I received an email via a community informatics list.  The author is c.wagner

BBC News Magazine just published an interesting article about the fading
interest in Second Life. If corroborates what many of us Second Life
users have experienced already, namely that it’s pretty lonely out there
in Second Life. See http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/uk_news/magazine/8367957.stm

I don’t think this diminishes the value of this technology, and still
consider virtual worlds as an excellent learning and simulation tool,
albeit not (yet) mainstream. So now, after some serious over-hyping,
reality appears to have set in.

One might also argue that a world such as Second Life cannot be run not
as a commercial interest, but that governance has to be handed to its
population. In other words, it needs to be open sourced, in more ways
than one.