World of Wiretapping?

Funny story written by Patrick Ryan

Monday, 4 May 2009

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Smile -- if your avatar can -- for the camera

Surveillance cameras have been installed in more and more online games, discreetly watching and listening to people as they launch rocket attacks or fire bullets at one another, or meet in secrecy to overthrow an overlord.

Experts say it's an aggressive new Patriot Act counter-intelligence campaign to get inside the heads of today's gamers before they can convert to Jihadism or become mall shooters.

In-game cameras, although intrusive, are not technically illegal, and are generally placed out of harm's way, mainly in action games like Team Fortress 2 or darkly-imaginative realms like "World of Warcraft," all of which are monitored by suits in listening posts in Washington D.C.

Imagine your irreverent online persona being scrutinized by bureaucrats sitting in a windowless office and you get the idea: your online self may be a "profile" waiting to happen.

Those in charge say it's in your best interests.

Calvin Dodd, a spokesman for the F.B.I.'s Internet Investigation (F.B.I.I.I.) said some of the sharp minds wandering around in the World of Warcraft could potentially group together with spells and potions and find "a novel way for spreading Anthrax around... We have to take this world seriously."

One guild in the "World of Warcraft"-- the "Faerie Bunch" -- has kept track of over six hundred security cameras in "WoW" alone. A competing guild -- the "Wombats" -- claims to have found 620.

Where will all this lead to? No one knows for sure.

"That's why you need us around," said the F.B.I.I. spokesman.

The funny story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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