Interesting stuff. My first thought was, that's kind of cowardly; why use the Web and a collection of avatars if you're trying to instigate real-life change? Norma Rae would be so disappointed. But actually, it's kinda clever. And creative. It shows that even with the business world's enthusiasm for Second Life, it remains a democracy.
IBM does have 11 "Netiquette" guidelines it provides for workers who spend time in Second Life. One guideline stipulates that employees must "Protect your -- and IBM's -- good name." It tells workers to "assume that activities in virtual worlds and / or the 3-D Internet are public -- much as is participation in public chat rooms or blogs."
The guidelines also remind employees that IBM's HR policies apply in virtual worlds: "If you encounter an inappropriate situation in a virtual world which you believe to be work-related, you should bring this to the attention of IBM."
So it sounds like if you're an employee of IBM, so is your avatar. Will IBM recognize an employee union in Second Life? The duplicity of it all is mind-bloggling.