Where in the world, we asked ourselves, could we hold the awards ceremony for the Blogpower Awards 2007?
Our nominees are from all over the world. There is simply no convenient place for them all to meet. So I suggested to James Higham, founder of both the awards and of Blogpower itself, that we hold the ceremony in another world entirely; in Second Life.
For those of you who don't know it, Second Life or "SL" is a virtual world hosted on the servers of Linden Labs in California. Linden Labs provide the landscape. All the buildings and objects to be found there were built by SL "residents." Anyone can get an account and wander about for free - you only have to pay if you want to own "land". For this purpose that's entirely unecessary as you will be my guests. I invite you to join me for the ceremony in my "sky box", 500 metres above my SL "home", "Last Ditch House".
The award ceremony will be on Sunday 1st July and will begin at 0900 New York time (1400 in Britain, 1500 Central Europe Time, 1700 in Moscow and 2200 in Australia). Please put it in your diary and come along. The drinks are free and you will be most welcome. Please tell all your friends.
If you don't have a Second Life account, please register and set one up entirely free of charge. You must select a surname from SL's standard list, but you can choose a meaningful first name. My SL name is "LastDitch Writer" and that's my "avatar" you can see in the pictures (click to enlarge). If you can also choose a first name that corresponds to yours, or to that of your blog, it would make things easier in a crowded room at the ceremony (avatars' names appear above their heads when you first meet them.
Between now and the ceremony there is plenty of time for you to set up your account, change the appearance of your avatar to suit your taste and work out how to get around. Don't worry though. On the day, you won't need to navigate to find us. There will be links like this one here and on other Blogpower blogs which will launch the software and connect you directly to the venue. You will materialise on the welcome mat you can see in the picture, so step quickly away before the next guest arrives!
You are welcome to visit in the meantime and take a look around. The right hand teleport on the balcony leads to my home on the ground. The left one takes you to my office in another sky box nearby. Make yourself at home, but watch out for the security robots!
The drinks robot will provide whatever you like so ask away. It's free but also virtual and (sadly) tasteless. I look forward to meeting you - at least virtually - at the awards.