About Second Life®

Developed by San Francisco based company Linden Lab, Second Life is an online 3D virtual world used by users or ‘residents’ (as they are commonly referred to) from around the world.

Second Life allows users or ‘residents’ to come together to interact, play, learn, do business and communicate in an online environment which is 100% user owned and created. The platform provides tools which allow residents to build their own environments, create highly personalised avatars, clothes, vehicles and all sorts of amazing virtual objects.

Second Life residents can engage in rich, sensory experiences, authentic contexts, activities, and opportunities for reflection that form an exciting new domain for a range of educational applications including distance education, vocational and tertiary education and workplace training.

Much like massively multiplayer games, Second Life provides an immersive environment for users to play and interact in. However, Second Life goes beyond a game, allowing residents to build and create their own environments; and interact with others from around the globe.

Key Features of Second Life:

The key characteristics of Second Life include:

  • Completely user-generated content – it’s an open world that gives users creative control.
  • Relatively easy-to-use built-in building and scripting tools allow users to create almost any object or any experience they can imagine.
  • Customisable avatars – users can create highly individualised ‘virtual selves’.
  • Users own the intellectual property for their creations.
  • A real in-world economy with real money transfer makes it easy to buy and sell creations (and profit from them). More than $5 million USD is transacted between users every month.
  • Audio and video can be streamed from the web and played in-world.
  • Linden Labs has tended to take ahands-off approach to governance, allowing the residents to self-govern (although residents are expected to abide by the Terms of Service and Community Standards).

In short, Second Life is an environment where users are designing, conducting business, building relationships, entertaining, learning, and living their virtual lives.