The Metaverse Is a Passing Fad? Second Life Just Celebrated Its 20th Birthday with 750k MAUs

The 3D virtual world allows people to create and interact in 3D avatars, making it the pioneer of metaverse experiences.
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Quick take:

  • The Original Metaverse platform Second Life celebrated its 20th birthday.
  • Created by Linden Labs in 2003, the platform provides 3D virtual experiences.
  • It has since grown to become the largest metaverse platform in the world, onboarding more than 73 million users.

Some of the world’s biggest tech companies have either distanced themselves from the word metaverse or recently scaled down their investments in the burgeoning industry. Apple is a perfect example for those that have tried to stay away from the idea despite building products that are tailor-made for the industry, while Microsoft is a good reference for the latter after pulling the plug on its industrial metaverse project.

According to the press release on Thursday, since inception, more than 73 million accounts have been created in Second Life, with around 750K monthly active users.

Second Life gives users “residents” an opportunity to extend their physical experiences into the virtual world by connecting them with thousands of engaging virtual environments and communities.

Residents and creators can generate income from the Second Life marketplace by selling millions of virtual items and services to other users. According to the announcement, the Second Life marketplace oversees more than 1.6 million transactions every day.

Commenting on the press release, Philip Rosedale, Founder of Second Life said: “When we first shared Second Life with the world in 2003, we had one mission in mind: to create a positive, enriching experience for its residents. While others continue to try, no other company has come close to building a world like Second Life.”

Some of the key stats provided in the announcement include over 500 live performances including music and discussions, Shop & Hop — the company’s largest shopping event in a year with over 500 merchants and creators, and over 300 community exhibits among others.

Brad Oberwager, CEO and Executive Chairman of Second Life commended the hundreds of thousands of residents who have made Second Life the experience it is today, also highlighting their positive, supportive, and accepting communities.

“Our commitment to rewarding freedom of expression, as well as protecting customer privacy, has helped establish Second Life as a successful pioneer in virtual economies, cultures, and communities over the past twenty years, and has allowed us to create a virtual world in which user identification and information is protected and not monetized for advertisers. We look forward to continuing to be a leader in virtual world and metaverse innovations,” added Oberwager.

With several tech companies and industry critics seemingly dismissing the metaverse as a passing fad, Second Life shows that the industry may after all be able to stand the test of time.

Linden Labs, the parent company of Second Life revamped its metaverse platform in January 2022 after receiving significant investment from High Fidelity. Second Life founder Philip Rosedale also returned to the company as a strategic advisor.


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