All of this raises important questions about the ethics of the virtual world in the short term. How should users act in the virtual world? What is the difference between right and wrong in such a space? And what does justice look like in these societies?
Let’s start with Virtual world already exists. Perhaps the simplest case is a single-player video game. You might think that with no one else involved, these games are free of ethical concerns, but ethical issues sometimes arise.
In his 2009 article “The Gamer’s Dilemma“, philosopher Morgan Luck commented that while most people think virtual murder (killing non-player characters) is morally permissible, they think virtual pedophilia is not. so does virtual sexual assault.In the 1982 Atari game Custer’s Revenge, the goal was to sexually assault a Native American woman. Most people think there is something morally wrong here.
This is a philosophical puzzle. What are the relevant ethical differences between virtual murder and virtual pedophilia? No action that involves directly harming others. If virtual pedophilia leads to bogus pedophilia that would be a big deal, but it seems the evidence for such transmission is weak.
It’s not easy for moral theories to explain what’s wrong here. One possible explanation is ethics, which explains the difference between right and wrong actions in terms of the virtues and vices of those who perform them. We consider virtual pedophilia to be morally wrong, so engaging in virtual pedophilia is itself morally flawed. Perhaps the same goes for virtual sexual assault, torture, and racism. It is said that many people have a similar moral reaction to the 2002 game Ethnic Purification, in which the protagonist is a white supremacist who kills members of other races. In contrast, we don’t think of “normal” virtual murder as a sign of a moral flaw, so we consider it no problem. However, the ethical issues here are subtle.
As we move to a multiplayer video game environment (such as Fortnite), and then fully social virtual worlds (such as Second life), ethical issues multiply. If these virtual worlds were merely games or fiction, then the morality of the virtual world would be limited to the ethics of the game or fiction. People can be wrong in the ways they do in game play, but not in richer ways than they do in ordinary life. However, once one considers the virtual world to be genuine reality, the morality of the virtual world becomes in principle just as serious as morality in general.
In many multiplayer game worlds, there are “grieves” – players of bad faith who enjoy harassing other players, stealing their property, harming or even killing them in the world. game. This behavior is considered wrong by many insofar as it interferes with other users’ enjoyment of the game. But is stealing someone’s property as wrong in the game as it is in real life? Most of us would agree that possessions in a game are more important than assets in a non-psychedelic world. However, in long-term games and beyond in non-game environments, assets can be important to users, and the harm can be correspondingly significant. In 2012, the Dutch Supreme Court upheld the conviction of two teenagers for stealing a virtual talisman from another teenager in an online game. Runescape. The court declared that the amulet had real value based on the time and effort invested in obtaining it.