While Michael Jackson’s friends and family gathered in California for his burial service, his Second Life fans gathered in Second Life to eulogize the performer and to celebrate his life.
The Second Life service may have lacked the well known names of mourners such as Reverend Al Sharpton and Elizabeth Taylor, but made up for it in the passion of its mourners, with frequent sobs and shouts of "I love you Michael!". It also had a mixed reality component that the California service did not: while their avatars sat in the Second Life service, many of the people behind the avatars simultaneously watched the California service on CNN.
Elite Runner eulogising Michael Jackson
The Second Life service opened with host MichaelJacksonWasA Wonder reading from "Magical Child’", written by Michael Jacksong and a prayer led by Genghis Roux
One speaker at the service, Morgane Batista, a native French speaker and resident of Quebec, spoke of learning to walk listening to Michael Jackson’s music and learning English watching his family movies. "His music made me laugh, smile, tease, cry, his music soothed a lot of pain in my life," she said, "Helped me go through my life. His heart is true and was felt. He was stronger that any person I know, I can’t imagine what it would’ve been to walk in his shoes, to see all what through he had to go through, the pain, struggles, the pure joy…"
.Another speaker, Elite Runner, spoke of the powerfully mixed emotions he felt when, on his daughter’s birthday, he learned of Michael Jackson’s death and he switched between BBC, CNN, YouTube, MySpace, Twitter, and Facebook trying to learn more.
The service ended with a celebration of Michael Jackson’s life as avatars of his Second Life fans danced to the music of DJSaitin Ansome.
The service is over, but the Michael Jackson Memorial location in Second Life remains. Second Life members can visit it by teleporting to slurl.com/secondlife/Sweety Paradise/139/238/21.