Joining CNET News, Reuters has now opened a new news bureau inside Linden Lab's "parallel world" game Second Life. The story here is that Reuters will now bring their own news, photos, and video news to the game world and also an actual news page for real world readers to check the news out, which can be found here.
For those of you who have never heard of Second Life before, Second Life is a 3D, computer generated world where users buy land, create buildings, build up the land, buy clothing and other accessories, and overall live out a parallel life inside the game. On an average day, Second Life users spend about $350,000 real world U.S. dollars in the game, and about $130 million a year. That's alot of dough, and companies including Reuters, CNET, Sony BMG, Sun Microsystems, even Toyota and Reebok and other big names from around the globe are buying into the pie. Entire conferences are held inside Second Life these days, Vivox a VoIP company is even offering "one million" free VoIP minutes inside Second Life through in-game phone booths where you can call actual phones and mobiles.
Yup, Second Life is that big these days. The Linden Lab game has around 900,000 users, and continues to grow. Users can join the marketplace, and use a USD to Linden Dollars conversion to buy property, land, clothing and other things, and even make money off transactions in the game and from other activities. There are even "adult" areas of the game, with nude clubs, casinos and other adult oriented themes. Anyone can register for free, but to get the most out of the game world, you would eventually have to spend some money for whatever. Names are also limited for free users, and pay users, including these big companies will soon have the chance to pay to get real names in the game, for a $100 setup fee and $50 a year service charge. Companies will pay alot more of course. But they are lining up, as game growth continues to be in the double digits every month.
Adam Pasick, who will be known as "Adam Reuters" will be the first virtual news chief for the new Reuters bureau and says this is really no different than a normal non-cyber job once you get used to it. Journalists will report the news like any other outlet, and Reuters does not feel they are bending any editorial rules by doing this.
View: Reuters Article
Link: Second Life Homepage