Over at the Guardian, Vic Keegan has a great post titled “Virtual worlds are getting a second life.” In this, Keegan discusses how social networking sites may get a lot of attention, but virtual worlds have better business models.
There’s another curious thing: Facebook and Twitter are lauded to the skies, but neither has found a way to make money – whereas virtual worlds such as World of Warcraft, Entropia Universe, Habbo Hotel, Club Penguin and Second Life are all profitable because their business models are based on the digital elixir of subscriptions and micropayments, a formula that other websites, including newspapers, would die for. Twitter makes the noise, Second Life makes the money.
While Keegan’s mention of Twinity comes a bit later:
In order to get a more streamlined experience, most of the new virtual worlds don’t allow users to make their own content. Twinity, which has just raised €4.5m in new funding, has a virtual version of Berlin and Singapore (with London still in the pipeline): you buy existing apartments or rent shops but can’t build yourself.
Just to clarify, the point is that location owners build the interiors. And stay tuned for more information on this topic. 😉
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I also wanted to mention that some of the source data for the Guardian piece came from KZero, as noted at http://www.kzero.co.uk/blog/?p=2818