TN reader and president of Blacklove Interactive Kelly Rued asks whether:
“player agency in an interactive sex game affects the media’s status as porn (legally and socially).”
I guess the argument might run like this: if two people having sex is it not pornography so is it porn if they happen to use avatars.
I would suggest that this should depend on who is viewing it. Certainly if there is a record of it, just as if there is a record of physical sex act, then this is a work and it it liable, based on its particular content, to fall under the category of pornography.
But what if there is no record and no one other than the two people involved ever see it – are they mutual and simultaneous creators / consumers of pornography, if so, why is this not the case in regular life; does the mere fact of mediation mean that there is a ‘work’ hence we have a legal category shift. In fact does the EULA comidification of data under the notion of ‘work’ force this shift?
All of which leads us to the broader question of whether categorizing it as pornography would serve a useful purpose, is this another law that needs re-evaluation in the light of virtual spaces?