I’ve been piling these up for a while. A couple are related to virtual law, but most are self-indulgent fun. Settle in, grab your favorite beverage, and get your mouse finger ready. I’m cleaning out my link bucket.
- “Get My FBI File” walks you through the process of doing exactly that. Your mileage may vary. As one Boing Boing (where this comes from) commentator put it: “If you don’t already have a file, now’s your chance to make one! Yabba dabba DOOOoooo.”
- I’m not entirely sure why, but I really like “Second Life, First Person,” a new blog by Second Life’s ‘Kit Meredith.’ It’s hard to classify — a mix of virtual world psychology, culture, and random musings, so far largely about the author’s internal debates over making her avatar more appealing. Not my usual cup of tea, but ‘Kit’ is a good writer, so while it has almost nothing to do with law at this point (‘Kit’ lists her expertise as “Law,” which is how I found it, so there’s hope it will later) it has made my semi-regular rotation anyway.
- There’s a good post on the legal nuts-and-bolts fallout from the Bragg case in terms of EULAs and TOS agreements on Law.com from David M. Klein of Paul, Hastings, Janofsky & Walker. It might require signup; I can never remember with that site. A few places are covering this, but I owe my hat tip to Steven Davis’ excellent Play No Evil, where I saw it first.
- Also via Play No Evil, three Chinese programmers were arrested for scripting unauthorized ‘bots for the MMO game Perfect World. Remember what Castronova said at Virtual Worlds 2007? Game and virtual world regulation is coming; let’s make sure it’s good regulation. Exhibit A: China. This is not good game and virtual world regulation.
- As you’ve heard from six-thousand places already, CSI: NY is doing a mixed-media multi-episode blah blah blah, partly in Second Life, in partnership with The Electric Sheep. Every aspect of my personal and professional self hates these shows — they consistently get the law wrong, overstate the capabilities of the technology, and worst of all, hide the ball until the end, so you can’t even solve the mystery. Here are a few facts for readers who are being misinformed by just about every other site covering this: (1) It’s running on Wednesday, the 24th, not Thursday, the 25th, (2) it’s called “Down The Rabbit Hole,” not “Avatar” (that was the other cops-and-robbers show) and, (3) it’s going to get killed by game one of the World Series. That all said, the Electric Sheep build is certainly going to be cool (writeup with video from the NY Times) and I like the Sheep, so I’ll visit it for them.
- More way off-topic goodness. Team Fortress 2 (packaged in The Orange Box) looks like the best multiplayer online game out there right now, including Halo 3. It also highlights something I’ve been wondering about recently. As graphics get better and better, do they really need to get more photorealistic? Are all games going to turn into gory miserable horror movies? The answer, happily, is no. Watch the Engineer’s trailer (movie). When you quit grinning, buy a copy of The Orange Box and get ready to tangle… in a month… once the first draft of Virtual Law is in my publisher’s hands.
- Somewhat oddly, I recently found myself in complete agreement with a recent Fox News editorial. The gist of it is that the internet would be better off with less pseudo-anonymity and more more real privacy. Read it and see what you think.
- Last, but not least, remember Ginko? The little Ponzi scheme that either lost, mishandled, or stole hundreds of thousands of U.S. dollars worth of depositors in-world currency way back in the ancient metaverse past — three months ago? Well, Ginko insider ‘Hinoserm Rebus’ recently posted “Part One” of what looks like an interesting first-person history. ‘Hinoserm,’ you’ll recall, owned the Ginko names before they became synonymous with “financial fraud.” It’s self-serving, of course, but hits a note of honesty that makes for a compelling read.
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