Oh my goodness, my recent posts on SL people types ruffled a few feathers! It seems there’s a few DJs builders, scripters and so on out there in SL world who think my analysis was a little unfair and paints a somewhat inaccurate picture of the complex and subtle skill sets that such people need to do what they do.
I’ve even been told I should publish a formal retraction… Well, nuts to that – it ain’t gonna happen!
However, in the interests of journalistic integrity, fairness and a quiet life, I will – on this occasion only – present a counter argument, as suggested to me by those I’ve horribly wronged, although I can’t guarantee it’s going to go far in endearing me to those detractors, but one can try. I’ll stick with the more technical ‘professions’, with whom I seem to have stirred up the most complaints, in particular DJs.
I may have been a little scathing in my appraisal of the sheer amount of raw talent required to master the decks in the average SL club. I’m reliably informed that a successful DJ will have invested years of blood, sweat, tears and alcohol into becoming adept at their craft and that my comment that pretty much anyone can be a DJ, if they can download YouTube videos and type a notecard, is well off the mark. All those times a DJ is seemingly ignoring you and palms you off with a glib comment that “I was in my DJ software” or “cueing up a track”, then pause a moment and spare a thought for the poor soul. Unknown to you, they’re doing insanely complex things with levels, bit rates and codecs, thinking six tracks ahead, AND trying to make sense of a screen full of IMs whilst pleasantly thanking people for their tips… Multitasking doesn’t even come near an adequate description of the brain-numbing challenge they face from moment to moment.
To be a DJ is – apparently – a thankless task: play one dodgy request, and you’ll alienate the whole room; fail to play someone’s favourite track and you’ll never be allowed to live it down. Don’t have the live, white label, stealth Ibiza bootleg of William Shatner’s ‘Common People’ – you’re a rank amateur… Play it, and you’ll be thrown out of the club! Those tips should have a couple of extra zeros for all the grief these heroes go through!
So, according to those who know these things, DJing is not at all easy – I stand corrected. (Believe that and you’re far more gullible than I’ve given you credit for!)
Hopefully, I’ve now placated all the deeply offended DJs in SL, so I’ll move on to that other class of highly qualified and gifted individuals: Scripters and builders.
Again, despite having personally dabbled in these disciplines for a while now, it seems I am woefully ill-informed when it comes to understanding the complexities and sheer dedication required to build even the simplest plywood cube or ‘hello avatar’ script. It seems that real builders have to contend with a whole range of problems that us lesser mortals would never even consider. The whole business of matching texture seams, achieving minimal land impact, optimising physics and achieving efficient server loads is something that content creators will
never do spend a lifetime learning. All this in the harsh and unforgiving environment of sandboxes, where griefing reigns unfettered and other avatars will insist on sitting on whatever you happen to be building, just for the fun of it!
Even when you’re done, there’s more hassle… Despite having put your heart and soul, along with the best years of your SLife into perfecting your wonderful creation, nobody it seems is happy with the result. “Can’t you make it in a slightly different shade of orange?”; “Your alpha’s don’t fit my portly frame – I demand you cater for every possible shape in SL!”; “What do you mean, I have to buy my own furniture?”; “Your builds are too big for my land – make a quarter size option just for me!”; “100 LI is far too much for a medieval castle – I insist you make it only 20 LI and how dare you charge L$50 for it. Lower the price!”; “Your scripts are crap, I could write them a hundred times better, if I had the time and weren’t so important” – everyone it seems, is a critic. Consequently, SL builders have the patience of saints on Prozac.
Which brings me to roleplayers, and the unsurprising conclusion that I’ve actually not done them a disservice at all; in fact I may well have given them far more credit than they deserve. I’ve reached this understanding by the simple expedient of standing in the middle of a Bloodlines’ sim and shouting at the top of my voice: “Vampires suck! (And they cheat at baseball!)” – It’s taken me three days and sixteen blood transfusions to get over the resulting mayhem! I’m seriously considering going into bulk wooden stake manufacturing to get my own back!
As for the rest: Noobs, SLex addicts, Land Barons, Shoppers and Hunters – well, as far as I’m concerned, nobody’s complained to me, and the cooling-off period expired… Oh, let’s say, five minutes ago.
Oh yes, almost forgot the bloggers again: Every word I wrote about them is quite definitely true!
You will never understand
How it feels to live your life
With no meaning or control
And with nowhere left to go
William Shatner – Common People
(Not the live, white label, stealth Ibiza bootleg – I’m no DJ!)