This may be a milestone that's important only to me, but The New Yorker will offer its first mention of Second Life in its next issue (parenthetically, to be sure) within a long profile of Will Wright by John Seabrook. Seabrook was among the first writers to explore the culture of high technology for the world's most venerated magazine, and so it's no surprise that his understanding of Second Life seems more up to date than Wright's:
The influence of Will Wright was not immediately obvious on the [E3] trade floor. His sandbox aesthetic is more noticeable in online virtual communities like Second Life, created by Linden Lab, and based in San Francisco, which uses a similar operating system to The Sims Online. Second Lifers can buy space in a Sim-City-like community, and use it for commercial transactions—conducted in virtual currency that can be exchanged for real money out in the real world. Aspiring musicians can perform onstage while their music is streamed over an audio channel. Second Life seems like a logical outcome of Wright’s simulation games—and it isn’t technically a game at all. When I asked Wright about Second Life, he said, “I think what you’re going to see now on Second Life is people who will start to develop games—someone will invite other people to kick a soccer ball around, and it will go from there.”
Then again, Will Wright's time and attention has been consumed by Spore, so it's understandable if he hasn't had a chance to see how SL has evolved since he stopped by Linden Lab's San Francisco party during GDC 2005, where Philip Linden was demonstrating the game development potential to the wild throng of attendees.
Anyway, the entire New Yorker profile of Wright is online here. I've interviewed Will before, and after Spore has conquered gaming, hope I get a chance to do so in avatar form.