Author

Nicole Gunara

Date of Award

2014

First Advisor

Daniel Neilson

Second Advisor

Asma Abbas

Abstract

In recent times there has been a growth of the number of gamers around the world who actively participate in online virtual spaces. Increasingly, the virtual has become valuable to the users in terms of both monetary and sentimental value. The question that this thesis strives to answer is what is the source of this value and how can we utilize it. It is through analyzing and observing the in-game economies of these worlds and looking at the theories of value posed by these economies that a solution can be found. The possibilities of the virtual are endless so why can’t we use them to our advantage? This thesis hopes to prove that these worlds are not only real due to their value, but show the research and experimental capabilities they hold.

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