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June 29, 2006


Vicero Lambert

Awsomeness, Hope somone brings a camera so i can see how messy your offices are.ROFL!

Dedric Mauriac

Those are a lot of tough questions. A group of people can get brainstorming pretty good when they are all excited about something. I can't wait to hear about it at the town hall meeting.

The physical avatar just sounds impressive. So instead of our avatars being "Ruthed" from time to time, it seems that we will now have to come up with a new term with this new physical avatar base. "Ventrella'd" just doesn't sound rite, and the short version "Vented" ... kinda negative. You folks out there may want to come up with a different name. Just call it a PR hunch.

Torley Linden

Dedric, how about "'trella'd"? That has a singsong quality about it, much as "electrode" gets lopped to "'trode" in cyberpunk fiction.

Anyway I was like gonna say OMG THIS IS SO KEWL but then I realize I already know about these projects! Hehe, Resident Out-of-Body Experience for a moment there. ;)

Everyone who's new here--a warm welcome to Robin's blog, focused on what's important in and to the community. Please take a time to aggregate it into your RSS reader if you use one:


or just bookmark it and come back for updates. :D

Tao Takashi

So today is Views day (and soccer day for use germans ;-) and I am wondering about the trust issue again.
I wonder if anything based on technology can at all build some trust level between residents. Of course we need trust in the system that it will also work tomorrow, is secure from attacks etc. but any means to tell me by whatever technological process that I can trust person X will IMHO not work.

And regarding anonymity in the net that's very relative. When I meet somebody on a RL street this person is also first of all anonymous to me. I might no his/her name but that does not say me much. Trust will be build by communication, experiences etc. but not by checking with some registry (this will even work against trust actually).
The same happens in the virtual space. You always have to work on your reputation and how people see you the same as you will do in RL.

It might be that trust is defined differently here and might mean "it's no teen" or something like that but then it needs to be defined what is meant here. Otherwise I would not try anything on the trust issue and let the society do that itself. It's nothing where technology can help IMHO. It even might make things worse in giving a false idea of trust.

As also posted on my blog, here's a little video about trusted computing which might be related to the problem (Let the user decide whom to trust, not the system).


Besides from that I am very much looking forward to the results of that meeting (and I am especially interested in the last point actually, sounds cool :-)

Gwyneth Llewelyn

Robin, thanks for posting this agenda :) At least, we finally know what "Second Views" is about!


Be creative al of you!!!!!

And dont forget to have a great time as well.. San Fransisco are so romantic!

And yes Torley that part are interesting! A lot.. A day.. a day we maybe need pills and condoms in cyber to.. who knows...


Prokofy Neva

This process remains illegitimate, and sharing the agenda in it at the last minute doesn't make it more legitimate. It's hard to know whether continuing to engage in it as an outsider is even of value, although I plan to answer all the questions raised here on my blog.

To just deal with Daniel's point, I hope you realize that above all, Linden Lab, or the "federal government of Second Life" *itself* is in this state you describe and envision as "out there somewhere in the RL Balkans,"
where, through fear of change and growth, through lack of knowledge even of developments all over the now vast grid, it is doing precisely what security-minded states do:

"When security is scarce, people retreat to their ethnic, religious or tribal groups. They begin to mistrust anyone outside the clan. If the government remains weak, they start providing for their own security, creating or expanding militias."

You are a weak government.

The clan you've chosen to deal with is your own programmers' elite, your own feted inner core of designers, graphic artists, content-makers, and land dealers emphasizing cooperation and content-making and "partnership" with the state. The militias you've created are all these "helpers" ranging from mentors to instructors, some of whom even have visible roles in paramilitary formations like the "Alliance Navy" on Help Island. Under the rubric of "helping," they also subtly, or not-so-subtly, help Linden Lab maintain control and surveillance over the population and even a kind of espionage, even with their own internal communications systems (as on HI now). And then, of course, there is the capturing of the hardware hashmark information, and the uses (present and future) to which this might be put, for good or bad.

These are all bad developments, all significantly bad turns for what was once a more open society. This closed society with its weak federal government and clannishness reaches for collectivism as an ideology rather than protecting the right of the individual and the openness created by multiplicity of individuals and self-formed groups.

Whether you see these 8 you've selected as "everyman" in generic categories with whom you wish to deal with in a corporativist way, that's bad; whether you see them as actual merited leaders by acclaim or your careful selection, that's bad, too. They do not represent the citizens of Second Life; they cannot and should not govern us.

You think you can undo 2,000 years of human history and dump representative government and respect for the individual and the freely and democratically-organized group merely because you're dressed up in cyber clothing? This will have terrible repercussions -- for our freedom and yours.

The mainland isn't the walled garden, Daniel, the private islands are the walled gardens, with the mainland still struggling to survive as a free space. And actually succeeding in many areas, and my sims are a good example. I really resent you helping the advertising campaigns of Alliez and Anshe and Andam, all your "A" friends, in trying to portray the mainland as "hideous" so that more people can move to your more-expensive islands. Thanks!

It's hideously -- even aggressively -- misleading to say that the mainland has turned into walled gardens, when the glaring fact in our faces is that the private islands turned into the walled gardens while most mainland owners and landlords providing rentals actually discourage security orbs and ban lines. And frankly, even Anshe Chung, in response to customers' requests, is ordering red lines to be taken down when owners are not on their properties so that people can fly around.

If you want to have trust of mainlanders, you'll have to put in place a Concierge who works just on the mainland. Governor Linden has to cease to be a fiction, and come to life as an actual figure who works on his estate where we live. That's the easiest, most reasonable "low-hanging fruit" there is -- a Linden, or part of a Linden, who is *dedicated to the mainland issues* on everything from auction reclamation, garbage pick-up, free waterways, reform of group tools to help mainland, etc.

You lost our trust when you failed to act against the vicious, intrusive, destructive, and spamming activity of the "Impeach Bush Guy". Your failure to enforce your existing TOS rules against destruction of *Second Life itself* for another person, and against spamming in the community, was outrageous.

We're not allowed to spam other residents with hundreds of advertisements in IMs -- how can someone be allowed to spam their eyeballs even more permanently by scarring the landscape with thousands of 16m2 parcels with ugly rotating signs? You lost the trust of vast swathes of the mainland community by being utterly paralyzed in your licentious liberalism, falsely believing that to ensure the right of private property in general, and the right of "I can do what the fuck I want on my property," you had to defend it in this particular instance -- even though that person's right to do what-the-fuck-he-wanted intruded on the rest of our rights to even enjoy our properties at all, being forced to sell them or buy back our view. It was an outrage, and terribly damaging to the fragile society you could have made here.

To respond to Ryan's question, there is one very important thing that has to be done to address griefing and justice in general, and that is to fix up the Police Blotter, give it more visibility and interactivity and livliness, instead of burying it in the back pages of the website with mainly "Lindens vs. Sandbox Shooters" as the story:

o Put in *all* incidents of discipline -- currently we've all figured out that you don't do that. People are expelled even from SL and the incident involved never reaches the blotter. ALL incidents must go up.

o The Police Blotter must have a memory and be searchable. We must be able to prove to new people that no, they can't keep an aggressive security orb that bounces people 2 sims away without warning is NOT ALLOWED, full stop, period. Keeping up incidents only for 10 days and then disappearing them down the memory whole cannot build up the rhetorical value of precedent in the world, which is far more valuable than the code-as-law approach in *preventing* griefing and also *empowering* residents to participate in a justice system by seeing that it is effective.

o The Police Blotter must, must, must name ALL names of ALL involved in every prosecution. That means perpetrator abuse-reporter, and Linden prosecuting the incident. An aggressive constituency in the Community Round Table wants *only* the name of the perp, so they can get busy banning them everywhere and subjecting them to double jeopardy, punishment for a crime twice or a thousand times. But you shouldn't cave to that aggression.

Another equally forceful lobby says putting in names of abuse reporters would lead to vengeance (like vengeance against perps who already worked off their debt to society was ok???). But what, are you telling us, Linden Lab, that you cannot protect us against vengeful perpetrators?! Please. People build trust by personalizing both their victimhood, their criminality, and see that in the end, it's justice prevailing. It's helpful for the criminals to see the damages they've caused to their victims, to see them as people. It's helpful for the whole community to see the perpetrator and protect themselves from him if they wish, although appeals processes must be put in place. AND we need to see whether this entire system, especially on the forums, is just a few Lindens and their long-time friends giving a pass to the worst offenders. That's why Linden names must figure in, too -- just like real life, when the arresting officer, judge, prosecutor, plaintiff, respondent, are all *named* in the public record.

Nobody goes around in RL screaming during a court case that the plaintiff now is subject to vengeance and must be kept secret. If anything, the court now has higher responsibility to take care to ensure that person's protection, and prosecute justice on behalf of that plaintiff who sought its good offices.

If you don't do this, we'll do it ourselves. And that's not necessarily a good thing. It's only a matter of time before a movement to match up police blotters with real incidents, and to publicize all incidents gets started -- already at least one forums poster has started such a thread. Name all the names, vote proposition 1355.


Lefty Belvedere

I look forward to hearing from the members of Views. I am glad that while the ears of LL are always open to everyone and anyone, they also take moments to hear from groups of people with special affiliations and levels of involvement in Second Life. I understand that this is not a democratic cross-section of the SL population and I also see this to be a good thing.

~Prokofy~, I struggle through your novellas out of respect and professional duty. I do, however, ask that you attempt to refrain from using the term "we" when referring to yourself. You do not speak for me, my friends nor my collegues in Second Life. You merely speak for yourself.

I think you will find greater success in building your case if you begin granting the avatars of Second Life an assumed individual perspective and an inherent cosmopolitan view of life, policy, society and value.

Please respect our right to resist having you speak for everyone else.

Prokofy Neva

Lefty, nice try using your little political jiu-jitsu there, but frankly, there are *plenty* of like-minded people who in fact are in the "we" that I speak of, I hear from them constantly -- my tenants, people who write emails, people who approach me in world. And I feel I have as much right as anyone to speak out on behalf of an interest group, so let me say it again loud and clear and proud:

"They do not represent the citizens of Second Life; they cannot and should not govern us."

When I say this about a group of 8 people picked from above, some without even an awareness of why they were picked, I know that the point of view I express -- that these people *do not* represent US -- us as diverse and as varied a group as can possibly be imagined -- I'm absolutely on safe ground.

That's not to say I represent them -- but I sure as hell know they don't represent US.

Mainly they do not represent US while you may feel they represent YOU because they are elites, picked by an elitist company, without any due process, without any transparency as to criteria or motivations, and without recourse.

That's wrong.

Your hortatory remarks attempting to try to "shame me" by your imagined "taste of my own medicine" are silly and misplaced, and better jiu-jitsued right back to your address, as you and your ideological confreres on the left are the ones we need to worry about in terms of collectivist ideologies stifling freedom : )

Exemplifying this ideology is this sort of statement: "I understand that this is not a democratic cross-section of the SL population and I also see this to be a good thing."

Oh? What's good about it? Or "groups of people with special affiliations and levels of involvement in Second Life"?

Only if you imagine yourself to be in one of them, and special in this regard would it appear good to you. No doubt you do : )

It doesn't to the rest of us -- and I feel fully entitled to say "rest of us" in this regard without *any* fear of arrogating myself into any unjustified, unelected, unaccountable leadership role.

You, your friends, and your colleages in your sect do NOT speak for me, or *us* or anyone that I have ever heard in two years speak with anguish about the notion of government by residents. Not in any way, shape or form.



Sorry to disagree with the famous Mr Neva, but the mainland IS a hideous wasteland. There is a mass exodus underway to the islands.. and who can blame anyone who leaves?

Lewis Nerd

"Sorry to disagree with the famous Mr Neva, but the mainland IS a hideous wasteland. There is a mass exodus underway to the islands.. and who can blame anyone who leaves?"

I blame Linden Labs for refusing to take action against problems on the mainland. We have notecard spammers, huge ugly advertising signs, particle systems that cause lag, now these ugly ban lines... so much could be done to make things better but, no, the mainland doesn't matter.

What's so sad about this whole "views" thing is that I would guess almost all of the people you choose are not the people who are suffering daily because of the problems LL are making by their non-action. Come and take a look at the monstrosity next to my place - it serves no purpose, it's ugly, its obtrustive, it doesn't fit any imaginable theme - but, no, free expression rules?

It's all well and good to have this "freedom" but when that freedom damages another person's ability to enjoy SL, then you risk losing customers. You cannot promote things for newbies at the expense of retaining mature players who are in the main the ones providing content for these newbies to enjoy.

Linden Labs, you MUST get opinions from a wider part of the community, otherwise you are getting a skewed view of reality, and you probably don't even realise half of the problems you are causing.



Hi, Robin. I am in the city having fun visiting SL in both realms.

I am going to be working more intesively with Guy G or another UI island starting this week. Feel free to add me to your list of SL focus group members. We have two Gens on this so could advise re Teen also.

Keep up the good work.

Prokofy Neva

I find it extraordinary that there isn't a single peep out of anybody from this trip of the select 8 to San Francisco on June 30. Not a peep. Not a blog. Not a forums comment. Not a Linden comment. Nothing. Just a promise maybe to post some notes some time. But none of the participants are talking. None of them are calling meetings inworld to discuss what was said. None of them are blogging. We can presume they're talking to their very near and dear close personal friends/commerce circles but the rest of us are in the dark. It's really quite extraordinary. What, they signed NDAs or something?

Salazar Jack

I peeped. I peeped back in mid June.


Perhaps I didn't peep with enough pep. Or maybe my peeper wasn't prepped for proper peeping.

Regardless, my poor post proceeded past the point of no return when the thread was locked. I find it extraordinary that there wasn't a single peep out of anybody regarding my post. For all the passion that the Second Views Program seemed to produce, you'd think that someone would have poked me inworld for the proverbial password. Was I being too cryptic?

I feel funny posting this here... for I don't want the Lindens to necessarily be privy to all that I feel the need to write on the subject. I promise to give the password to any resident who asks me for it. I'd just like to be able to have the freedom to talk about what they're doing without them watching my every move.

I took a lot of photos (some when the Lindens weren't looking) and I will do my best to get those posted, along with my thoughts, as soon as I can. Up until the Views meeting I was working 12-14 hour days. Things haven't changed since I got back inworld. But I mean to pass on what I have learned so that others can be aware of what the Lindens are up to.

Prokofy Neva

Oh, well one of the "delightful" things about my condition as a dissident in a Second Life Gilded Cage is that I can't even read "General," when I press on your link, it gives me one of those "Prokofy Neva you do not have permission to access this page. This could be due to one of several reasons:" I always find that a truly startling thing for an adult world in the age of the Internet, but there it is.

So I missed your peep, and I hope you will peep more on a personal blog somewhere.

I'm not following what you mean by "password" or anything at all, well, I will try to contact you inworld.

Perhaps you can sum up what the Lindens are doing in one word, you know, like "plastics".

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