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The Reunion

 By mgib  I guess an appropriate topic for this first 99 issue of AWWoS could be about the future of our virtual community for this new year, when we just get as a Xmas gift these guidelines extending the shadow of shame on the universe. Nothing really new. Cowardice, arbitrariness, hypocrisy are simply officially legalised. 
 But articulated language is one of the major differences between humans and animals. Too much an honour for such an occasion to address people who donít speak if not allowed by their lawyer, and anyway with terms chosen by him. Neither their henchmen for whom a debate is a crime and gunshots honourable arguments.
 Face it, citizens, the real master of our Universe is COFís lawyer. By the way... he wishes us a Happy New Year! The sign at GZ attests to his sincerity and it has been legally checked... itís safe! ! !
 Iíll save as well for future issues some saucy details about the pathetic fight for power behind the velvet curtains of our wonderful universe. (Postponed info, mainly because my usual informer seems to have problems these days with the power, she needs a brake).

 Finally, if we want to start this year on an optimistic note, we should look on the RL side of our community better than the virtual one some have spoiled. So letís talk of The Reunion. 
 As we start to think of its 99 version, we have to remember it hasnít been planned first as a yearly event. First version was for year 2000. But a 2 years term looked like too long. Look back 2 years ago. So many citizens left, so many arrived in the meantime. In our VR, itís like planning an event for the next generation. So summer 98 was the target. We have to understand how incredible was the challenge for a community built up in an universe where there is no distance, with a rather cheap access, you can join for a couple of minutes or hours at your free time without plans. 
 The question was RL brings back its practical differences between people our VR is supposed to erase. Not all may afford the resources and the free time of such a real meeting. But the miracle happened. The event brought its magic spirit. Some who thought they couldnít join did. I remember several were so sad not to be able to join. But I canít remember anyone saying either the event itself or its location is unfair, arguing about another place closer. The Reunion gathered about the order of magnitude of the number of citizens (less the tourists) joining a major event in our virtual universe, and much more then many virtual parties you can join with few clicks. Incredible, isnít it?
 From this success, organisers planned a 99 event. It already has been said before the first event. If such an event was done again, to balance as much as possible the distance obstacle, it should change from continent. So organisers planned a meeting in Europe for 99, with the idea of Australia in 2000. Why this order? Maybe to go step by step in difficulties as we go farther from the barycentre of our community. Also because in 2000 there are special events in Australia which may cheer people to come there and find fair travelling condition.
 Alas, it was the end of the dream. As soon as the new location was announced, some who found their country very convenient for the first Reunion thought suddenly somewhere else was a bad idea. They didnít only say they wouldnít be able to make it personally, they contested the place. A counter-event was set up at once in Florida. Same name, same date. A laughable parody. Where are we now?
 We try to organise several meetings in different continents with a lot of confusion. Making it, even unwittingly, a competition as some may attend several of them. IMO itís always worth to meet in real someone we know in VR. Local AW real meetings are good to offer at the local scale better chance to meet at least few other citizens. This isnít new. Local official meetings already happened before The Reunion. But itís just reunionS, not A reunion, even less The Reunion. Its spirit is dead.
 One will say itís still a unique event as all will be held at the same time and we can link the meetings through webcams and AW. Yes. And tomorrow we will think a meeting by continent is still too far for some. Letís have one by country and in large countries by area. Look at the first wishes on the official web site. Iíll tell you what is the best clue to have the maximum of attendees. Letís say everyone organise a Reunion at home, being its organiser and we would all join in AW the given day so to call it The Reunion.
  Is it really too bad if we canít make a real Reunion again? I donít think so. This is just an extra challenge when we have so much to do in our RL. If we can make it, and we did it once, we can be proud of it. If we canít repeat it, itís ok. The challenge is big enough so there is no shame to fail. I donít know what to think of the insistence to pretend to do it again cheating with its spirit. Maybe the urgent need to succeed in RL at a time we fail in VR.
 The most annoying is this failure has its origin and its equivalent in the source, our VR environment. Those who made the project to stumble claiming for their country again under some ď majority Ē concept, simply translated their day to day attitude.
 For them, AW is a wonderful place where people from different culture, nationalities, may meet as far as the community has for common language, laws, rules, habits, moral... THEIRS. A home-centred conception of ď world-wide Ē now enforced in rules as an alibi for humanism.
  Actually, AW is for them a virtual zoo. Where you can see wild species uncommon where you live, in a mock copy of their natural surrounding, but in a safe and clean environment so they can bring their kids for a parody of education. No off-fence at the zoo when the fence is on, and FenceKeepers there with their guns. 

Welcome to the Zoo! But if you want real thrills, join the 99 Brussels safari and see wild life in its real environment. 

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