Interesting article on nytimes. I particularly liked this part:
â€œPerception is reality, and if a substantial part of our community feels like we are biased, whether it is true or not, it is true to them,â€ Hilmar Petursson, CCPâ€™s chief executive, said in a telephone interview. â€œEve Online is not a computer game. It is an emerging nation, and we have to address it like a nation being accused of corruption.â€
Also relevant this washingtonpost article Does Virtual Reality Need a Sheriff? Reach of Law Enforcement Is Tested When Online Fantasy Games Turn Sordid:
Rosedale said he hopes participants in Second Life eventually develop their own virtual legal code and justice system. “In the ideal case, the people who are in Second Life should think of themselves as citizens of this new place and not citizens of their countries,” he said.
Note that he is speaking about citizens developing legal code and not world-creators embedding a legal code into the programming code. Interesting times …
Below the beginning of the article from nytimes
In a Virtual Universe, the Politics Turn Real
By SETH SCHIESEL
Published: June 7, 2007
The kingdom is in crisis. After pledging to treat its citizens equally, the government stands accused of unfairly favoring one powerful, well-connected political faction. Many citizens have taken to open dissent, even revolt, and some are threatening to emigrate permanently.
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A scene from the multiplayer Internet game Eve Online.
This specter of corruption has emerged most recently not in some post-colonial trouble spot but in the virtual nation of an Internet game called Eve Online (population 200,000) where aspiring star pilots fight over thousands of solar systems in a vast science-fiction universe every day.
So now, in a sociological twist, the company that makes Eve, CCP, based in Iceland (population 300,000), says it will tackle the problem the way a democracy would. In what appears to be a first, the company plans to hold elections so that players can select members of an oversight committee.
The company will then fly those players to Iceland regularly so they can audit CCPâ€™s operations and report back to their player-constituents. And taking cues from transitions to democracy in the developing world, CCP says it will call in election monitors from universities in Europe and the United States.
â€œPerception is reality, and if a substantial part of our community feels like we are biased, whether it is true or not, it is true to them,â€ Hilmar Petursson, CCPâ€™s chief executive, said in a telephone interview. â€œEve Online is not a computer game. It is an emerging nation, and we have to address it like a nation being accused of corruption.
â€œA government canâ€™t just keep saying, â€˜We are not corrupt.â€™ No one will believe them. Instead you have to create transparency and robust institutions and oversight in order to maintain the confidence of the population.â€