Get a jump on your next career in metaverse research

Chances are, there are few regular readers of Hypergrid Business who aren’t aware that we’re at the dawning of the age of virtual reality.

The metaverse is coming. We’ll all soon be regular visitors to the Matrix. Snow Crash will be crashing. Our virtual streets will be paved with gold and free sex beds. And parents will be nostalgic for the time when kids listened to gansta rap and spent all their time texting and pulling up their pants — you know, the good old days.

If history is anything to go by — and really, what else do we have? — there will be a virtual boom, accompanied by an explosion of interest in everything and anything virtual. Remember the days of the dot-com boom when magazines were each two inches thick and filled with endless dot-com success stories and dot-com ads? When bookstores were filled with guides to the Internet? When every newspaper and television program had to add a special section for Internet coverage? And Yahoo and other Internet directories were hiring hundreds of people to basically sit and browse the Web, searching for interesting sites to point their users to.

Of course, after a few years, this era was over. Internet research was no longer the domain of a few cutting edge journalists, consultants and academics — everyone was doing it. And automated search engines like Northern Lights and Google replaced the human-assembled hierarchical directories of Yahoo! and its ilk.

So, assuming history is going to repeat itself, are you interested in getting a head start?

With the addition of a new advertiser — SASSO, an OpenSim and Aurora-Sim hosting company — Hypergrid Business now has a small budget for a researcher.

Work will include finding new hypergrid destinations, writing a one-or-two-sentence summary and taking a snapshot. You’ll also be collecting info on upcoming events and updating the calendar, and writing articles about hypergrid happenings.

Sounds like fun? Email me at [email protected].

The safari-themed Virunga Mountains region on OSgrid. That elephant was feisty.

The safari-themed Virunga Mountains region on OSgrid. That elephant was feisty.

We also need help with a site redesign

Hypergrid Business was founded in the spring of 2009 — that’s five years ago! — and the site hasn’t changed much since. We’re well past due for a redesign.

In particular, I’d like to switch the site over to a responsive design, so that it would look good on mobile devices and tablets. I’d also like to change the organization a little bit. I come from a newspaper background, so I naturally think of sections organized by type of article — news story, feature, column, editorial. That kind of organization benefits the folks who produce the content. But readers might benefit more from content arranged according to subject areas — business and economy, culture and virtual lifestyles, development, scripting and building, grid management, people, gadgets, and other platforms.

We don’t have the budget to pay for a redesign. Our current advertising revenues are fully allocated to grid hosting, web hosting, and coffee for freelance reporters.

But we can offer advertising space. If you are a developer or consultant who knows what “responsive design” and “child themes” are, and could use an ad in a publication targeting virtual worlds users with a total of over 125,000 unique visitors in 2013, drop me a line.

maria@hypergridbusiness.com'

Maria Korolov

Maria Korolov is editor and publisher of Hypergrid Business. She has been a journalist for more than twenty years and has worked for the Chicago Tribune, Reuters, and Computerworld and has reported from over a dozen countries, including Russia and China.

  • hack13

    We just used our latest partnerships to relaunch Grid-Press and have already begun hiring journalists and getting it back up to par. I suggest looking into partnerships as to oppose just relying on ad revenue. We barely make anything from our ad-revenue, but partnerships really carry us over.

    Just a word from the wise 🙂

    • What do you mean by “partnerships”?

      • hack13

        We partner with other companies or grids who are interested in getting Grid-Press off the ground and up and running again. We have great rules in place that prevent them from requested articles that force us to do in positive light.

        We are operating as a site to allow all news to get through and be publicly available. No real filtering process, so we can let everyone get their grids news out.

        • That’s a very different business model. We run press releases that seem interesting or relevant for our readers, but we would never accept money for running a press release or article.

          We want to make it really clear for our readers which parts of the site are editorial, and which are paid for.

          Part of it is that I’m betting that a focus on serving readers will help our circulation — advertorials tend not to do well with audiences, even though they do bring in more money.

          Part of it is that the primary goal of Hypergrid Business isn’t to support OpenSim vendors, but to support OpenSim customers. For the past 15 years, as a technology journalist, I’ve always had an enterprise focus rather than a vendor focus, and the publications I work for tend to have the same approach. It wouldn’t feel right to do it differently here.

          Finally, I’m betting on the long term. I think that this sector is going to explode, and the editorial opportunities are just going to keep growing. I already file the occasional OpenSim-related article for one of the bigger pubs I work for (such as the MOSES article last year for Network World). I couldn’t do that if I was in bed with any of the vendors.

          Plus, something like that would pretty much destroy my career.

          I know that people in these comments casually toss around accusations that I’m on the payroll of this grid or that grid or that hosting company… I try not to let it get to me. Every journalist is accused of bias at some point. There’s a saying “if everyone hates you, you know you’re doing something right.” Of course, there are some journalists who are actually on the take — and when it gets out, they’re done. Their careers are over. And it does get out. Everyone blabs, especially in the media and PR industries.

  • Samantha Atkins

    Well, some of us have been saying and attempting to believe these things so long that this almost reads as comedic parody. 🙂