I found this very interesting… not because it was different from anywhere else in real life or online, but that there was a sense that this may NOT be the case. Real world laws largely apply online. I am happy with what appears to be an agressively proactive stance, and I’ve heard that Lindens were cracking down on age-play already (Ageplay – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia), but it is not something I know much about.
Seeing something bad happen online scares many people, but I also think that the main difference is that in the long run it is easier to track and catch people doing illegal things online. I’m more worried about what happens in real life behind doors where we cannot protect individuals at risk.
I think some people will feel that their right to privacy is invaded, but as in RL, you you forfit privacy when you break the terms of service agreement.
Linden Lab’s stance on child pornography:
Linden Lab has absolutely zero tolerance for depictions of child pornography within Second Life. We were outraged to see the images that ARD showed us, and will cooperate fully with any legal authorities that choose to investigate the individuals involved in such activities. Child pornography is, of course, illegal and as such is a breach of our Terms of Service. It goes without saying that anyone engaged in this activity will be permanently banned from Second Life, and subject to legal consequences.
Residents are responsible for the content and their activities in Second Life. All Residents are required, as a condition to using Second Life, to assert that they will not use Second Life for illegal purposes. The overwhelming majority of Residents respect and abide by this pledge, and we know that it is the rare exception when someone doesn’t. To date, SL Residents have been active and vocal in reporting any broadly offensive behavior.
In the US, we notify and work the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children and other appropriate authorities, and we will work with similar organizations in other countries.