by Alphaville Herald on 10/01/09 at 7:21 pm
by Pixeleen Mistral, National Affairs desk
Last night, while trying to convince Hamlet Au of New World Notes that things would really go much better for him if he would simply stop running away and dance with me – I don’t bite – the one-man Linden infomercial production company totally ruined the mood when he voiced a concern that SL Herald press representation could signal the presence of griefers — and what terrible self-replicating particle shit hammer might rain down on the laggy RMB City dance party that Hamlet has been nice enough to teleport me to?
Hamlet generally avoids covering the meta-games Second Life residents invent to put some excitement into their gameplay, so perhaps he is unfamiliar with the two avatars to whom the Herald is awarding the prestigious 3rd place award for avatar of the year in 2008: n3x15 and d3adl3yc0d3c. This is a shame. The Herald’s Avatar of the Year award is never presented lightly, and recognizes those that have had the biggest impact on “your world, your imagination” — for better or worse.
Previous griefers players with a unique approach to gameplay who have recieved the avatar of the year award include Prokofy Neva, Tizzers Foxchase, and Plastic Duck — demonstrating that a vigorously pursued vision for the metaverse can have a real impact.
d3adl3yc0d3c qualified for his award with a series of cleverlyconstructed distributed denial of service (DDoS) attacks on the SecondLife infrastructure and asset server in 2008. By creating selfreplicating scripted objects that quietly spread across a large numberof sims, and by then remotely triggering the object scripts, d3adl3yc0d3c wasable to bring the Second Life asset server to it’s knees repeatedly andseemingly at will, using Second Life’s grid to mount mass attacks onthe SL asset server. Does this also suggest that the SL grid may begenerally useful for DDoS attacks against external targets?
After this game lost its appeal, d3adl3yc0d3c branched out into mass e-mail spamming from in-world self-replicating objects, taking advantage of scripted objects' ability to send e-mail to external sites. Mr. c0d3c eventually attacked an SLEXchange forum regular that he felt was anti-American. Unfortunately, after a few days, his target used a Gmail filter to automatically redirect the spam to the e-mail accounts of the Herald staff. But the Herald staff took 5 minutes to become experts on Gmail spam filters, and this skill has proved to be useful in the hall of mirrors that is teh interwebs.
Eventually d3adl3yc0d3c moved beyond the griefing game and to pursue studies of the philosophical implication of self-identical avatars along with a professional writing career. Before getting out of the griefing game, d3adl3yc0d3c demonstrated a number of new uses for anonymous access to unlimited free scripting and the Second Life infrastructure, and was helpful enough to offer existence proofs to Linden Lab about the drawbacks to user-created content and unlimited free accounts.
n3x15 is jointly awarded the 3rd place avatar of the year award for his work in keeping the notorious Patriotic Nigras griefing group running after PN founder Mootykips tired of the game. Community organizers are a vital part of our virtual world, and n3x15 seems to intuitively understand this.
Beyond suporting the PN during a period when the leadership was in constant turmoil, n3x15 also had a crucial role in maintaining the shooped life griefer-friendly SL client. With this client, n3x15 enabled legions of throwaway accounts to visit Second Life, fill sims with goatse images, get banned, and return on another account within minutes – providing both abuse-report-expert anti-griefer groups such as the Justice League Unlimited and the Linden Lab G-team a reason to exist.
Beyond his software and organizational abilities, n3x15 also worked part time as an open source software license advocate, and demanded that d3adl3yc0d3c publish his griefing improvements to the SL client to comply with the terms of the GPL license. This commitment to the cause of free software and what appears to have been a competitive race to see who could be the biggest and baddest in the griefing community appears to have served both of this year's 3rd place award recipients well – and spurred them on to greater achievements.
In time, n3x15 also tired of the griefing game, and has recently turned his attention to anti-griefing tools and the OpenSim software. While both d3adl3yc0d3c and n3x15 have changed their focus, it seems likely they have inspired a new generation of griefers, if the repeated log-in lock-outs due to “in-world issues” have anything to do with scritped user-created content and anonymous accounts.