The creator of Second Life has a lot to say about all these new ‘metaverses’


Philip Rosedale is one of the few people in the world who can genuinely be called a metaverse pioneer. He founded the company behind Second Life, arguably the closest thing we have to the metaverses first described by sci-fi novels: a user-built 3D world in which inhabitants assume custom avatars, socialize, and run genuine businesses. It went nearly two decades without much direct competition, but all of a sudden it feels like even the pigeons in Silicon Valley are pitching the metaverse. Coo, coo, creator economy…

Philip Rosedale

(Image credit: Linden Lab)

Philip Rosedale founded Linden Lab in 1999 because he “wanted to simulate a world that was real.” He left the company in 2010, but returned as an advisor this year. He also founded High Fidelity, which is currently working on spatial audio. 

Rosedale is taking the metaverse boom (or bubble?) in good humor, but as you’d expect, he’s skeptical that blockchain evangelists and a rebranded Facebook (it’s now “Meta”) have all the answers to questions he’s been thinking about for decades. 





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