A griefer is a name for a Second Life Resident who harasses other residents. See the "Griefer" article on Wikipedia for more information on this topic. Griefing is a violation of the Second Life Terms of Service.
Griefer activities vary and can take very different forms.
Some of them are limited in size and might affect only one or a small number of residents:
- Harass without touching others:
- Abusive use of messages (can include advertising messages, group invites - on protected land and infohubs)
- Sexual abuse (with messages, but not only; this can include inadequate outfits in General and Moderate sims
- Bite requests from Bloodlines
- Pushing/moving other residents
- Pushing (directly by a resident itself or with the help of objects or scripts)
- Scripts that try to animate others
- Invasion of others' parcels or abusive use of protected land:
- Particles (smoke, posters and many others)
- Sound (excessive noise)
- Unwanted objects
Other griefers are specialized in more brutal actions and like to be called themselves terrorists. If they are to be considered so, they are the most stupid and irresponsible of all residents. Some of their actions are:
- Abusive usage of simulator resources (as a result, lag increases in a sim up to incredible levels, other scripts run at 2%)
- Blocking traffic (roads, railways, waterways, usually with the help of abusive use of simulator resources)
- Sim-size disturbing the piece (with a particle/message generator that can overwhelm an entire sim with particle jets, instant messages, sounds and chat messages)
- Replicants (objects that can self-replicate). These ones can take control of an entire area and if nobody takes action, they can cover a Subcontinent.
Intermediary griefer attacks
A very common technique used by many griefers is to offer free products (inworld or on marketplace). When a resident purchases this and decides to rezz or wear it, the attack takes place. Rezzed object can be a replicant or can harass others (and the new owner) with messages. There have been reported cases when residents had to auto-return all objects on their land because they rezzed one small, invisible, self-replicative object that kept on sending chat messages and consumed all their land resources.
What happens to a griefer?
Griefers don't get away with this. The punishment they take is not made public, but as recorded, it usually includes access suspension and in some cases their account might be terminated. Even so, the problem is that they return with new, alternative accounts. In 2010, Gridsurvey published an incident chart and we can see there that the action token was usually an account suspension, but not only.
It is recommended to file an abuse report when you see a large-scale griefer attack. If nobody does, Linden Lab will not know about it. However, not all that looks like a griefer attack is really intended to be. For example, there have been recorded cases when a resident had a inside a wearable object script requesting to animate others (and that resident had no idea about it). Against such small incidents, no action will be token.
There are specialized groups that take action against griefer attacks (for example, Anti Bloodlines Span & Harassment).