History needs a push

Back in April I received an email inviting me to participate in a beta test of Metaplace, the “next-generation virtual world platform”, that, its designers hoped, would make it easy for anyone to create their own little metaverse.

“Lonely?” the invite inquired enticingly, before promising that I could “meet new friends to chat and build with.” I can’t say that I wasn’t tempted, but I figured that wasting my time in one virtual world was enough to be going on with, and gave it a pass.

I kept meaning to go back and have a proper look in the months that followed, but never quite got round to it. I was interested in what their monetisation strategy might be, and this week I found out; they didn’t have one, and are shutting down their operations early next month.

Metaplace isn’t the only player in the virtual world business to hit trouble recently; Forterra have laid off half of their staff, and are rumoured to be up for sale.

I hope there isn’t going to be a virtual rerun of the real world financial crisis, with relatively small outfits going to the wall first, to be followed by the big operations that everyone thought were solid. It would be vexing, to say the least, if Second Life were to disappear just as I have finally worked out something fun to do with it, though perhaps an atmosphere of impending crisis will help my plans.

Here’s me in my new outfit, in a bar in Steelhead, a steampunk community in the Pacific Northwest:

I’m trying my best to look like a Wobbly, though I’m perhaps a little too smart. Clothes for the common man are hard to get hold of in SL; the best I could do was this Victorian worker’s suit by Eladrienne Laval. At least the neckerchief is deepest red. I’m going to try to get some radical agitating started in the new year, once I’ve worked out what our demands should be, and had some flyers and red cards printed up.

One Response to History needs a push

  1. Hey! I live in Steelhead and have the same suit – you’re not stalking me are you? πŸ˜‰

    Seriously, if you want a tour of the joint, just drop me a line in-world πŸ™‚

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