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  • Approved for CNN

  • Posted August 14, 2009 by
    This iReport is part of an assignment:
    Stories from Second Life

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    Bill Clinton Speaks in SL


    42nd President Bill Clinton spoke passionately at Netroots Nation, a mixed reality event in Second Life (SL) and real life (RL). Netroots is the premiere political blogger's convention, hosted by Markos Moulitsas, founder of The Daily Kos blog. Netroots Nation (NN) is a national convention, in it's 4th year, that draws thousands of progressive political bloggers together in RL; with a very active integrated SL event organized by 60 avatar (avi) users for many hundreds of SL participants. See the NN organizing ceremonies with President Clinton's speech at: http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/1979520


    Markos Moulitsas was interviewed in SL immediately after President Clinton's speech by Jay Akroyd at the SL Virtual Speaking show. Virtually Speaking is an interiew talk show in SL produced by Widget Whiteberry, director of the SL Commonweatlth regions. The show interviews top progressive intellectuals every Thursday weekly at 6pm SL time (US Pacific), here:


    The mixed reality connection between Netroots in SL and RL is clearly explained on the RL Netroots website. SL is one of the major access options for people in US and worldwide to enjoy the NN convention:  http://www.netrootsnation.org/node/1263


    US Representative Brad Miller (D-NC 13th District) introduced President Clinton. Miller is a active, 3 year participant in Netroots, who attends NN sessions along with the bloggers. Miller  was introduced as "He is one of us!" Miller is also a blogger, his blog is located at  http://tpmcafe.talkingpointsmemo.com/talk/blogs/rep_brad_miller/


    President Clinton's speech was forthright and surprising, saying "Nixon was a communist compared to all the Republicans who came after him" by establishing Environmental Protection Agency and enacting other progressive policies. Clinton explained the significance of President Obama's election, including being the first black American, and the acknowledgement of Communitarian Culture in US. He explained that Hawaii and California have no majority racial groups, and that the entire US will be that way by 2050. Clinton both confronted and embraced the blogging community, pointing out that bloggers sometimes attacked his policies while President, as well as, supporting his major initiatives most of the time


    NN in SL organizer Zathras Afarensis (SL) commented, "We have been continually attacked during NNSL by griefers (people who want to poison our SL fun), this shows how important what we are doing is in RL, that they would care enough to try denial of service." and  "But the main reason for our gathering for that session was for the panel to have a conversation about Iran and activism, and the griefing did absolutely *nothing* to stop that.  As a matter of fact, we incorprated it into our conversation on the panel, and made it a  'teachable moment' "  Zathras Afarensis adds, "If they fail to silence us, they lose.  All we need to win is to continue to have ownership of our own voices, which we did."


    Nefferkitti Quintessa (SL) shared her sentiments about Netroots in SL: "Well this year is my second NN in SL experience.  And it is a wholey new and richer one now that I have been part of the progressive community and have the SL experience under my belt.  Being part of the team that put it all together this time really makes me appreciate just how much work goes into the effort to bring NN into SL and once again I am amazed at the talent  within the community as well as the willingness to help new visitors to SL get the most out of their experience in what to them  can be such a new world.  The spirit of community comming together as NNinSL began and continues is what I take away so far.  I think for me I would title my experience 'what a difference a year makes'  - thats what I have been telling a lot fo people who were thre to help me last year - esp with the videos - last year I couldnt see them, this year I can - and they are all so happy for me - the community remembers my being brand spanking new last year at NN in SL and this year really is thriled that I am able to view the vids along with everyone else. Again, just another one of those small things that make SL community real."


    Nefferkitti Quintessa is an NN in SL organizer and insisted that I include: "OH btw please make sure to put in the article about how this is a full team effort - I havent been super involved  because of my RL house going full speed ahead during the biggest part of the NN inSL planning wirth."


    Widget Whiteberry summarized many of our feelings with this comment, "Like all serious content in SL , some of which builds from 1st life 'content,' NNinSL lowers barriers to participation in public life. Regardless of where we live, our economics, our health, demands on our time, we can be part of, contribute to and learn from  important events and conversations. We can be active and recognized in the communities of our chooseing."


    Picture Captions


    Picture 1 - Bill Clinton in mixed reality in Second Life.


    Picture 2 - Chuck Rocka is Political Director of United Steel Workers. The introduction to Bill Clinton really made the point the organized labor and the cause of the progressive bloggers where identical.


    Picture 3 is the crowd at Netroots opening ceremonies. Despite a lot of griefers trying to ruin the event the attendanced topped 50 avatars; which is a major turnout for any SL event.


    Picture 4 from right to left is Zathras Afarensis, Cotton Thorne, Millay Freschi, and Siri Vita.


    Picture 5 and 6 are Nefferkitti Quintessa,  lovely SL Neko lady who is quoted above.


    Picture 7 is US Representative Brad Miller (D-NC 13th District)


    Picture 8 is the NN in SL poster graphic.


    -- Any Gynoid in SL reporting for CNN iReports
    I teach free classes in SL Event Organizing...
    and finding fun in SL... come round and visit at 6am SL time (US Pacific) every Sunday at this SL address: http://slurl.com/secondlife/Caledon%20Oxbridge%20Village/59/207/26

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