The Second Life user-concurrency and user-to-user transaction figures took a bit of an unexpected jump this week, rising sharply after a year of relatively little motion. Through 2009, user-concurrency has been on a slight, though not terribly significant decline, while user-to-user transactions remained flat and rather unexciting.
The sudden rise coincided with an advertising campaign by Linden Lab, where James Cameron's Avatar and Second Life were rather strongly linked in a series of banner advertisements run on YouTube and as a part of Linden Lab's affiliate program.
We asked Linden Lab about the obvious connection drawn in the advertisements yesterday, and received the following response:
"While we're certainly fans of the Avatar film, and of blue avatars (not to mention pink, green, yellow, and robot avatars), we do not want to cause any confusion between Second Life and the movie with this advertisement, and we plan to change it to avoid any misunderstanding."
In the meantime, unofficial roleplay areas resembling settings from the film are flourishing and populated with film-inspired avatars, and even some direct knock-offs, although Linden Lab has reportedly already taken action against some of the derived digital works.
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