SL Bloggers - How hard do you think it is to find a relationship in SL? If you have an SL relationship, have you met in the physical world? Would you meet them? Do you think it would change your SL relationship if you met?
RL Bloggers - Would you start a relationship with someone you met online? Would you have a problem telling people that's where you met? Do you think it's easier to meet someone online rather than at work or at a club?
Visual Thesaurus view of "relationship"
There are many types of relationship. I think today's topic implies the romantic version. To answer today's question, I think that good relationships in any world are hard to find and take conscious effort to maintain. Although I've never had a virtual relationship, I've closely observed the ongoing SLoap Opera from my very first week and have written about it pretty extensively. Here's an excerpt from an August 2009 Post, Love Lies and Avatars:
Unfortunately, humans are stuck with a biology that doesn't differentiate between virtual and actual experiences. As I've noted before, once those love chemicals start getting cranked out in your body, it's likely you'll believe the sweet lies they tell you. You'll associate the blissful feeling of the love drugs with the experience of the other person's avatar. Even though you "know better."
Of course, it's possible you'll be lucky enough to fall in love with one of the real life supermodels who are so common in virtual worlds. Or maybe, your passion will survive the cognitive dissonance between the idealized avatar and the all-too-human form of your soul mate. There are certainly a number of virtual relationships that successfully extended to the physical world. But the odds are very, very long.I'll leave you today with one of my videos on the topic: Primates in Virtual Worlds