View Full Version : Is Virtual Life Better Than Reality?

08-02-2006, 04:23 PM
When reality gets hard to take, there's an escape to a parallel universe — a virtual world without end where real people create online personas called avatars. Anything is possible.

Catherine Smith showed CBS News correspondent Jerry Bowen that her avatar has "red hair" and "big nice cool glasses."

"This is my deck overlooking the beach, and I've got neighbors that have a giant pirate ship," Smith explained.

Smith can't afford a beach house in real life. But in Second Life, the online game created by her employer, Linden Lab, she — and nearly 100,000 other subscribers who pay $10 a month — can have that and more.
"You can go skydiving and not be afraid of dying; you could become a wild animal, something that you could never do in real life," she said.

As hard as this may be to believe, there is real money changing hands among the players in these games, Bowen reports. An estimated $1 billion worldwide is spent by users buying and selling virtual goods, such as furniture for virtual houses and clothing for their avatars. But it's paid for with real-world credit cards — at Second Life alone, $6 million a month.

"I put in 40 hours a week easy," said Shannon Grei, who supports herself in Medford, Ore., by making virtual clothes for avatars in that other world.
"I couldn't believe that it was really, that it was real, that you could even do that, and it just blew my mind, it still blows my mind," Grei laughs.

She's not alone.

"What we have here is a virtual loft of sorts that we created for the artist Regina Spektor," says Ethan Kaplan of Warner Bros. Records, which has set up shop to publicize the pop singer's music.

"Our goal with second life is to make it better than real life in a lot of ways," says Phillip Rosedale, Linden Lab's CEO and founder.

But there are real-life problems. Hackers have tried to shut it down. Who do they call when hackers strike?


08-02-2006, 04:24 PM

08-02-2006, 04:25 PM
Great REad

08-02-2006, 05:18 PM

I think it's lame when someone uses this source of entertainment as a means of carving out a life that they can not obtain in reality. Sometimes peoples insecuritites, and self-seteem problems prevent them from moving forward in life. Doing it online as an anonymous persona makes it easier.

However, it would be cool to live a virtual life, say in another time or place. I saw a Western type theme going on at their site. It looked kinda cool.

08-02-2006, 05:22 PM
sounds like a MMO for old people :lol:

08-02-2006, 06:15 PM
However, it would be cool to live a virtual life, say in another time or place. I saw a Western type theme going on at their site. It looked kinda cool.
I think it would be cool also, the only problem is that they're not really living a virtual life when you do it online.

They're sitting in front of a computer screen alone and watching graphics.

Now...if they could invent something like the holodeck from Star Trek: The Nest Generation, that would be interesting. :wink:

08-02-2006, 06:22 PM
anything with bianca beauchamp involved and i'm in :dday: