Second Life Beyond

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Second Life Beyond

  1. 2. Virtual Property Introductory Scenario Cindy Creator became a resident of Second Life ® through joining Second Life ® and creating an avatar. She became a premium member and purchased land in Second Life ® . Her passion is learning all she can about Germany during the years 1915-1950 and passing that on to others. On her island, she created a themed community—a game that replicated Nazi Germany in detail. Although she had visited Auschwitz-Birkenau one time, she obtained most of the information for her game and the models from news reports, books, and museums such as the Munich City Museum and the Jewish Museum Berlin. Cindy believed that lessons learned in Germany could be useful for all people. Thus, in her game, Cindy requires that visitors take on the roles of various participants. The roles, which are randomly assigned when avatars visit the island, included Jewish citizens, Nazi guards, and various government officials. Each visitor is given a description of the role and the actions in which the visitor must participate in order to authentically perform the role. Cindy provides period costumes for avatars that enter the game.
  2. 3. Virtual Property Introductory Scenario After visitors complete their portion of the game, they are escorted to a store that sells paraphernalia related to those years, including Nazi paraphernalia. Visitors can purchase replicas of Nazi uniforms, flags and other items. Some visitors are unhappy that they were assigned roles. Other visitors e-mailed their friends to let them know what certain avatars did when they acted as Nazi guards. What potential issues arise in this scenario?
  3. 4. Issues-Introductory Scenario <ul><li>Contract </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Between Cindy and Linden Lab ® (owners of Second Life ® ) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Between Cindy and visitors </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Intellectual Property issues (fact based vs. property created by someone else) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Newspapers and books </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>None for her direct photos </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>International IP treaties </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Protection of her IP (e.g. game itself, buildings, clothing, instructions for each role) </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Tort </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Defamation (perhaps those who e-mailed regarding roles) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Any others? </li></ul>
  4. 5. Defining &quot;virtual world&quot; <ul><li>Defined: It is a computer program with several key characteristics </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Interactivity-the program can be accessed by many users at the same time from many different locations using a communication medium (e.g. the internet) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>&quot;Physical&quot; environment-users access the environment through, what appears on the computer screens as a physical environment </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Persistence-the environment exists and events occur after individual users have left the virtual world </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Examples: Second Life ® is one of many virtual worlds. </li></ul>
  5. 6. Defining property rights <ul><li>Ownership: bundle of rights </li></ul><ul><li>Limitations on ownership </li></ul>Bundle of rights Temporary transfer of possession Temporary transfer of all rights Permanent transfer of all rights
  6. 7. Defining property rights (cont.) <ul><li>Constitutional issues & government regulation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Freedom of expression, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Freedom of speech, </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Freedom of association </li></ul></ul>Source of Statistics: Secondlife.com L$262.3720 / US$1.00 Today's average: L$259 / US$1.00 Today's low: L$269 / US$1.00 Today's high: L$260 / US$1.00 Today's open: L$50,692,190 Today's volume: +L$10 / US$1.00 Change: L$259 / US$1.00 Last close: L$269 / US$1.00 Last trade: L$269 / US$1.00 Best selling rate: L$259 / US$1.00 Best buying rate: Last Close Date 2009-07-26 Daily Summary
  7. 8. <ul><li>Real Property: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>land </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>things attached to land </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>buildings </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>vegetation on the land </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Airspace above the land and minerals below </li></ul>Real and Personal Property <ul><li>Personal Property </li></ul><ul><ul><li>tangible and intangible </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>movable </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ goods” as defined by Article 2 of the Uniform Commercial Code </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Virtual property, e.g. URLs </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Gamers’ property </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Second Life ® vs. Gamers’ property </li></ul></ul></ul>
  8. 9. Creating Virtual Property Rights <ul><li>Contract-End User Licensing Agreements (EULA) </li></ul><ul><li>Adhesion Contract </li></ul>
  9. 10. Creating Virtual Property Rights (cont) <ul><li>Balancing types of individual liberties </li></ul>Right to create (virtual environment creators) Right to play (virtual environment users) Right to modify environment during play (virtual environment creators and users)
  10. 11. Additional Legal Issues <ul><li>Infringement on intellectual property rights </li></ul><ul><li>Tort Liability </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Defamation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Fraud and Misrepresentation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Intentional Infliction of Emotional Distress </li></ul></ul>
  11. 12. Additional Legal Issues p. 2 <ul><li>Criminal Liability </li></ul><ul><li>Breach of Contract </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Violation of Terms of Service or End User Licensing Agreements </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Grey market of buying and selling virtual items </li></ul></ul>
  12. 13. Additional Legal Issues p. 3 <ul><li>Dispute Resolution </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Method and location defined by the End User Licensing Agreement </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Created by Users </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Informal system, e.g. other users will not interact with that avatars </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Formal system, e.g. Second Life and its Metaverse Republic organization </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Real world dispute resolution: arbitration or the court system </li></ul></ul>
  13. 14. Additional Legal Issues p. 4 <ul><li>Jurisdiction and conflict of laws </li></ul><ul><li>International law-Issues relating to property ownership (and taxation, e.g. EU’s VAT http://secondlife.com/corporate/vat.php) </li></ul><ul><li>Escheat & Inheritance </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Co-ownership of property, i.e. land on Second Life ® (tenants in common) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Contract-End User Licensing Agreement Terms </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Tax implications </li></ul></ul>
  14. 15. Web 2.0 Tools and HR Implications Match the term on the left with one of the descriptions on the right. Website where individuals can connect with each other and interact Blog Website where visitors can add, remove and edit content Wiki Website where individuals enter comments and the comments are displayed in reverse chronological order Social Network
  15. 16. What is Web 2.0? <ul><li>Basic web programs are “static”, e.g. web page where a user uploads content and other users view that content but cannot alter or interact with it </li></ul><ul><li>Web 2.0 programs are interactive, e.g. where users can add content and interact with the content to change it or where the program can personalize the web experience to a particular user’s tastes. Examples include </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Google Maps, a directory </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Delicious, a bookmarking site </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Blogs, web logs where many users can alter content </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Wiki, editable web pages, such as Wikipedia </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Social Networking sites: Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn </li></ul></ul>Social Networking in Plain English http:// www.youtube.com/watch?v =6a_KF7TYKVc&feature= PlayList&p =9A8244EE1E566988&playnext=1&playnext_from= PL&index =23
  16. 17. Uses of Social Networking/Web 2.0 <ul><li>Why would an employer use them? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Work with customers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Keep in touch with customers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Coordinate work among employees </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Advertise to find new customers </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Investigate prospective employees </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Monitor current employees </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Why would an employer prohibit their use? </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Reduced productivity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Strain on resources </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Potential Legal Liability for information stated on the site </li></ul></ul>
  17. 18. Privacy Concerns <ul><ul><li>Digital natives (those who grew up using the internet) view the internet as a way to maintain connections and create their identities for “approved” family and friends; their space </li></ul></ul>Source: A (My)Space of One’s Own: On Privacy and Online Social Networks, Patrician Abril Digital immigrants (those who migrated to use the internet) view the internet as a way to decide which information to reveal and which to keep private; information is kept private by NOT revealing it on the internet
  18. 19. Uses of SNS in the workplace <ul><li>Screening job applicants </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Statistics on using SNS to Screen Job Applicants (The Newest Way to Screen Job Applicants: A Social Networker’s Nightmare, Brandenburg) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>10-12% of employers use SNS to do background checks on applicants </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Many employers do not use SNS or review online postings </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>40% of employers are undecided whether to use information on SNS and online postings </li></ul></ul></ul>
  19. 20. Uses of SNS in the workplace- Effects on Job applicants <ul><li>Employers have rejected applicants because: </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>“ 41% - content posted about alcohol or drug use </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>40% - “inappropriate of provocative” pictures </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>29% - candidate appeared to have poor communications skills </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>28% - candidate bad-mouthed their previous company or fellow employee </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>27% - candidate lied about qualifications </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>22% - discriminatory comments related to race, gender, religion, etc. </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>22% - candidate’s screen name was unprofessional </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>21% - candidate was linked to criminal behavior </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>19% - candidate shared confidential information from previous employers” </li></ul></ul></ul>New Study Shows Increase in Online Applicant Screening, Molly DiBianca, http://www.delawareemploymentlawblog.com/2008/09/new_study_shows_increase_in_on.html
  20. 21. Sample Legal Issues from Using SNS (Discrimination) <ul><li>Eloise, the HR Manager knows Vang went to the same school as several applicants and asks Vang to check the applicants’ Facebook pages. Vang finds &quot;party pictures” of John, Xavier, and Josefina. Vang reported that she was especially disturbed by Josefina’s picture – and wants to refuse to her for an interview for that reason. You represent the employer. Any recommendations? </li></ul>
  21. 22. Sample Legal Issues from Using SNS (privacy) <ul><li>Sam, a manager, looked at Julio’s MySpace page and learned that Julio was a member of a gay rights group. Sam fired Julio when he arrived late for work two weeks after Sam’s discovery. Julio sued arguing that Sam fired him because of Sam’s presumption about Julio’s sexual orientation. You represent the employer. Any recommendations? </li></ul>
  22. 23. Sample Legal Issues from Using SNS (SCA) <ul><li>Selena has a website that is critical of her employer. She requires usernames and passwords for access. She includes a statement that users must keep information they read in that site confidential. Don, her manager finds out about site, gains access from other employees (who were authorized users) and fired Selena for the comments. Has Don violated the SCA? </li></ul><ul><li>( Konop v. Hawaiian Airlines ) </li></ul>
  23. 24. Sample Legal Issues from Using SNS (Tort Liability) <ul><li>Henry is upset that his manager did not give him a raise, so he created a new section of his MySpace page where he posted derogatory comments about his manager and some of his co-workers. Does the manager have any recourse? What about the employer? </li></ul>
  24. 25. Violating a SNS Terms of Service <ul><li>A manager is reviewing resumes and asks a co-worker to use her Facebook account to look up the Facebook pages of 3 finalists. The employee creates an account and pretends to have attended the schools of the finalists to access their Facebook accounts. Any recommendations? </li></ul>
  25. 26. Twitter: Additional Legal Issues <ul><li>Brevity of communication can lead to more potential misunderstandings </li></ul><ul><li>Confidentiality can be an issue for sensitive communications </li></ul><ul><li>Agency law could lead to representations on any of these sites being representative of the company </li></ul>
  26. 27. Recommendations <ul><li>Preventative Approaches </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Develop a clear policy relating to on the job uses of SNS </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Consider blocking some sites </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Tips On Using SNS and Online Sources of Information </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Train managers so they do not use the information learned from the site in a discriminatory manner or otherwise prohibited by law </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Document searches and do consistently for all, not just for some </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Determine whether the information acquired is truly relevant-that is, whether it is job related </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Use only sites that are readily accessible to the public; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Do not create a false alias to access the site; </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Do not provide any false information to gain access to the site </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Advise applicants/employees about using social networking sites </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Encourage their use to highlight accomplishments; ask themselves whether they’d want their mother to see their site </li></ul></ul>Adapted from: Today's BLR Teleconference On Hidden Risks In Using Social Networking Internet Sites To Conduct Background Checks by Anthony Zaller and Employers Using Facebook for Background Checking: Is It Legal? By George Lenard,

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