‘I Create Therefore I Virtually Exist’: Digital Content Creation, Virtual Consumption, and Motivation in Second Life
User-generated content (UGC) has been receiving increasing attention given its spread throughout digital media platforms and applications. Previous research focusing on Web 2.0 based platforms highlighted linkages with personal characteristics, user attitudes, and social as well as individual motivators. Interestingly, UGC has not been addressed on other platforms such as 3D virtual worlds, and the purpose of the current study is to fill this gap in the literature. More specifically, we explore virtual content creation within the particular 3D virtual world of Second Life, via comparing key demographic, usage and motivational attributes of creator versus non-creator residents. Results revealed differential patterns as a function of age, gender and usage. Digital content creators were also more likely to purchase goods reflecting stability, expand greater financial resources on the Second Life Marketplace, and while acknowledging greater difficulty in ease of use, reported higher esteem and self-actualization. Implications for scholars and practitioners are discussed.
User-generated content, digital object creation, Second Life, virtual consumption, motivations
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The full website for the Journal of Virtual Worlds Research can be found at: http://jvwresearch.org