Shame on you, Wall Street Journal, for running a front page exposé on the Second Life bank run. Fair enough to report that its banks are collapsing. But mostly, the article will serve to remind Journal readers that second Life is still a going concern.
Since so many of the virtual world's lending institutions are private enterprises, they've gotten away with breaking shady promises, like 200 percent interest rates. (Honestly, who would think that deal was legit?) Linden Lab, the maker of Second Life, has finally decided to clean up this problem, like its gambling infestation, by simply banning all Second Life banks, hoping to avoid runs like that on Ginko Financial last August. Anyone looking to run a virtual financial institution will now need to possess a real-world charter — another bit of regulation Philip Rosedale pledged to avoid. If only this were enough to pop Second Life's bubbly fictional economy. Sadly, there are more than enough clever virtual shysters entrepreneurs to keep the farce going.