Archive for the ‘Virtual Life’ Category

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New York’s attorney general, Andrew Cuomo, has charged that Tagged.com stole the identities of more than 60 million internet users worldwide – by sending emails that raided their private accounts. He plans to sue the social networking website for deceptive marketing and invasion of privacy.


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TweetCraft is an in-game Twitter client for World of Warcraft and a Microsoft Coding4Fun Project. With it, you can send/receive Tweets, upload screenshots, and even AutoTweet in-game achievements!

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The social network Twitter was asked by the US government to delay a planned outage in order to allow Twitter users in Iran to report on events taking place following the recent controversial election. Dubbed the “Twitter Revolution,” Iran’s government attempted a total media shutdown but cell phone owners have been able to send tweets without interference.

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Habbo, which see more than 11 million unique users each month, today released its annual Global Habbo Youth Survey Brand Update. The study, says Habbo, explores teens’ connection and interests toward individual brands and highlights their preferences in categories including consumer electronics, music, sportswear, and games. On the game/virtual worlds front, Runescape maintained its number one status among US respondents, followed by Gaia Online, IMVU, World of Warcraft, and Club Penguin.

Top Online Games / Virtual Worlds (other than Habbo)
1. Runescape
2. Gaia Online
4. World of Warcraft
5. Club Penguin
6. MySpace
7. Meez
8. Maple Story
9. Neopets
10. The Sims

Top Web sites (other than Habbo)
1. MySpace
2. YouTube
3. Facebook
4. Addicting Games
5. Runescape
6. Google
7. Yahoo
8. Gaia Online
9. Club Penguin
10. Miniclip

The study was conducted in April, 2009, collecting the opinions of some 112,000 teens between the ages of 11-19.

Source: Virtual World News

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From the UK;s Daily Telegraph newpaper’s Matthew Moore:

“Great works of literature are being shortened into 140-character “tweets”, in the latest diversion to grow out of the popular Twitter website. Classics by Charles Dickens, JD Sallinger and Jane Austen are among the novels to have been boiled down to a sentence by bookish readers of the micro-blogging site.

“Whilst the haiku-like brevity of the synopses will appeal to modern readers more accustomed to skimming their emails than working through 600-word tome, literary purists may be put off by the internet slang.

“Samuel Beckett’s bleak play Waiting for Godot is reduced to: “Vladimir and Estragon stand next to tree and wait for Godot. Their status is not updated.”

“The fuss surrounding the publication of DH Lawrence’s novel Lady Chatterley’s Lover in 1960 is summed up with the web acronym for websites that are not suitable for work: ‘Upper-class woman gets it on with gamekeeper.’

“Tim Collins, a writer who has collected some of his own potted summaries in a new book, said that while the compositions are intended to be tongue-in-cheek the platform opens up new possibilities for art and education.

“‘It’s very easy to knock Twitter as something you use to tell the world what you ordered in Starbucks this morning, but it’s more than that,’ he said.

“‘What it is really good for is live-blogging events as they take place, and that can work for historical events too. Over Easter a church in the US re-created the death and Resurrection of Christ through tweets.'”

Illiterates around the world will now no longer have to endure even the shortened “Cliff Notes” version of classics but can now get all they need from 140 characters or less. is it only a matter of time before books actually get written this way?

I cry to think that my favorite book, Zorba the Greek, may end up as “Dionysian Cretan meets Apollonian Greek and open a mine on an island. Woman is killed, mine fails, Zorba dies. Man learns life lesson.”

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In a press release on May 15th, the UN Secretary-General, Ban Ki-moon called for better protection of children in cyberspace.

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon

“As they surf through cyberspace seeking information and entertainment and building social networks, they are also among the most vulnerable to exploitation. Without safeguards, their precious lives are at grave risk in the vicious world of cybercriminals and pedophiles that prey on easy targets.”

The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child both recognizes the right to access to information but also accords protection against all forms of inducement to engage in unlawful activities, the Secretary-General said, calling for these provisions to be applied rigorously.

“The virtual world has exciting possibilities for nurturing children and helping them grow into creative, productive adults,” said Ban Ki-moon.

“But we must mind the pitfalls that could scar them for life,” Mr. Ban said, calling on policy-makers and industry leaders to take action to ensure the safety of all in the rapidly-evolving virtual world.

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Virtual Student Foreign Service (VSFS) Internships, announced by Secretary Clinton at the 2009 New York University commencement speech, are part of a growing effort by the State Department to harness technology and a commitment to global service among young people to facilitate new forms of diplomatic engagement. The VSFS Internships will be developed over the next year and will seek to harness the energy of a rising generation of citizen diplomats.

Working from college and university campuses in the United States, American students will partner with our embassies abroad to conduct digital diplomacy that reflects the realities of our networked world.

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