“the employment of leisure”

The title of this post comes from an article by Richard Urban in an article for the Bulletin of ASIS&T: The Information Society for the Information Age, where he reminds us that one of the original greek meanings of ‘school’ was derived from ‘the employment of leisure’. Imagine that: schooling a pleasurable activity.

Second Life, Serious Leisure and LIS


… What immediately captured my attention as I [Urban] began to explore Second Life was the number and diversity of museums, galleries and cultural sites that had already been created. Over the course of the next two years, as we studied Second Life’s development, the number of these simulations continued to increase. Existing sites grew from small simple displays into full-scale organizations that are creating changing exhibitions, public programming and sponsoring ongoing activities.

Even more interesting was that much of this activity was not being driven by real-life institutions, but rather had developed through the efforts of Second Life residents who shared common interests. Here was an example of how Second Life was serving as a “third place” where people gathered to share these interests and build community…