The online community of Second Life, built by its users and increasingly colonised by brands, was covered on BBC Two last night on a programme called 'The Happiness Formula'. I didn't manage to see the show, but I've been reading up on it just now here. The programme also showed how web innovations have made the world smaller.
The huge growth in e-mail, blogs, message boards and messenger services has created a host of new social networks which defy geography. Using the internet to make new connections that you then meet in real life - that's very positive.
Reminds me of eight months ago ;)