Digital Dealmakers: Sibley Verbeck

Jan 29, 2007  •  Post A Comment

The player: Sibley Verbeck, CEO of Electric Sheep Co.

The play: Electric Sheep Co. creates content for online virtual worlds. Electric Sheep inked a deal with Showtime last week to craft the virtual world for its “The L Word” show using the virtual-world technology known as Second Life. The site launched last week on Showtime’s Web site and includes, for instance, a neighborhood cafe that serves as the hangout for “The L Word” characters and which will host virtual-world events such as speed dating. Electric Sheep also worked with MTV last year to create a virtual world for “Laguna Beach” in one of the first examples of a network debuting an online virtual experience for a show.

The pitch: A virtual world is a new communications medium, Mr. Verbeck said. “You feel like you are in the same place with another human being when you are logged into a virtual world.” Users can create avatars for themselves and then interact in the online world.

Pros: An online world is an immersive experience that can deepen a viewer’s loyalty to a show, and also allows for interactive advertising and sponsorship opportunities.