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The Dark Side of the Virtual World

06 May

The internet has allowed the evolution of gaming to a degree where anyone and everyone can play. These games are called Massive Multiplayer Online Role Playing Game (MMORPG), the most popular game currently, being “World of Warcraft”. There are many good things about MMORPG, such as interaction with other players while questing, and creating a background story for your personalised character.  However many negative aspects associated with online gaming are being discovered. In an episode of “Good Game SP,” it was reported that a gamer had been charged with theft and ordered to perform community service for threatening a younger gamer in real life, both physically and verbally, in order to gain the younger gamer’s rare amulet and mask in a gaming situation (Good Game SP, 2012). This is an example of how seriously some gamers can become, to the extent that they almost believe the situations are real. 

In the reading “A Rape in Cyberspace” two virtual characters were sexually abused by a character called Mr Bungle. In reality, no physical interaction occurred, however there were emotional repercussions experienced by the creators of the characters involved. Cybersex in gaming, is becoming a growing concern, especially with the age of gamers becoming younger and often more emotionally immature (Dibbell, 1998).  Unfortunately any regulation on the internet is almost impossible.

Dibbell, J. 1998. “A Rape in Cyberspace or Tiny Society and How to make one.” Posted December 1998. Accessed June 1 2012. http://blackboard.qut.edu.au/webapps/blackboard/content/contentWrapper.jsp?content_id=_4076720_1&displayName=Week+9&course_id=_81726_1&navItem=content&href=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.juliandibbell.com%2Farticles%2Fa-rape-in-cyberspace%2F.

Good Game SP. 2012. “Good Game Gamer News.” Posted 18 February 2012. Viewed 3 May 2012. http://www.abc.net.au/abc3/goodgamesp/transcripts/s3433309.htm

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2 Comments

Posted by on May 6, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

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2 responses to “The Dark Side of the Virtual World

  1. Hannah Dunn

    May 10, 2012 at 7:30 am

    With so many ethical and moral issues putting people at risk on the Internet, it is rather disturbing that there isn’t enough being done to protect individuals online, especially in the case of “Mr Bungle”. It’s apparent that there are serious cases of misconduct on the Internet that raise the issue of the mental health risks involved in virtual gaming.

     

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