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04/05/2010

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Melissa Yeuxdoux

"ignorant, raging ninny"... les mots justes. Nicely done.

Rights are in conflict all the time; that's why there are courts. The lines about shouting "Fire" in a crowded theater and one's right to swing one's fist are well-known, if not cliches, for a reason--and equating companies, which one can refuse to do business with, with governments, which impose their rules at gunpoint, is ridiculous.

Prokofy Neva

I find that geeks like Melissa usually fetch up with that point of view because this state of affairs -- companies that aren't as susceptible to democratic oversight and control as governments -- serve their need to keep in power over people just fine. They're happy to leave a company as abusive and arbitrary in their powers as long as they imagine they'll have an "in," perhaps by joinin the OS dev group, perhaps by sucking up somewhere else and getting in the FIC. That's how I've seen it work with SL.

They love the idea of an endless plurality of undemocratic companies where you can always just pick one more -- perhaps one they'll make themselves. They take that endless pluralism of non-democracy as the democracy itself. It's sort of the way the concept of companies writ large work, that together, lots of autocratic bodies that answer only to their boards or shareholders, and sometimes don't even do that, make up the free economy.

While it's true you can endlessly posit this state of affairs and just keep walking around everything you don't like, it's a bankrupt philosophy because you have no means for change, and you are also lacking in a concept of higher law -- the rule of law.

We don't -- not anymore, anyway -- think that companies can endlessly pollute the environment and dump toxic waste into lakes and streams. There are now laws that govern them. There are groups that stop them or try to stop them. There are permits and licenses they must get. You don't just say "I'll move to the next town and the next lake because this one is polluting and won't change," you get your own lake back by forcing the company to comply with a higher law.

Hippies and lefties accept this perfectly well, because the envirronment in their worldview can trump a company's will. They might stretch this to one more thing, say, the need to have equal opportunity hiring, that companies can't get away not hiring women and minorities anymore; they are expected to try to even out their work force, and may even face lawsuits. But they often won't concede anything else. They won't concede that there might need to be more free speech, or more democratic participation in governance.

Instead, they get at this problem in some other way, either nationalizing or socializing the economy and making industries then run by a government department where they imagine they and their enlightened friends will prevail, or they lobby on some one issue dear to their hearts, like Silicon Valley is now lobbying on the immigrant start-up visa issue or net neutrality, and they expect to overthrow the government at least on that one point and have it do their interested bidding -- even as they expect that on other things that aren't in their interest, say, Internet regulation like a "decency act" that might serve an interested parents' or religious group, they expect to repel furiously.

The geek mind fashioned in these California companies has no notion of pluralism *really*, as a set of competing interests with compromises and guarantees for minority opinion and checks and balances; they just see it as a proposition of where they overthrow, or don't overthrow, overthrow where they wish, and stop anyone else from overthrowing by force or ridicule.

That is, geeks are happy to leave software companies in particular free to be as abusive and authoritarian as they like, because they merely hope they'll overthrow them -- they don't have a vision of "parliamentary democracy and a mixed economy," for lack of a better term.

There isn't any reason in hell to expect that software companies, and this one in particular which has so much contribution in terms of financing and content and code, to go on being arbitrary and abusive. It's like...Slovakia. Slovakia was once arbitrary and abusive, with investigative journalists killed or the president's son kidnapped or minorities abused, and everyone said it "had" to stay like that for the sake of poverty or the national industry that was failing or the velvet divorce that wasn't working out. But then...it changed. It changed *anyway* because people really like living that way and they want something different -- and they get it. It backslides, and people push it back right again because they want to be free. A little country which has many larger interests and forces to buffet it about, and many internal factors to make it unfree, but it doesn't sit still with that status quo, and tries to right itself and become free again.

In fact, as i've explained, the TOS shows the contributions of many residents, including me, on topics that the Lindens were forced to change their authoritarian/libertarian hippie ways on, like the ad farms policy or even machinima (where they are trying to square the circle of people like me who rage about Papparazi Artful, and rightly so, and people like Crap Mariner who finds it ridiculous he can't make a film without getting a signed statement from blurry avatar in the scene. The loud and long protests of content theft led to the Third Party Viewer policy, which is pretty good, even though it now leads to the howling of a minority of extremist OS dev freaks.

In fact, these muddles are testimony of a sort of semi-democratic regime, the sort of democracy you get in a state with "democratic centralism" or an authoritarian state that is forced to cave a little bit to popular control or it loses control as people riot or flee.

The forced migration policy that geeks cook up every time they meet a roadback -- a function of their rigid and orthodox way of viewing software production, especially through open source -- isn't viable at all.

First, it produces brain drain. Second, it's unfair as no one should have to lose their stake or their home due to some draconian stupid government policy. Third, there might not be another place to flee to. Fourth, there might not be other good places that can keep endlessly absorbing emigres. And so on.

Forced migration policy isn't how you solve the problem of a lot of undemocratic nations or companies; it's a dysfunctional compensation. Democratic governance is how you solve the problem and that isn't the impossibility everyone imagines.

Look at how Facebook had to retract on their TOS and modify it, when literally hundreds of thousands complain. It's very far from perfect and they were cunning and duplicitous in changing it, but they were forced to regroup, even though they as geeks thought that as always, being in charge, being the power, they could just roll over everybody.

Same for Twitter on the @ and the follow issues they were forced to back down from; and as I said same for LL on issues over the years they had to relent on -- prim tax, telehub compensation, grandfathering of sims, ad extortion, bots, etc.

If Melissa REAAAALY believed in the quietism and passivity in the face of corporate abusiveness that she finds in the LL setting, she'd never file a JIRA. It would be futile...

Marc Woebegone

What's wrong with cyberspace, and second life, is its petrified bloggers.

Prokofy Neva

Um, so I guess that's why you've been not blogging with your own ideas all these years, asshole, but making parody blogs of me and writing long diatribes ranting at my normal and legitimate criticism instead of targetting what needs to be changed. Such an ass.

cube inada

And Blackwater isnt armed and at war....

so much for a "Ben and Gerrys" only future...

Its obvious Jaron Left such a crowd for such realizations and menching up. I AM NOT A GADGET.

The idea that "natural law" is now removed since all virtuality is under "mediated law" is the poison of the last 30 years of such ideologs of tech and singularities.

The Idea that civic speech can exist without a constant struggle in a medium, so overhandly controlled by commerecial speech interests is laugahable and ignorant to how radio and television have mediated humanity during the last century.

these are important posts..important ideas expressed. those who want to see only the shiny or the surface or the illusion of the now... enjoy it

everything changes...

Darien Caldwell

EFF fights for the Important Rights of people. Things that Really affect Real people. Constitutional things.

As far as I know, there is nothing in the Constitution that says "you have the right to put out a dancing bear and not have anyone (how dare they!) take a picture of it. That's a beyond petty complaint. In fact I would say it borders on deranged. Which is why I can't really comment on these posts, as I may start kicking nuts too, it's all too far out there and bizarre.

cube inada

http://nwn.blogs.com/nwn/2010/04/eff-on-linden-lab.html

darien. send me your picture in RL..with a full release clause signed... Im sure the EFF will help you find one- i want to show you how a usage license works in RL...

cube3

cube inada

https://blogs.secondlife.com/message/165631#165631

and so it "grows"

c3

melponeme_k

At the height of the pirate bay scandals, the long standing dream was to turn the internet or at least certain sites into the equivalent of an independent country. Many groups wanted to "share" everyone's IP in a "country" where this "sharing" was allowed.

They wanted to be internet Liechtensteins. And they still do. Please note that many of these RL pirate havens are monarchies or affiliated with monarchies.

The most popular motif in RP across all internet land is the King and Queen ruling supreme. How unhealthy. And of course no one wants to be the serf.

cube inada

"its good to be the king"
- oh pissboy, my bucket please....

mel brooks- History of the world. part 1.

part 2- well Linden is trying to sell us that...lol

note--- mel- the eff has responded--- ive sent a reply-- awaiting another email from our fav. dough eyed spokesperson for the new world hamlet order.:)

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