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Sex & God in the Metaverse

by Sigmund Leominster
Published March 5, 2012

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It’s been a week of polar opposites in virtual life for this reporter’s investigations. While the Adult Entertainment Virtual Convention (AEVC) [1] was held for three-days in February to celebrate all things wicked, the relatively new online world, Bible Island, seeks  to provide children with a safe-h(e)aven from the “many evil things” that are out there.

Back in 2002, Canadian Brian Shuster created an online world called the Utherverse [2],which opened its now famous Red Light Center [3] in 2006, inspired by a trip to Amsterdam’s much-more famous Red Light District. Red Light Center is an adults-only, subscription based online “experience” that is openly about sex, sex, and more sex. As in the Second Life virtual world, people have avatars that they can manipulate and the opportunity to buy equipment, scripts, and anything else necessary to engage in whatever fantasies they can imagine.

Sponsored by Utherverse, the AEVC took place at the end of February from 24th – 26th, stopping just short of having it run into Valentine’s Day. The aim of the conference was to promote the virtual sex industry, which included seminars on B2B opportunities, how to make money in the virtual world, using social media to promote virtual products, and even legal issues. Business owner could rent virtual booths, just as in the real world, and promote their wares to other businesses and consumers. In fact, according to Steve DuMosch of Mojowijo [4], a company in the forefront of teledildonics [1], “We felt the smaller attendance lent itself to be a better B2B expo rather than a B2C.”

The “smaller attendance” was, according to the organizers, around 10,000 unique log-ins over the event, which is a not insignificant number.

For those new to the word, “teledildonics” is used to describe the industry involved in designing and producing sex toys that work over the internet. Mojowijo has been in business since 2010 and has both male and female stimulation toys that can be operated via a Wii controller or over a Skype connect. http://www.mojowijo.com.

In fact, the exhibitor list also included Vstroker [5], the maker and distributor of a virtual sex system based on the Fleshlight™ penis stimulator, where a client wears the device and, while attached via a USB port to the computer, can visit a web site to download an interactive video that responds to movements in the Fleshlight.

Being an adult event focused on the sex industry, there was, of course, some graphic content available to attendees, as well as the opportunity to listen to, and interact with, real world and virtual world porn stars. One of the star attendees was the now legendary Seka, who was phenomenally popular in the late 1970’s and early ‘80’s, and who talked about her life as a porn star and how that changed over the years.

But also attendance was the Association of Sites Advocating Child Protection [6] (ASACP), which was founded in 1996 as a non-profit agency dedicated to the elimination of child pornography on the internet. Its members are primarily adult industry companies who are keen to make a distinction between adult porn and child porn, and to help parents and others to protect children from viewing age-inappropriate material online.

In contrast to the potentially Sodom and Gomorrah world of Red Light Center, the creators of Bible Islands [7] describe themselves as “the world’s first Christian online world for children. Bible Island offers safe and enriching Christian edutainment to Bible believing families and their children, worldwide.” Developed by the Compedia educational software company that was created in 1988, Bible Islands promises to provide a safe, wholesome, Christian-based environment where children can be entertained while simultaneously learning moral and spiritual values based on biblical teachings and stories.

Perhaps in some strange way, it’s comforting to know that both these types of events can go on in the virtual world and yet stay so very, very far apart.

Further Information

[1] Adult Entertainment Virtual Convention home page: http://www.adultvirtualconvention.com

[2] Utherverse portal page: http://www.utherverse.com

[3] Red Light Center sign in page: http://www.redlightutherverse.com

[4] Mojowijo home page: http://www.mojowijo.com

[5] Vstroker home page: http://vstroker.com

[6] The Association of Sites Advocating Child Protection home: http://www.asacp.org

[7] Bible Islands home: http://bibleislands.com

 

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