Google shutting down virtual world ‘Lively’

Lots of people like virtual worlds like Second Life. Turning this into a commercial success is something entirly different. It seems to be tough to turn innovative things into business …

… Once thought to be its answer to virtual worlds like Second Life, Google’s Lively launched this summer to much fanfare.

Lively was Web-based and allowed anyone to set up virtual spaces, such as rooms, that could be embedded onto blogs or Facebook pages.

But the project never picked up much steam.

Now, Google has decided to shut the project down.

"Despite all the virtual high fives and creative rooms everyone has enjoyed in the last four and a half months, we’ve decided to shut Lively down at the end of the year," Google said on its official blog Wednesday evening. "It has been a tough decision, but we want to ensure that we prioritize our resources and focus more on our core search, ads and apps business." …