From November originally Mercury newspaper, I think:

THE popular reality TV show Big Brother plans to expand into virtual reality with a new edition in the online world of Second Life, the Dutch unit of television programmer Endemol said today.

“Big Brother” to be launched in Second Life

Second Life is a three-dimensional virtual world with more than 1 million registered users and its own economy and currency. It was created by San Francisco-based Linden Lab.

Endemol will select 15 international Second Life contestants to spend at least eight hours a day inside a specially constructed glass-walled house for one month. As in the real-world version of Big Brother, the contestants will be voted off until only one remains.

The winner will receive a virtual island within Second Life, worth about US$1675.

Big Brother Second Life represents a fantastic opportunity to amass knowledge of the virtual world. In the future, we will use this experience to develop specific content for online communities,” said Endemol Netherlands Managing Director Paul Romer.

A number of real-world companies have entered Second Life in recent months, drawn by its rapid growth and large pool of tech-savvy consumers, including Toyota Motor Corp., Adidas AG and Sony BMG. Reuters Group Plc also recently launched its own news bureau in Second Life.

What is the difference between pixel avatars and Big Brother contestants anyway? I’m thinking of setting up a travel guide in Second Life to show marketing execs around: “here’s Reuters and Adidas and if you look to your left you’ll see Big Brother contestants -OMG! What ARE they doing? – oops avert your eyes” yeah, that sort of thing – and SilkCharm SacherTorte would probably get paid in Linden dollars. Heh.