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"A self-proclaimed under-age virtual self-pimping cyber prostitute and madame"
December 14, 2003 1:41 PM   Subscribe

"A self-proclaimed under-age virtual self-pimping cyber prostitute and madame" says that s/he turned to prostitution in the online game, "The Sims Online" because s/he "never was a skill person. i needed money. why skill when you can suck [virtual] d**k to keep [virtual] food on the [virtual] plate." And as the Sims Online brothel grew s/he would only hire sex workers who were "real mother f**k'n b****s to represent that sh**..." (Obviously NSFW and more inside...)
posted by limitedpie (20 comments total)

 
Meanwhile, the seedy underbelly-- including prostitution-- of The Sims Online is being reported by an independent virtual newspaper, "The Alphaville Herald," which is now being censored by the game makers. As Salon (annoying day pass req'd) comments on the whole messy situation: "There's a fundamental divergence between the interests of a community (typically high-minded goals like freedom of speech and assembly) and the interests of the corporations that run those communities (typically not very high-minded but otherwise understandable goals like making money and avoiding public association with words like 'prostitution')."
posted by limitedpie at 1:42 PM on December 14, 2003


And add into that the Shadow Sim Government and their special brand of Vigilante Sim Justice and that game is looking less and less like suburbia and more and more like the wild west.
posted by PenDevil at 2:00 PM on December 14, 2003


They only forgot one thing: monsters from the id.
posted by jfuller at 2:15 PM on December 14, 2003


Remember MUDs? Being a newbie cleric elf and needing the help of a clan-leading paladin giant to kill the white queen on the chessboard? And he'd help you for a price? Ah, good times.
posted by keli at 2:31 PM on December 14, 2003


Jfuller: Nice. Very nice.
posted by inksyndicate at 2:51 PM on December 14, 2003


I've been thinking the same thing, keli - people seem shocked and stunned by the "real" turn games like Sims and Everquest are taking, but I saw all this years ago in MajorMud. Level 52 warriors being sold for hundreds of dollars. Players ganging up to mess up other people's scripting runs. Players pleading to the sysops to get their stolen gear back. I think it just demonstrates the power of these games - if you create a virtual world you can expect players to act like virtual human beings.
posted by Jimbob at 3:13 PM on December 14, 2003


A much better example of how low virtual life can go is the ten-year-old piece A Rape in Cyberspace.
posted by WolfDaddy at 3:35 PM on December 14, 2003


Jimbob: Great point! I'd say that I do not find it so much shocking and stunning, as I find it utterly fascinating. The problem of the needs of the corporate game masters butting up against the human crush of vice unleashed ("players [acting] like virtual human beings") creates a sort of tension that, for me, keeps this story fresh and intriguing. These games are now run by major, publicly traded corporations-- a major shift from the good old MUD days. If a possible lesson is that in the face of dionysian human nature, corporations will necessarily turn towards a sort of reactive fascism (to protect the bottom line), maybe we should look carefully at the seeping corporatism of our democracy.... Just wondering if these are "sims in a coal mine...."
posted by limitedpie at 3:37 PM on December 14, 2003


When Sims truly reflects reality (which is where it seems to be going) will people still play it? If so, why?
posted by oissubke at 4:11 PM on December 14, 2003


Eventually someone, open source or commercial, will release something like Neverwinter Nights which will allow end user created universes but, unlike Neverwinter Nights, will allow as many connections as the computer and connection can handle.

This will be the comeback of MUDS and will play out similar to how the web has. Corporate sites will still probably dominate, but user created content will be very popular as well, especially with sites which will do things the corps will shy away from: sex, drugs, extreme violence, sacriligious items, weird humor, and various experimental ways of telling a story.
posted by pandaharma at 4:31 PM on December 14, 2003


Thanks for the link, WolfDaddy. Interesting read.

Maybe I'm just not a "mudder" or whatever, but I can't really imagine getting upset to the point of tears over something like that. I guess they tie themselves into their character.
posted by ODiV at 6:48 PM on December 14, 2003


Being a newbie cleric elf and needing the help of a clan-leading paladin giant to kill the white queen on the chessboard

truly, there is little hope for humanity.
posted by quonsar at 8:20 PM on December 14, 2003


If only we all could be the same beacon of light that you are quonsar.
posted by Mick at 9:48 PM on December 14, 2003


Be a beacon?

/sneakers
posted by namespan at 12:21 AM on December 15, 2003


WolfDaddy and ODiV, it must be noted that like the author's _My_Tiny_Life_, many of the denizens of the MOO "Rape in Cyberspace" is about feel that Mr. Dibbell has a penchant for overdramatization.

Having had many personal conversations with the "victim" of the event narrated in "Rape in Cyberspace", it is clear that even her emotional response to the issue was not nearly as cut and dried and Dibbell said it was.
posted by kalessin at 6:24 AM on December 15, 2003


If so, why?

Respawns, basically, I think.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 3:54 PM on December 15, 2003


sneakers?
posted by Satapher at 4:25 PM on December 15, 2003


Overdramatization on or about the Internet?

Oh.

My.

GOD!
posted by WolfDaddy at 4:41 PM on December 15, 2003


WolfDaddy, I'm just saying that the "Rape in Cyberspace" article is sensationalized. Those of us who know the "victim" know that she was not nearly so upset as Dibbell said she was, and now, something like 10 years later, the real inconvenience is that when people who read that article or read Dibbell's book figure out who she is and come looking for her to ask her how awful it was, she just wishes they'd leave her alone.

She was, even then, a veteran Internet user, and knew that it's very easy to disconnect from such worlds if things happen that upset you there.
posted by kalessin at 7:12 PM on December 15, 2003


Sorry, that wasn't a ding at your comment, rather to express that I shouldn't be at all surprised what you say is true.
posted by WolfDaddy at 8:12 PM on December 15, 2003


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