Today, the U.S. is recoiling from the tragic news that Sean Smith, a State Department official, was one of four individuals killed in a rocket attack in Libya. The U.S. ambassador to Libya was also among those who died.
Smith, a foreign service information management officer, had a sphere of influence that extended far beyond the realm of real-world diplomacy: He was also a respected and hugely influential figure in the world of online gaming.
For much of the past decade, Smith was an avid player of Eve Online, a massively multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG). The game has more than 400,000 players, who take on roles as warriors, strategists and even diplomats in a science-fiction setting.