Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Second Life Subcultures: Please Help With List Creation

Version .2 (Updated at 3:45 pm)

Second Life Subcultures .2

In researching my intended post on SLebrity, I was unable to find a comprehensive list of Second Life subcultures. I took a quick shot at an outline that is depicted here, but realize it is very incomplete.

If you'd like to contribute to building a more comprehensive set, please post your list in the comments section. I will aggregate contributions and then create a revised image.

Version .1 (Original image with this post)

Second Life Subcultures


MB said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tara said...

A type of role play which you may or may not consider to fall under fantasy is historical role play. There are the Minoan Empire (where I RP), and various Greeks, Romans, and others.

Lalo Telling said...

Very nice! Well-organized, too, with groups identified by shared activity on the left and by shared "institution" on the right. It seems comprehensive enough, as long as I keep in mind that individuals identify with more than one category -- bloggers like us, for example.

I'm curious, though, where you might put furries in that tree. In your (admittedly, preliminary) view, are we included in the Fantasy sub-branch of Role Play? Or should we, perhaps, get a branch of our own on the right? I advocate the latter, as furries are more of a lifestyle aggregation than an activity-based one.

(You may also want to consider moving the Religious branch to the "institutional" side, for similar reasons.)

Implicit in all of this, of course, are the "great unwashed": the thousands who wander SL partaking of all these subcultures without participating in any.

Dale Innis said...

Good 'eavens! :) There are a zillion, and they overlap and interpenetrate and conflict in countless ways. It's going to be a complicated diagram. :)

Furries (with subdivisions for "yiff", "cuddle", and "anime"? heehee)

Trekies (Trekkies?)

Superheros (ref Justice League Unlimited)

People very into one or more anime or manga cultures (Dragonball Z, etc; some overlap with Furry here)

General futurism, segueing into posthumanists of various stripes

The BDSM D/s power-exchange folks, in a thousand varieties, from nice loving owner/pet relationships, switches, slaves, statuary / objectification, all the way out to things like dolcett that the other groups wouldn't want listed in the same paragraph as them.

Dolls, Latex, other interesting alternative forms.

Transexuals (m2f, f2m)

Lesbians (those who care about RL gender and those who don't)

Gay males (similarly, I presume, although I haven't seen much of that culture; I must hang out in the wrong places)

Goreans (standard, panther-girl, plains-folk, etc)

Zombies (don't know if they're organized enough to be a subculture, but I do know a couple)

Kid AVs

Shoppers / freebie hunters

Fashionistae (some overlap with shoppers, but also completely different)

Vampires (Bloodlines and real :) )

Art subcultures of all kinds (rebel / traditional / erotic)

Live music fans

Club/DJ cultures (hiphop, reggae, blues, etc, etc)

The entire complex graph of RL religions, transcribed into SL. :)

Similarly for politics.

Gad I'm not sure if I've drifted away from "subcultures" more into "adjectives". :) Can you say anything about just what you mean by "Subculture" here?

Anonymous said...

You can look through the communities at thatotherlife.com and see the ones I was able to identify.

Botgirl Questi said...

My initial purpose in trying to put the list together was to think about how SLebrities vary across SL interest groups/subcultures.

For instance, there are probably people considered to be SLebrities within RP, fashion and builder communities who are relatively unheralded within other groups, or the avatar-public-at-large.

As usual, once I began to hack into the visualization, I got interested in other aspects of the topic, including how one might discover and organize the significant subcultures and interest groups in Second Life...maybe even take a crack at an ontology.

I spent a few hours combing the internet for something in that ballpark and couldn't find anything close. Maybe someone like Tom Boellstorff has something in their back pocket.

ArminasX said...

You might want to add Podcasters, who have a fairly strong community in SL.

Also, I wonder if there is a category for those who play HUD-type games, such as Tiny Empires. Believe it or not, there are many thousands of players in that game and they have their own subculture, including vocabulary, events, costumes, etc.

Anonymous said...

It's a giant melting pot! :)

Lalo Telling said...


OK, I can accept the assignment of furries to the Role Play branch... I said as much here a month ago.

Moving griefers from the 'behavioral' side of the tree to the 'institutional' side? That, I have some trouble with. Though vandalism may be inevitable (think "blank wall vs graffiti"), I doubt that even the presence of semi-organized goon squads like the PN rises to the same level as the other groupings on that side of the graph.

Marianne McCann said...


SL Kids
Family role-play
Mafia RP

Botgirl Questi said...

Arminasx: Thanks. Added Podcasters and HUD games.

Lalo: I didn't intend to use the sides to imply categorization. I mostly tried to balance the image visually. :)

Wildstar Beaumont said...

I guess the sailing community (cruising, racing, naval battles RP) is something to be considered

Anonymous said...

Glad to see charitable groups are added in. Where would peacekeeping and other in-world help organizations fit in?