Does Loving an Avatar Threaten Real Life Marriage?
Keywords:relationship satisfaction, virtual relationships, online romance, avatar partners, virtual love, MMPORG, Internet romance
The purpose of this study was to examine the nature of relationship satisfaction and its predictors for those who simultaneously maintain committed relationships, in both real life (RL) and in an immersive virtual world, with either the same or a different partner. All 236 self-selected study participants were recruited on the virtual, multiplayer, online game and social platform of Second Life (SL), screened to insure that they had a committed relationship with both an avatar and a RL partner, and then asked to respond to an online survey about these relationships, and how satisfying they were. The results showed that (1) virtual committed relationships with a partner other than one