« What is Art? | Main | Michelle Obama and Wal-Mart »

May 13, 2007

Second Life

Horror of horrors, Second Life has no legal system, no courts and no police force.

Little wonder then that legal experts claim the lax regime could provide a haven for money launderers, fraudsters and even terrorists to hide and move funds.
The FAP, a watchdog established by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales, says that criminal or terrorist gangs could use the game to move funds and avoid surveillance. Other risks, it says, include credit card fraud, identity theft, money laundering and tax evasion.

Note "could". Future conditional I think that tense is?

Yes, indeed, let's interfere because something might happen.

Couldn't be anything at all to do with the thought that if 6 million people can rub along online without any external control then as people begin to realise this, they might wonder whether they need such controlling out here in meatspace now could it?

May 13, 2007 in Web/Tech | Permalink


TrackBack URL for this entry:

Listed below are links to weblogs that reference Second Life:


"Yes, indeed, let's interfere because something might happen."

These accountants & legal experts are simply looking to expand their business - the time to worry is when politicians decide they need an online presence in things like 'Second Life'!

Posted by: JuliaM | May 13, 2007 10:04:33 AM

Tim, I am confused by your posts today. Comparing this post on Second Life with the one on John Reid and the Law, do you think having laws (and of course the means to enforce them) is a good idea or not?

Tim adds: Sure, laws are essential. A very few of them. 6 million people rubbing along happily together without them shows how few.

Posted by: Ed | May 13, 2007 11:05:23 AM

We should make the distinction between law and legislation.
This is worth a listen at EconTalk:

Posted by: Kit | May 13, 2007 11:54:27 AM

Much of the crap legislation and compliance initiatives that governments foist on us today are purely down to lobbying by lawyers and accountants. A few others are the result of lobbying by window manufacturers or electrical contractors. The devil certainly makes work for idle hands. Imagine, without complex laws and ridiculously byzantine tax codes, we'd have no need for these overpaid wankers with their price fixing and monopolistic professional guilds. I say we liquidate all lawyers, accountants and maybe preachers. After that it should be plain sailing... a bit like Second Life, really.

I feel better for that!

Posted by: MarkS | May 13, 2007 1:25:03 PM

I'm trying to imagine how this could happen. It would require second life to have banks, etc. not regulated by any real world regulator, and for financing to be able to move into the real world entirely without using the banks and other institutions that are heaving under anti-moneylaundering rules.

Posted by: Marcin Tustin | May 14, 2007 2:00:07 PM