In the virtual world as much as the real one, the past months have been filled with bleak economic news. Following a federal investigation, Second Life’s parent company, Linden Lab, banned all gambling in the virtual world–a major source of its business. A month later, the collapse of an in-world bank led to a crackdown on all of Second Life’s unregulated financial institutions. Most worryingly, Linden Lab’s sales of Linden Dollars–the world’s currency–trickled off during the second half of 2007, and in February 2008 still stood just below where it did the same time a year before, about $720,000 a month, compared with $800,000 in February 2007.
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