and current residents are, to be honest, stagnant. It’s the same people time and again just buying new lots and dropping old ones. Let me play out a sample scenario for you, to illustrate what is going on that is bugging me so much:
Susie Resident, new to the grid and very excited to be a part of it, stumbles upon an amazing looking region. She’s only seen random shopping malls in mainland up till now and is astonished that entire themed cities exist! This is more like it. She’d like to put down her tiny new roots in such a place. While picking up freebies from the local arrival point, she learns that the region has an inworld group, which welcomes all to join. How wonderful! She does, and with eagerness begins to listen in on the chatter, a little step to get to know her potential new neighbors. And what does she hear?
“I just ate cheese!” *digresses into an hours blather of every morsel that’s passed everyone’s lips that day*
“My lumbago is acting up today” *digresses into everyone’s aches, pains and sordid details of everything physical and mental*
“Oh geez, its noob season again. I see a Resident downtown. She’s got bling on! Let’s throw things at her! Bomb her back to Mainland!”
“Hey guys! I just picked my nose!”
“My mom is so MEAN to me! She made me clean my room!”
“Im un meds andhve a concushion doctor saidI hsould be restnig”
“OH HAI I AM BACK AND I HAVE MORE CHEESE LOL LOL LOL”
Suzy Resident can’t decide if she’s embarrassed about her bling (she didn’t know it wasn’t cool!), shy about having been spotted in town, worried the place is overrun with kids, or hesitant to strike up conversation with People With Issues.
And she wonders where the visionaries are that built this wonderful town. As she walks past a vacant lot that’s in her budget… she hesitates. She thinks perhaps if there’s one beautiful region in Second Life, there’s got to be two, or three, or more. She quits the city group, and goes to seek her fortune in another place.
Later that evening, the local residents grumble about all the vacant land and why can’t one of the locals take on just one more plot? After all, it’s our town and we’d do anything to keep it, right?
Stop blaming the economy, and start welcoming visitors in a way that makes them want to be your neighbor. It’s easy to make groups. If you really MUST talk about cheese or compare bodily malfunctions, pull your friends into a group chat on the side and babble to your heart’s content.
Would you stand in the middle of a city street in your real-life and tell every passer by how many times you burped that day? Why are you behaving this way in your chosen city in Second Life? Why do you think it is you haven’t seen anyone new in town lately, other than alts?
*steps off soapbox, expects snark, doesn’t care, converts the soapbox to a birdhouse*
Postscript, as encouraged by others. What are GOOD topics of conversation in a city group chat? Feel free to reply with your opinions, too! I would think topics pertinent to the REGION are primary. Discussing new buildings, talking about last night’s event, anticipating upcoming events, bits of roleplay (with occasional mentions that it IS roleplay for those just logging into chat), recommendations for shops that sell clothing and items that would suit the region, sharing of photos, links to sites that inspire the residents….