Identity and Expression

First Avatar Arrest for Virtual World Murder? The Hack Job

In what might be the first arrest for the murder of an avatar, Associated Press reports that a woman in Japan killed off her virtual husband when he divorced her. The police threw her in jail for ‘hacking’ because the murder was accomplished by using her ‘ex husband’s’ log-in information to perform the act of revenge:

” “I was suddenly divorced, without a word of warning. That made me so angry,” the official quoted her as telling investigators and admitting the allegations.

The woman had not plotted any revenge in the real world, the official said.

She has not yet been formally charged, but if convicted could face a prison term of up to five years or a fine up to $5,000.”

The murder took place in the online world of Maple Story. Which proves that it IS a world, because as Prokofy Neva has famously noted, a world is a world because it contains people, a sense of place, and drama.

Maple Story Wedding

Logging in to find your avatar wiped away is the ultimate in drama. Five years is hardly enough: she should get life.

Thanks to Pais for pointing this story out.


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