« Last Week in New World Notes... | Main | Can OpenSim Worlds Scale Better Than Second Life? »

Monday, February 16, 2009


Feed You can follow this conversation by subscribing to the comment feed for this post.

Zillow Dejavu

I was going through a rough spot this past summer and missed the launch altogether. Sounds like I didn't miss much. But I'm sill puzzled as to why Google folded Lively so quickly. Anyone who launches a new venture knows (or should) that it takes time. With all their resources it seems that with determination and patience Google could have found a winning formula.

Then again, Google has so much going on that Lively maybe wasn't a big priority. Second Life was a priority for Linden Labs and they stuck with it, luckily for all of us. Anyone know what SL's numbers were like during the first few months?

Harper Ganesvoort

No; not...Bob...NOOOOOOO!

Koinup Burt

It seems that Google is deleting several projects that were deployed or bought to expand the business of the big G in a sort speculative/futuristic way.

Virtual Worlds weren't exactly the core business of Google, but it looked to many that Google was giving them a try...

Probably because of the the worlds economic recession, the board decided to focus on the more direct-well known and well proven business models, as search, advertising, open social applications, etc...

There are many virtual worlds that don't have yet the numbers of SL, but they continue to stay alive. I think to Vivaty, Twinity, Kaneva, Vside, etc...

I think that probably along with the not-so-good numbers, Google deleted Lively because it wanted to give a sign of austherity to its shareholders


"but they continue to stay alive. I think to Vivaty, Twinity, Kaneva, Vside, etc..."

VC burn......

Nexii Malthus

Lively was a failure from the start, because it wasn't even a virtual 'world' to begin worth, just a virtual room, kind of like IMVU. Making content for it wasn't even a possibility, just modifying the existing a little bit. It wasn't really much of an independant program as a virtual world should be either.

If it was going to be a virtual world then it was such an extremely premature release. As well as being badly programmed and not well thought out.

Dedric Mauriac

Lively reminded me of IMVU. It was just disconnected 3D chat rooms. It did not give the feeling of being in a virtual world at all. There wasn't much else you could really do other than move furniture around and chat.

Gwyneth Llewelyn

Google often does projects that fail spectacularly :) This is definitely not the only one, and will not be the last.

An internal source I've got (which I won't name :) ) told me that internally this project was hated by most employees anyway (excluding, of course, the 3D group). Google's got a very democratic internal corporate culture, and the project was voted down by its employees to be shut down.

Then again, this was clearly a case where "Google did all wrong". There is absolutely not a single redeeming quality of Lively beyond having the brand Google behind its name. The avatars were ugly; it was painstakingly slow; to follow up in-world chat bubbles were a nightmare, so you had to open the chat history window which would cover 2/3 of the viewport (so, in effect, you'd be in a text-based chatroom and pretty much ignore the 3D virtual world aspect of it); it was hard to find friends; and everything else was insanely difficult to do (even moving). It's quite hard to imagine a *worse* virtual world, and I cannot possibly imagine what crossed Google's mind to even launch it that way, when an obvious choice would have been a "Google Earth With Avatars And SketchUp Models" (they had everything except the avatars to launch it).

Dedric, IMVU, by contrast, has 20+ million users, over 100,000 content creators offering 2 million or so items for sale :)

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Your Information

(Name is required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)

Making a Metaverse That Matters Wagner James Au ad
Please buy my book!
Thumb Wagner James Au Metaverse book
Wagner James "Hamlet" Au
Wagner James Au Patreon
Equimake 3D virtual world web real time creation
Bad-Unicorn SL builds holdables HUD
Dutchie Evergreen Slideshow 2024
AWE USA discount code
Juicybomb_EEP ad
My book on Goodreads!
Wagner James Au AAE Speakers Metaverse
Request me as a speaker!
Making of Second Life 20th anniversary Wagner James Au Thumb
PC for SL
Recommended PC for SL
Macbook Second Life
Recommended Mac for SL

Classic New World Notes stories:

Woman With Parkinson's Reports Significant Physical Recovery After Using Second Life - Academics Researching (2013)

We're Not Ready For An Era Where People Prefer Virtual Experiences To Real Ones -- But That Era Seems To Be Here (2012)

Sander's Villa: The Man Who Gave His Father A Second Life (2011)

What Rebecca Learned By Being A Second Life Man (2010)

Charles Bristol's Metaverse Blues: 87 Year Old Bluesman Becomes Avatar-Based Musician In Second Life (2009)

Linden Limit Libertarianism: Metaverse community management illustrates the problems with laissez faire governance (2008)

The Husband That Eshi Made: Metaverse artist, grieving for her dead husband, recreates him as an avatar (2008)

Labor Union Protesters Converge On IBM's Metaverse Campus: Leaders Claim Success, 1850 Total Attendees (Including Giant Banana & Talking Triangle) (2007)

All About My Avatar: The story behind amazing strange avatars (2007)

Fighting the Front: When fascists open an HQ in Second Life, chaos and exploding pigs ensue (2007)

Copying a Controversy: Copyright concerns come to the Metaverse via... the CopyBot! (2006)

The Penguin & the Zookeeper: Just another unlikely friendship formed in The Metaverse (2006)

"—And He Rezzed a Crooked House—": Mathematician makes a tesseract in the Metaverse — watch the videos! (2006)

Guarding Darfur: Virtual super heroes rally to protect a real world activist site (2006)

The Skin You're In: How virtual world avatar options expose real world racism (2006)

Making Love: When virtual sex gets real (2005)

Watching the Detectives: How to honeytrap a cheater in the Metaverse (2005)

The Freeform Identity of Eboni Khan: First-hand account of the Black user experience in virtual worlds (2005)

Man on Man and Woman on Woman: Just another gender-bending avatar love story, with a twist (2005)

The Nine Souls of Wilde Cunningham: A collective of severely disabled people share the same avatar (2004)

Falling for Eddie: Two shy artists divided by an ocean literally create a new life for each other (2004)

War of the Jessie Wall: Battle over virtual borders -- and real war in Iraq (2003)

Home for the Homeless: Creating a virtual mansion despite the most challenging circumstances (2003)

Newstex_Author_Badge-Color 240px
JuicyBomb_NWN5 SL blog
Ava Delaney SL Blog
my site ... ... ...