It is really interesting to learn about the origin of virtual worlds.
Nowadays, virtual worlds like second life have become some people’s real life. On an episode of True Life, the cameras follow a young woman who is shy and introverted in her real life, and outgoing and famous on second life. This is an example of how people use this world to be what they consider better than their real selves. Virtual worlds provide a space for people who may not fit in, in the real world and give them the confidence to be who they really are. I found it really interesting how you pointed out the fact that these virtual worlds are actually virtual communities. People can fantasize about a place and build it quite easily. They can also build products and sell them via second life. The virtual world has gone way beyond simply being an avatar and conversing with other people on the site. It has become some people’s preferred realities.
Technology has made it possible for people to be completely different and live in completely different worlds. It has opened up a new world where its residents can be free to express themselves. I feel that this is a good thing in a way because it gives people who are not confident an outlet where they can be themselves. However, it also promotes deception. People can pretend to be older or younger to gain other users attention and predators can target people easily in a virtual world. It also may promote isolation because some users are using the virtual worlds as their only communication with others. For the most part, I am fascinated with virtual reality and see the benefits as long as the sites are used for the right reasons.