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Second Life launch for Birmingham law firm as it sets up virtual office.

Birmingham law firm Simpson Millar has launched a "virtual office" in Second Life - the online, sophisticated 3D virtual world.

Second Life opened in 2003 and is 'inhabited' by millions of residents and a growing number of businesses.

Craig Jones, operations director at Simpson Millar, said: "We decided to launch a virtual office to expand the service we offer but also to explore its extensive training potential for clients and employees.

"Many of our clients have injuries which can make it difficult for them to meet us at our offices. Others are too busy. Second Life is a way of 'seeing' your legal representative and receiving advice without coming to our office. We are still working extensively to explore the vast potential of our virtual office but in essence there is the potential to do almost everything we currently do in the real world.

"We are planning our first legal seminar. The idea is to offer training for our clients and colleagues from a seminar room in our virtual office. The savings in environmental impact, time and travel are immense.

"Unlike watching a training video, people will be 'sitting' in a virtual room full of people. It makes it feel like a normal seminar and people will hopefully be more motivated to interact and participate. They will be able to either ask questions through their PC microphone or type questions which the presenter can answer for all participants."

Brian Allan, Simpson Millar's business development director, said: "This is an exciting move for us with huge potential for employees and clients.

"The decision to set up an office in Second Life is a direct reflection of our core business values - to be a truly modern and forward thinking law firm. We take pride in constantly embracing cutting edge technology.

"The legal profession is in desperate need of change and modernisation to meet the challenges of growing competition. Our presence in Second Life is a way of making ourselves even more accessible and approachable."
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Title Annotation:Business
Publication:The Birmingham Post (England)
Date:Nov 6, 2007
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