Topping from the Viewfinder: The Visual Language of Virtual BDSM Photographs in Second Life


  • Shaowen Bardzell Indiana University School of Informatics and Computing



Visual language, sexuality, virtual BDSM, identity, Second Life


The paper explores the mutually constituted relations between avatars, space, and artifacts depicted in virtual photographs from Second Life

Author Biography

Shaowen Bardzell, Indiana University School of Informatics and Computing

Shaowen Bardzell is an Assistant Professor of Human-Computer Interaction Design in the School of Informatics and Computing at Indiana University. Dr. Bardzell specializes in socio-cultural computing, with an emphasis on emotional, intimate, and embodied experiences. The primary domain in which she practices this work is domestic spaces as well as computer-mediated social environments. Recent work has focused on embodied collaboration in virtual worlds, designing for intimacy and emotion in non-western homes, and the application of critical and cultural theories for developing concept-driven design strategies. Dr. Bardzell directs the Everyday Computing Research Group and co-direct the User Engagement Research Lab at Indiana University.