The 97 minute movie Life 2.0 follows four people who are involved with and addicted to the 3D, virtual world of the internet. Life 2.0 reveals that the internet can be as addicting as alcohol, drugs, or gambling. Some of the people addicted to the virtual world spend as many as 20 hours a day interacting in it while they sit at their computers smoking and eating junk food. Doing so causes them to neglect their health, family, school, or job.
One creepy man in this movie neglected his fiance and interacted in the virtual world as an avatar that was an 11 year old girl. When he, as the 11 year old girl avatar, engaged in terrorist bombings in the virtual world, he was suspended from the Life 2.0 game for a mere 24 hours.
This movie can be a wake-up call for naïve parents whose young and impressionable children can be put at risk when these children have unsupervised access to the virtual world. Although fetish and pornographic aspects of the virtual world were not covered by this movie, they are a part of the virtual world. This movie was made in 2010, and the graphics are even more realistic now, thus making the virtual world even more seductive.
The virtual world activities of adults also can lead to unfortunate consequences in the real world. In this movie, a married man and a married woman meet in the virtual world and fall in love. Eventually, they begin an adulterous affair in real life. The consequences of this affair are unfortunate.
The fourth person followed by this movie is a single woman who runs, from her home, a business that is in the virtual world community. She is victimized by another person in the virtual world who steals her intellectual property. She and others like her consult a real life lawyer who initiates a lawsuit against the person who, as a virtual world citizen, stole their intellectual properties.
Some have compared the virtual world to TV reality shows, Facebook, and Twitter. This movie, however, reveals a virtual world that is much more complex, elaborate, misleading, anonymous, and seductive than reality shows and social media. For example, the virtual world allows participants to construct avatars to represent them. Thus, older, unattractive, overweight people can represent themselves as younger, more attractive people who are in good physical shape.
Although many normal people use the virtual world for mild escapism, some people bring their neurosis and psychosis from the real world to the virtual world. Also, those with addictive personalities or those who are unhappy with their current real life can run the risk of becoming addicted to the virtual world.
What experiences have you had in the virtual world? Please comment below.