Friday, April 3, 2020

News and Commentary: Have a Second Life Contingency Plan

By Cyfir (Cyfiremmerich)

In college, I took a whole course on business contingency. Contingency is “a future event or circumstance which is possible but cannot be predicted with certainty.” Everything is contingent. Whether you go in to work tomorrow depends on if work is still there. Whether you go home at the end of the day is contingent on if  home is still there. For many in my real life community, both are not still there. Not only has COVID-19 shut many businesses in my area down, an EF3 tornado dropped down a few blocks behind where I live on Saturday afternoon, and tore through the business district, grew into a massive wedge, and leveled homes. There were no casualties thanks to advanced warning and many being home because of COVID-19, but many people no longer have jobs or houses to go back to. The local mall and a handful of businesses are practically destroyed. If the tornado had dropped down sooner, I wouldn’t be writing this.

Here’s the important part: Second Life should be the furthest from your mind in life threatening and/or natural disaster circumstances, but wouldn’t it be nice if you didn’t have to worry about it at all? Why wait until it’s not possible to do anything about your rent meter running out? Who will inform your Second Life friends of your whereabouts if you’re not able to get online? There have been a few instances when this publication has had to send out a call for help to discover the whereabouts of a missing Second Life resident.  

In my business contingency courses, we learned to write up a contingency plan for when the unexpected should occur. For instance, who would be in charge of things if the manager is out? A Second Life contingency plan doesn’t have to be as elaborate and drawn out as a business contingency plan, but think of who you would trust to help you pay your rent meter or tell your friends of your whereabouts if something should occur. Be sure that you can contact them offline or at least let them know that if you disappear one day to please help you with contacting friends or paying rent for a certain amount of time until you get back. I always keep at least two weeks on all my meters in case something happens like a week long power outage. Do you run a blog or website based around Second Life or do you run a sim or a club? Who do you trust to run those while you’re gone? Think of any possible thing that you can see not being taken care of if you vanished for a month and write it down and think of who can back you up in a time of need.

In these times of uncertainty, it’s good to have a plan in real life as well as Second Life for when things go horribly wrong. COVID-19 has had me thinking about this, and the tornado this weekend finally inspired this article. Don’t wait until it’s too late.


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