'Second Life' tops 1 million

The virtual world

A few years ago, it was considered an article of faith that massively multiplayer online games and virtual worlds, at least American ones, couldn't reach 1 million subscribers. Then along came "World of Warcraft," which quickly disabused the world of that notion.

Inside Second Life

Now, "Second Life" has joined the seven-figure club. On Wednesday, the so-called metaverse, which launched in 2003, passed the million mark. And Its growth--it was at 963,212 accounts midway through Tuesday, and sits at 1,014,617 at this writing--is continuing at a brisk pace, at least 20 percent a month.

Of course, the question of how many "Second Life" users there are has always been debatable, since anyone can open an account for free. The company attempts to address that by publicizing the number of accounts that have been active within the last 60 days. And as of this writing, that number was 405,931. But even that number can be misleading as that includes anyone who opened an account within 60 days, many of whom presumably leave and never come back.

Still, it's impressive to see "Second Life" grow, and there are certainly several hundred thousand active users. So, a toast to a million accounts. Here's looking at the next million.

About the author

Daniel Terdiman is a senior writer at CNET News covering Twitter, Net culture, and everything in between.

 

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