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Getting Started in Second Life, NTC 08

Getting Started in Second Life, NTC 08

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  • 1. NTC 2008 New Orleans March 20, 2008 Getting started in Second Life
  • 2. Overview
    • Mission, History and Overview of the Nonprofit Commons (and TechSoup)
    • Nonprofit Commons: What we do
    • What we have realized/learned
    • Goals and Metrics
    • Going Forward
  • 3. TechSoup is a popular, comprehensive online content and community destination for nonprofits that provides unbiased information and technical knowledge and resources to ensure that nonprofits make the best possible use of technology. TechSoup.org-The technology place for nonprofits
  • 4. The TechSoup Community Network
    • 17 Forums
    • Events Calendar
    • Member Spotlight
    • Community Blog
    • Second Life
    • Surveys
    • Soup Recipes
    • Managed by Me, Community Manager and volunteer hosts and stars
    • Online social networks: www.techsoup.org/community/where
  • 5. Nonprofit Commons in Second Life
    • Through this community, we provide free office space to qualifying groups, hold meetings, create a cooperative supportive learning environment and foster outreach, education, fundraising, all in a virtual space.
    • Our goal is to create a learning community of practice for nonprofits to explore and learn about the virtual world, and to investigate the many ways in which nonprofits can utilize this unique environment.
  • 6. Creative Potential and Implications for Nonprofits in SL
    • Encourage Volunteering and Leadership: There is a tremendous volunteer spirit in Second Life; learn how to tap into that.
    • Contests and Competitions: Friendly competitions are often good ways to get people involved in creating content and working together.
    • Combine Second Life with Other Outreach Channels: Second Life activities are good launching points for reaching people through other means (i.e. social networking sites, viral videos, real world events, etc.)
  • 7.
    • Go Beyond the Classroom Model: An immersive, interactive, open content environment presenting many opportunities for moving beyond the classroom lecture model of teaching with successful experiments involving peer-to-peer interaction
    • Sandbox Learning: Team building activities by organizing small teams of avatars to build something with minimal guidance, Rich, long-lasting lessons for students through activities that challenge them to create something on their own, using the various tools available to them in Second Life
    • Use Avatars to Explore Identity Issues: Create opportunities for identity play and self expression through avatar creation and manipulation.
    • Generate empathy: by putting people literally in the shoes of others and explore existing avatar choices to bring up issues of gender and racial representation or use nonhuman avatars to address issues of discrimination.
    Potential and Implications for Nonprofits in SL
  • 8. A Valuable tool for Nonprofits
    • It costs virtually nothing to build a location in Second Life.
    • Nonprofits can use the tool to raise funds (for example, the American Cancer Society's virtual Relay 4 Life just raised $115,000
    • Second Life offers a safe and anonymous means of self-expression.
    • Second Life provides a space for the impossible to happen (for example, Simon Stevens, Community liaison and SL group Wheelies (disability nightclub) [June issue of Newsweek] a group of adults with disabilities use SL interact in an environment without the physical constraints they experience in the real world).
    • By meeting people in world you are reducing emissions and your carbon footprint
    • Second Life for many nonprofit groups has become an effective tool for broadening their outreach to new audiences and supporters and increasing community involvement and engagement with their work.
  • 9. Real wealth, virtual philanthropy, and the birth of the Nonprofit Commons
    • The Commons was generously donated by Anshe Chung, the first person to become a millionaire in RL, by selling virtual goods and services. 
    • Guntram Graef, Anshe's partner, attended the SLCC last year and saw my talk on NPOs and SL.
    • Following the talk, he offered me the management and ownership of the Nonprofit Commons, provided we select the groups and keep the space active. 
    • Launched in August 2007,
    • 32 organizations currently building out their free office spaces.
    • $40,000 in-kind Donation of Sim and designers
    • We have received financial donations from several organizations and foundations, and a donation of a second Sim
  • 10. Nonprofit Commons 2: ALOFT, our second sim
    • Eliminated our waiting list
    • Expanded to nearly 70 organizations
    • TakingITGlobal's donation (Starwood Hotel prize)
    • Benefited from tremendous volunteer spirit
    • Mobilized community through barn-raising efforts and group-inspired creativity
  • 11. Community meetings and guest speakers
    • Continued weekly meetings have grown to over 45 avatars a week
    • Featuring guest speakers from around the globe to discuss issues such as: Virtual world and disability, human rights abuse, using second life to combat climate change, conferences, etc.
  • 12.
    • Hold Virtual Events in-world
    • Help Nonprofits produce events
    • Hold Mixed Reality Events at RL conferences such as Netsquared or Council on Foundations
    Mixed reality events
  • 13. Entry points to community
    • In-world Meetings
    • Wiki
    • Website/community blog
    • NPSL tag
    • Management steering committee group
    • Directory of Nonprofits in SL
    • Branding as NPO experts and advisors to all new orgs in-world
  • 14. Best Practices: What we have learned
    • Holding events is a great way to bring avatars to our offices, and builds alliances amongst members.
    • It’s important to maintain a presence on the mainland, for foot-traffic, versus being on our own private island
    • Freebies/branded tools are a great way to draw traffic, and can spread your message
    • In-world fundraising was our initial goal, but it hasn't worked out for most.
    • You can’t please everyone– the biggest lesson!
    • Belligerent Learning Curve, challenge scares many newbies away. (need mentor)
  • 15. Areas of Exploration
    • 1. Diversity 2. adaptable teaching environment 3. research 4. field training 5. awareness-building 6. community building 7. recruitment 8. distance education 9. Reducing of carbon footprint
  • 16. Goals and Metrics
    • 1. Learning community of practice 2. repeatable branded free tools 3. international representation 4. Publicity 5. excerpts from white ppr 6. Support from Linden Lab
  • 17. Key Performance Metrics REACH
    • 400+ Total Members
    • Demonstrated interest from 60 countries
    • 1300 people attended 40 meetings in world
    • 235 unique avatars attended since Mar 2006
    • 32 NPC Tenant Organizations with 29 additional organizations on a waiting list.
    • 2208 unique visitors to the NPC Blog
    • 100 avatars in world and 70 people in the RL room at the Mixed Reality Event
    • Volunteers have donated an estimated 6000 hours(5000 for meetings and 1000 for maintenance ) to this project in the last year.
  • 18. Going Forward
    • 1. SLCC panel 2. Other conferences 3. SL developer network for nonprofits 4. Webinars 5. Virtual volunteer audio tour 6. Academic research on discourse analysis 7. Campaigns for actions 8. Applying for grants and awards
    • 9. Spur innovation by providing honorariums to volunteer SL Developers
    • 10. Support special scripting and SL development
  • 19. Contact Susan Tenby Senior Manager – Online Community Development, TechSoup Network [email_address] (415) 633-9333 SL avatar: Glitteractica Cookie http:// www.nonprofitcommons.org http://npsl.wikispaces.com/ http://www.techsoup.org/community