User generated content or UGC can be described as online content, text or graphics that has been created by an Internet user as opposed a Web page operator or private company. However, in order for such content to be described as user generated, it must meet three standards. First, UGC must be published by the user themselves. Secondly, the content must also be the user’s personal work, not including any copied texts or content. Lastly, the content must be created outside of the user’s professional realm.
The majority of user generated content can be found in different forums and blogs where users can create and exchange content, texts etc very easily. The innovations of Web 2.0 have really helped users publish and edit their own content. The best of example of a website with user generated content is Wikipedia. Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, is one of the fastest growing sites since the launch of Web 2.0, especially as users can easily create, edit and publish their own articles. Some other examples of websites with user generated content are Myspace, YouTube, Twitter, and Flickr, which are all platforms that have thousands of users who publish new content on a daily basis.
Smeet’s chat community has several thousand users who enter the Smeet 3D virtual world on a daily basis and use the many different 3D chats to generate content. In addition, Smeet users have the opportunity to create their own user generated content by creating posts for the Smeet blog. Similarly, Smeet users could create a post about Smeet in their own personal blogs and link it to www.smeet.com. This would then be user generated content both for the individual Smeet user and for Smeet’s virtual world.