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Information Dynamics in Virtual Worlds

Book Description

Presents a broad examination of the nature of virtual worlds and the potential they provide in managing and expressing information practices through that medium, grounding information professionals and students of new media in the fundamental elements of virtual worlds and online gaming. The book details the practical issues in finding and using information in virtual environments and presents a general theory of librarianship as it relates to virtual gaming worlds. It is encompassed by a set of best practice methods that libraries can effectively execute in their own environments, meeting the needs of this new generation of library user, and explores ways in which information literacy can be approached in virtual worlds. Final chapters examine how conventional information evaluation skills work falls short in virtual worlds online.

  • Maps out areas of good practice and technique for information professionals and librarians serving in virtual communities
  • Provides a clear foundation with appropriate theory for understanding information in virtual worlds
  • Treats virtual worlds as ‘real environments’ and observes the behaviour of actors within them

Table of Contents

  1. Cover image
  2. Title page
  3. Table of Contents
  4. Copyright
  5. Dedication
  6. Acknowledgements
  7. About the Author
  8. Introduction
  9. Part I: Virtual Ontologies
    1. Chapter 1: Mapping virtual worlds
      1. Abstract
      2. Theory v. reality
      3. Our theoretical moorings
      4. Hyperreality
      5. Globalization
      6. Gender and queering
      7. Actor-Network Theory
      8. Intertextuality
      9. Transhumanism
      10. Spaces and how to move in them
      11. Running in virtual spacetime
      12. Money moves worlds
      13. Some definitions
    2. Chapter 2: Types of virtual worlds
      1. Abstract
      2. Games
      3. Gametypes
      4. Perspective, aesthetics, clickiness
      5. Non-games
    3. Chapter 3: N00bz inworld
      1. Abstract
      2. Gendered initiation
      3. Stories and tasks
      4. Floating World, Active World: Islands in the Net
      5. Back to initiation
      6. Help from the man
      7. Symbols of passage
    4. Chapter 4: Inworld info desks: information initiation
      1. Abstract:
      2. Official Stuff
      3. The unofficial stuff
      4. Wikis and forums
      5. Fan pages, Blog posts, Newsgroups
      6. Further discussion
    5. Chapter 5: Info service inworld: how to practice info services in virtual worlds
      1. Abstract:
      2. Let’s talk about librarians first
      3. Inworld library attributes
      4. Real skills for real patrons?
      5. Who is the community? Who are the patrons?
      6. Where to lurk
      7. Viral you
      8. Linden, Turing, and Kempelen’s Turk
  10. Part II: Time Inworld
    1. Introduction
    2. Chapter 6: Hungry Ghosts in Second Life
      1. Abstract:
      2. Deep and dark
      3. Official signage
      4. Academically speaking
      5. No action
      6. Public, as in Tammanial Hall
      7. I’m a Mac. And I’m a PC
      8. Real Life again
    3. Chapter 7: After virtual worlds
      1. Abstract:
      2. Thumbing into new turf
    4. Chapter 8: Conclusions
  11. Appendix I: SL librarianship
  12. Appendix II: TOS
  13. Bibliography
  14. Index