Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Unending Potential

Admittedly unfamiliar with Second Life, I have to say that I am now both amazed by and watchful of its potential. From scholastic environments to market research, Second Life can be used in new and previously unseen ways. Imagine a teacher manipulating the environment to convey a certain point about something. Advertisers can get direct feedback for potential billboards. I saw an Obama campaign advertisement, as well. Even better, I heard of a company which constructed a model of a hotel which it plans to build in the future with the hope of receiving user feedback on the design and layout. The same applies to any piece of architecture, really. But all of this comes at a cost.

Technical problems aside, any game which leaves this many freely operated devices to its users has irrevocably subjected its system to the relentless degeneracy of man. Can you really police these things and how culpable are people for virtual crimes? Wouldn't you rather have perverts play video games than carry out their horrific desires in reality? Or is the video game only going to enable someone, previously nonthreatening or lacking in gumption, to manifest desires of this kind? Does this give them the courage to believe they will get away with what they do in the real world, as well? Would a system like this, then, be viewed as an incubator for sexual deviance?



  1. I was definitely taken aback when reading about the "scripts" for sexual actions. It seems a little over-the-top for my taste, and I agree that its inclusion in the programming can be seen as contributing to sexual deviance. People who wouldn't normally act out their sexual desires are given a chance to do so.

    The possibility for someone to take their real life designs and construct them within the virtual world for people to sample and provide feedback seems like a great idea. I wonder why we don't see more of that already.

  2. When you look at the history of media, though, sexual content has always been present along with technological innovation.