Life 2.0: “The Bubble Bursts?”


My Second Life avatar in the lobby of Globo’s G1 news portal. Someone down the block is screaming, “Hey, anybody want a job?” No takers. Why bother? In Life 2.0, there is no hunger or death, and many other corollories of the entropy principle, like gravity, have been outlawed. Which may explain why no one is working the G1 desk, either. I later morph into a naked bearded female circus freak, armed to the freaking teeth from a free weapons cache I discover on Ilha Favela. Which is good, ironic fun for about 15 minutes. After which I completely lose interest (and have to deal with the amazing oscillating bandwidth and frequent brownouts of Globo’s NET cable broadband, to boot — which makes Life 2.0 a lot less less magical, I have to say.)

rtp.pt (Portugal) comments:

A loucura dos Media sobre o Second Life tornou este espaço na Internet um dos mais comentados dos últimos tempos. Mas será que o investimento numa “Segunda Vida” compensa? Algumas marcas que correram para marcar terreno no mundo da Linden Labs começam agora a repensar a estratégia. É que passando a euforia com os Media tradicionais, que noticiam o que se passa no Second Life, o número de utilizadores reais no mundo virtual parece mostrar que o esforço pode não compensar.

The media madness over Second Life has made this Internet space one of the most commented in recent times. But does an investment in a “second life” really pay off? Brands that once scrambled to claim territory in Linden Labs’ virtual world are beginning to rethink their strategy. And leaving aside the infatuation of traditional news media, which started reporting on what happened in Second Life, the number of Second Life users seems to indicate that it’s not worth the effort.

The stealth marketing of Second Life as a legitimate news story — go and see how many newspapers still run Second Life “coverage” as a legitimate “innovation journalism” news beat (Reuters pioneered the Second Life “news bureau,” I think) — is going to result in a minor journalistic ethics scandal someday, I predict.

See also

A “Segunda Vida” tem estado de forma constante na primeira vida, quer através de notícias nos vários meios de comunicação, quer mesmo através de repórteres que navegam no mundo virtual para escreverem para os meios físicos, palpáveis, reais. E quando esse interesse desvanecer? Valerá a pena manter uma vida dupla?

Life 2.0 has maintained a constant presence in Life 1.0, whether through widespread news coverage, or reporters who navigate through the virtual world in order to write about it in real, palpable, physical media. And when this interest vanishes? Will it be worth the trouble to keep on living a double life?

Os dados apresentados pela Linden Labs parecem mostrar que apesar de o Second Life ter um número considerável de “avatars” criados (um avatar representa uma pessoa no mundo real) – 6 164 951 –, teve apenas, em Agosto, 540 151 utilizadores activos (uma pessoa, real, que tenha passado pelo menos uma hora por mês no Second Life). Menos 3,8% do que no mês anterior.

The data presented by Linden Labs seem to show that Second Life, which hashad a considerable number of avatars (a representation of a real-world person) created — 6,164,951 — had only 540,151 active users (a real person who spends at least one hour in Second Life) in August. Some 3.8% fewer than the previous month.

Compare

As the guy from Stats.org noted of Sifry’s number-spinning claims about the plastic, fantastic exploding inevitable blog universe:

… relative to the overall number of blogs, Technorati seems to be charting a decrease in activity:

October 2004
Approximately four million blogs
Approximately 400,000 posts per day
Average number of posts per blog site per day: 0.1

March 2005
Approximately 7.8 million blogs
Approximately 500,000 posts per day
Average number of posts per blog site per day: 0.06

August 2006
Approximately 50 million blogs
Approximately 1.6 million posts per day
Average number of posts per blog site per day: 0.03

These figures suggest that the number of blog posts per site is going down, so while the number of outlets is increasing, each outlet is used less frequently.

This presumes, of course, that the number of blogs being tracked by Technorati is a real measure of virtual life in the blogosphere.

Rather than, say, inflated by Third World armies of click farmhands. A click farm being a

company set up to manually click on web ads 24 hours per day to either deplete a competitor’s ad budget or to increase a website owner’s own revenue.

But what this measure of diminishing output points to is that the number of blogs isn’t real at all: The 50-million figure is meaningless, an artifact of blogs past and present, derelict and dying, of virtual enthusiasm and manifest lassitude.

All smoke, mirrors, and not terribly creative substandard beancounting.

Do ponto de vista comercial, a adesão do público às lojas ou espaços virtuais também deixa muito a desejar. Dos dez espaços empresariais mais concorridos, o primeiro é o “The Pond”, com cerca de 11 mil visitas semanais. A IBM está em segundo, com perto de sete mil, seguida pela “The L Word”, “Greenies Home”, “Pontiac”, “The Weather Channel” e “Nissan”. A empresa japonesa de automóveis consegue pouco mais de duas mil visitas por semana.

From the commercial point of view, the public response to virtual shops and other environments also leaves much to be desired. Of the ten most sought-after commercial space, in first place is “The Pond,” with some 11,000 visits a week. IBM is in second place, with some 7,000, followed by “The L Word”, “Greenies Home”, “Pontiac”, “The Weather Channel” and “Nissan”. The Japanese car manufacturer gets a little over 2,000 visits a week.

You go to G1/Globo’s virtual headquarters, and what do you find there?

A chance to open up G1’s Web site in an external browser.

Só.

Which I can do in two seconds just by firing up Swiftfox.

In the quiet tranquility of my home office — just listen to that sabíá singing! — where I am less likely to be assaulted by gabbling extras from a badly animated zombie movie.

O mundo real no Second Life

The real world in Second Life

Os dados divulgados pela Linden Labs revelam que os EUA foi em Agosto o país com mais utilizadores activos do “Second Life”, com 157 289.

The data released by Linden Labs shows that the USA was the country with the most users, with 157,289.

Portugal ocupa o 17.º lugar, com 7 275 utilizadores.

Portugual came in 17th, with 7,275 users.

I will refrain from making the easy joke about Portugal here.

I actually have a friend who does PR work for Portugal as a tourist destination, and she is quite persuasive. I would actually like to go there and experience the rustic pousadas!

The woman deserves a raise, too, because I am like Mikey in the old cereal ads: I hate everything.

I also frequently read some very good Portuguese (from Burtugaw) business journalism. There are definite signs of intelligent Life 1.0 along the Iberian western seaboard.

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