Essay about virtual crime

Submitted By jasongorden
Words: 823
Pages: 4

September 10, 2013 Virtual Crime I believe the author is against someone being punished in the real world for a virtual crime. He states that no one should be penalized for the difference of the conflict about real and virtual law conflicts. Personally I play video games often and I consider it a virtual world, as do most people that engage in video games. I feel like people expect to do things unlike you would do in real life because when logged onto a game you are logging into your pretend, virtual life. If you want to make “stealing” actually a crime online then, like the author states about beating, you have to make everything an actually crime.
In the beginning of the article the author is talking about how the Supreme Court convicted a gamer for stealing two items that doesn’t exist in the real world, but in a massively multiplayer online [MMO] video game called RuneScape. The Supreme Court stated that the time the 13-year-old victim spent in the game trying to earn the objects gave them value. I do not agree with this because if something doesn’t exist than how can it have a value. I could understand if the victim actually spent money in game on the items. The game encouraged players to spend real money for in-game currency. It is used to build highly desirable objects, but in doing so you take the risk of someone coming along and destroying everything you’ve worked so hard on. But it was a personal choce to spend his money on a video game. When I play games I don’t expect to get an actually currency for my time spent playing, when playing a game you expect to get awarded by experience, giving your player the opportunity to level up.

How a case like this would even make it to the Supreme Court bewilders me. It just a video game and it shouldn’t have gone any further than being dealt with in the game. The author states “this ruling makes no sense to me. It places too much value on the time people spend playing video games. Video games are not work or investments for which people should be compensated; they are escapism” (Weiss 727). I completely agree with him about how he used video games to escape into a whole different life because I too use games for escaping into my own world. When you play video games it gives you the opportunity to be who you want to be and do whatever you want to do, mostly things that you are unable to do in the real world. Alex Weiss later says how he played an MMO called EVE and he would mess with people, making fake investments, engaging in corporation thievery, and even having and extended e-relationship with someone who thought he was a girl. He would join a corporation and scam them into thinking there was an antagonistic group trying to destroy them. He even hired decoys to ruin things for the corporation. Then he’d accept the bribe money and block the player. He was just conning people into giving him their in-game money. But those are examples of