Canary Beck’s sex survey results, and how attitudes to that may also apply to SL naturism

Canary Beck has been conducting a survey into sex in Second Life, about people’s attitudes and how they differ from the real world. You can see the results to that survey over at Becky’s blog, via the link. Second Life sex versus Real Life sex – Survey Results.

I’m a regular reader of Becky’s blog, and as such did ‘complete’ the survey as far as I could. Q1. Are you sexually active in SL? Answer: No, so that’s as far as my participation went! 🙂 It does, however make for fascinating reading as to people’s thoughts on the topic. Almost all of it is irrelevant from a SL naturist perspective, but I did focus in on one quote from a respondent, as highlighted in Becky’s analysis.

‘I’ve used SL to explore bdsm themes that I’ve transferred to RL…it’s a good platform to learn about ideas, experience some of the thought processes associated before attempting RL versions.’

So let’s re-align that quote from a naturist perspective…

‘I’ve used SL to explore naturism…it’s a good platform to learn about ideas, experience some of the thought processes associated before experiencing it in real life’.

Becky’s survey reveals that people are ‘more bisexual. 82% of respondents said they are more liberal when it comes to sexual preference in Second Life’.

Yes, there’s a sex…thing(?)….I’m not quite sure what to call it…where people talk about being bi-curious. (The wiki link sees it described as a ‘phenomenon’).


I would say that, just as strongly, people are naturist-curious. It’s something people are interested in, and have a curiosity about in real life. Skinny-dipping, for example, is something that regularly turns up on bucket lists. At this time of year it’s hard to miss some of those ‘100 things to do over the summer’ bits of repetitive journalism that turns up everywhere from airline magazines to lifestyle sections of the newspaper to women’s magazines in the dentist’s waiting room. And skinny dipping always turns up.

Clearly, then, there’s a deep desire within all of us to strip off and go for a swim somewhere. We’ve either done it, want to do it, or are being encouraged to do it as a kind of life-affirming experience.

It’s from that perspective that I think many people will approach the topic of naturism. They’d love to try it. They’re keen to understand what the experience is like. They want to hear from those who have tried it (and our readers’ contributions on their ‘nude debut’ bear this out in the popularity of the posts – people want to read about it as well).

While Becky’s survey suggests that some are more sexually satisfied by SL sex than RL sex, I’d be of the opinion that the real thing must surely be more satisfying than a virtual experience. Shouldn’t it?

As I say, I’m not equipped to measure both experiences, and I’m not going to judge other people’s sense of satisfaction with one over the other, but it’s clear that even where sex is concerned, there’s a sense of the virtual bettering or matching the real life in some instances.


Let’s go back to our re-jigged quote:

‘I’ve used SL to explore naturism…it’s a good platform to learn about ideas, experience some of the thought processes associated before experiencing it in real life’.

Yes. All of this applies to the virtual naturist experience, something I’ve been saying for a long time. No, it can never replicate the RL version, it will never better or match the RL experience, but SL is certainly a good platform to explore the lifestyle, to learn about ideas, and experience some of the thought processes.

Sure, it is substantially easier to take your clothes off, in public, in a virtual world. You will still face that *gulp hard* moment in RL. But where SL can and does fulfil a role is in education as to what naturism is all about: the friendliness of its adherents pretty much replicates the RL version. The sense of naked bodies no longer seeming ‘naked’, just not covered with clothing is also a very similar experience to RL. The sense that it’s non-sexual also transfers from the real to the virtual, assuming you’re visiting the right naturist sims, that is, not just sex sims operating under the guise of naturism. The sense that it’s a healthy lifestyle that lends itself to participation in all manner of physical activity, from swimming to tennis, to cycling, to hiking -all things that will improve your physical and mental well-being.

Immersing yourself in the genuine naturist lifestyle in SL may be something that allows you to learn about the ideas, experience the thought processes and generally explore it prior to making the leap to embrace the RL version. Suitably armed on matters of etiquette and behaviour, all of which can be explored in SL, it may smooth the route into RL naturism.

Becky has more to say about the generally lazy journalism that portrays SL as some sort of virtual sex world. It certainly can be that, but that’s not the whole story, and anyone writing about it from that perspective hasn’t researched it fully. SL can be more.

SL can exist as a bridging point, a jumping on point, into RL experiences, be they naturism, or sexual experimentation (as the survey results by Becky infer) or, come to that, many, many more topics. If there’s a broad ‘educational’ sense of the virtual regarding naturist etiquette or ‘bdsm’, as the original quote suggests, then why not a broad educational sense in respect of other matters? Philosophy? Theology? Any other strand of learning you might wish to name?

If anyone is naturist-curious, I’d encourage them to throw themselves into the experience virtually in SL, and maybe gain a better understanding as to what the lifestyle is all about.







Canary Beck : Ne me quitte pas

We’ve previously written about Canary Beck, a remarkable woman whose website is a joy to behold, as she discusses a wide range of SL/RL interfacing, and the possibilities and potentials for SL. I would urge anyone who reads SLN to hop over to Canary’s site and easily work their way through a couple of hours reading her thoughtful, insightful words.



Our own photographer, Diane, gave me a heads up on Canary’s ongoing photographic exhibition, Ne me quitte pas, which you can find at the Waderstill Ode sim. I hopped over there earlier and have to say I’m greatly impressed by a series of atmospheric nude shots in which, according to Canary,

I have aimed to express what I am only now able to express coherently in words. I’ve even lifted the titles for the pictures from the verses of Jacques Brel’s plaintive poetry set to music, feeling unable to write them myself.

These very personal pictures are the result of two months of taking hundreds of similar pictures on my bare white platform – most of which I obliterated soon after I took them. I never planned to share them. As I’ve reviewed these works for showing; however, I see them now like heavy pages in an old diary; a shabby book that reflects a threadbare me, depleted by gravity and, I hope, now hardly recognisable.

Things fall apart, but we reflect, re-examine and reconsider the necessary grieving process that we go through, which tends to accompany any significant loss or separation, and perhaps might feel a cathartic lightness in the sharing.

And you thought SL was only a world of pixel-Barbie dressing up and cybersex?

Canary’s work, in whatever medium, illustrates the breadth and depth of some of SL’s more imaginative players. Apart from photography, Canary was also responsible for staging in-world theatrical productions of ‘Romeo & Juliet’ and ‘Paradise Lost’, complete with some onstage nudity (which is where we came in 🙂 ) and she is an exceptionally talented lady whose work, in world, often re-defines the boundless possibilities of SL.

I’m also hearing that both productions will be released in machinima (‘movie’ style productions from within virtual reality worlds) form in 2015. Can’t wait! 🙂

I won’t be reproducing the photos from the exhibition here: it’s up to you to go see for yourselves 🙂

Diane also recommended using the Ode sim’s wind light settings to view the photographs in best effect. Diane was also impressed by the wider Ode sim itself, and took a series of photos in which to show it off. Again, if you do visit Ode, I (and Diane) would recommend further exploration of this beautiful sim.abi ode sim3_001babi ode sim4_001b abi ode sim6_001b





Paradise Lost (1)

I learned, earlier, that a production of Milton’s Paradise Lost, the story of Adam and Eve’s fall from Grace, to a score by Mozart, is being staged in Second Life. And the production features, well, nudity. It is Adam and Eve, after all. Tickets are being sold at L$1000 a pop on the marketplace, but if the photos I’ve seen are anything to go by, this is a step up in how SL is used, and may well be worth the money.

The production is being staged by the Basilique Performing Arts Company, and they have their own blog on the internet.

We’ve seen photos!…it looks like a winner. You can check out photos from the performance on that site, a flickr photo stream or on Ziki Questi’s blog.

Additionally, Canary Beck, one of Basilique’s movers and shakers, has a blog of her own as well. Plenty to occupy you if you’re into your (performance) Art, some of which, as I’ve said above, includes some nudity, so thumbs up from SLN on that basis.

While SLN always has reservations about using other people’s photographs for copyright reasons, I’ve less concern about providing the link to a trailer for the production on youtube. I recommend you watch and get some sense of just how much goes into this production and, I guess, the rest of Basilique’s work.

Simply wonderful!

I found the Basilique sim through a search, but I appear to not have permission to visit (and photograph it), which is a shame, but we can’t let an SLN post pass without a photo, so I asked Diane to find a theatre where we might, at least, give a sense of nudity in performance. So she dragged me along to a little performance space where she got me to do a bit of posing. barbara harp_001b barbara harp3_001b