Metaverse: Gran Turismo v Nissan, Second Life v Penises

The new “Gran Turismo” game from Sony was up against some stiff competition, so for the promotional campaign it teamed up with Nissan to help spread the word. A competition was created offering the chance for an unsung racing driver to compete against the very best. Consumers had to register for the contest on the website or via their PlayStation 3 and then complete a virtual lap of a specific racetrack, in a specific car, on their console. The best drivers were invited to compete for real on a racetrack, and the champions in those races then went head-to-head in a GT Academy in the UK. The two ultimate winners were then signed up to represent Team Nissan in the 24-hour endurance race in Dubai in January 2009.
Pay no attention to the furry avatar behind the curtain. Linden Lab has a new pitch for Second Life: it wants to be a 3D teleconferencing platform for enterprise customers. Today the company announced a new product called “Immersive Workspaces,” an area in Second Life set aside for corporate meetings. Of course, you could already do that years ago, but this new product is “a completely exclusive and secure experience, with no connectivity to the Second Life mainland.” In other words, business users can be confident no one will crash their event with a barrage of flying penises.
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