Time Magazine recently ran a piece 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, but the article begins:
We’re sure that somebody out there is enjoying Second Life, but why?
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.
But perhaps it’s time we recognised Second Life for what it is – (yet another) software platform that fails to leverage virtual reality for serious purposes and also that it has only hitherto been propped up by a multimedia marketing campaign that now shows signs of failing.
And yet there are still some of us who will continue to think that Second Life actually provides scope for more meaningful interactions to take place, say in the world of public diplomacy, peacebuilding or political activism. I’m not entirely convinced, but I would like to believe that perhaps Second Life is ahead of its time. What’s cool today is augmented reality on mobile devices, which seem to hold far more potential in my mind than virtual reality on PCs.