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well this was predictable

such constant negativity

torley has been a great presence within SL for a long time... she represents SL and thus LL quite well. I have no problem with her making the decision to want to become a Linden, and LL deciding to hire her on.

It was a smart move on LL's part.

Kyrah Abattoir

i dont know why but the second i saw this news i ran to your blog, sure that you would not resist to rant about it

I condemn it utterly.

I am saddenedly horribly.

Prokofy Neva

Forseti, it's not about Torley, and you know it. She might be a fine person. She's great. The Lindens are great. But coming and cabbaging the society, cribbing the icons out of the society, is just an awful thing -- awful.

This is EXACTLY what I meant about the Holy Mother Russia stuff the other night, and how you are going for it, and how I radically differ from this.

It's creating a seamlessness between the society and the government that is simply unseemly. It's doing so in some notion that these things in the "modern cyber virtual world" no longer have to be kept separate.

It's logical after John Lester becomes Pathfinder Linden, and it's a barely kept secret...then Zarf Vantongerloo becomes a Linden and puts it on his resident-run business Nota Bene...that then Torley would become utter coopted.

Do you even understand the notion of cooptation?

Is that utterly alien to your world?

I guess so.

It's just so profoundly scary.

Booya Boffin

Blah blah blah. Come on Prok, isn't there anything you're ever positive about? This is about the 50th time you've declared it "OMG THE END OF YOUR WORLD YOUR IMAGINATION OMG!"

The sky has yet to fall during your years of inane ranting.

Aspen Normandy

You seem very personally hurt by this.

I have a couple questions though --
How does this directly impact you as a person? That is, why does the change of 'status' of this one person emotionally impact you so much?
People join and leave SL every day, I'm sure, and you don't shed tears over that. So why this? Is it because it's something that was announced, and thus, something to get upset about? Is it envy?

Second -- If you do get so upset about the going-ons of SL, why not leave? Surely there are better things to do with your time than get so wound up about a game?

Cienna Rand

I would be willing to bet money that if Torley had not kept the same name, this rant would have been about how it's a secret and closed process with no transparency and we need to know who becomes a Linden so we can villify them!

Don't be so jealous.

Prokofy Neva

Um, Aspen, whoever you are, you're another one incapable of grasping even the most rudimentary notions of separation of powers, of the need to keep state and society separate in a country.

It's not about jealousy. Hell, no. You'll never see Prokofy Linden, ever in your life, ever.
I have absolutely no wish to become a Linden; au contraire, I'd like to become less Linden than I might be -- and we are all a little Linden if for no other reason that we have Eric Linden trees swaying in our breeze.

And it's not about wishing someone well -- hey, somebody got a good job, that's great, happy for them. That's not at issue.

It's about the nature of this world and its society.

It's about cooptation -- GOM, and everything else. I have no doubt that Zeppi and Ricky are grimly hearing this news this morning over their Cheerios and coffee and thinking, Hmm, figures and thinking, like me, it's not a good thing one bit. There are a few of us who see that.

It's not about it being unannounced or announced. And no, Cienna, it's not about being "jealous" once again, and you reveal the code and the currency of your realm when you go nattering on about "jealousy" all the time because it so permeates your own being.

If it had not been announced, we would have been less upset merely because some cosmetic effort would have been made to keep society and state separate. This way, Holy Mother Kremlinden Lab now has to even take gleeful joy in utterly merging even the most whimsical, precious, creative expression of its people, and so smother it to Her breast that the being no longer even exists in the data base.

The other silly thing you all are doing is starting up the Holy Mother Russia rant about "well, if you don't like it, leave," or "if you get so upset, why don't you quit."

Hell, no. I live here. It's my country. And I have absolutely no intention of leaving willingly.

Aspen Normandy

You take it a bit too seriously.
I could understand if it were actually a nation that you lived in, but it's not. It's a chatroom, like any other, but with a few more features added.

And chatrooms are usually moderated. That's the nature of things. If you'd like an example of mod-less chatrooms, go to any AOL or Yahoo room, or go to an IRC server with no chanserv and IRCops.
THAT'S depressing.

But even if we were to take this to a more 'political' and 'personal' level, I wildly disagree with your notion that there should be segregation between moderators and the people they moderate. The best-run chat mediums out there are run by its most prominent and helpful regulars, who have over time been 'promoted'.

But, again, I need to re-iterate to you that it is not a country. It's a game.


Linden Lab hired a friendly, helpful and passionate Second Life player.

I can't see how even you can spin this negatively. Aren't there some real stories to report on, Prok?

Prokofy Neva

I disagree. SL is a lot more than a chatroom. And btw, I've given you the benefit of the doubt and I'm happy to have this conversation later but you need to post with your SL name. That's the rule here. Otherwise you are removed. If you care to make such demeaning and critical statements, at least take responsibility for them.

I'm not asking for a world or even a chatroom with no moderator. Oh, just the opposite. I very much would like to see governance -- although *government* is a more complex thing for this world that I don't think can work. One of the important things to get right about government is where I leave off, and it starts -- to not merge these concepts, so that the government is limited, and knows its place.

I utterly reject MMORPEGism in which wizard-type characters or experienced players get to rule over others. It's a rigid authoritarian system and it leads to corruption.

You can go on stating baldly like I'm stupid and you need to "reiterate" that it is "not a coutnry" but "it's a game" but that's silly and you just look like an ass for your statement of this as if you are right, and your belief that I'm just going to go "oh, ok, thanks for telling me, I'll go think that now."

None other than Philip Linden himself first called it a country, and I stand by that.

Gabriel Spinnaker

Despite Philip's statements to the contrary, SL is not a country by any stretch of the imagination. If you can show me that you've renounced your (presumably United States) citizenship and you have a shiny new passport from the Union of Soviet Socialist Simulat--err, I mean, the Republic of Second Life, I might believe otherwise, but as it stands now calling SL "your country" strikes me as a ham-fisted attempt to justify your frankly insane devotion to what is, at its core, little more than a game. Your constant comparisons of LL, SL, and groups within SL to various aspects of the Soviet Union only make you seem even more like a crank.

SL is barely even a platform for development of other games or worlds, as evidenced by the migration of Stagecoach Island to ActiveWorlds. Apparently, despite its numerous shortcomings compared to SL, Wells Fargo, or whomever they contracted to develop SI, found AW to be a better fit. That's pretty damning, don't you think?

I'm sure you must think SL will turn into the Metaverse or the next Internet someday, but as much as I like SL and as cool as I think it is, I think that's far too optimistic. They may have the first-mover advantage now, but someday, someone who learned from LL's mistakes (and there are plenty to learn from) could easily come along, build a better virtual world, and then dethrone them.

Prokofy Neva

Jauani, you are at heart such a fanboy.

It's precisely because Torley is a vibrant and creative person that I would rather she stay in OUR WORLD and not GO OVER TO THE OTHER SIDE OF THE SERVER.

I'll ask you: do you get it about the separation of government and society?

It's one thing if some civilians go into government work, some people run for office, some people become contractors. That's normal in a normal society -- but one where the limits are already established.

They haven't been with SL -- and now they are hopelessly muddled and it becomes hopelessly ripe for corruption, favouritism and worse -- precisely because of this losing of the bearings.

Linden Lab should go and fix their servers. They should find methods and tools to enable a creative, passionate person like Torley to live and work in SL, not take her over. It's just that simple.

Prokofy Neva

Gabriel, not all countries start out with all the trappings of a country. America was like that once. Most countries start from scratch and don't have passports to issue right off the bat, nor even control their borders.

Sure, I understand it's a marketing metaphor to sell a game. But that's ok. I do it the favour of taking it utterly seriously.

I don't get why it would be ok, for Hiro to say he's quitting his RL job and working full-time within SL on his business and consulting. Or it's ok for Torley or Zarf to go Linden. But if I want to live and work in Second Life qua Second Life, even part-time, all of a sudden that's "insane" and "game addiction."

Huh? What a ridiculous double standard.

I don't know all the details about the Stagecoach issue because they are secret, but one problem evidently was that they couldln't make their world *their world enough* -- they couldn't shut it off sufficiently from the main grid. Telling! Very telling!

And I agree that if the Lindens can't get the Metaverse going they will fail and others will do it.

I just happen to think that one of the ways they will fail is by yielding to their old tribal MMORPG fanboyz culture and not separating the church and state, or the society and the state. It's all about separation of powers.

Aspen Normandy

First off, I have used my SL name since my first post. Aspen Normandy is it, so don't give me that condescending tone as if I'm just some cowardly anon.

Linden Labs is a company, Second Life is an interactive 3d modelling program and chatroom combined. As such, they CAN do anything they want to any of the residents they want.

It is not and will not ever be a "country" in the sense of the word, nor will it have "governance". It will have moderation.

Also: Linden Labs and Second Life cannot grow without hiring more people. And the best people to hire are people who have proven themselves in-game, and that LL has recognized and wishes to hire at their discretion.

It is not something that should be up for popular opinion. LL can recognize who they can best utilize to continue to expand their chat site and make it continue to run smoothly.

Kendra Bancroft

Prok, a request.

Leave Second Life. You annoy the shit outta me.



Kendra Bancroft

Prok, a request.

Leave Second Life. You annoy the shit outta me.



Aspen Normandy

People have made their living off playing games for the past several years. Quitting a job to make money in SL is no different than quitting a job to do gold farming on UO or EQ II, honestly.

This does nothing to support your irrational embracing of SL as an actual nation.

Prokofy Neva

I never heard of you, but it's a big place and we newbies can't be expected to have heard of the royal oldbies.

Re: "Linden Labs is a company, Second Life is an interactive 3d modelling program and chatroom combined."

Well, yeah, but not just because you say so, but because it is. Actually, the technical term that David Linden uses is "monetarized socializing platform". So there! Two can play at that game!

But so what? They said it was a country. It's a company and a chat room and a 3-D thingie etc that generated a country which last time I checked hat $249,000 US as its GNP just for one day, yesterday. So spare me all this histrionics about saying it's not "a thing" beyond what it appears.

You lack imagination.

But then...it's Their World, and not much is there any more to promote Your Imagination, I realize.

Um, my concept of "the world" is not up for the government to determine. The idea that this company always gets to do what it wants, with no constraints is not a model I accept when we all pay a lot of tier to be in it. When I sign on to TSO or WoW I could concede what you say.

Not so with SL. It's my world, and I own part of it, and it's a country. In my country, the village jester remains beloved by the public and sustained by that public, not given over to the king to have only in his court.

Prokofy Neva

No, thanks, Kendra, I'll stick around.

But it should have been clear, I guess, before, that with GOM, the telehubs, the little cooptations like making instructor sites, or newbie starter villages, or combat sims (all reasons I reduced my tier) -- and with Zarf and Nota Bene and now with Torley -- that they are eating our world. I'll bet it's tasty.

And what they don't eat, they will spit out, and they will allow you all to stamp and claw, and beat and suppress and kill whatever they don't succeed in driving away. That's pretty awful.


Is this where you come to get the good drugs?

Aspen Normandy

RE: "ownership"
Disagreed. You pay for a service -- effectively hosting space on a server. That means you get to deal with the server rules.

When Second Life is a public corporation and you a shareholder, then you can say you "own" a piece of it. Until then, you own nothing -- you are a tenant on a server, paying rent. Nothing more. Don't delude yourself into believing you're a "citizen" and have "rights".

Prokofy Neva

No, Aspen, again, you're taking this arrogant, condescending, and hortatory tone as if you're right, and your model prevails. These issues are debated, including among scholars, and there are different approaches.

The residents have had enough influence on this "government" of the Lindens -- making suggestions for the software and policies, getting their ideas co-opted like GOM, having their notions taken into consideration -- even getting compensation when part of the world goes wrong, like a kind of eminent domain compensation.

I am a citizen and I do have rights that are evolving. That's just the point, it's all being made up as we speak. And there's no reason to foreclose the future by yielding over to the maw of co-optation everything from GOM to Torley. Non pasarant.

Prokofy Neva

And btw, let's say if I rent in city-owned apartment buildings -- what, that means I'm not a citizen and can't vote? These ideas that renters of server space are just chattel and worthless rightless creatures is just plain silly. Even the Lindens don't claim that.

Aspen Normandy

Renting an apartment means you have to do what the landlord says. In the "Real World" we have different hierarchies of rules, you can't mix and match them like you have just done.

And yes, LL takes consideration of what its customers talk about because that's the only way they will continue making a profit and continue being able to develop their program.

Prokofy Neva

I fail to see how the need to "do what the landlord says" -- abide by the TOS -- means I always have to utterly merge my life with the landlord's, to turn over my possessions and my very being to him -- even myself. That's ridiculous.

You're the one trying to insist that some hierarchicl relationship of RL transfers to SL and then mixes up the very metaphor you purport to use by refusing to realize that landlords can expect you not to make noise after 11 pm and collect your rent, but they don't enter your house just like that and steal your television set, your wife, and then your identity. If you want to play RL metaphors, let's play them.

RL landlords also have a lease and agreement, and lawyers and courts to uphold them. We don't have that.

I'm not the one that thought up the country stuff; they did. I didn't see the need to make currency transferrable and talk about RL in SL and serious games and all the rest -- they did. So I extend it to its logical consequences and say that if LL wants to wean everybody off its tit as it is doing now with dwellopers and stipend cuts and all the rest, it needs to stop smothering everybody to its breast.

Anyway, we're not going to agree on this, and so your further efforts to try to attack my character, etc. will just fall on deaf ears.

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