Mystic Places in Cyberspace: Second Life

Ayse Nil Kirecci


When we look at products that use mystic elements and the marketing activities related to them, we see that mysticism has become a passion for individuals and this passion has become an opportunity for marketers. Accordingly, when we look at the process in reverse, we might as well say that this is a tendency created by marketing activities and instilled into individuals’ lives. Although, it is indisputable that the notion of mystic experiences originated in the East, it is equally true that the commodities charged with the so-called mystical qualities and meanings including services associated with these experiences have become a natural part of all of our daily lives like they have always been there in the first place. Most of these have become part of our beliefs, habits, and discourses and have entered into our present life styles in various ways. Technologies in general, an indispensable part of our lives, or even internet-based-services in particular make use of this attractiveness of mysticism. When we think about the associations of mysticism, although it might seem hard to relate the concept to technology, virtual reality an important feature availed by the internet technology provides the infrastructure for the mystic experiences in question. The most pervasive example of this is the use of internet technology to spread mystic experiences on the internet, extend it to as many users as possible, and make the products that have mystical qualities catch on. This paper is a research on Second Life, a cyberspace that is used as the basic means to make mystical elements spread on the internet. Second Life comes before us as an alternative to the real life on cyberspace and its approach and perspective is examined via a creative theory on mystic places by Chamberlain: topomystica. This focuses the paper in revealing the mystic elements of Second Life and associates these with the theories of economy politics of the internet in order to demonstrate how mystic elements have become a source of economic profit in digital platforms.

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