Mischief & grief: virtual torts or real problems?
Adrian, A 2010, 'Mischief & grief: virtual torts or real problems?', International Journal of Private Law, vol. 3, no. 1/2, pp. 70-84.
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Perhaps more than any other branch of the law, tort has been the battleground of social theory. Individuals wish to be secure in their person against harm and interference, not only as to their physical integrity, but also as to their freedom to move about and their peace of mind. This is important whether they are at home in Bournemouth or at home in a virtual world like Second Life. They want to work and deal with others whilst protected against interference with their private lives, their relationships, and their honour and reputation. In any society, it is inevitable that these interests shall come into conflict. The gaming community calls people who promote conflict ‘griefers’. Griefers are people who like nothing better than to kill team-mates or obstruct the game’s objectives. Griefers scam, cheat and abuse, often victimising the weakest and newest players. In games that attempt to encourage complex and enduring interactions among thousands of players, ‘griefing’ has evolved from being an isolated nuisance to a social disease.