Thursday, November 22, 2007

Cybergrrl goes places & sees things in Second Life - Nov 1-15

It has been a busy couple of weeks. Here are some things I've been up to and people I've seen in just the first two weeks of November 2007...

Working at the Cafe des Amis on Elysian Isle. I've been doing this every Tuesday at 1pm SLT and have held impromptu chats, show and tell days, and more recently live voice readings of our writing. This was on a bad SL day where log ins were tough and getting Ruthed was common.

The Elysian Isle Book Group promotes Random House authors. This was the discussion for the book Night Watch. They are usually held in the Rose Garden but this is a much better location - right next to the book shop!

I made a promo t-shirt for the book and reading group. I'll be putting up vendors for all the promo tshirts I've made for the Book Group for book fans - but only for a limited time. Will probably be in or near the book shop on Elysian Isle. They'll be free of charge. Think of them as collectors items!

Just a shot of me and my sock monkey on Elysian Isle.

Starting to set up a gallery of Alaskan artists for a foundation to promote Alaska and Alaskan art. It will reside on Elysian Isle. More details to follow soon.

Rolig Loon is a new designer in-world, and I convinced her to open up a shop on Elysian Isle so go buy a beautiful outfit from her! I'd call her style very classic with a touch of the late 1950s.

I bought this outfit from Rolig and added my own Cybergrrl touch - the combat boots!

Some giraffes in Virtual Africa.

Meeting with the women from Uthango regarding volunteering to do PR for them.

Had a lot of fun taking snapshots of Alanaugh Recreant and Enakai Ultsch, the women of Uthango and Virtual Africa, for a CNN iReport news clip.

One of the outtakes from the photo session with Alanagh and Enakai.

Alanagh as a cute, cuddly warthog.

This is one of the African bikes being sold inworld to raise funds for an employment center in South Africa. IM Alanagh Recreant for more information.

I attended the Virtual Thirst competition unveiling. This is a shot of some of the gang from Crayon, Coke and my friend Emerie May, the winner.

Emerie and one of her winning Coke dispenser designs at the unveiling. MY ARTICLE: The Coca Cola bottle experience dispenser is here

Hanging with Soph at her place while trying on the t-shirt I made for her inworld project, Extropia.

Attended the Orange avie events and covered them for Here are some of the avies attending the avie competition. Part of the Orange Identity Summit. MY ARTICLE: Orange Wants to Get to Know You Better

An avie showing off her accessories on Orange Island.

Trying on a new set of eyes.

Prepping for Music on the Isle, a live music event I started but am no longer running. Long, painful story. Hard lessons learned. (Note to self: Put everything in writing BEFORE taking a great idea to others.) I'm proud of what I created but saddened that it is now out of my hands.

Hanging with my new friends Kit and Charlanna at Music on the Isle where I passed out Music on the Isle t-shirts that I created. My sexy jeans are from my friend Chel Pixie who felt I needed to amp up my looks. She also took me shopping for makeup (before and after pics will be posted sometime). Partly to cheer me up over the Music on the Isle debacle and partly to improve my look. She thought I still looked way too noobish.

Covering Metanomics and Metaversed events now for Watched the one with Ginsu Linden from a partner location via videocast. MY ARTICLE: Linden Lab is not the government or the god of Second Life

57 Miles of doing last minute preps at a Metanomics panel. Behind-the-scenes shot!

Onder Skall of stretching before a panel begins. Wrote about this panel for MY ARTICLE: Thieves, Scammers and Fools in the Second Life Economy

My book agent, Jacky Sach of Bookends, LLC, was supposed to be a special guest for the Writers Wednesday group that I formed on Elysian Isle. Unfortunately, SL was unkind that day. But here is a shot of the avie I created for her on her first day inworld. She told me that she thought it really did look like her. I used a photo of her from her company site and gave her avie some of my clothes that I thought looked appropriate for her to wear. She'll be back on Wed Dec 5 on Elysian Isle at 12pm SLT. IM Cybergrrl Oh for info or join the Writers Wednesday group.

This is a sky view of the new CNN inworld hub - shaped like a letter "i" - where residents can get free CNN equipment and instructions for posting iReports, their inworld version of their citizen journalism project. MY ARTICLE: CNN Takes in Second Life

My favorite android - a helper on the CNN iReport project.

Me showing a friend how I can't get sit poses right for my floor cushions at the Second Life Women's Club clubhouse.

Taking a moment to relax at the Second Life Women's Clubhouse with two of my three hummingbirds. Tshirt (Must be the Lag) is one of my designs. Birds from Animania.

Me and the sock monkey again, hanging at the clubhouse wearing my Moms in Second Life tshirt. If you are a mom and in Second Life, please join our group!

Some of my other articles from November...

Thinkerer Challenge awardee builds outpost for English as a second language education
Paul Preibisch (Fire Centaur in Second Life) and the English Village project won The Thinkerer Challenge, receiving linden currency and land to build an outpost on Cookie Island.

Second Life musician set to release his first single
Jeff Krantz (Hep Shepherd in Second Life) quit his job, logged into Second Life, and before he knew it, started an in-world music career that has launched a real world one.

Flaws in security leave Second Life banks wide open to hacking this week
A hacker stole L$3.2 million from L&L Bank and Trust and several smaller banks earlier this week, all exploiting security weaknesses.

Monday, November 19, 2007

My Second Life Avatar and Branding

I've been thinking a lot of about my avatar as a brand. The fact that she has the name "Cybergrrl" is no coincidence. That is the name I made up in late 1994 when I published my first web site - "The Web According to Cybergrrl." Back then, I was wary of putting my own photograph on the Internet so I drew a cartoon character of myself, added a hot pink cape and bold yellow letters on her chest - CG - and Cybergrrl was born.

The origin of the name was a combination of "cyberspace" coined by William Gibson in Neuromancer and "grrl" which to me meant "girl with attitude" along with a nod to the Riotgrrrls (I had been in the music business for years so was familiar with this underground community of female rockers). Within the first year of calling my business Cybergrrl, Inc. and launching a more official Cybergrrl site, I became synonymous with my online alter ego. I was Cybergrrl. In fact, people stopped calling me by my real name and only referred to me as Cybergrrl.

As far as brands were concerned, Cybergrrl seemed ideal. This was at a time when the only major "brand" was Pathfinder but that wasn't yet catching on. Yahoo was just a fun - and useful - project launched by some kids in college. The Cybergrrl site quickly gained popularity and hundreds, then thousands, of visitors a day.

The downside of a brand like Cybergrrl was the spelling. People thought I was saying "Cybergirl" and would inevitably visit the porn site that had set up shop at the alternate - albeit correct - spelling of the name. No amount of legal action could get the porn site to relinquish the name, despite the fact that my company eventually owned the registered trademark to the name. The name was especially problematic when I'd be interviewed on radio or television. On radio, people would hear and write down "cybergirl," and on TV, producers inevitably "corrected" the spelling of Cybergrrl to Cybergirl before airing the segment.

Five years later, I left my company, and all of its assets went to my former business partner. I was allowed to refer to myself as "The Original Cybergrrl," but in essence, I lost more than my brand identity - I lost my identity.

So now I'm on Second Life, and I'm reviving Cybergrrl. When I first downloaded the software and registered, I couldn't think of a more perfect name for my 3-d avatar roaming through the 3-d space. Of course, once I began meeting others in SL, I realized that my name was a bit - dated, antiquated. And hard to spell. But by then, my avatar was already getting "known." People were saying "yeah, I heard about you" or "I read your article on" or "So and so told me to get in touch with you." Cybergrrl was alive again.

Most people inworld call me Cyber and that's fine with me. I'm not so touchy about the Cybergrrl name right now, but maybe that's because I'm still the only Cybergrrl in SL. And Cybergrrl is an inworld brand. She represents my work in Second Life. She even has her own umbrella company - Cybergrrl Productions - to encompass all her activities from inworld consulting, community building, marketing, branding, event planning and organizing.

Cybergrrl Oh is me. She is an extension of what I'm doing on the real world platform. In the same way I continue to build my own personal brand, I'm building Cybergrrl's personal brand. Because when it comes down to it, we are our own most powerful brand. As far as marketing is concerned, if we can leverage ourselves, we're golden.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Upcoming Artists - Music on the Isle in Second Life

Music on the Isle is a 1/2 hour live, all-original acoustic set under the stars!

Every Thursdays at 6pm SLT - Elysian Isle Rose Garden

(produced by Metaverse Horizons, taped by

*15 Nov - Capos Calderwood aka Alex Whitmore

"Home cooked Texas style with humor for dessert."

*22 Nov - THANKSGIVING HOLIDAY - see you the following week!

*29 Nov - Cylindrian Rutabaga aka Grace Buford

"The virtual representation of Atlanta Singer/Songwriter, Grace Buford, who has been writing songs and performing in Second Life and the regional Southeastern United States for almost 2 years."

*6 Dec - Dann Numbers- Dec 6th confirmed

"Dann Russo aka Dann Numbers pours rock, blues, country, gospel and every other type of real down-home music into his performances."

For more information about Music on the Isle, join the Music on the Isle Group!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Second Life Inspires New Tshirts by Cybergrrl

Last Saturday, I was the "guest speaker" at Sophrosyne's Saturday Salon. It was a 2 1/2 hour discussion that ran the gamut of our life and work in Second Life and building online communities. I was even inspired to create a tshirt on the spot that says "We Are the Internet."

The Second Life Women's Club clubhouse was griefed by floating Marios. And of course, it inspired yet another tshirt...

The "I Survived a Griefer" tshirt will be available at my new tshirt shop that I'm opening in partnership with The Traveling Avatar. The shop is called Snark Attack. Details and opening party soon!

Another new tshirt - "Music on the Isle" - and this is a freebie to promote the new Music on the Isle show with on Elysian Isle that takes place every Thursday evening at 6pm SLT in the Rose Garden.

Our first musical guest for Music on the Isle was Hep Shepherd aka Jeff Krantz. What a pro! And great musician, too.

Hep Shepherd performing in the Rose Garden on Elysian Isle for Music on the Isle.

My new hairstyle. I love the bangs and beautiful curls! And my sweet little sock monkey. Maybe I'll make a tshirt that says "I Love My Sock Monkey!"

Friday, November 2, 2007

Cybergrrl at Sophrosyne's Saturday Salon!

Link: Finding Sophrosyne - Sophrosyne's Saturday Salon: Cybergrrlz!.

Join us Saturday, November 3 from 1 to 3:30 PM SLT at the Diversionarium for a very special Saturday Salon! Our Spotlight guest Cybergrrl Oh (Aliza Sherman) has been helping empower moms, daughters and women entrepreneurs since the dawn of the Web.

I love Soph's description of my work. It makes me sounds so...goddess-like! For all you SLers, stop on by for a dynamic discussion about...well, everything that comes to our minds.

SLURL: The Diversionarium in Pandoria