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When a woman suspected that her husband was using his online alter ego "avatar" in the role-playing game, Second Life, to have an affair with another woman's avatar, she hired a cyber-private investigator to follow his activities online. When she caught her husband's avatar getting intimate with a female avatar named "Modesty McDonnell," it was the last straw. She filed for divorce in real life, in Cornwall, England.
Hearts and Avatars
Twenty-eight-year-old Amy Taylor, whose own avatar on Second Life is named 'Laura Skye,' told reporters that her husband David's online infidelity hurt her as much as any real-life affair could. According to David Pollard, 40, it was his wife's addiction to playing yet another online game, World of Warcraft that drove him to the new girlfriend-avatar.
Couple Met Online, Married Online
Ironically, Amy and David met online in a chat room and got married in 2005, both in real life and in a lavish ceremony as avatars on Second Life. Later, Amy discovered David watching his avatar, 'Dave Barmy,' having sex with a cyber-prostitute, and the (real-life) marriage started to deteriorate. Amy ended her avatar's marriage with Dave Barmy but continued to live with David.
However, this past spring brought new suspicions when Taylor caught her husband’s avatar snuggling up to Modesty McDonnell. Taylor said she was very hurt by what she saw.
A New Relationship
The woman behind the Modesty McDonnell avatar, Linda Brinkley, lives in Arkansas. She and David Pollard have told reporters that after he was formally separated from Amy, they married in an online ceremony; they have not yet met in real life.
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