Morning from the groovy virtual worlds forum, London. Let me paint the scene – urban regenerated warehouse type place with Ikea chandeliers, more apple laptops than you can shake a stick at and loads of journalists in quiet corners getting the latest soundbites from folk including IBM’s very own Roo Reynolds and Ian Hughes.

Last night was the SXSWi mixer event where I finally got to meet Lisa Smith, Paul Ledak and others.

The first two sessions of this morning were from Politicians: Lord Puttenham of Queensgate and Lord Triesman of Tottenham who emphasised that this industry needs to accomodate a significant education element and a responsible approach to young people and children. It will also need to tackle the major IP issues raised by virtual worlds.

We also heard from Paul Jackon from Forrester Research and Jessica Mulligan from Cyber Sports Ltd. who pointed out that some 50% of revenue in online gaming are from Asia – Japan, Korea, China etc. and there are some Chinese online games that dwarf Second Life.

Also, when we look at web2.0, about 10% of the user base are “creatives”. When we look at Second Life, some 60-70% can be considered as creatives, so this is a great community for businesses to get feedback from.

Also VERY INTERESTINGLY, some feedback that Google is definately creating a virtual world as Jessican mentioned that lots of his friends are being hired to design it!

Finaly comment was that in terms of buying digital stuff, anecdotally, people either spend nothing or get hooked and set their credit cards on fire, so I guess the challenge is how to get people to START parting with cash.

Further updates coming…. Watch this space.

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