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On IP, Legality, And Virtual Worlds 15

Thanks to LawMeme for their complex article discussing how to regulate player content in virtual worlds, with particular relevance to the recent announcement that MMO Second Life "now recognizes the ownership of in-world content made by subscribers." The author starts with a question posed by a third party at the time of the announcement: "You're creating this world in which people come to play and be creative, and yet you've given this world a system that has been extensively criticized as limiting creativity. Haven't you just given them a new set of hurdles to creativity?" He then outlines his worries: "If your game platform - your game's rules and infrastructure - is non-coercive, then your game is going to have a serious problem resisting the intrusion of decidedly unfree real-life values as soon as your players start to care greatly about it. Only if your game is so trivial and so boring that no one attaches any significance to what happens there will the sense of play survive unaided."
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On IP, Legality, And Virtual Worlds

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  • YAHOOO (Score:2, Interesting)

    by ITman75 ( 671124 )
    FIRST POST. Ok, had to get that out of the way, but its funny that THERE.com has been doing it right along. We develope the content, pay an ingame amount of money to sell our objects. And our name is taged to the object saying we designed it.
    • I think it is somewhat more complex in Second Life because they also have the ability to write scripts, which can drive the behavior of many of the objects in the game.

      Also, Second Live doesn't have a oversight system to approve customizations -- they happen immediately.

      I personally don't see too much of a problem with in-game copyright voiolations. If you have set the permissions on your objects to be non-copyable, then it is enforced by the server.

      If someone does manage to roughly duplicate your objec
  • creating content (Score:3, Interesting)

    by musikit ( 716987 ) on Thursday December 04, 2003 @02:32PM (#7630809)
    i got to say i would love to generate my own outfits for my character etc. however i would see a large portion of the people out there creating content to make their character appear nude. i play FFXI and i think they did a great job on the game. no player created content though, and i would say for the right reasons
    • I wouldn't be so sure about that. SecondLife lets you go about in the nude in mature areas of the world, but I haven't seen many people taking advantage of the option. In fact, the most common form of nudity I've seen is people who forget they aren't wearing a bra under their body armor when changing outfits.
  • The article discussed the possibility of distributed, end to end massively multiplayer world near the end, in which no central authority or EULA has ultimate control, and ask what is there to keep this peer to peer thing from becoming part of the real world--merely an extension of the Internet, rather than a game. This is particular noteworthy, because the idea of a completely p2p MMOG is one of those ideas that "everyone" has. You know what I'm talking about--stupid ideas like the 3D window manager that
  • What will be interesting is when people in MMOG's that are allowed to create and sell things can support their own subscriptions with the money they make from selling virtual items. Or better yet, when they can turn a better profit then they would in the real world.

    for example, say I found out a way to gain the level of Jedi in Star Wars Galaxies in 8 hours of gameplay and the going price for a Jedi account on E-Bay is $500. Should I quit my day job and just start producing Jedi? Then again, if I fo
    • for example, say I found out a way to gain the level of Jedi in Star Wars Galaxies in 8 hours of gameplay and the going price for a Jedi account on E-Bay is $500

      Actually, I looked last week (just for kicks and giggles, mind you. I refuse to play an MMORPG where people are obsessed enough to pay real money for in-game items, whereas I'm limited to playing a few hours a week so I can pay my bills ^_^).

      The Jedi character slot was for sale starting at $3999.99.

      I kid you not. I don't know what kind of brass
  • ...i'm not the only person who ever MUDded, am i?

    on three seperate MUDs i began as a player, and graduated later to a creator. issues like, "who did it first?" were never brought up, because people didn't copy... of course, most of the people i played with were both intelligent and reasonable. the ones that weren't? never graduated to creators.

    the whole, "players owning copyrights" is an attractive idea at first, but why bring copyright into it at all? if the community is active enough, people will not
    • what a naive view of the whole situation you have. you don't understand anything about free market capitalism, do you? if a player does not assert his or her rights as the copyright owner, then the backing company (we're talking about MMORPGs here, not MUDs run by a devoted player) will take it and find a way to make money off of it. for instance, you create a chair in-game. the company takes this chair and begins including it in the next iteration of the game - not compensating you for your design in the l

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