The Drax Files 37: non-profits in Second Life

Joyce Bettencourt (aka Rhiannon Chatnoir in SL), the Nonprofit Common Community Manager talks Nonprofit Commons with other members of her community
Joyce Bettencourt (aka Rhiannon Chatnoir in SL), the Nonprofit Commons Community Manager discusses the role of the community, together with other involved with it through their own organisations

The Drax Files World Makers show #37 arrived on Thursday, April 21st, perhaps somewhat overshadowed by Fantasy Faire opening its gates. Once again, this is one of the shorter World Makers videos, running to just one second under 3.5 minutes.

The subject this time around is an overview of Nonprofit Commons, designed to lower the barriers of access to Second Life, to create a community of practice for non-profits to explore and learn about the virtual world, and to investigate the many ways in which non-profits might utilise virtual spaces. As such, this is something of a departure from recent World Makers segments. Rather than following a single narrative, it presents a series of sound bites for those responsible for  the various organisations, groups and communities which for Nonprofit Commons, allowing them to provide a concise overview of who they are and what they do.

While this may sound like little more than a simple infomercial for Nonprofit Commons, don’t be fooled. While the pace may be rapid, the comments delivered at a staccato rate, we are nevertheless drawn into more fully appreciating the many diverse social, ecological, sexual and personal areas encompassed by the work of non-profit organisations, large and small, within Second Life, and the critical role they place in bringing people together positively.

Such is the clarity of presentation within this piece by those involved, there is really very little to add to it directly, particularly as Drax has  so eloquently summarises things:

Over 60 international non-profit organizations with causes ranging from environmental awareness to LGBTQ activism, AIDS education and Parkinson’s support, groups that fight to end homelessness or promote emotional healing with the help of horses, are gathered in the virtual world of Second Life to do everything from training to fundraising.

For over 10 years this global community has been successfully showcasing the powerful force of SL to facilitate social good: at NPC in SL office space is given away free, agency over identity through avatars is a powerful facilitator and ideas for outreach and networking can easily be implemented in the digital realm before committing to them in physical reality.

Which leaves me with but one thing to say: watch the video, and if you want to find out more, visit the Nonprofit Commons website.

4 thoughts on “The Drax Files 37: non-profits in Second Life

  1. Inara, thx for the writeup!

    I just want to provide some context on how these stories are made: as opposed to designing the story approach beforehand and then have people actually record specific soundbites that support the thesis I have in mind, I interview each participant for well over one hour about what drives them to do their work in SL.

    Then comes the hard part to drill down to the essence of the story and present it in a relatively short video without losing depth.

    In other words: I let the story take me where it wants to be and in the process very similar points come up, naturally, about why SL is so powerful and investing in the community is so rewarding.

    Call it promotional material [like this one guy we all know] or call it advocacy journalism , the point I am trying to make is that the procedure is quite involved for a reason.

    I could live a much more stress-free life if I’d employ the simple method to write a voice-over script, record, edit, push out but that would be disingenuous and not serve the purpose of creating a repository of individual vignettes that as a whole hopefully live on and tell the story of a absolutely unique universe, created by all of us!

    Needless to say: the task to weave together multiple stories is far more complicated than focusing on one person at a time….


    1. This is why we need to get back to our conversational pieces about the series 🙂 . This segment of WM stands and speaks clearly for itself – as noted in the write-up, so looking more deeply under the covers would have been ideal as a companion article. We need to co-ordinate diaries better in future 🙂 .


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