So, sorry for the break in posts but I took off some days for Christmas. In fact, at the moment I am in North Carolina visiting relatives. So, after dinner, I logged back into SL to see what is going on archaeologically. I continued my searching for Egyptian related SL sites and found the "Temple of
Ancient Egypt Pharaoh Neferneferu and Echnaton." One of the first things I noticed on arrival was that my flying button was unavailable. I am always unhappy to have my flying ability restricted. I feel that flying over the site is the best way to prevent me from missing things, and yes it is also because I can be impatient. After looking around for a few minutes, I noticed the site seemed to be confined to area with some Egyptian souvenirs for sale and the recreation of an Egyptian temple. It was an attractive site, visually. From an education standpoint, it did not provide enough information about what the site was and what it was for, but it did get me thinking about artifacts in SL. Who owns them? Is it ok to recreate "real" or authentic artifacts to sell or give away in SL? One argument that can be made is that since there can be multiple copies of an item, one person "owning" a copy in SL is similar to buying a replica at a souvenir shop. This collection in SL is also helpful in sparking a person’s interest (and SL by its very design promotes collecting things in your inventory). One argument against it is that it could promote bad habits in real life, as in the case of a person who starts collecting artifacts in SL and then transfers that interest into collecting artifacts in real life. As 3D worlds come closer to simulating real life, I firmly believe that we need to work harder to educate the public on ethics in archaeology. Since some people feel that virtual worlds like 3D allow them to simulate real world activities, this educational aspect needs to be emphasized. I intend to talk to our building crew on Archaeology Island and make sure that we find a way to provide an introduction to archaeology ethics in a fun, interactive way.