So buzzed to be involved in the MA Education in Virtual Worlds. Reading, reading reading… and lapping it up.
Although virtual worlds are proving to be a valuable resource for educators, there is another, greater reason why understanding the role of identity in virtual worlds is important. Essentially, virtual worlds are not simply about the creation of a 3D computer world; the use of avatars means they are about the creation of a 3D computer-generated us.
As 3D virtual worlds and the global population continue to grow, creating and coordinating a system of multiple offline and online identities will increasingly become a normative feature of human development. Individuals will manage their multiple personality orders in a manner analogous to a choreographer managing a company of dancers, or a conductor leading an orchestra, and the operation of personality will increasingly take on, as Goffman once suggested, a quality of performance art.
(Gilbert et al P232)
Peachy, A., Childs, M. (2011): Reinventing Ourselves: Contemporary Concepts of Identity in Virtual Worlds, Springer Verlag, London.