Noteworthy: WebbliWorld

Update: Aardman Animations Creates WebbliWorld, Potential Virtual World?
Aardman Animations, the creators of Wallace and Grommit, has teamed with Enable Interactive to create WebbliWorld, a new Web portal for children. An article in ToyNews and the developer blog describe the site as “a new virtual world,” though right now it doesn’t look like there’s much of a world. Currently, users can create a Webbli out of pre-defined parts, play games, and create profiles. The site is to include search and social networking functions, though, so that virtual world experience may not be far off. Currently the site is sponsored by Puffin Books and the World Wildlife Fund. The company is looking for other organizations to sponsor different sections of the
site.

Updated:
Concerning the lack of virtual world elements, Matt Connolly, Enable’s Co-Founder and Strategic Director, told us “Welcome to Phase 2. At the moment it is just a vibrant, fun, engaging website for kids, and not a huge amount more, other than some sort of community aspect, other than it being a nice place to be. Phase 2 is
planned to be a much more immersive brand experience, moving into the world’s
root. Probably not down the Second Life route, more of a Neopets thing. It’s
a mix, but a much more immersive user experience.”

The company will be staying with browser-based technology to make it easier for its targeted audience of 6-to-10-year-olds to access the site.

The site allows users to build up Webblies, a virtual currency. Connolly sees that as a potential source for marketing interactions, both in and out of the world.

“Eventually it will be transactional both in-world and out of it. There’s a potential relationship where some of the more suitable banks and financial institutions could be involved to teach kids about finance and credit and savings.

Out of world, there could be a potential redemption for vouchers with brands. In-world you an buy a new piece to add on to your Webbli, but out of world there could be vouchers and discounts. Those types are going to be based
on brand by brand.”

Virtual Worlds News: Update: Aardman Animations Creates WebbliWorld, Potential Virtual World?

First of all– I LOVE Virtual Worlds News. Click on the link above to read the FULL article.

The site definitely has a young feel to it. The colors are pastel and sweet, the creations (your “avatar”) are construct-o fun too. Feels a bit “CBBC” to me… or preschool television-y in design. Sounds funny– but the design reminds me of the vibe I got from School Supplies in 3rd grade (the cool pencil boxes, the trapper keeper art, the tradeable erasers… come on you gotta remember trading erasers!).

I dig the unique vibe to the site (and even to the avatar creation), and I definitely dig the Green movement (Prevent Global Warming!). And is it safe? Heck yes!

Check this shhhhhtuff out:

We take every possible precaution to make WebbliWorld a safe world.

Children must create and name a character who represents them. This protects their identity, promotes creativity and, let’s face it, is much more fun! As part of our safety procedure, every user who registers is required to provide certain personal details and an authentic email address. We treat these details as confidential and never pass them on to a third party.

All content that is added to WebbliWorld by users is moderated by an external, specialist moderation company and by the staff of WebbliWorld.

We have a strict code of practice that applies to every user of WebbliWorld. Any user not abiding by the WebbliCode will be removed from the site.

WebbliWorld is designed to enrich your children’s lives and expand their horizons. We encourage them to leave their computer as often as possible and explore the amazing world around them. As the site grows it will embrace a global community of kids and give them a voice on topics that really matter to them.

http://www.webbliworld.com/parents/

YAY! THEY GET IT! YAAAAAAAAAAY! I dance the jig of a happy Mod Manager/Safety Zealot!

Le Sigh.

Anyway– I eagerly look forward to how the site progresses in “Phase 2”. And also– I look forward to seeing the success of the demographic they’re aiming for (again, seems young for tween– might be great foro the El Ed kid– the U11 kid). Cool.

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  1. July 25, 2007 at 9:27 pm

    Hey, Izzy, I note that your blog comes up high on the list when I type in “addicting games Viacom.” Congrats!

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