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You only live twice

Abstract

Our world might be getting smaller, thanks to technology, but virtual worlds and games are booming. Millions of people venture daily into these new and constantly evolving landscapes where they can conquer mythical armies, slay dragons and embark on other fantastical quests. Four Corners explores the bizarre frontiers of virtual worlds, taking a sceptical, sometimes humourous, look at their heavily marketed promise and their pitfalls. Our world might be getting smaller, thanks to technology, but virtual worlds and games are booming. Millions of people venture daily into these new and constantly evolving landscapes where they can conquer mythical armies, slay dragons and embark on other fantastical quests. Four Corners explores the bizarre frontiers of virtual worlds, taking a sceptical, sometimes humourous, look at their heavily marketed promise and their pitfalls. In the virtual world of Second Life, you can painlessly remake yourself as a slim and blemish-free avatar, chat up strangers, shop, or start a business and make (or lose) real money. A cover of Business Week featured the woman who became the first paper millionaire by buying and selling virtual property. Some of the world?s biggest companies are staking territory in Second Life. They don?t want to miss out on what?s touted as the Next Big Thing that the Internet has to offer ? some claim Second Life will be more far-reaching than YouTube or MySpace.

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