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The Consumer Ethics of the Virtual Environment: An Aetiology

The Consumer Ethics of the Virtual Environment: An Aetiology
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Author(s): Savvas Papagiannidis (Newcastle University, UK)
Copyright: 2007
Pages: 3
Source title: Managing Worldwide Operations and Communications with Information Technology
Source Editor(s): Mehdi Khosrow-Pour, D.B.A. (Information Resources Management Association, USA)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-59904-929-8.ch038
ISBN13: 9781599049298
EISBN13: 9781466665378


Free-form, massive multiplayer online games have resulted in the migration of many real world activities to virtual worlds and environments. These often exceed what is possible in the real world, but in most cases are still just reflections of it. In this paper we will focus on the commercial applications that virtual worlds can host and more specifically on the potential ethical issues that arise when trading in virtual environments. We will present the case of Second Life and illustrate some of the key consumer-related ethical issues that arise from this virtual environment. The next section examines important key attributes of the virtual environment of Second Life and illustrates its popularity and usage. This is followed by an analysis of consumer ethics within the game, whilst a separate section outlines a number of key recommendations. The last section concludes our analysis.

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