Virtual economies – toppling regimes?

Alex posted an interesting note on his blog yesterday about an article on virtual economies and their possible implications. This was a comment on a discussion around that Anshechung studios is launching the first cross-world exchange, which allows you to invest in any of several virtual worlds (such as SecondLife and Project Entropia).

I love the potential of these to have an even greater first world impact. The fact that they’re inherently extremely hard to control means that they’ll be more liberated from government influence and be freer. Currently, though, I’m worried about the fact that these communities are essentially walled gardens and don’t interoperate – right now the owners are private companies, it’s beyond the reach of any random person to create their own and to be the owner of the content (as it is very much with the internet).

If the global metaverse is not created, based on openness, interoperability and the fact that “anybody can do it” we’re going to create a number of universes more free from government influence but instead bound to a handful corporations. In my opinion, not a good way to go. Hopefully these kind of initiatives will help to push these worlds forward.

The original press release.

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