Michael Gerson finds what he calls an online experiment in libertarianism. His conclusion:
[The online role-playing game] Second Life has plenty of spontaneity, and not much genuine order. This experiment suggests that a world that is only a market is not a utopia. It more closely resembles a seedy, derelict carnival -- the triumph of amusement and distraction over meaning and purpose.
Of course, online role-playing is presumably all about "amusement and distraction," so perhaps we shouldn’t be surprised and shouldn’t draw big conclusions.