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Government to tax Second Life money

Linden crisis looms

People who control avatars of themselves and float around in the popular virtual world of Second Life could find themselves on the wrong end of a tax demand that will leave them wanting to flee their first life.

Yes, even fictional profits in games are taxable, and the dark lords of the Inland Revenue are logging in to catch you.

If profits from online games such as Second Life enter the real world in the form of special deals or discounts you are advised to seek advice from the taxman pronto.

The same goes for people who sell goods on online auction sites such as eBay and re-sale affiliates such as Amazon. Read more here.

Second Life has a fully integrated economy built to "reward risk, innovation, and craftsmanship", according to creators Linden Research.

Second Life "residents" can create their own virtual goods and services. Because residents retain the IP rights of their creations, they are able to sell them at various in-world venues.

Players who have amassed lots of Linden Dollars are matched with residents who want to buy Linden Dollars at LindeX (the official Linden Dollar exchange), or at other unaffiliated third-party exchanges.

Second Life's real estate market provides opportunities for Residents to establish their own communities and business locations.

HM Revenue & Customs is running a kind of amnesty for people who haven't yet paid all taxes owing from self-employment, off-shore accounts, internet trading and buy-to-let rentals.

Declare your profits now and you should avoid paying up to 100% penalties on top of the monies owed. 10% penalties will still be payable for profits over £2,500.

The amnesty runs out on June 22.

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