Exodus to the Virtual World: How Online Fun Is Changing Reality

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Palgrave Macmillan, Nov 27, 2007 - Business & Economics - 235 pages
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Virtual worlds have exploded out of online game culture and now capture the attention of millions of ordinary people: husbands, wives, fathers, mothers, workers, retirees. Devoting dozens of hours each week to massively multiplayer virtual reality environments (like World of Warcraft and Second Life), these millions are the start of an exodus into the refuge of fantasy, where they experience life under a new social, political, and economic order built around fun. Given the choice between a fantasy world and the real world, how many of us would choose reality? Exodus to the Virtual World explains the growing migration into virtual reality, and how it will change the way we live--both in fantasy worlds and in the real one.

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Chapter One Dreams Fashioned in Silicon 3
Chapter Two Game Societies 21
Chapter Three Worlds of the Future 45
Chapter Four Migration 63
Chapter Five In Search of an Understanding of
Chapter Six A Theory of Fun 91
Chapter Seven VirtualWorld Design as Public Policy 109
Chapter Nine The Fun Society 159
Ending the Politics
Epilogue 209
Notes 223

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About the author (2007)

Edward Castronova is the author of Synthetic Worlds: The Business and Culture of Online Games,  he has been featured in such media as  60 Minutes, NPR, and  The New York Times. He is Associate Professor and Director of Graduate Studies in Telecommunications at Indiana University. He lives in Bloomington, Indiana.