Virtual Communities and Collaborations


Virtual worlds provide new forms of social interaction. They offer alternative spaces where social functions can be carriedout in online three-dimensional virtual environments. In this paper we explore how collective action on a global scale isenabled by these virtual worlds. We used qualitative research to examine the organization of one social movement in Worldof Warcraft (WoW), the most widely used massively multiplayer online role playing game in the world. Using New SocialMovement Theory, our paper suggests that there are a number of differences between real world and virtual world socialmovements, namely in their (a) locality, (b) issues, (c) periods of activity, (d) hierarchies, and (e) membership.