Online Death Leads To Offline Arrest
A woman who brutally murdered the avatar of her online husband in Japan last week has been arrested in the real world.
(Maple Story murder scene)
After a messy online divorce, she obtained her digital partner's password and used it to illegally access his computer. Once logged in, she erased his digital character. The charge of illegally accessing a computer carries a maximum sentence of five years in prison or a fine of about $5,000.
According to investigators, the woman flew into a rage when the relationship was abruptly terminated. "I was suddenly divorced, without a word of warning. That made me so angry," she was quoted as saying.
The two met while accessing a hugely popular role-playing game called MapleStory, which encourages anonymous users to create online characters that navigate alternative worlds, fight monsters and engage in virtual relationships. Long-term commitments, marriage, and digital sex are not uncommon among players, who are sometimes not even living in the same country. Originally from South Korea, Maple Story now reportedly boasts about 50 million subscribers worldwide, including 9 million in Japan.
In terms of science-fictional precursors, I was trying to think of cases in which the death of an online character resulted in the death of a corresponding real person. Readers?
Update 28-Oct-2008: In a 1988 episode of Star Trek: The Next Generation (Elementary, Dear Data), Geordi asks the holodeck to make a Sherlock Holmes villain capable of defeating data. The resulting character, Dr. Moriarty, comes to claim that he is conscious and wants to live a life outside the holodeck. Since this is not possible, Captain Picard agrees to save his program data and algorithms before terminating the active program. (Thanks, Moira!)
(Dr. Moriarty program from ST:TNG)
From Virtual killer faces real jail after murder by mouse ; thanks to Moira for the tip.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 10/27/2008)
Follow this kind of news @Technovelgy.
| Email | RSS | Blog It | Stumble | del.icio.us | Digg | Reddit |
you like to contribute a story tip?
Get the URL of the story, and the related sf author, and add
Comment/Join discussion ( 3 )
Related News Stories -
AIREAL Lets You Feel Virtual Objects In The Open Air
'Startled, he touched his mouth. 'How the devil did you do that?' he shouted.'- Frederick Pohl, 1965.
Millimeter-Scale Computing For 'Internet of Things'
'In their megalomania they thought to make the very sand beneath their feet intelligent...'- Stanislaw Lem, 1965.
Fujitsu Touchscreen Mixes Real And Virtual Worlds
'His hands flashed over the keyboard - it had not been there a moment before, but it was operative...'- Frederik Pohl, 1965.
Nanowire Memristor Networks Form 'Brains'
'He had constructed ... a brain, of metal... whose atomic structure he claimed was analogous to the atomic structure of a living brain.'- Edmond Hamilton, 1926.
Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!)
is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for
the Invention Category that interests
you, the Glossary, the Invention
Timeline, or see what's New.
Haute Cuisine On International Space Station
'The gas gave sufficient heat for the culinary apparatus...'
Tongue Mouse Created By Valve Engineer
'He pressed hard with his tongue against his right upper first molar.'
K5 Autonomous Data Machine The Future Of Mall Security
''Halt!' A robot guard appeared...'
RF Safe-Stop Shuts Cars Off
'...a police control-override.'
Army's New Bird-Like Surveillance UAV
'The prototype blue-bellied, gray-backed tracer-bird with the wide-angle eye...'
Honda's Tumblebug - The UNI-CUB beta
'A tumblebug does not give a man dignity...'
NASA's LADEE Enters Lunar Orbit
'... dust normally on the surface picks up and keeps a charge.'
3D Printing An Entire Car
"... Almost as good as the original it was printed from."
Aldebaran Robot Talks Like C3PO - Almost
'See Vee Threepio - Vee for versatility - at your service...'
Google's Skin Tattoo Lie Detector
'Three and a half centimetres in diameter, permanently fixed in the centre of his forehead.'
inFORM Dynamic Shape Output Device
Like that pushpin device you remember, but supercharged.
Owlet Vitals, The Future Of Baby Monitoring
'In every diaper there is a fine copper wire...'
Robert Heinlein, Your Personal Electric Helicopter Will Be Ready In 2016
"They were half way home when a single flyer, hopping free in a copter harness, approached the little parade."
WildCat Runs Faster Than You, Untethered
'...moving with such drifting ease that it was like a single solid cloud of black-grey smoke blown at him in silence.' Almost.
HiBot's ACM-R5H Robot Video Shows Graceful Terminator-Style Swimming
'No! No! Aaaaaaarrrrrrgh!'
tDCS Jumpstarts Your Future
'We invented a scanner that can change the labyrinthine neural connections of the brain by tiny electronic impulses...'.
More SF in the News Stories
More Beyond Technovelgy science news stories