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  SXSW- Looking Back on March 14  
Posted 2006-03-15 by Tony Walsh
Yesterday was the first and only day at Austin's SXSW fest where I was functionally impaired due to a champagne-and-tequila-induced hangover. As a result, I managed to liveblog only the panel entitled "How to Be a Virtual World Entrepreneur. My notes were apparently the source of a shitstorm in the Second Life community over casual remarks made by Reuben Steiger of Linden Lab (maker of Second Life. I felt compelled to respond to the situation after learning of the controversy at around 3am local time. I'm torn over the issue: On the one hand, I feel I have every right to publish panel notes publicly, even if the notes are not an accurate verbatim transcription and were never presented that way; on the other hand, part of what has exacerbated the controversy was that I wasn't able to capture some comments from panelist Peter Ludlow that might have softened reaction to Steiger's remarks. The beauty of liveblogging is that a rough sketch of a live event can be published immediately. The downside, I have discovered, is that a sketch leaves too much to the imagination.

Yesterday afternoon I moderated the panel entitled "The Secret Sex Lives of Video Games (you can find notes from the panel here and here). Despite some performance anxiety on my part, I think the panel went very well, and covered the topic maturely and informatively. Attendance was decent, and with only a few exceptions, attendees remained in their seats for the whole sordid affair, and asked some great follow-up questions. The panelists all did a super job: Thanks, Julianne, Kyle, Glennis, and Mark!

Last night was spent swilling free booze at the closing party before heading over to The Herald Suite, where a cluster of the usual suspects gazed over the balcony to observe RealFrogger, an improvised re-enactment of the classic arcade game Frogger involving a costumed Roomba and 6th Street traffic. Phillip Torrone and Limor Fried rocked downtown Austin with retro robot goodness while the rest of us chortled madly. More on this blissful experience at a later date. I've got a plane to catch!
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Comment posted by Prokofy Neva
March 15, 2006 @ 1:44 pm
Thanks for your excellent footwork and coverage of this conference. Don't worry about missing this or that quote or context.

The problem of the Reuben shitstorm isn't about you or blogging or insufficiently covered nuances from Uri. It's that game companies really don't value user-created content, at the end of the day. They just don't. *Shrugs*. They've either got to eat the compelling content that their user created (it's crunchy, goes well with milk!), or they've got to eat the user himself and make him an employee of the game company. It's very hard to keep their fingers out of the pie.
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