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 September 30, 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 September 30, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

How 'Yes Means Yes' Defines Sexual Assault

How 'Yes Means Yes' Defines Sexual Assault

Newsy (Sep. 29, 2014) Aimed at reducing sexual assaults on college campuses, California has adopted a new law changing the standard of consent for sexual activity. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists May Have Found An Early Sign Of Pancreatic Cancer

Scientists May Have Found An Early Sign Of Pancreatic Cancer

Newsy (Sep. 29, 2014) Researchers looked at 1,500 blood samples and determined people who developed pancreatic cancer had more branched chain amino acids. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Colo. Doctors See Cluster of Enterovirus Cases

Colo. Doctors See Cluster of Enterovirus Cases

AP (Sep. 29, 2014) Doctors at the Children's Hospital of Colorado say they have treated over 4,000 children with serious respiratory illnesses since August. Nine of the patients have shown distinct neurological symptoms, including limb weakness. (Sept. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dr.'s Unsure of Cause of Fast-Spreading Virus

Dr.'s Unsure of Cause of Fast-Spreading Virus

AP (Sep. 29, 2014) Doctors at the Children's Hospital of Colorado say they have treated over 4,000 children with serious respiratory illnesses since August. Nine of the patients have shown distinct neurological symptoms, including limb weakness. (Sept. 29) Video provided by AP
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:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

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