Seminary 3.0

I find myself in the very odd position of writing and talking about seminary education under Web 3.0 conditions, and receiving appreciative feedback for it, with no immediate prospect of participating in a project that realizes the characteristics I describe. I suppose the “appreciative attention” beats “gales of derisive laughter,” though.

Recent posts about rivals to Second Life tend to confirm my sense that the future holds a successor to the kind of context that Second Life has pioneered — but that successor isn’t on the immediate horizon. (That’s trivial, right? No one thinks that SL will be eternal. But I mean that if someone wants to modulate into a Web 3.0 environment, they should probably move into SL cautiously, not vesting all their resources in SL-specific features. Build out into SL, but build out as a staging area, not as though it will be the long-term platform for your online education venture. SL may have the winning recipe to be its own successor, and that revised iteration may preserve your SL assets — but there’s no need to gamble.)

On the other hand, institutions that shy away from persistent-media online venues will be less well prepared for the transition when it comes. Now is an entirely appropriate time to begin exploring avatar-oriented education; after all, Socrates did all right just wandering around the Agora with his students.

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