Abandon

The Digital Human, Series 6 Episode 3 of 6

What happens when we abandon a place? And why is it so difficult for us to leave these places behind?
In this episode, Aleks explores abandon both on and offline. We tell the story of the only permanent resident of Fukushima's radiation exclusion zone. Naoto Matsura stayed in Tomioka while everyone around him fled. He's now the unofficial caretaker of this abandoned town.

Aleks contrasts this with a remarkable example of digital abandon. Meridian 59 was the first massively multiplayer online game. When newer competitors arrived on the scene, many players left. The game has been abandoned and restarted several times over since. Aleks hears from the hardcore community of players who refuse to let the game disappear entirely.

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30 minutes

Last on

Thu 8 Oct 2015 23:30

Alastair Bonnett

Alastair Bonnett

Alastair Bonnett is Professor of Social Geography at Newcastle University and author of 'Off the Map: Lost Space, Feral Places and Invisible Cities and What They Tell Us About the World'.

He explains why people are so drawn to abandoned places, as well as the psychological and spiritual hold they have on us.

Marie Mutsuki Mockett

Marie Mutsuki Mockett

Marie Matsuki Mockett author of 'Where the Dead Pause the Japanese Say Goodbye' tells us about her relative who remained in the Fukishima exclusion zone after the tsunami and nuclear disaster to care for the Buddhist temple, and the ancestors who will ever remain in the abandoned town.

Naoto Matsumura

Naoto Matsumura was the sole person to remain in Tomioka city. He tells us about life after the nuclear disaster, why he remains to care for the animals and what life is in like in the abandoned city.

Andrew Kirmse

Andrew Kirmse

Andrew Kirmse, with his brother Chris, co-created Meridian 59 one of the very first graphical MMOs.

 

He tells us about the fantasy world's massive popularity in it's hayday, the decline and shut down of the world, and why he revived the game as an open source platform allowing the die-hard members of the community to play and reconnect.

Matt Dymerski

Matt Dymerski
Sci-fi and horror author Matt Dymerski was a player, and developer of, Meridian 59. He tells us about the boom times for the game, and how the community reacted when the world was shut down.

Idajean Fisher

Idajean Fisher
Idajean Fisher is an engineer and one of the original Meridian 59 players. She explains why the community was a greater draw than the hack and slash adventure, and what happened when it was torn asunder by the shut down.

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