Friday, November 14, 2008

Virtual affair leads to real divorce

A British couple are divorcing after the wife discovered her husband with another woman. Nothing that unusual there of course but the discovery of this illicit liaison was in Second Life. The wife found her husband's online virtual alter-ego "a goatee-bearded, medallion-wearing hombre called Dave Barmy" with a similarly virtual woman. The wife said her husband's affair might be in a virtual world but it was a real affair.

The blurring of the line between the virtual and real-life world is always something that has interested me and i can appreciate her point of view. It might be a situation generated by zeroes and ones but are the thoughts and intentions still the same.

As more of us spend more of our lives in virtual worlds then we need to start considering what laws apply and how. For example (and this is just something that interests me not a query about a possible career change) if i was to become a prostitute in a virtual world like Second Life and sell sex to other users would that be illegal? Especially in virtual worlds where the virtual currency can be exchanged for real loot. Would it stand up in court? (Sorry couldn't resist!)

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