Friday, January 25, 2008

Second Life: A Future or a Waste of Time?

Okay, good news, I have found me a way to struggle through all the information on the metaverse, thanks to a friend, and faithful reader of this blog.

Time Magazine ran a piece back in August on five of the worst websites that mentioned Second Life as one of them. Not entirely sure why - since Second Life isn’t a website, as far as I know, but the article begins:

We’re sure that somebody out there is enjoying Second Life, but why?
and ends,
The corporate world’s embrace of the place as a venue for staff meetings and training sessions does seem to lend Second Life a layer of legitimacy. But maybe it’s a case of some CEOs trying too hard to be hip. “

And I thought Time was a serious magazine with founded information on different subjects, but this seems to me a one man vision, who is not even well aware of what Second Life really stands for, what the future will be with or without Second Life, what Second Life is learning us, what Second Life means to a lot of companies.

It is not just another platform, to my opinion, reading all the different reports on virtual worlds, but it is a current platform for meaningful interaction. There are different kind of projects currently on going in Second Life include some brilliant work .

In the past months we have seen several marketing projects, RL companies coming inworld. They all see some advantages in SL, otherwise they would not be there.

Yesterday I had even a chat with the friend, mentioned in the first paragraph of this post. He is managing director of a RL company, who finds it interesting enough, not only to be present in SL, but also to grow within this virtual world with several SIM’s, and with customers using these sim’s as a recruitment area, a meeting place for its own employees, a place for staff meetings, trainings and conferences.

But not the whole world is yet convinced about the advantages of Second Life, or even the virtual world. There is still much to be said, much to develop, but personally, I am convinced that what we experience today with Second Life might be the first steps of something bigger, which will not be separated from our first lives anymore.

Can you still remember those first years of the World Wide Web? What did people say back then about the web? Something like: “What is this Web thing? Why should I spend time on the Web? These are all websites created by a bunch of people who have way too much time on their hands.”

We now know very well how this turned out, haven't we? Will we have the same 'déja vu' feeling with the virtual worlds? The future will tell us, but I am very curious to know how this story will end.....or will never end...


Daequix said...

Interesting thoughts on this Looker, and I have to admit 2 years ago I was one of those sceptics...though I've been gaming on the internet for years. When I first came to SL, all I seemed to see was mindless stuff- the XXX clubs, the shopping (which I personally STILL love) but as far as something I could enjoy in the long run... I didn't see it.

Then I started meeting really creative people, and in addition being mentored by my boyfriend in Photoshop.... I enjoy SL as a creative outlet, I have attended business meetings here as well, and I love chit chatting at times with my friends.

Will this ever replace my Real never, I enjoy that too much!


Looker Lumet said...

It will not replace your first life of course, Dae, but just bear with us and Second Life, and we will all see if we are some guinea pigs or not.

Anonymous said...

When you compare the early web criticism with criticism of 2L you need to take a few things into account.

I watched the web and original browsers come into their own and there was skepticism, but the thing about that time that is different from 2L is that the web was big with university and government information (before business got into the game) and, more importantly, it was not run by ONE company like Second Life is!

The promise of VR is exciting and I have watched it evolve for years. 2L is not the first online VR environment (or even the most impressive), but you never know what will catch on with people. The expensive to build and singular business model of 2L makes it less appealing to me.