SL: designers & businesses

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POSTED: February 27, 2007

There are a growing number of designers who claim to be making most or all of their living working with clients in SL. Some work with real life clients to build content for them that they can place in SL. Others work entirely inside the world, where their avatar makes objects or runs services for other avatars.

The Electric Sheep Company, for example, is a design company that works only in Second Life and other online worlds, and it now has ten full-time workers. These workers live in different parts of the world and communicate online, mainly inside Second Life where ESC’s office is. Clients for ESC and other similar in-world companies have included BBC Radio 1, Coca Cola, Dell computers, IBM, Toyota as well as a number of film and record companies.

In 2006 there were also at least ten film premieres, rock concerts and similar events staged in Second Life, with the participation of people ranging from Justin Timberlake and Duran Duran to Suzanne Vega.

There are several other synthetic worlds online or under development, and it appears likely that, whether Second Life succeeds or fails, synthetic worlds will become a mainstream leisure and business pursuit. They will offer employment opportunities for designers, programmers, producers and business organisers. We are now at the beginning of this period, which is an ideal time to test the water.

In January 2007 the Swedish Institute commissioned a virtual Swedish embassy inside SL.

Second Style

Other people have set up businesses on the web that service SL users. Online magazines such as SLBusiness Magazine and the visually much more impressive Second Style offer one approach to this.