"Parcel media" is stuff you can play on your land parcel(s) in Second Life — like music, movies, webpages, etc. Once you learn how, it's easy to do.
The basic steps are:
- Go to Edit menu > Preferences and in the Audio & Video tab, make sure the Play Streaming options are checked and the volume sliders are loud enough. See a video:
- Go to World > About Land.
- In the About Land window, click Media tab.
- Enter in either a Media URL or Music URL (or both).
- In the Media tab, replace the current media texture with any texture from your inventory. This texture needs to be used on at least one prim surface in the land parcel for the media to play.
- The media should play automatically; if it's not set to, click the play buttons near the bottom right of the Viewer window.
We have a helpful selection of articles in our Knowledge Base detailing how you can play parcel media. In particular, see:
You can also watch video tutorials like how to make your own movie screen:
What will play?
Any format that QuickTime supports should work inworld, as well as standard webpages. So a good general rule is to try to play URLs in QuickTime Player or your web browser.
Play YouTube videos
Second Life (as of 2009-05-03) can't play Flash media from YouTube and most other popular video-sharing sites.
There are workarounds to convert Flash videos into formats which are QuickTime-compatible, and hence, playable inworld. YouTube tools have a tendency of disappearing, so don't depend on this. However, it's most reliable to:
- Convert a Flash video to QuickTime-compatible format.
- Upload the video file to a reliable server you own or have access to.
- Use that video file's URL in your About Land's Media tab.
You can also search Xstreet SL for media players that, through clever scripting, might allow you to watch YouTube inworld without using external tools.
Play media outside of Second Life
Media streams used inworld can also be played in external players, depending on what formats they support. The following are some popular options — if you're confused, start with QuickTime Player. Since these are 3rd-party programs, Linden Lab doesn't support them, but here's simple steps to enjoying media streams.
Once you have a media URL:
For Windows and Mac. Second Life movie playback is based on QuickTime, so if it plays in QuickTime, it'll play inworld (and vice-versa, with the exception of some media types like HTML and Ogg Vorbis).
- Use File menu > Open URL.
- Paste the URL and click OK.
Video for the above steps:
For Windows and Mac. Good for most Internet radio stations and plays QuickTime movies. It can't play RTSP/RTP, but QuickTime Player can.
- Use Advanced menu > Open Stream.
- Paste the URL and click OK.
Only for Windows. It's a popular player for Internet radio stations (like MP3-based ones) but doesn't play QuickTime video.
- Use File menu > Play URL.
- Paste the URL and click Open.
For Windows, Mac, and Linux. It plays a vast variety of formats, but isn't the most elegant to use and has some quirks (e.g., it doesn't play all RTSP/RTP streams).
- Use File menu > Network stream.
- From the Network tab, select an appropriate option, paste the URL, and click OK.
Can I download music or video in Second Life?
Whether you can or should are related but different things. There certainly exists a lot of 3rd-party tools to record media. However, you should respect intellectual property laws, and each case is different.
That being said, if media URLs with certain filetypes like ".mp3" or ".mov" are shown in About Land's Media tab, if you enter them into your web browser or a specialized download utility, they should download to your local hard drive.
If the music or video was created by a Resident, ask them to see what distribution options they offer. For example, many musicians sell MP3s and CDs, and they thrive on your support.
- Streaming Music - Learn how to broadcast your own audio stream into SL, and more.