From this article in The Australian:
“Rohan Gunaratna, author of Inside al-Qa’ida, says …[Terrorists] are rehearsing their operations in Second Life because they don’t have the opportunity to rehearse in the real world,” Gunaratna says. “And unless governments improve their technical capabilities on a par with the terrorists’ access to globalisation tools like the internet and Second Life, they will not be able to monitor what is happening in the terrorist world.”
“Kevin Zuccato, head of the Australian High Tech Crime Centre in Canberra, says terrorists can gain training in games such as World of Warcraft in a simulated environment, using weapons that are identical to real-world armaments.”
I can only hope that Rohan Gunaratna and Kevin Zuccato are being so misquoted by The Australian that they have grounds to sue, because in my opinion the only other possibility is that they are smoking the crack.
My mind reels at the concept of a terrorist attacked planned and trialled and perfected in Second Life.
“Quickly, Ahmed! We must strike at the Great Satan NOW! You put on your anthropomorphic fox avatar, and I’ll wear my Sailor Moon outfit! Don’t forget to res up your largest weapon and let us pray to Allah that the American Pig Dogs have Push Damage enabled on their land!”
“After we strike, I will escape in my 50m long flying hot dog, you leave in the opposite direction via Lightcycle! Don’t forget, if the Americans use a cage trap weapon, in Allahs name, Teleport back to base and I’ll meet you there!”
And as for Kevin Zuccato … Terrorists training in WoW? Is Al Queda training to raid Onyxia the Dragon now?
“Ahmed! I cannot believe you pulled that add! In the name of Allah, control your aggro! Minus Fifty Infidel Kill Points!”
And using weapons identical to real-world armaments? My Druid main in WoW has A Splintering Greatstaff of the Beast that increases his Attack Power by over 300 points while he’s in Cat, Bear, Dire Bear and Moonkin forms. If that kind of tech is now in the hands of Al Queda, then frankly, I lay the blame squarely at the door of the international intelligence community.
I can MAYBE see people training in something like small squad tactics, using a game like the Call of Duty series. Maybe. But SL and WoW? Not so much.
First furries and gankers, and now Al Queda. I may go back to playing Starcraft.