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Julian Dibbell (1998) ["A rape in cyberspace"]

Mr Bungle was a persona on LambdaMOO. The identity of his real-life creator is not known.

He used a programming construct called a "voodoo doll" to cause two other personae to carry out unpleasant sexual acts while their real-life creators were logged on. This caused genuine distress, both to the real-life creators of the personae affected, and to others who had interacted with them.

There was a lot of subsequent discussion in the immediate aftermath as to the best response, and in the end, one of the administrators of the system erased the character. A "virtual rape" was thus punished with a "virtual death penalty". The incident is much-used as a discussion point on academic courses dealing with the relationship between virtual and real life. More to the point, it is the archetypical case of how online communities philosophically and politically cope with "violent" sociopaths.

It turns out that the original virtual rapist was a composite identity: an ErnMalley.


It turns out that the original virtual rapist was a composite identity: an ErnMalley.

Really? How did they find this out? I'm curious. -- SunirShah

Well, so I heard, but it was presented in a gossipy "a friend told me way", so take with salt. I can't remember the URL, but it was linked from a prior version of this page. Apparently the original MrBungle who did the virtual rape was a group of ~4 bored guys egging each other on. The somewhat contrite and strangely different reincarnation of Mr. Bungle that reappeared later was a single one of the group. Interesting if true, anyway. --MartinHarper


See some further discussion at DeathThreat
If this same person operated "MrBungle" on the EfNet? IRC network, his name is Jason Schlachet and his website is http://schlachet.net/ More information here: http://www.geocities.com/efnethottub/

That seems exceedingly unlikely.


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