|Bragging at dethklan |
I do not understand Griefers. I do not understand people who choose to use their energy to disturb and destroy, rather than create and support. Well, I suppose inside their own microcosm they support and create themselves, but that is really pretty much negated by taking that and using it against others. Now before this descends into a strange discussion about war, I should probably share one key piece of information: this “Major SL Raid” in the site above? That was members of this group griefing about sixteen people sitting around a campfire listening to native Hawaiian tales and chants. Oh my! The bravery THAT must have taken!
This group has apparently been around for four years. Four years! They are a legitimate group in SL (Hey! They paid their $L100) with 15 members founded by a RON Paule whose stated purpose is “A Group where we go around and jack each other off.” Classy! They even promote their exploits through their website: dethklan.com.
I suppose it is dubious for them to get even this much attention, but the more we expose those who incite and provoke, the more we losen their hold over us. They appear smart, but then they behave stupidly. Hmmmm. Attacking people listening to a story and then crowing about it? Hmmmmm. They griefed at the site of the stories over a 30 minute period of time, some pretending to be legitimate audience members. They were still rezzing their particles fifteen minutes after the audience and the storyteller were teleported out of the parcel, while two members of the audience stayed and collected information on them to add detail to the pile of ARs that were submitted to Linden Labs. Jamison Melody was engaged in an IM exchange with me in which he really thought I would tell him what I had posted in the AR!
Several of the griefing members from Saturday night’s “raid” who were findable in search Saturday night were not searchable Sunday (Jamison Melody & MyParentsAre Absent). One hopes that Linden Labs will and is following up on Ron Humble’s recent promises to provide better support of their users. Allowing griefing does not encourage the legitimate use of Second Life.
The dethklan website is hosted by a company called Dream Host. A member of the story group contacted their abuse department and asked them to review dethklans webpage, specifically the racial aspects and what they say they do to children, and asked if Dream Host would considering suspending dethklan's account. Dream Host said that while they personally abhor such content, they support the right of the website users to post whatever they want to. Well, I do love democracy even if it does allow stupidity.
They also lied to a resident on the island being attacked, pretending to be assisting Linden Labs and redirecting the blame for the incident to a member of the story group and encouraging them to AR that person. Never AR someone on the word of someone you don't know!
There are tons of legitimate Role Plays (RPs) within Second Life where you can scratch this particular itch, make war, shootem' up, and get a sense of accomplishment from a battle fought hard and won. It is still baffling to me why you would decide to just do it on your own to unsuspecting people who did nothing to you but exist. I suspect these particular individuals wouldn't last in a legitimate RP. Too much structure and too many rules. They probably didn't last in World of Warcraft either for much the same reason. Given their clear ability to manipulate the system in Second Life for four years, it's a wonder they couldn't manage to thrive in an RP. But then, they don't really want to play someone else's game, do they? Nice! Neither did we on Saturday night.
Given that griefers thrive on their ability to perpetuate their stupidity via alts, there is sadly only so much that can be done, unless Linden Labs takes the group seriously. They may find me writing about them and posting this as a validation of their “triumph” – assuming they actually read. I hope, rather, that by making others aware of them, we can help along the process of shutting them down. Look at their website if you will, but only to educate yourself to them, their intent, and their ways. Then forget about them until that moment, which will hopefully never come for you, when you need it.
Of all of the opportunities in SL that you can dubiously perpetrate and and get some weird sense of victory or superiority from . . . shutting down a story session? How utterly pathetic!
~Caledonia Skytower, Reporting
“Any ink is good ink, even if it is virtual”
Post Script: As can be seen from the comment of Mr. Spencer Pierce, and on the dethklan website, members take offense at being labeled. Fair enough. You are right. Labeling someone makes them a faceless non-person for whom it is easy to deny empathy or compassion. I too am a person with a real life: family, friends, job. And yet you are quick to label me as "you guys." Is that anymore fair? You can't have it both ways. So point taken: no more labels.
The Urban Dictionary defines hate mongering thus: "A person who uses political beliefs or passions of any kind as a platform to express their hatred for another individual." Mr. Pierce, I ask you to look at the dethklan website where you will observe people being denigrated for who they seem to be or are, regardless of their actions. What does that say to you?
I do not hate dethklan. I criticized them based on their actions which were inflicted on others without their consent. The challenge of freedom is that yours only extends as far as it does not impede the freedom of someone else. Griefing is an attack, whether the damage is real or just inconvenience, and attacks are often taken personally.
For the record, I am not the person who contacted Dream Host, and I have nothing to do with any threats to dethklan or its members outside of the Linden Labs TOS. I support the constitutionally guaranteed protection of free speech in the United States. Dethklan is free to say anything they want on their website and I am not forced to look at it. Dethklan members are free to rez all the multiplying particles and sound making devices they want, as long as they do so with those willing to participate. If dethklan members choose to "jack off on each other" then they are free to do so amongst themselves. If they choose to take it beyond that, then they take responsibility for the consequences of that choice.
There is a reason why the term includes the root word "grief." Definition: “A griefer is a player who does things in a game or virtual environment to deliberately cause annoyance ("grief" in the sense of "giving someone grief") for the griefer's own enjoyment.” Is it right Spencer, for your enjoyment to trump mine?
That same First Amendment Right that allows dethklan the freedom of its website allows me to post my opinion here, as a columnist. My opinion is that individuals who are smart, regardless of how old they are, and who are "normal human beings that have social lives, friends, school, jobs..." should be applying themselves to creating something positive with that capacity. Griefing is neither positive, nor productive.