Playing Possum

Honesty is the first chapter in the book of wisdom. ~Thomas Jefferson

Playing Possum Hair: Dura, Girl52 **NEW** . Necklace: Pure Poison, Rosalyn **The Couturier’s Dock . Earrings: Pure Poison, Baroque Earrings **L’Accessoires .

Playing possum, or in the words of the late great Mark Twain, “The reports of my death have been greatly exaggerated.” The philosopher Immanuel Kant said that lying was always morally wrong. He argued that all persons are born with an “intrinsic worth” that he called human dignity. This dignity derives from the fact that humans are uniquely rational beings, capable of freely making their own decisions, setting their own goals, and guiding their conduct by reason. To be human, said Kant, is to have the rational power of free choice; to be ethical is to respect that power in oneself and in others. Free choice, what a remarkable thing it is to be human.

Playing Possum Dress: *LpD*, Carlotta **The Couturier’s Dock** . Bag: Baiastice, Twiggy Bag . Background: Katinks, grunge . Watch: [Mandala], Hokusai .

But with this free choice, lies are morally wrong for two reasons. First, lying corrupts the most important quality of being human: our ability to make free, rational choices. Each lie told contradicts the part of us that gives us moral worth. Second, a lie robs others of their freedom to choose rationally. When a lie leads people to make a decision other than they normally would had they known the truth, you have harmed their human dignity. Recently it flew like wildfire across Facebook that a certain model/avatar had passed away. I have to be honest; I wrestled with myself mightily because I didn’t quite believe the tale. Why? Well, it seems this particular person possibly has approximately 5 different avatars that she uses for different reasons, none known as the related alt of the person. So if you are all of the avatars and killed yourself, shame on you. If someone hacked your account, lied and did this to you. Shame on them. If either story is true, why is this lie bad? It’s just a Second Life, not a first, right?

A lie is a lie, is a lie and by telling this heinous brain aneurism death lie we were stripped of our dignity. Shame on you! The liar caused angst, stress and unrest. Well, not to me, in my gut I never quite believed the lie, it’s why I didn’t comment, but to a few really close to me, yeah, it hurt them. The take from? It’s so easy to hoodwink people in virtual worlds, the question is, why do you feel the compulsion to do so? At the end of the day you will have to face that anything you have gained was illusory at best but the damage you have inflicted on others is permanent. What damage? I reckon you can start with me, I sadly can’t even believe a person has truly died anymore and that’s pathetic. Just think about that for a while, I hope the truth of what you are will come to you. And, of course, this is just my opinion, for what it’s worth to you, I know, probably not all that much.


BIGBANG – LIES (거짓말)

20 thoughts on “Playing Possum

  1. I usually don´t make comments unless I have something good and positive to say. But I can´t keep quiet this time. I can´t believe people are still faking their deaths and illnesses in SL … STILL !!!! Are we not learning anything from our interactions??? What gives them the right to even think they can hurt others who have truly come to care about them by feigning their own deaths? I have seen it happen all over the place already. One even had the guts to feign her death in order not to have to break up with an unloved BF therefore robbing him of the possibility to get over her. In his mind she was always that wonderful sweet woman who happened to be ill and cruel fate had taken away from him. Like you say … a lie, is a lie, is a lie … in this and any other world.

    1. omgoodness that woman should rot in heck! That is evil! Thank you Landa, I guess I just don’t understand why a person can’t like themselves enough and have to lie to make them mean something to someone. Uff!

  2. Wow, I can’t believe people still think they can get away with this most cruel lie. Whether a relationship (lover, family, friend) is virtual or not, the fact is that we connect with the real person.

    Before I came to Second Life, I was an inhabitant in another virtual world. That world had a memorial garden for people who had passed away. The one stipulation was that in order to have the avatar memorialised there they had to receive a copy of the death certificate. It was a peaceful, lovely place and I would go there sometimes to sit by the memorial for one of my dear friends that passed away from cancer at the age of 32. She fought the disease for almost a year before she finally succumbed. She knew of this garden and wanted her memory to be held there, mainly because she had been hurt by someone who had faked their death and she wanted to make sure her avatar’s name lived on there as a reminder to anyone who might play that cruel game.

    I’m just going to end by saying I miss my dear friend, Day, who gave me so much laughter in her much-too-short life.

    1. I bet you do Peep, and I totally understand, my sister in law, best friend Kim died at 36 from leukemia. Not that age matters a lot, it’s their love we miss, but it always seems to hurt just a little more when there is a lot of life left to explore. *pats spot next to her on couch* come sit with me a little while and we will just think of them and dream. ❤

  3. Wow, thought this was just one of your ‘thinking aloud’ post. But this really happened? Ugh. 😦

    I have minimal actual interactions inworld due to time constraints. But all the interactions and friendship I have forged inworld (and Plurk, blog, everywhere), I consider it as real as the one I have in flesh world. The things I have inworld are not real, but the people I talk to are real to me. If someone I know in SL were to pass away, I would be distraught. Imagine finding out this was just a lie, I’d be so livid!! Why would anyone put the people they call friends in that state of mind? 😦

    You’re right about this being damaging to everyone when we even have to question: “is this person really gone or…?” 😦

  4. I absolutely loved this comment from your blog:

    You wrote: It’s so easy to hoodwink people in virtual worlds, the question is, why do you feel the compulsion to do so? At the end of the day you will have to face that anything you have gained was illusory at best but the damage you have inflicted on others is permanent. What damage? I reckon you can start with me, I sadly can’t even believe a person has truly died anymore and that’s pathetic. Just think about that for a while, I hope the truth of what you are will come to you. And, of course, this is just my opinion, for what it’s worth to you, I know, probably not all that much.

    My reply:

    My first encounter with modeling and
    photography in Second Life was when
    someone approached me and said that he
    owned a “modeling agency” and invited
    me to submit some photos to a show.

    He said my look was “very unique.”

    A quick glance at an early a snapshot
    from 07 confirms that I looked like
    the noobie from hell.

    A friend took some shots and I submitted
    them.

    I was told that they would go into a
    competition and that the “lucky winner”
    would get 2500 Linden and a scholarship
    to modeling “school’.

    People had to pay a L100 to vote
    for me but they could vote as often
    as they wanted.

    At that time, I had many newbie “friends” in SL
    and many of them were willing to pay to vote for
    my picture.

    I noticed that at times, I would take the lead but
    there was one fellow who always had the most
    votes each morning regardless of who held the
    lead the previous day.

    He won of course.

    Later I found out that he was part of the schools
    ‘in’ crowd.

    His avi was not the best in the contest and neither
    was mine.

    Neither of us had earned a win.

    But someone who worked very hard to provide
    a decent presentation lost a rigged contest.

    The culture of Second Life has matured a bit
    in seven years but the gaming mentality still
    prevails and it promotes cronyism.

    Cronyism is profitable but it is not the same
    as genuine success.

    In real life, cronyism suppresses talent and
    promotes mediocrity.

    There is a difference between a group of people
    who work to promote each other and the
    sociopathy that characterizes cronyism.

    In a game, everyone is fair game.

    I later met a woman who said that she “liked”
    me and that she esspecially liked an idea that I
    had for a jazz club.

    She introduced me to a woman who wanted a
    “business partner” and this woman said I was
    ideal.

    I also began to date a third woman who “really wanted
    to know me”.

    They were all the same woman.

    I have alts and it has never occurred to me to
    use them like this.

    The fact that so many members distrust
    people who use alt accounts tells me that
    this misuse of the alt account is common.

    You know the old saying…fool me once shame
    on you, fool me twice…won’t get fooled again.

    I was conned out of two thousand dollars.

    For some reason this woman thought I was
    being rude to hold her accountable for it
    because she is ‘only human.’

    And all of her friends agreed with her.

    I was supposed to be slapped and like it. 🙂

    You are right.

    Lying breaks faith on the most fundamental
    level.

    It breeds a culture of cynicism and mistrust.

    And it stifles creativity,

    Your topics are always relevant and you
    are unafraid to speak your mind.

    I admire that.

    Rob Goldstein

    1. Yikers Rob! You have had some bizarre experiences 😦 I’ve actually never understood the use of alts, always being just Cao, or way back in the beginning, just the first alt except for a brief period when I had both so I could transfer over what I could. But once that was done the first alt was deleted. I like to think there is nothing “secret” I need another alt for, no secret activites, no hidden agendas, just me. Thanks so much for sharing your experience as well. xo

  5. This has happened in SL since its very inception and it will continue to happen, it is part of anything where people are involved and the underbelly of humanity squirms and thrives in all mediums. Remember the dead model? on whose very name an tragic “death” an entire “University” was created and thousands of linden stolen as people stood by and watched, and profited? I will not go on about some things because this is Cao’s blog and recently I read a good post about foot in mouth 🙂 (smiles) but let me point out a small quote; “All it takes for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing” Edmund Burke. With that said if people stand by and hush-hush and keep names under wraps and say and do nothing or turn a blind eye, because it is easier to play possum than to make waves and risk not being “popular” because you speak up and point things out, then we are all a little guilty if tomorrow this person miraculously resurrects into another avi, to once again do the same it has done before (some styles do not change no matter how many avis they may create).

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