OK. So this idea of virtual business combining with real business may be a bleeding edge phenomenon.
In 24 hours, the real cash spent on Second Life totaled $494,196!!! Those real dollars were spent on virtual goods and services that have no value whatsoever outside the virtual environment of Second Life!
Nissan has just purchased an online island for $1,250. The New York Times has recently created a permanent news bureau on Second Life. Anshe Chung makes over a 6-figure income buying and selling virtual land in that same virtual world. Toyota sells a virtual Scion. Reebok sells virtual shoes for your too-cool-to-be-shoeless avatar.
In fact, there are now over one million "residents" on Second Life who would argue feverishly with you about the reality of their virtual life.
So if this phenomenon is not bleeding edge and involves real cash incentives, not to mention that it may solve corporate training issues, where do we begin? Well...perhaps someone like Pano Cap's techie blogger should consider providing virtual caps for those virtual Ketchup bottles and peanut butter jars in those virtual kitchens and restaurants. I wonder how many Linden dollars I could make selling tamper evident closures to a virtual Tylenol?