DEMO: Next Island opens time travel for its virtual world

Next Island is one of 53 companies chosen by VentureBeat to launch at the DEMO Spring 2011 event taking place this week in Palm Desert, Calif. After our selection, the companies pay a fee to present. Our coverage of them remains objective.

Is your avatar hot or not? Blue Mars iPhone app will let others vote

The Hot or Not web site was an early web sensation when it debuted in 2000, letting you rate how attractive women or men were with a simple voting system. Now Avatar Reality, the maker of the Blue Mars virtual world, let’s iPhone users vote on how hot, or not, your avatar is.

Social entertainment world IMVU expands to Europe

Social entertainment firm IMVU is launching a big expansion in Europe today as it unveils new versions in seven languages. With IMVU, users create their own 3D character, or avatar, and can then meet people, chat, create virtual goods and share them, and play games.

Watch out, Disney, Fantage doubles its growth for kids virtual world

Virtual worlds for kids have been volatile during the recession. Some have come and gone. Some have declined. So it’s worth noting that Fantage, a virtual world for kids who like playing games and staging fashion shows, has doubled its audience in the past year.

Virtual worlds recede, but Second Life keeps growing

Virtual worlds, those fully-formed, three-dimensional renderings of the real world, are waning as apps take off on social networks and mobile phones. But the mother of the virtual-world craze, Second Life, is bucking that trend and growing.

Virtual world co., Multiverse, raises $850,000 more in debt

Multiverse, a Mountain View company that builds virtual worlds for companies and individuals, said it has raised $850,000 in convertible debt from unnamed angel investors as it searches to raise a first round of capital, according to VentureWire (sub required).