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04/10/2006

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Kyrah Abattoir

can you put a noisefilter on? high grade if possible, then repeat ^^

Kendra Bancroft

Wow --this sure would suck for you.

Cristiano Midnight

Not to worry, Prokofy. While everyone else is out there SLurling, we can always count on you to be right here slurring. Some things never change.

Prokofy Neva

Heheh made ya look!

Cristiano, every day, every minute, that I keep you occupied typing over here or at Second Citizen is a minute of *freedom* for the boys and girls over at the SL forums, where they can breathe free at last -- especially all those new ones looking for first land and stuff. Gosh, it's just *wipes away tear* SUCH important work and I just don't get any HELP around here...*chokes back sob*.

jauani

are you saying that your blog is just a red herring of meaningless gibberish?

it should have a disclaimer!

prok, i agree with some of your observations, but disagree with your opinions and conclusions.

i don't think there's anything wrong with people opening thrid part sites for disseminating information. how is it any different from what you have been doing here for the last year? it's clearly making the sl social sphere richer and more diverse.

how can information be controlled if it's all diffusing across the internet? clearly the forums were restrictive and the network is liberating.

Prokofy Neva

Jauani, it should be obvious that what the Lindens are doing is a kind of grand Slashdot or Google sort of thing, with that same insidious "rule of links" kind of mentality.

They're privileging their own site (obviously), they're encouraging others to spin off but sink to the bottom of the ratings/hits because they'll just get less readership, and they'll cherry-picking a few they really like, of their pets, who really articulate their vision, like Hamlet or SLOG, and giving them privileged links and amps so that they can get MORE links and amps.

The others then just keep sinking further and further into the memory hole. Too bad for them if they didn't suck up to Hamlet or Cristiano or Pathfinder.

jauani

i don't get it - how was LL responsible for walker's coopting? how does LL control the metaverse messenger? or the minds of readers?

if metaverse messenger is indeed bland as you claim, and there is a need or demand for "poltically - heavy" publications, then they should be around the corner. doesn't your blog infact constitute one?

and despite lack of sluniverse or LL endorsement, i would say your blog is likely a highly trafficked publication. doesn't that contradict your theory?

Prokofy Neva

I realize satire eludes even you, Jauani, or possibly *especially* you.

So you don't disagree that Walker is co-opted?

The process by which a journalist becomes coopted is subtle. Mainly, they want to help their career. They pre-anticipate what stories will get maxim hittage and coverage, the object being a link on the all-important left-hand ticker on the home page. They can simply almost instinctively pick what kind of topic/style will move them up to that hittage sweet spot -- it used to be called self-censorship, now it's just skill at getting hits and links.

LL provides the incentives to this -- some subtle, some not-so-subtle by providing the left-hand ticket, the schmoozing on the games conference circuit, whatever is needed.

The same for MM -- the Lindens' strategy for MM has been to give them more information than they do for other outlets, even RL. Example: Philip's "leaking" of the story of their concept of the Covenants which was a HUGE story.

For one, MM bothers to go to the Lindens for quotes, and the lazy Herald journalists don't bother often.

But again, it's more subtle. LL lays out the restricted game space and makes the MMORPG-like rules. Journalists and news outlets eyeing this set-up decide whether they want to play outside the box and be the muck-raking discredited sort of tabloid, which they'll wind up being seen as even if all they do is publish long transcripts of Lawrence Lessig or Noam Chomsky, or whether they want to strive for that "newspaper of record" status.

The MM appears to me to be the best of all the player-created newspapers in this game because they try the most to be "like a real" newspaper -- indeed, their motto is "a real newspaper in a virtual world". That means they try to avoid tendentiousness, sensation, muck-raking -- though the Herald shows that that muck-raking/tabloid strategy is *exactly* what you need to challenge the heavily authoritarian executive power of the "country".

Patient fact-finding or bland commentary can work over a very long time to create a space for independent society to form, but it's always encroached. Parody and scandal work faster and better, as history has always shown.

The MM also consciously decided to secure their flank against the FIC by publishing a series of really over-the-top "avatar of the week" columns in which they sucked up to every single major diva, forums reg, etc.

We're still waiting for the right newspaper. This newspaper should have the independent, even at times snarky attitude of the Herald, but have better stories actually interviewing the subjects, like the MM.

Think of a paper without all the girls and the mafia hits like the Herald has, without all those huge ads and FIC infomercials like the MM has, that is lean and crisp, has good graphics, and most importantly is *inworld* as well as outworld.

jauani

give me a break, prokofy. if this intended as satire, you wouldn't have a two page supporting arguement.

it's another ridiculous protest that you are dipping your feet firt with in the guise of satire. by next week you will be siting this blog as an insightful revelation.

personally, i think metaverse messenger does a good job. within their means. i also don't see how LL is different from anyone else in using friendly media to release their news. LL doesn't release news to you for the same reason coca cola doesn't to adbusters.

the herald still exists and it still regularly features avatar pinups for the depraved. all that has happened is that an individual has decided to move on to another project. this is not a coup or conspiracy.

why do you ignore the point about your blog? you claim to be "reporting". if that is the case, despite it being a purposely skewed absurd entertainment style of reporting, doesn't it fit the bill of what you think is missing?

Prokofy Neva

Yes, I like to combine satire with insightful revelation, Jauani, I think it's an innovative narrative device - and memorable.

LL shows the nice face of a game company on the bleeding edge to the outside world, but shows the dark face of an authoritarian ruler to its country on the platform. These two things shouldn't be out of sync so much.

You're just endlessly arguing the "it's a game, it's a game company, it's a platform" meme and I got it like a year ago, thanks, I appreciate that perspective. I don't share it. Because the whole product of this game company is a world, so they need to do more stuff to make that world credible and stop making it just run by game rules and MMORPG culture.

Yes, my blog is part of the mix too, sure. But I think we need to have professional, credible independent media, and a variety. There needs to be a range, politically and style-wise. We don't have that yet. What we have is just too co-opted by LL right now to be effective in informing the world and giving the world and its makers the kind of feedback they really need to get to that magic million they always talk about.

jauani

ok if you need country examples to fit in your narrow views, the american armed forces will not be giving the berkely student paper first crack at the news releases.

just because one demands a certain product doesn't make it an obligation for others to provide it. if someone wants to provide you with what you want, that is their right and they should not be permitted to. that does not mean that walker must forever remain defined by the personal desires of prokofy neva. anyone has the right to move on to a new interesting project. i don't even understand how you can blame LL for that.

certainly we don't have the range yet, but it's demonstratably emerging. it won't happen over night. but in the meantime, it's nobodies fault. the sl population can't support it. it is that simple.

Prokofy Neva

Jauani, in approaching the problem of Second Life's authoritarianism, I deal with it much like East European dissidents. People like Adam Michnic or Vaclav Havel used to say that in order to be free, they had to behave *as if they were already free*. They couldn't wait for the U.S. Army or the Soviet Army to give them space in the Stars and Stripes. If they did that, their countries wouldn't be free to this day. So they made samizdat, or self-published newspapers, and took it from there. Their groups went on not only to run the countries, but if they merely aspired to newspaper status, they went on to become popular dailies. Because tiny groups of dissidents seem like nothing at first, but if they behave *as if* they are free then people start to want to do that, too.

I don't have any aspiration myself to run SL, win the forums, or even have a popular daily newspaper. I do want to be free, however, to do the few things I have chosen to do, like run a business, have civic groups, and have a little news service. It's just that simple. I will go on behaving "as if" until it becomes impossible.

The trajector of Walker is an interesting one. Walker just wants to be a really good, well known, and professional and well-liked journalist. That's great! He works *hard* at doing this, he doesn't sit around in a game, he writes for real newspapers. He gets published. He figures out the tone, the level of depth, etc. His blog is first-rate for what it is, catching all those kewl tekkie wiki things.

But it's not necessarily serving the public's right to know. It's mainly serving Walker's career right now. People like Walker are necessary in countries because their energy and drive to make careers can lift all the boats in that country's sea. But they can also merely drain the sea out of the country if their work is tied up so much to themselves and their needs and not the country's.

The country I live in "as if" is not served in the public interest I can perceive by the Herald as it is now. There just aren't enough stories about the world itself, its issues, and the real story behind the story. There's just a lot of confections right now about new tekkie wiki stuff, naked girls to keep the readership up, and the occasional token muck-raking story that is usually half-assed.

I could say a lot more about this, but knowing of your penchant for just arguing and arguing for the sake of arguing without any sense, and adding all kinds of barbs to humiliate along the way, I won't continue now.

I do blame LL. They're all we have. They need to have a higher consciousness. They could be creating the conditions for freer and more public-interest oriented media themselves. They can't seem to separate their company's needs though, the Platform Uber Alles and the Creator Fascists, from the country's needs. I think that's their tragic dilemma. It's not entirely of their making. But what they've done here with the media/information space is basically said "Let's run roughshod over the forums, let's let our pets run it, let's give it to some harried junior staff without much judgement who protect their friends, let's just deal with 'nice' newspapers like MM; let's use the Urizenus/SLH story of how "SL brought him in when TOS kicked him out" as part of our revolutionary game-selling lore, but let's not really engage with it."

Their handing off the Infohubs to Squagmire; their handing off the town halls and more to Johnny Ming; their badly managed SLTV fiasco -- these are all examples of their failure to first develop a state-run media concept then implement it. Of course like a lot of stuff, they just make it up as they go along.

They care *least* about the world itself's information flow. They want their own information flow from themselves top down into the game, they want their own information flow outside the game to the media to sell themselves. They care least about the internal information flow of residents to each other.

Cocoanut

Well I'm tired, but I agree that the MM is the best newspaper.

Second Life Herald was the best muck-raking paper, but they appear to have lost their focus on those stories. Uri's basically gone, and the main guy in charge seems to be mainly off doing his own thing, with unseasoned journalists left at the helm.

I'm against the reverse-GOM'ing of everything SL, because what that usually means is one interest gets tossed the lion's share, where once everyone stood an equal, democratic chance. I'm particularly not looking forward to the loss of the events calendar, for example.

What with this latest fiasco, where apparently a few individuals were going to be given free rein to run the Town Hall (the Town Hall, for crimininity's sake!!), I'm beginning to think the Lindens might be better off just to stop even trying to run a world, and just hand the whole thing to their residents of choice - lock, stock, and barrel. Maybe rename it, "Electric Sheep Life," or something.

However, having narrowly escaped being forced to bow and scrape and acquiesce to those residents who were set to take over the Town Hall entirely, in a sort of coup, I'm willing to table that conclusion for a while longer, and retain hope that this world really can be more of a democracy than a kingdom, complete with appointed court, with the peasants outside the gates.

coco

Prokofy Neva

I'm sure Cristiano will set us all straight soon about how they weren't *really* going to do that, and it was their idea to remove themselves from the equation and have people just call in directly to Johnny Ming.

I dunno, the whole thing reeks IMHO.

I shudder to think of what our world will be like if they just lease it to the Electric Sheep Company. You can be DAMN sure I will go on being a battery-operated goat, in that case.

And they ARE doing this. If they hand Flipper the Events calendar, I will scream.

You know, they put the events calendar up at eventful.com

Nobody is reporting any eyebleeds.

Jake Reitveld

Wll they will never silence the voice of jake-unless the make more resmods andI again get disgusted. I do think there is some merit here, though.

The forums are a headache, mostly due to a wide spread inability to be civil, and the constant harpings of a few harpies who are part of the in crod, as well as the ever present moral majority that need to impose thier will on everyone else. This headche is an administrative one, since forum fights involve discipline and require moderation.
The resmods were supposed to be the way to do it on the cheap. Free labor so LL can innovate and not administrate. Well that did not go over well, so why not shut dowm the forums? limit the posting to technical stuff, and let the community talk inworl, or in other places outside the walled garden?

I would be amused to se SLavspace. It would be a unique way to market the product and create advertising revenue for LL.

Prokofy Neva

Jake, the'll have slavspace very soon. Look on your game, where the avatar's profile is, it says "publish to website". So soon we'll be able to do that. Um, oh, goody.

I disagree with you about the moral majority. They're the immoral majority on that forums. One catfight about child molestation (which they like to dress up with the more euphemistic term "age play") doesn't mean it's
a moral majority.

I think it's healthy for at least some of us to regularly and often express our disgust with the morally repugnant side of SL. That includes stuff like the name Suicide; BDSM; Gor; the age play crap. I think that's fine. It's fine for them to express themselves? Ok, it's fun for me and others to express ourselves TOO without a hectoring whack from Jeska telling US to be tolerant and not THEM. Please.

Of course, like the Pet Nazis who push animal rights uber alles, the child abuse zealots are absolutely unbearable. They have a psychotic zeal to them and they're willing to trample a whole bunch of other rights of adults and humans on their way to protecting children and pets.

That's because what they're about is an insane narcissistic promotion of their own selfless image of being a crusader. They're not really about protecting anything vulnerable. The people who do the real work of this sort aren't crazed zealots like that.

Cocoanut

Well, let's see, what was I going to say.

Oh yeah - Cristiano explained to me that there were various ideas just being kicked around, and that none of them was necessarily a done deal. I don't remember exactly, cause like I say, I'm tired. But he sees it entirely different from you.

I see it somewhat different from the both of you, but there is no question in my mind that the Town Halls shouldn't be given to residents, and I will raise hell if they are.

And another thing: I'm really getting tired of being practically DEMANDED to point out your every little flaw, Prok. It's like I'm not supposed to just have friends like everybody else, but I'm supposed to be some kind of big arbitrer in the sky who keeps track of everyone's errors or something, and pontificates on them.

It's just not like that. I think you're wrong about junk and say so, and that's about all I figure I should have to do. I point out things other people do I think are wrong, but only when I have something specific to say, or a point to make. I SURE don't go around pointing to all of everybody's things I don't agree with, or things I don't think they should say, or whatnot, or I'd be doing nothing else all day.

Somehow it's okay that I let 80% of everything everybody else says slide by, but I'm supposed to have stricter standards for you or something.

It's stupid, and I'm tired of it. People shouldn't be mad at me and stay mad at me just because I'm not ragging on you like they'd like.

After all, they have friends *I* don't like, but I don't insist they publicly take their friends to task for everything - besides, their friends' ENEMIES will be happy to do all of that!

You know I disagree with you on a fair amount (while agreeing on main political things and a lot of other things), and though we usually think a lot along the same lines separately, I hone my thinking with you, and learn from you, and I'm sure you do the same back.

But I reject this notion that it's supposed to be my job to rail at you for every little thing.

They say I "give a pass" to you. Well, I think they ought to count up all the passes I give to EVERYBODY, sometime, and think how life with me would be if I held grudges about it all.

They should just be glad I'm relatively easy-going (minus occasional flare-ups hollering at people, mostly at those I care about) and stop the hell trying to get me to be something I'm not.

I don't make them put their friends on trial with every frickin thread or post.

There. That's been bugging me. I'm tired of it. Those people need to lay off me and let me have my friends.

coco

Prokofy Neva

It's because they're always trying to enforce conformity to the group-think, Coco. Just don't heed it.

Jake Reitveld

I think all you can do is be who you are. It sounds horribly cliche, but really I don't think about who I agree with, or disagree with, half the people on my friends list hate each other. But then I never figured I needed to agree with someone to respect them. Besides people are a lot more than thier one opinion about one issue.

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