Saturday, January 20, 2007

Political activism in Second Life

Second Life is back in the news. This time, reporters are describing virtual protests and guerrilla warfare against Jean-Marie Le Pen's Front National, which has opened virtual headquarters in Porcupine, an otherwise quiet region of the Second Life universe. Apparently protesters, not happy with placards, are using all sorts of violent animations in order to disrupt Le Pen's domain. Reports reckon exploding pigs have been used.

Perhaps this is just a cute story, but it hides a more serious issue. UKIP, the UK Independence Party, has announced that it may follow suit and set-up headquarters in the virtual environment. Should these action be regulated at all? Europe and the United States have completely different views on freedom of speech. What will happen if racists and xenophobes take over Second Life?

Ready your exploding pigs, the revolution is coming...

1 comment:

Commercial Law said...

I guess the main problem is not about the extremists who disclose their identity but about the ones who remain anonymous. Linden Lab/Second Life does not require a credit card any more and does not care about your IP address (thus allowing multiple accounts). And, given the fact that there are between 100,000 and 2,000,000 residents, it would also be hardly possible to enforce any prohibition of extremist conduct. Best wishes, MMS