The ABC in Second Life: one year on

The 19th March brings up the one-year anniversary of the ABC’s launch of ABC Island. Launch night coincided with the screening of You Only Live Twice on Four Corners. Since that time, there’s been a steady stream of events, including a great number organised by the Australian community of Second Life residents who frequent the island.


ABC Island’s presence is a modest one when compared to the Telstra build, but it packs a lot of variety in the area it does inhabit. The Sandbox remains the most popular area, but themed areas like Melbourne Laneways provide a lot of ongoing interest as well.

There are also rumours of further expansion via another island. I caught up with Lisa Romano (SL: Lise Robbiani), the ABC’s Project Manager, Strategic Development for its Innovation unit, who wouldn’t confirm the rumours. We also asked her to confirm the original intent of the presence in Second Life. “The ABC created a presence in Second Life to learn more about virtual worlds so that it could understand how to create and present content and build a community in this rapidly growing three-dimensional environment. One of the ABC’s core principles is to reach audiences wherever they are and to pursue opportunities for innovation, so a new platform of this kind which shows strong audience growth and interest is worth exploring,” Romano said.

So after a year of effort in Second Life, has it been worth it for the ABC? Romano certainly thinks so. “We are thrilled with the response from audiences over the past year. The response has been overwhelmingly positive, and we feel like the Island really offers a sense of Australian community based around content, creativity and innovation for both Australian and international visitors, mainly due to the dedication and enthusiasm of the ABC Friends Group.”

That same ABC Friends Group (of which I’m a minimally contributing member) is organising some anniversary events this week. There’ll be plenty of information in-world or watch this space for details.

What are your thoughts on ABC Island’s first year? Has it been a success? How do you see it evolving in the coming year?

Australia Day 2008 in Second Life

An excellent grass-roots effort has been put in by a handful of Australian Second Life residents to ensure Australia Day 2008 goes off in style in-world.

There’s a cricket pitch with plenty of spectator seating, a special Australia Day version of Wolfie Rankin’s Rockit music trivia extravaganza and lots more.



Come dressed in your best whites from 8pm AEDT tonight (Rockit commences at 7pm)

Check it out in-world

Update: Gary Hayes has some great photos of the festivities here

Previous Posts