Murdoch University Research Repository

Welcome to the Murdoch University Research Repository

The Murdoch University Research Repository is an open access digital collection of research
created by Murdoch University staff, researchers and postgraduate students.

Learn more

E-commerce transactions in a virtual environment: virtual transactions

Scarle, S., Arnab, S., Dunwell, I., Petridis, P., Protopsaltis, A. and de Freitas, S. (2012) E-commerce transactions in a virtual environment: virtual transactions. Electronic Commerce Research, 12 (3). pp. 379-407.

Link to Published Version:
*Subscription may be required


E-commerce is a fundamental method of doing business, such that for a firm to say it is trading at all in the modern market-place it must have some element of on-line presence. Coupled with this is the explosion of the “population” of Massively Multiplayer On-line Role Playing Games and other shared virtual environments. Many suggest this will lead to a further dimension of commerce: virtual commerce.

We discuss here the issues, current roadblocks and present state of an e-commerce transaction carried out completely within a virtual environment; a virtual transaction. Although technically such transactions are in a sense trivial, they raise many other issues in complex ways thus making V-transactions a highly interesting cross-disciplinary issue. We also discuss the social, ethical and regulatory implications for the virtual communities in these environments of such v-transactions, how their implementation affects the nature and management of a virtual environment, and how they represent a fundamental merging of the real and virtual worlds for the purpose of commerce.

We highlight the minimal set of features a v-transaction capable virtual environment requires and suggest a model of how in the medium term they could be carried out via a methodology we call click-through, and that the developers of such environments will need to take on the multi-modal behavior of their users, as well as elements of the economic and political sciences in order to fully realize the commercial potential of the v-transaction.

Item Type: Journal Article
Publisher: Springer Verlag
Item Control Page Item Control Page