Everyone’s favorite games writer (after Peter Suciu), James Wagner Au, went about debunking five major myths about Second Life. The myths he debunks — that it has a population of 5 billion or 5 lonely weirds, that it is full of porn, penises, and dancing vulvas, etc. — are aimed at marketers who might be thinking of advertising in the world and are put off by dancing vulvas.
It’s a good read if you care about Second Life marketing but one of the best parts is after the jump. He basically says you can lock out the dancing vulvas entirely, if you want to, so you can advertise Fanta in Second Life just like you would on TV. Ain’t technology grand?
Related to this, most “sabotage”, such as it is, involves impermanent special effects which could have been prevented entirely, had the landowners used the available land management controls which regulate unauthorized content creation on their property. (That includes notorious cases like flying penises besieging CNET’s office, or the defacing of Senator Edwards’ unofficial SL campaign HQ.) Some reporters miss this detail. That’s like a real world shopkeeper leaving his store unwatched and unlocked with the alarm disabled, then after the place gets trashed and looted overnight, subsequent news reports blame his landlord. Sometimes sabotage is even asserted where there is none– as with widely disseminated reports of a “nuke” that supposedly destroyed Australia’s ABC island– which later turned out to be a non-malign server crash.