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Virtual crime & punishment: Corn Field?! | VintFalken.com
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Virtual crime & punishment: Corn Field?!

September 10, 2008 10:27 pm

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If a certain world allows you to be a thief, is it a crime or just an aspect of the game? Should real-world law apply?

The Garden of NPIRL Delights and Punishment - Cheen PitneySome virtual worlds have devised their own versions of jail, where boredom is the punishment. In Second Life, the largest virtual world, where about 60,000 residents are logged on at any given time, misbehaving avatars used to find themselves stuck in the Corn Field, an eerie place with nothing but endless rows of corn, a decaying tractor and a black-and-white television. The Corn Field still exists but is no longer used as a penalty box.

I fear that was before my time. Anybody can throw an SLurl or Landmark at me? Although I’m still sure that you can bore people to death in Second Life, if you ship them off to the correct locations. :D oh, the Corn Field should not be confused with the Far Away which is a beautiful and lovely place!


(thanks Siobhan! And some more Cornfield Snapshots)

upperdedate: I asked Foolish Frost - senior resident - ‘what can you tell me ’bout the ‘corn field’? :D’. The results: ‘ *stares* Well, when little avis were being bad, and didn’t follow the rules, the lindens… Wished them into the cornfield. Technically, it was a set of sims that when banned residents logged in, they would rez in a sim that looked like a cornfield. And it was only tried for a while, until they realized it was silly to use system resources to amuse asshats. *grins* It was funny. Never got to see it myself, but some few people supposidly still have parts of the cornfield. Wish i could remember who…‘. Furthermore, it seems clickable culture blogged about it in 2006. Also, < href="http://aliciachenaux.blogspot.com/2008/06/ali-search-for-corn-field-part-1.html">Alicia Chenaux went on a search for the mysterious corn fields. No idea if she eventually got in.

Cellufun courthouse: judged by your equals

A virtual world for mobile devices, called Cellufun, has established a courthouse, where rule-breakers are indicted by their peers and tried by a jury of other community members. If found guilty of a charge, such as using profanity, users must carry out varying levels of sentences, from being mute for 20 minutes to being banished. For the duration of punishment, a user’s avatar — a cartoon version of his or her real-life self — is pictured behind bars. At least one user has been convicted of a crime every day since the Cellufun courthouse opened two weeks ago, said chief executive Arthur Goikhman. Every day, dozens of members are indicted. “It’s really affected the tone and tenor of the site,” he said. “People are much, much, much more careful now. But sometimes curiosity about these penalties can cause spikes in petty crime. In Cellufun, some characters started breaking rules just to see how their avatar looked behind bars.”

… behind bars in VZones

Another site, called VZones, created the Void, a dull-colored last-chance holding cell where delinquents are sent before getting a final warning or being removed from the world entirely.

I guess if it was tested out in Second Life, but not continued, it became unsustainable when a large user base was reached? Did any of you - older than me - avatar ever got send to the Corn Field? How could you get out? And was that ‘punishment’ tactic effective?

Regardless, Virtual Worlds get real about punishment is a good, quick read of overview on some virtual world law, crime & punishment facts (real life and virtual) that even mentions Second Life’s Metaverse Republic. Sadly enough, IP theft is not mentioned. (That’s probably a few pages of article on it’s own! ;)) Anway, *kuddos* to the writer! =)

2 Responses to “Virtual crime & punishment: Corn Field?!”

Arabesque Baroque wrote a comment on September 11, 2008
MyAvatars 0.2

Glad I stuck with that vid to the end, it was very cute! Mmmm - I got bumped to Poderosa twice yesterday by land magnates - for loitering and trespassing. Such a gangster! lol

Gwyneth Llewelyn wrote a comment on May 9, 2009
MyAvatars 0.2

The Corn Field still shows on the map :) And no, you cannot teleport to it, at least I couldn’t…

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