Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

More To 'Second Life' Than Just Sex

Date:
May 26, 2009
Source:
University of Toronto
Summary:
Researchers have found that a wide array of health-related activity occurs in the 3-D virtual world of Second Life.

Researchers at the University of Toronto and the University Health Network's Centre for Innovation in Complex Care (CICC) have found that a wide array of health-related activity occurs in the 3 dimensional virtual world of Second Life. Second Life is free for users with basic accounts, and reported over 16 million registered users worldwide in 2008.

The web-based platform, which is often associated with pornography and "cheating" spouses, is also used to educate people about illness, train physicians, nurses and medical students with virtual simulations, enable disease-specific support and discussion groups, fundraise real-life dollars for medical research, and to conduct research.

The group found that health-related activities in the virtual world have significant implications in the real world. Dante Morra, Medical Director of the CICC, says "virtual worlds and the social networks that populate the Internet offer a new domain for healthcare. Although it is early in the development, there is a great opportunity to use these platforms for education, research and even disease surveillance." Jennifer Keelan, the Principal Investigator on the project, suggests that a major feature for users is the "relative anonymity where patients can seek out information and share health experiences in a safe environment. There is also a great potential for patients to "practice being patients" by virtually experiencing a mammogram or navigating a hospital's virtual ward—they can gain insight into medical procedures and processes to become more informed." "There is a great opportunity here to understand the design features of social media that make it so appealing and accessible to people," states Leslie Beard, the designer on the team. "Once we understand what pulls people to Web 2.0, we can design and apply more effective communication strategies both within and beyond the Internet."

The group's findings are the basis for the next phase of their project, which looks at using Web 2.0, social media and virtual worlds to conduct academic research and design compelling health communication strategies.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by University of Toronto. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Beard L, Wilson K, Morra D, Keelan J. A Survey of Health-Related Activities on Second Life. Journal of Medical Internet Research, 2009;11(2):e17 [link]

Cite This Page:

University of Toronto. "More To 'Second Life' Than Just Sex." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 26 May 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090525105431.htm>.
University of Toronto. (2009, May 26). More To 'Second Life' Than Just Sex. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 20, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090525105431.htm
University of Toronto. "More To 'Second Life' Than Just Sex." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/05/090525105431.htm (accessed August 20, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola-Hit Sierra Leone's Freetown a City on Edge

Ebola-Hit Sierra Leone's Freetown a City on Edge

AFP (Aug. 19, 2014) Residents of Sierra Leone's capital voice their fears as the Ebola virus sweeps through west Africa. Duration: 00:56 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
101-Year-Old Working Man Has All The Advice You Need

101-Year-Old Working Man Has All The Advice You Need

Newsy (Aug. 19, 2014) Herman Goldman has worked at the same lighting store for almost 75 years. Find out his secrets to a happy, productive life. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

Researcher Testing on-Field Concussion Scanners

AP (Aug. 19, 2014) Four Texas high school football programs are trying out an experimental system designed to diagnose concussions on the field. The technology is in response to growing concern over head trauma in America's most watched sport. (Aug. 19) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
American Ebola Patient Apparently Improving, Outbreak Is Not

American Ebola Patient Apparently Improving, Outbreak Is Not

Newsy (Aug. 19, 2014) Nancy Writebol, an American missionary who contracted Ebola, is apparently getting better, according to her husband. The outbreak, however, is not. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins