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Hi! Have you attended a memorial for a deceased player in World of Warcraft? Have you visited some of the memorials listed here in Wowwiki, such as The Shire of the Fallen Warrior (http://www.wowwiki.com/Shrine_of_the_Fallen_Warrior)?
I am a PhD student of digital culture studies from the University of Turku, Finland. I know you players might get these a lot, but I would be immensely grateful, if you would have the time to fill our my short survey here: 
I am studying virtual mourning conducts, such as virtual memorial websites, memorial groups in Facebook, memorial videos, online-gaming memorial services etc. You can find more information about me here (my Finnish blog): http://bittiavaruuteen.wordpress.com/in-english/
Thanks already! Please contact me email@example.com, if you have any questions!
- About two years ago, Ezra Chatterton passed away from cancer just before the release of Wrath of the Lich King; he had been in WoW news a year and a half earlier because he had received the first phoenix mount from Blizzard during his visit to their offices, two days before somebody picked up the actual drop from Kael'thas in Tempest Keep. After he died, there were a bunch of people - myself included - who made it a point to do the quest given by the character that Ezra created and voiced during his Make-A-Wish visit (Ahab Wheathoof, the old rancher standing by the bridge near Bloodhoof Village in Mulgore), and I think there were also a bunch of memorials on Norgannon US, the server he played on. That might be something worth looking into. --Joshmaul (talk) 14:29, August 11, 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for the story! I was already familiar with some of it and I will definitely look more into it. I'm interested about the meanings of what people give to this memorials and how they might help with coping with loss and sorrow. How was it for you to do the quest? I've also heard a rumor that some players "fake" their real-life deaths to attract attention or something. Is that true? Also "side effects" like the (in)famous funeral raid are also part of my interest. Annahaverinen (talk) 06:26, August 12, 2010 (UTC)
- I tear up every time I hear his voice (he voiced Ahab), let's just put it that way. I'm a softie. *grin*
- As for fakers - there was one instance on a tech forum some years ago (I read about it in high school computer class) where one of the administrators was a highly respected member of the community, and she got sick and died. Except...it turns out "she" was actually a he, and was very much alive. People started to get suspicious after "her death", when they saw the pictures the person used on a porno model website, and then confronted the guy about it. ("I cried for someone who didn't exist" was one of the comments made by a forum member.) --Joshmaul (talk) 07:09, August 12, 2010 (UTC)
- Why someone would do something like that - attention. Even adults in the age of the Internet still clamor for it. And I myself have not attended in-game memorial services, though - as I mentioned - I made it a point to do the Ahab Wheathoof quest chain upon learning of Ezra's death. --Joshmaul (talk) 07:16, August 17, 2010 (UTC)