Second Life's First Millionaire

Posted by: Rob Hof on November 26, 2006

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Anshe Chung, the virtual land baroness that I highlighted in my cover story earlier this year, My Virtual Life, has apparently become the first millionaire in Second Life. That’s millionaire in real U.S. dollars. Her real-world persona, Ailin Graef, figures her net worth based on her substantial in-world land holdings, cash in “Linden dollars,” which can be converted to real cash, as well as virtual shopping malls, store chains, and even virtual stock-market investments in Second Life businesses. As the release explains:

Anshe Chung’s achievement is all the more remarkable because the fortune was developed over a period of two and a half years from an initial investment of $9.95 for a Second Life account by Anshe’s creator, Ailin Graef. Anshe/Ailin achieved her fortune by beginning with small scale purchases of virtual real estate which she then subdivided and developed with landscaping and themed architectural builds for rental and resale. Her operations have since grown to include the development and sale of properties for large scale real world corporations, and have led to a real life “spin off” corporation called Anshe Chung Studios, which develops immersive 3D environments for applications ranging from education to business conferencing and product prototyping.

I relate this all with a straight face, but I still find it rather hard to believe that someone can become a millionaire through virtual-world creations. No fun and games, indeed.

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Reader Comments

tim

November 27, 2006 12:16 AM

That's amazing. The trick here is how that converts into real life... or better yet, if there is a way to translate between real world and virtual world so that gamers can apply their skills and affect the real world.

Matt

November 27, 2006 05:56 AM

Hey Rob, just an fyi that we posted a new podcast and video interview with Second Life CEO Philip Rosedale at www.iinnovatecast.com

Michael Seaton

November 27, 2006 12:11 PM

We have to look beyond what SL is today and see it for what it represents tomorrow.

Websites are static, Second Life is involving and immersive. These online communities and virtual worlds add a dimension to the overall experience that I believe will be the future of the internet.

Perhaps the question we will ask in 5 or 10 years is "Why did companies ever set up websites with a one-page-at-a-time mentality when the opportunity to create a experiential environment in places like Second Life existed?"

Undertoad

November 27, 2006 12:47 PM

No wait, I can imagine that --

Instead of picking a DVD from a list of DVDs, we'll walk down to the virtual DVD store, using the mouse and ASDF keys and walking around other virtual shoppers.

And when we get there, we'll walk over to the main store console, where we can browse their list of DVDs to find out which aisle our DVD is in.

And then we can virtually walk to that aisle to find out if it's in stock (look, they have 1000 of them!) And use our mouse and ASDF keys to select the book and remove it from the shelf, where we can see how much it costs.

And then we select it, by putting it in a cart or basket around our arm; and then we use our mouse and ASDF keys to walk over to the checker, who virtually sneers at our selection.

Ah the promise of the brave new world.

Sorry, I'm in a snarky mood this morning.

B. Williams

November 27, 2006 12:53 PM

Anshe Chung's achievement should not be belittled, and I tip my hat. However, her Second Life empire is somewhat less liquid that the write up implies; her holdings are so vast that she would not be able to sell them quickly, so for now her fortune is still virtual.

In Second Life we are all kind of holding our virtual breathes to see what happens when Anshe Chung does decide to cash out.

At any rate, she has certainly proved that it can be done! Brava!

Jason

November 27, 2006 05:38 PM

I'm gonna go out on a limb.

Don't get sucked in. Second Life is a flash in the pan. My employer is currently all over - a very big IT services company - but I really don't know why.

It's not going to be the next google or ebay or anything else.

They've been promising virtual reality for abbout 15 years now...

But as long as it's on my screen here - its horribly 2d and now more than a chat room with an avatar.

This will be useful when we can put our brains in jars and wire them up. Until then I advocate going outsite, sometimes.

ashley

December 3, 2006 10:34 AM

I agree...

There's just something to be said for fresh air


What's the word I'm looking for ... reality.

Giff Constable

December 3, 2006 02:22 PM

Second Life has its believers and skeptics, as you would expect. It certainly will not be all things to all people, but whether it is Second Life or another technology, Metaverse technology is here to stay.

Regarding liquidity, you could argue the same thing about many of the Forbes richest people list. It's not usually cash that puts the billionaires on that list, not surprisingly. Most of their value is tied up in stock, which is a lot less liquid than many people imagine, because at this volume and with their notoriety, they move markets. It's especially illiquid when it is stock is from a company which the billionaire founded/runs.

Jon

December 13, 2006 09:30 AM

There are quite a few millionaires from Virtual goods. www.rpgse.com tracks what virtual wealth is worth in real world cash.

Rohan

December 15, 2006 04:07 PM

Second Life is a joke. It will be washed away in a few years. Get a First Life!

David Batty

February 1, 2007 02:04 PM

Re comments about Second Life being a joke etc.

I assume that the writers haven't been in there, or, if they have then maybe they are not a visionary type of person. Maybe they prefer to criticise something they don't understand.

Second Life is a way people can make serious amounts of money, but only if they have the insight, knowledge, ability and determination to do so, this is very much like real life.

Real life has those that 'DO' and those that 'criticise'. The potential wealth of residents of Second Life is probably a good reflection of their potential wealth in their First Life.

zarghev

February 11, 2007 08:02 PM

"Second Life is a way people can make serious amounts of money, but only if they have the insight, knowledge, ability and determination to do so, this is very much like real life."

Yes, like in real life only a handful of people will make lots of money. Besides, I have personally been in ActiveWorlds, several years ago, and it's all of the same thing, except of course ActiveWorlds.

Besides Anshe Chung is *not* millionaire, her immediately convertible assets (Linden Dollars), is only $10,000. She is millionaire only if she can find enough people to buy (or rent for very long) her creations, which with current 70,000 customers, is totally impossible (not to mention the crash of selling all that property).

Neel Bhatt

February 14, 2007 09:16 AM

Instead of debating between virtual and real worlds we should try to see the virtual world as an enhancement to the real world.

SecondLife and Anshe Chung's work have helped many businesses and people bridge world-wide distances and work and live in a better way. And that should definitely be appreciated.

Monish

February 22, 2007 09:42 PM

This is just unbelievable news!!!

PvB

February 22, 2007 11:53 PM

Hi!
I guess that Second Life is has to be taken seriously because it is an alternative to the real world in the business sense.
You can sell, market and do nearly everything that You would in the real world.
The bit easier part is that the Virtual World has more strict rules which are automatically forced or guarded.
I would risk to say that it is a bit easier to make a good business in the Virtual World than in the Real World so we can't say that a prosperous VIRTUAL businessman would be so prosperous in the Real World.

Still there are so many ways that have not been done in the Virtual World that You just can't imagine so go out (or rather IN) there and find You promised land :-)
Rgds,
PvB

Darrig Kidd

February 23, 2007 01:06 PM

The fundamental limitations in Second Life prohibit the flexibility in income opportunities. Sell your music if you are a musician, or land if you can make a real dollar investment. But since avatars dont need to eat, I cant open a hot dog cart for any real reason.

The opportunities are limited to those who have a significant knowledge of technology. The types of businesses that function in the real world that take limited investment capital, just cant exist in SL. Can you open a shoe shine stand? Hot dog or sandwich cart? Are you a plumber or a handyman? You are out of luck.

If you have a knowledge of Photoshop, 3D modeling software or music editing applicatons you might make a few buck, but thats about it.

Of course, there is always virtual prostitution or gambling.

Peace

Edward

February 24, 2007 11:32 AM

Don't think it will last for a long time , better to focus on first life

Nathaniel

March 22, 2007 01:13 PM

There are going to be more millionaires made in Second Life. The popularity is quickly reaching the likes of myspace and youtube. In the coming years Second Life is likely going to become a billion dollar advertising market.

Ad money goes where people go, and they are going to Second Life.

Dann

March 25, 2007 05:14 AM

Real life and virtual life can go hand-in-hand. They can complement each other in certain aspects. But like everything else in life, there's no perfect complement.

rich

May 20, 2007 10:13 AM

Second Life is going to be around for a long time, and there will be many more millionaires. Remember I said it.

Bill

May 29, 2007 08:34 AM

I recall when web based businesses started, people said, "Well, it will never replace brick an mortar." Which was and is true. Yet, despite the .com bubble and bust, web based business are doing well. And Second Life based businesses will do well, too. I think that there will be a Google level success story in Second Life at some point.

smudger

June 8, 2007 01:32 PM

I have tried Second Life--far too complicated to be interesting, not much help EITHER, just confusing jargon.
DON'T BOTHER.

SMUDGE

June 8, 2007 01:34 PM

Some of the peeps in there seem to think this is real life.
Sad sods need to get out much more.

Neil Simmons

July 5, 2007 05:51 AM

I suppose that if you are spending that much time generating a fortune in vitual life, you probably wouldn't have much of a real life at all.

David

July 10, 2007 08:54 AM

I agree that virtual life is an enhancement of the real life, and it clearly has potencial to keep growing. Don't forget that a huge multinational company put a lot of money in advertisement there before the premiere of their product recently...

Kevin

July 10, 2007 07:05 PM

I signed up to this stuff about 6 months ago. Then I thought better of it as it became to look more and more like my first life, so why try a second life?
I prefer to make my money (as that is where it's all about in the end) in my first life.
Forget about enjoying yourself there. If you can't enjoy yourself in your first life as you wish, poor people.

Net Hustlin'

July 14, 2007 05:21 AM

I think the Linden (second life currency) is going to start losing value pretty quickly. There are many virtual casinos and stores that allow you to "camp" for money, which means they pay you every 10-20 minutes to park your avatar at their store for as long as you want, which makes them appear more popular, thus getting them more business. The problem is that many people are now trying to make money in SL, so instead of spending the money they make by camping, they sell it on e-bay. Without the money being pumped back in to Second Life economy the linden loses its value. This is a big phenomenon that's happening all over SL.

Brian

August 6, 2007 04:21 PM

oh my god, this woman has to be smart right now - figure out an exit strategy and begin it - if that means dump it as quickly as possible and only end up with $500k, so be it - just get out of there and come out big-time ahead - I'm picturing myself in her shoes a year from now or whenever Second Life runs its course looking at her worthless Linden dollars and thinking back to when she had the equivalent of a mil USD and wanting to throw up - GET OUT NOW LADY - you did something remarkable but it will all get wiped away if you don't act soon!

Tim

August 30, 2007 07:25 AM

I think what people are missing here is that this woman has a back-up plan. She runs a real-life business making virtual buildings (separate from half-life) so people can do 'virtual tours'. This is a modern technical advance of the old craft of modelmaking. People will also want a model of their building that they can put in the lobby but they also sometimes want something special for presentations.

Remember that this woman started out with $9.95, had the business strategy to build from there and backed herself up with a real-life extension of her Second-Life business. Does anybody REALLY think that she'll be crying into her cornflakes if the Linden goes belly-up? There are some people in life who seem to have a licence to print money. I think Ailin Graef is one of them.

As far as Second Life not doing well is concerned, to do pretty much anything other than walk around in Second Life (as I understand it) you have to buy Virtual real-estate or virtual goods. This ensures at least a base level of investment.

Peter S. Magnusson

September 23, 2007 05:16 PM

Rob, there are some serious comments here, questioning the validity of the "millionaire" notion. Any response from you? Have you responded elsewhere?

Rob Hof

September 24, 2007 01:13 PM

Peter, I don't think either Anshe Chung or Second Life is a Ponzi scheme by any reasonable definition--in particular, neither is promising returns from buying virtual real estate, so there's no scheme that I can see. So, I've preferred to let people discuss the issues among themselves rather than pontificate further myself. OK, so I guess I just pontificated.

Josef Balbozar

October 25, 2007 03:52 AM

My name is Josef Balbozar, I owe my existence to Second Life and that means more than just walking around or discretionary spending.

With tenacity, originality and entrepreneurial instinct it is possible for an ordinary avatar such as myself to become a success story, in real world terms. For that reason alone trial membership of Second Life is well worth the effort and other resources put into orientation by gamers.

As every starter web-page owner knows - fortune rides the winds of change.

Joseph Adams

March 29, 2008 05:51 AM


"They've been promising virtual reality for abbout 15 years now...

But as long as it's on my screen here - its horribly 2d and now more than a chat room with an avatar.

This will be useful when we can put our brains in jars and wire them up. Until then I advocate going outsite, sometimes."

Virtual Reality is here and has been for quite some time, I think it was in the 80's there was a game console released that gave you a headset and a paddle, it was a tennis game that put you in a 3D environment, of course there was the problem that if you wore it for more than half an hour at a time it gave you headaches and could cause sever disorientation (i think thats because your brain could see things i couldn't feel, i don't know..)
The graphics from what I have seen where awful, but considering how good our current graphical abilities are and the fact that virtual reality and 3D environments are just a matter of the way things are recorded and portrayed I don't see why this should be a flash in the pan atall, if you add to this an article i read online a few days ago (forgive me but I haven't got the lin, google it or something) that a University had created a brain interface, which let people play (second life, specifically) with brian power; I must say I was surprised to head this as the last I heard about brain control was a game in which two people wore headbands and tried to push a ball off of the table.
But, if you add these things together brain control interfaces and a 3D environment, I could see this becoming seriously relevant in business and normal life in the future.
Of course it will have to wait until prices drop enough for it to be affordable, but when they do I will be first in line to get my Second Life full emerssion kit :D

SecondLifer

April 3, 2008 03:51 AM

Just how did "Anshe Chung" supposedly become a millionaire selling pixels? If my experience with her "company" is any indication the answer is simple: good old fashioned fraud and intimidation.

Having read xeroxed press releases like this article, in late 2007 I trusted Anshe Chung and bought 5,000 sq. m. on a Second Life private estate island of hers. I paid $150.00 plus agreed to pay the $30 monthly tier fee. Trust is a major component in the deal, as Second Life owner Linden Labs stipulates that estate owners are like monarchs: they may treat their property buyers any way they choose.

Within a month of my purchase Anshe Chung representatives made specious claims that I had violated the "land covenant" while at the same time admitting they were citing concepts not mentioned in the covenant, i.e., placing a house high out of sight in the sky and having parties. They claimed all my "neighbors" were making complaints.

After a few intial unpleasant encounters with said neighbors, I rarely set foot on the land at ground level: 1) my land on all sides was surrounded by ugly buildings pushed up against the property lines, a covenant violation actually spelled out, and 2) although the island was classified as a mature zone as opposed to PG, my child avatar neighbors were flying spaceships onto me and my friends on my land. I would also log on to find child avatars engaged in sex acts on my land. I and my friends would often discover strange avatars, naked and hard in our midst, demanding cyber sex from us.

My purpose on Second Life was fun, so my solution was to stay 600 metres in the sky in the residence I'd built there, and to limit access to my land to family and friends. This resulted in my land being confiscated by Anshe Chung. I was told by one Anshe Chung rep I was allowed to limit access, then later told by another I could do that only if at least one of our group were on the land at all times. My group was international and 24/7, so this was easy to do. Still later yet another rep then confiscated my land again and changed that stipulation, ordering in threatening terms that I had to open my land to anyone.

My complaints of objectionable behavior of the neighboring child avatars were met with exhortations to mind my own business and enjoy myself. I must say that every interaction with Anshe Chung reps was unpleasant -- they as a matter of course are snippy and insulting, and if you do not agree with them they end the IM conversation, wait for you to log off, then leave a lengthy uncivilised IM while you are offline. It appears to be a practiced, scripted, formulaic routine. They regularly accuse you of all manner of violations, including in my case repeating "you're running a sex club! You're upsetting the neighbors," notwithstanding that all I had there was my virtual house, high in the clouds out of sight, beyond the reach of anyone not invited there by a teleport mechanism.

Immediately after payment of my second $30 monthly fee I was ordered in threatening terms to sell my land back to Anshe Chung for pennies on the dollar or they would confiscate it irrevocably and compensate me nothing. Multiply that times thousands and you see how "meteoric profits" might accrue.

FAced with this I put the land up for sale and accepted an offer of $120, losing $60 -- $30 of my purchase price, and the second $30 monthly tier fee I had just paid.

I visited the site daily thereafter and, lo and behold, shortly after I sold the land the buildings against my former property lines were gone, as were the child avatars.

Unfortunately other con artists are following the Anshe Chung "business model," seeing Second Life owner Linden Labs as a willing accomplice and Second Life denizens as ripe for the picking.

Again, Linden Labs is very clear about its relationship with estate owners: they may treat land buyers on their private estates any way they like -- including confiscating the land without refund -- and Linden Labs will do nothing, claiming it is a neutral service provider. Linden Labs will however knowingly continue to receive a portion of the money fraudlently obtained by such unscrupulous estate owners.

Organized con artists know there is little chance of being held accountable. For one, few people will travel to another state or country to recover a small claim. Linden Labs itself stipulates that it can only be sued in the San Francisco jurisdiction. And the elephant in the room: the focus of Second Life is outrageous sexual behaviors in virtual reality in complete anonymity. It is one giant masked orgy. Linden Labs and its criminal partners are working a kind of tacit blackmail scheme, confident no one is going to risk exposing their real identity in a court proceeding where exotic sexual practices might come up. I have met many closeted gay men in Second Life -- indeed, the land I bought from Anshe Chung was advertised as a gay paradise. Clearly the intent is to prey on victims hesitant to seek redress. I know of many other gay men who have been victimized in Second Life in the same way.

While Linden Labs and its criminal accomplices may be legally safe for now, they are racking up tons of bad karma. If they are hoping one day to be purchased by a deep pocket mega-corporation they will have to atone and clean up their act. No Google or Microsoft would want any part of it, as exposure to civil and criminal complaintsw looks inevitable.

Right now Linden Labs knows full well it is luring victims into a system overrun by bullying extortionists, and then profiting unjustly from that activity.

Just a thought: has any journalist ever investigated the actual background of Anshe Chung tycoon Ailin Graef, if that is in fact her real name?

Ashley B

April 12, 2008 10:53 AM

Second Life, while is is catregorized as a GAME, is not strictly for those with "no lives" and con artists. There are people who actually make a living for themselves and their families. Second Life is a form of recreation just as a Playstation, Wii, DVD player/DVD's etc. People have the freedom to do what they wish, within the realms of the TOA.

While there are in fact those who are out to get people, there are far more people who aren't. Second Life is an effective socialization and networking tool, that is used propely can have positive outcomes... Just ask my daughter. Where it not for Second Life, where I met her FATHER, she would not be here today.

GreyGeek

May 16, 2008 09:16 AM

I've been playing around in SL for about 5 months after purchasing a one year premium subscription. In those six months I had only one incident where "greifers" tried to do damage to my avatar. They failed miserably. Many property owners set flags which nullify the effects of griefers and one can obtain invisible shields or other defenses that make harming an avatar next to impossible.

Sure, there's a lot of virtual sex in SL, but so is there in Las Vegas. It seems that a very large percentage of internet traffic is sexual content, as is pay per view TV. No one is forces a person to go to Las Vegas nor to purchase porn movies on cable TV for at rental stores. Neither does anyone force an avatar to do any of those things in SL. You are responsible for your own behavior in either RL or SL.

That said, there is a lot of education, entertainment and clean FUN to be had in SL. It's a nice way to meet friends and family who are spread across the country or the world. I and a relative of mine reqularly meet in SL to go exploring, try new tools, or what ever. We do it in VOICE chat mode so we don't have to type. The VOICE response is instantaneous, unlike the typing, and like in RL the volume depends on how close your friend is.

I am retiring in a month and plan to enjoy SL for some time to come. Considering the price of fuel right now it is an economical way to travel, with no concern about car or plane crashes. In SL you are resurrected if you die, unlke RL. Besides, I've always like flying around the country like Superman!

AC

June 13, 2008 01:36 AM

I have to laugh at the suggestion that there is any rule of law when it comes to real estate dealings in Second Life. It appears that international back-alley cutthroats have found not just a safe haven but a willing profit-sharing accomplice in Linden Labs. They act with impunity as if convinced that the San Francisco-only jurisdiction agreement will protect them from civil or criminal prosecution. Oh yes and that other thing shielding their sorry con artist hides: the fact that the typical girls-of-all-genders-gone-wild behavior of Second Life denizens will keep most wronged parties from revealing their true identity in court papers. The typical Second Life real estate scam victim individual loss is well under $1,000. Most if not all suck it up and move on.

Imagine a public schoolteacher in Arkansas having a few hundred stolen from him by a criminal Second Life private estate owner. He files a complaint against Linden Labs and/or the Second Life private estate owner, and then it is revealed in court that his virtual name is IP Daily and he is served nightly by an army of loincloth-clad virtual teenage slaves who shower his virtual self with virtual urine on command? Linden Labs and its legion of criminal partners know the pigeons they’re dealing with -- they know their victims are going to take abuse and keep their mouths shut about it.

It is a sickening variation on the entrapment and blackmail of homosexuals in the 1950s, indicative of the fact that these scams often originate in parts of the world with repressive regimes like China or the Caribbean where homosexuals still suffer arrest and government-sanctioned beatings. One specific Second Life Real Estate scam in fact targeted gay men to invest in a “gay paradise.” A dozen gay men were targeted and relieved of a couple of thousand dollars. I know because I was one of those victimized -- not an easy thing to say, harder still to accept. San Francisco-based Linden Labs was made well aware -- well aware -- of every detail of this particular scam and still knowingly earned revenue from it. To date, almost a year later, Linden Labs refuses to respond to the dozens of complaints filed by those victimized. Despicable.

What if that same schoolteacher only came on Second Life to stumble through cartoon reconstructions of great cities and behaved as all prim and proper (and fictional) schoolteachers do? Then suppose he were to attempt to sue an unscrupulous Second Life private estate owner who robbed him with its corporate offices in China? Good luck.

Linden Labs can claim they are equal to an ISP and repeat the familiar and nauseating refrain “we are not responsible, we did not know” for now. But mark my words: this cozy little fraud and tacit blackmail arrangement will one day be blown sky high and there will be not just civil suits, but criminal indictments as well. What corporate and institutional entities Linden Labs has succeeded in luring to Second Life will flee or make expensive demands to stay.

One wonders at times if Linden Labs was in fact set up as an organized crime scheme to begin with. Having a Harvard MBA as CFO one would think Linden Labs could have easily foreseen the obvious plight of legions of unwitting new customers charmed by its colorful and upbeat advertising, and then victimized by the highly organized criminal “private estate owners” Linden Labs sets up in business, protects, and shares unjust enrichment with. I can't say for certain that I have had direct experience with organized crime before in my life, but thanks to Linden Labs, I get the feeling I've been played big time now by professional theft rings on more than one occasion.

Funny how you only read cute, sunny articles about Second Life. You don’t hear about organized criminal private estate owners -- not one word. Not in Forbes or Barron’s or the New York Times, or any so-called SL newspaper, until it happens to you. Then EVERYBODY you know has a story about it happening to them or to a friend or family member. Don’t be a victim. LEARN FROM OUR EXPERIENCE:

DO NOT BUY LAND PARCELS ON SECOND LIFE FROM ANY -- ANY -- PRIVATE ESTATE OWNER. PERIOD.

-- INCLUDING -- INCLUDING -- THE LARGEST AND MOST WELL-PUBLICIZED VIRTUAL REAL ESTATE COMPANIES YOU MIGHT HAVE READ ABOUT. THAT JUST MEANS THEY KNOW MORE TRICKS, AND HAVE AN ENDLESS SUPPLY OF ACCOMPLICES AND MORE CASH TO PAY PEOPLE OFF WITH.

-- INCLUDING -- INCLUDING -- THAT BEST AND DEAREST MOST INTIMATE FRIEND WHO YOU CAN’T BELIEVE YOU’VE BEEN FORTUNATE ENOUGH TO MEET ON SL, OR THEIR CLOSEST, DEAREST AND MOST TRUSTED FRIEND WHO JUST HAPPENS TO BE OFFERING YOU THE MOST AMAZING DEAL ON THE MOST BEAUTIFUL PLACE.

ASK THE LINDENS AND THEY WILL TELL YOU IT IS TRUE: A PRIVATE ESTATE OWNER CAN TAKE HUNDREDS OF DOLLARS FROM YOU FOR “LAND” AND MONTHLY TIER FEES, THEN TURN AROUND THE NEXT DAY AND THROW YOU OFF THAT LAND FOR GOOD AND DISAPPEAR, AND THEN REAPPEAR LATER WITH A DIFFERENT AVATAR WHO SUDDENLY OWNS YOUR RENAMED ESTATE ISLAND AND RESELLS IT TO OTHER SUCKERS LIKE YOU. LINDEN LABS WILL NOT WARN YOU ABOUT THIS, WILL NOT INVESTIGATE, WILL NOT COMPENSATE YOU AND WILL NOT PUT THE CRIMINAL OUT OF BUSINESS. LINDEN LABS WILL PLAY DEAD AND WILL NOT RESPOND TO YOUR INQUIRIES. LINDEN LABS WILL HOWEVER KNOWLINGLY KEEP THE MONEY THEY RECEIVED FROM THE THIEF WHO STOLE IT FROM YOU, AND WILL CONTINUE TO COLLECT MONEY FROM THAT SAME THIEF THAT HE OR SHE STEALS FROM OTHER VICTIMS.

ASK THE LINDENS AND THEY WILL TELL YOU IT IS TRUE: A PRIVATE ESTATE OWNER CAN POPULATE THE LAND SURROUNDING YOURS IN A MATURE ZONE WITH SMALL CHILD AVATARS WHO COME ONTO TO YOUR LAND AND PERFORM SEX ACTS, AND WHEN YOU COMPLAIN OR ATTEMPT TO BLOCK THEIR ACCESS, THE PRIVATE ESTATE OWNER CAN CLAIM YOU HAVE BROKEN YOUR “COVENANT” AND THREATEN TO CONFISCATE YOUR LAND WITHOUT COMPENSATION UNLESS YOU SELL IT BACK TO THEM FOR PENNIES ON THE DOLLAR. THIS IS BUT ONE OF A WHOLE UGLY PLAYBOOK OF REPULSIVE TRICKS “PRIVATE ESTATE” OWNERS FROM MANY WORLD CULTURES USE TO HARASS YOU AND INTIMIDATE YOU OFF YOUR LAND AFTER THEY HAVE YOUR MONEY. THESE ARE RUTHLESS PROFESSIONALS FROM DESPERATE BACKGROUNDS. HOW DO YOU THINK THESE SHADOWY COMPANIES OUT OF NOWHERE MAKE MILLIONS SELLING PIXELS? DO NOT BELIEVE THE HYPE FOR ONE SECOND!

Even with the US dollar taking a beating, in developing countries many people still make less than the equivalent of one dollar a day. There $1,000 is like $10,000 or $20,000 and $1M is like $10M OR $20M. If an individual can steal a few hundred a month from “rich people” like you on Second Life he can live like a king in his country. If she can get her family and friends in on the scam they can be touted in financial journals as a phenomenal international corporate success. When career criminals in developing countries realize how easy Linden Labs has made it to perpetrate virtual real estate fraud on Second Life users, it’s like gold fever to them. It’s like those phony emails from Nigeria promising a dead man’s millions but with far better odds for the criminal. If you want to redistribute some of your “wealth” to developing countries, donations to OXFAM will actually feed the hungry and work toward solutions to poverty.

If Linden Labs is looking to one day be bought out for a billion or three by a deep pocket company I do hope potential buyers solicit stories from Second Life users when making that decision. Unless they clean house and clean up their act at Linden Labs, ain't NOBODY legitimate EVER gonna touch this fish as it is: dead, stinking and rotting from the head. IBM reportedly has $100M invested in Second Life. Do they have a clue what's going on?

Calm Hill

June 18, 2008 03:51 PM

And what exactly is second life???

Just kidding

www.calmhill.com

star

June 23, 2008 04:39 PM

Second life is a "virtual world" it was launched in 2003 and came to takeoff in 2006...so its fairly honeymoonin..

Mari Vega

June 28, 2008 08:29 PM

Second Life was really enthralling for the first couple of times I entered, except that it crashed my little laptop, and seemed to be no more than a big meat market with mucho shopping. About my 3rd time in, I made a comment to some buffed out dude that nearly landed on my virtual head, "Nice biceps." And said no more. I'm not normally sarcastic, but the overall sameness of everyone in that world with their Barbie & Ken bodies, no matter the clothes or color of skin, was a big joke. When we parted ways some moments later, my legs kept falling out from under me. (He) had somehow sabotaged my avatar. That's when I quit. I've got enough real-life weirdness.

Maki

July 5, 2008 03:12 AM

Many thanks for this fine site. Lots to learn here. I'll be back many times.


http://www.buy-essays.com

Kishalaya

July 17, 2008 05:39 AM

Its good to hear that someone can be a millionaire from the virtual world, its an eye opening event and the developer community needs to get on the bandwagon of virtual world and create even more interesting stuffs.

Very good info.
Thanks,
Kishalaya
http://blog.kishalaya.com

Okami Zenovka

September 10, 2008 02:22 PM

Anshe Chung
I am amazed about what you do. Its amazing I would love to meet you on Second Life sometime. Not for money but see what it's like =)

Im proud of you keep up the good work =)

From Lucy Wicker

Second life name: Okami Zenovka

Totally Virtual Realty in Alabama

September 21, 2008 10:21 AM

Your article was great! but check out my article its a little different from your company but my best wishes go out to you and keep you the good work!

Here is my article:

Totally Virtual Realty is the new wave of Real Estate.

Owning a virtual real estate business could save you lots of money its not just working on the internet its all about face to face customer service

Apr 25, 2008 – Totally Virtual Realty is the new wave of doing real estate in this generation. We are a full service company where technology meets customers service and the home buyer needs. With gas prices at an all time high and the economy slowing down going virtual is a great way to start a real estate firm. Most people do not understand what '' virtual ''really means, they always say hey ' is that an internet company only?'

The answer is no! Totally Virtual Realty is a full service company with real licensed professional Agents working to serve the home market! Our company has a combination of connecting with our clients through the internet or in person if they are local. We are members of the National Association of Realtors and this says a lot!

Totally Virtual Realty have been very successful in Alabama since opening their doors in 2008. We do business nationally by networking with other agencies whom are members of the National Association of Realtors

Visit our website: www.TotallyVirtualRealty.com
Phone (205) 447-2781
Cotina & Carlos Mayes, Broker/ Owners

UCantBeSerious

October 15, 2008 08:59 PM

*sigh*

sallybee

November 16, 2008 12:41 AM

I was thinking about venturing into this virtual world as a way to supplement income but thanks to the candid remarks that I've read, I won't. This sounds like a total crock..."sigh"

hyperdyne lupundu

November 22, 2008 12:57 AM

the funny thing is u guys don't realize one thing. linden more than triples their $linden$ value every time someone purchases something, every time some purchases a land, REPAYS for it when the monthly time expires, and absolutely every time someone buys from a 'lindopia' main store, keep also in mind, they have created the virtual equivalent to a new type of money, and once a money is started in order for its reality to exist at all it must exist!! this is also highly convenient money, you don't even need to put it in your pocket-someone can basically look at your object from 500000000 virtual-meters away and it can be already tied into your paypal! linden wont go belly up, nor will it run out of land space, so long as they receive money , one hardrive of nowaday can easily store 5000 miles of virtual dirt! ladies and gentleman its the virtual age, grab some dirt before 20 billion people of the earth take up theirs before you!

Todd Gurss

December 13, 2008 08:05 PM

Hmmm.. Spend some free time - Like a hobby - make some money you didn't have? Appliying what you learned on 2nd life in real life? Sounds good... Where can you go wrong. If you get a real life you spend money buying stuff , and in 2nd life you can make stuff to sell. Sign me up... If I dont make it , I dont have anything to loose.

Deb

December 29, 2008 08:44 PM

I have tried out second life for some research for an article I am working on. SL was my first experience as an avatar. I was excited about meeting people and talking with them but my first experience was two avatars talking about have sex. I thought that was strange, but I continued flying around trying to figure out the world. I can see how some might have stopped their exploration at their first experience. I am just now discovering the ins and outs of SL and I am amazed that some people are able to blame others for their lack of entrepreneurship. I find it even more hilarious that people are actually victimized in SL! Since when can a person choose an environment, and then blame others for not liking it. In the RL, if you do not like a location....then you just don't go back. Why is that any different in SL? SL is not RL. The avatars might represent you, but probably not. When you meet an avatar don't expect the truth. If after time, you figure out that person is really being honest then terrific...add them to your friend list. Otherwise, take your friendships there with a grain of salt. My advice to those of you that are being victimized....consider this....stop going into SL...you have a choice.

My greatest concern is the integration of young children into this environment. That is where we need to put our energy. If the young are being preyed upon, then it is no longer a "game" . Children often are not able to discern real and fantasy and can be lured into places. We need to be concerned out the children and promote a safe haven for learning and gaming where sex acts are not their first encounters.

QatanI'

December 31, 2008 05:11 PM

Second Life is here to stay, yes, it will evolve and it will merge in time with other virtual worlds along with Google and Yahoo and others until one day the internet is one big virtual world. We will have a universal avatar tied to secure bank accounts for shopping and business, similar to MS passports and wallets. The virtual internet today is fledgling like AOL was in the beginning. Consider this article: http://www.networkworld.com/news/2008/040308-ibm-second-life-virtual.html
I have been in SL for 2 years and I may never leave, watching it evolve is amazing.

Albert Fisher

January 8, 2009 06:46 AM

Rob, I was seriously thinking of spending sometime setting up a learning environment in SecondLife: a bit like INSEAD but on a much more modest scale. We coach Spanish speakers with their English.
Having read through the comments above, I would be worried about my students and I bumping into or, worse, being bumped into by unsavoury characters. Are my fears unfounded or do the "burned" people here have a point? Thanks.

Rob Hof

January 8, 2009 12:52 PM

Albert, you can easily set up private environments on Second Life and avoid the problems some commenters mention--which in my experience are not all that widespread anyway. I'd suggest buying land directly from Linden Lab (the operator of Second Life) and using privacy settings to avoid jokers.

Chris Dodd

January 16, 2009 07:25 PM

oneseason.com has really taken this concept to another level

Toshkamuto Dragovar

January 20, 2009 11:50 AM

Amazing, someone making their money out of a Virtual game. Truly incredible I am making houses in Second Life myself. I am hoping the designs will sell OK, and the interior designs to be brought too. I probably wont succeed but I will try my best. Anshe Chung has done a great job.

Toshkamuto Dragovar (Second Life name)

Axel Oakleaf

September 24, 2009 05:06 PM

Don't put down Second Life,because you can make money in it,many companies IRL make money from selling cars and whatnot,so it's another form of business.

Axel Oakleaf(Second Life name)

durrrrrrrr second life

November 23, 2009 10:57 PM

hey guys guess what... this is stupid get a real life

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