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Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Those Rascally Griefers

There are some people who crave attention so much they don’t care what sort of attention it is…and so they try to annoy, upset, and inconvenience others. These people are known as “griefers”, because they delight in giving others grief.

Some griefers work on a small scale, only annoying individuals. Others attack entire regions, and a few ambitious souls try, on occasion, to bring down the entire Second Life grid.

It’s a bad idea to respond to a griefer with a counterattack. Many griefers are just waiting for you to fly off the handle and do something to them so they can Abuse Report you. Instead, here are some tools for handling griefers.
  • Ignore Them. Especially if all they are doing is being annoying in text or voice chat. Remember, a griefer lives for attention. If you don’t give them a response, many of them will eventually give up and go away. If you move your conversation with your friends to IM, they can’t even hear what you are saying and may get bored even faster.
  • Go Elsewhere. There are tens of thousands of places in SL. Why not find one that does not contain this annoying person?
  • Mute Them. In Viewer 2, this is called “Block”. Right click their avatar and select Block from the pie menu. The griefer will become a gray silhouette, and you will no longer hear their chat, voice, gestures, or IMs.
  • Eject and Ban Them. If you own or lease land, you have enforcement powers there. Some groups also give some or all of their members these powers. Right click the offender. You have three choices: Freeze, which locks the avatar in place for 30 seconds; Eject, which throws the avatar off the parcel; or Eject and Ban, which not only throws them off but keeps them from returning.
  • Abuse Report Them. The Abuse Report form is found in the Help menu – select Report Abuse. Once you submit the form, you’ll get a confirmation email from “Indra Abuse”, but do not expect to be told the outcome of LL’s investigation.
Remember that SL is an international community. It’s possible that a conflict is due to a language or cultural misunderstanding, not malicious intent. So cut people some slack…but use the above methods to keep your Second Life pleasant.

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