by Pixeleen Mistral on 05/03/07 at 4:48 pm
Any resident can be a metaverse TSA security screener
by Pixeleen Mistral, National Affairs desk
For those who feel the need to examine other residents without their clothes – or their permission – a metaverse virtual strip search is now available. According to the secondtoys production description and the SLexhange page:
SL Nude Mod is an addon for Second Life that hides clothing layers on avatars. The changes are only visible to the person running the modification and do not have any permanent affect on appearances. This is accomplished by running a special proxy on your computer that modifies information coming from Second Life, so your client thinks they are not wearing any clothing textures.
Apparently this mod allows anyone to view avatars in the raw – without waiting for a Post 6 Grrrl photoshoot in the Herald. At L$3500 – or about $13 USD – we suspect there may be some willing buyers. However – the maker has an important caveat:
WARNING: While you do have the right to modify any incoming data to your computer, it may not be within the Terms of Service of Second Life to take pictures of nude avatars and post them, or abuse this addon in any way. As always you are responsible for your own actions both in-world and out; use common sense.
We take this to mean it is fine to look in private – but maybe hold off on publishing the photos.
This all seems a bit like the x-ray backscatter devices being installed in some RL airports and prisons – and scholarly real life journals such as USA Today have expressed privacy concerns. Could similar privacy issues apply to avatars in Second Life?
Of course, in RL only TSA employees and prison guards have access to the x-ray vision equipment – but In the metaverse anyone can be a TSA security screener. This may make a certain amount of sense – anyone can fly at anytime in the metaverse and pre-flight security screenings in SL have been notoriously lax – perhaps we need all the strip search screening we can get?