I’ve just been introduced to a video of an event that took place in the virtual gamescape of World of Warcraft.

You can watch the same video here: http://tinyurl.com/lcuct (Be aware some of the text included on the video might fall into the “explicit lyrics” category)

I found it incredibly absorbing and was fascinated by the phenomenon, but some of you may find this occurence unsettling.

To summarise, what occured was that a group of WoW players decided to honour the real-life death of one of their number in the online world of WoW.

Their virtual ceremony was gatecrashed – “griefed” or “owned” – by a another group of game players who play against players rather than against the game.

To cut a long story short – the funeral party was devastated by the attack – in game terms and in real life..

Many of the characters were the result of hundreds of hours of game play and hundreds of dollars of subscription fees to the game.

I am wondering how others are positioned on this? Is it just a game, or is this transgression something more serious and the signal of things to come as the distinctions between online and offline existence become more blurred?

Interestingly, the Serenity_Now website http://www.serenity-now.org/ was hacked severely shortly after they crashed the funeral… is this fair play – a case of what goes around, comes around?

Under law, the hacking is a federal crime in most countries…. the online desecration of a funeral service is simply rude but not unlawful…

What do you think lies ahead for this sort of thing??

Some good extended discussion from the Other Players conference proceedings.

One thought on “The ethics of PvP

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