Ages ago I blogged about how sex dominates in-world search listings in Second Life. Since I hadn’t been on for a while I thought I would have a look and see if anything has changed. Well, the long and the short of my quick investigation is that it hasn’t. Linden Labs haven’t bothered to chuck a bucket of cold water on the metaverse and Google’s 3.4m hits agree, sex continues to “dominate” Second Life.
An example of this can be found through a search for “RPG” in-world under the places/games category. Lets make it hard and uncheck the “include parcels with mature content” box. There should be 11 results. Of these results:
- 6 reference sexual terms, including ‘sex’, ‘bdsm’, ‘gorean’ and ‘bondage’.
- 9 practice key-word padding, that is, they throw in any word into their description to try and boost their chance of being found in searches (because that’s how search in Second Life works). It’s annoying this tactic still works as it makes most plot descriptions meaningless.
- 1 is in Italian, and we all know how dodgy those Europeans are!
So, while searching for games, in a games section, with mature content off, you will still find yourself hitting on mature content. Odd.
If you tick the “mature content” box and run the search again your search results will blossom out to 17 hits and the most popular game in the list is “Kingdom of Sand – Capture Roleplay Game in Arabian City”. In case you didn’t know, “capture roleplay” is a BDSM-like game of “sex tag”, as the wonderful Second Life Herald puts it.
I’m not entirely sure I wanted to learn that.