Although many would say that Second Life is not a game, but a social phenomenon, I think it is a bit of both. You keep creating a virtual avatar, touring virtual environments and doing virtual things, although you are not alone, but you are part of a social phenomenon with thousands of other people. So how can something virtual, something from a “game,” like the Linden Dollars used in Second Life, become real-life spending dollars? The economy of the game allows it and the fact that you face other people who are willing to spend a few dollars in this virtual environment answers your question. But to use the Second Life economy, we must understand it.
Second Life – Virtual Economy
The entire economy of Second Life is based on the in-game currency, called the Linden Dollar, or simply L $. About 270 Linden Dollars are equal to one US dollar, and you can easily transact Linden Dollars into US dollars (or various other currencies) using Second Life currency exchanges.
With millions of Second Life residents buying and selling items, land, and property, it’s not hard to understand how this economy comes to life. In reality, virtual economy analysts at Metastat’s Bureau of Statistics estimated that Second Life will have a GDP of more than $ 550 million in 2007. $ 550 times 270 = Linden Dollar Loads flowing freely in the Second Life economy.
Converting virtual money to real money is easy in the world of Second Life, and you have several options for doing so. First, you can go from Linden to real dollars using the Linden Lab forex brokerage, which the creators of Second Life closely monitor. Or you can try the LindeX currency exchange, which many residents prefer to the old currency exchange offered by Linden Labs. Last but not least, if you want better management of your transactions, you can use a third-party currency exchange program , but keep in mind that you are using them at your own risk.
As you can see, it is not very difficult to go from Linden to real dollars and you have several options at hand. However, changing the money is not the difficult part, but doing it is! It’s not easy to make money as a beginner in Second Life, but if you move up and get “rich” in the virtual world, you can start to cash in on real dollars and really make a living out of it. Many trained residents have built successful businesses within Second Life that allow them to earn real money. Just like in real life, Second Life has its giants, with various real estate owners or premises owners generating thousands of real dollars every month as they can basically live off the profits made in the virtual world of Second Life.