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  ‘Electric Sheep’ Herd Culled  
Posted 2007-12-21 by Tony Walsh
Second Life's largest third-party developer became substantially smaller earlier this week. The Electric Sheep Company cut 22 staffers on Tuesday (reportedly about 30% of its workforce), as announced by COO Giff Constable, and reported by Sheep client Reuters. Unofficial blog Second Life Podcast broke the news on Monday with word that the Sheep's planned Virtual World Ad Network was also canned. According to Constable, the company will continue to work on its OnRez client software and shopping site as well as "some other cool initiatives."

I'm not surprised at the news. Although I haven't been able to follow Second Life like I used to, my impression is that business interest in SL has been waning, barely a year after a boom for metaverse developers. Since that time, it seems the developers with the most sense are investigating other platforms rather than concentrating solely on Second Life.

Having met a number of enthusiastic Sheep staffers in the past, I found the company reminiscent of a 1990s Dot Com--seemed like folks were being hired left and right. Although the timing is really unfortunate, trimming staff and refocusing the company is the sensible thing to do--lessons learned from the Dot Com Bust.
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Comment posted by Urizenus
December 22, 2007 @ 4:03 am
I'm pretty sure that Anshe Chung Studios would be the largest 3rd party developer in SL -- mostly because of the Chinese and German customers.
Comment posted by Tony Walsh
December 22, 2007 @ 8:48 am
Oh yeah, ACS, what a dummy I am--totally forgot about them. Do they have more staff than ESC or just a larger customer-base?
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