Thursday, November 5, 2009

Remember remember

A 48 hour ban on commerce in Second Life hurts no one but those who make their livings creating the content that makes our world beautiful. Most creators are already feeling the pinch- they are, after all, the ones punished the most by content theft to begin with, as well as the whole economic downturn (and LL can spin the numbers all they like, it has had a lot of impact in Second Life regardless of what they try to pretend). 2 days without sales means the very real possibility that some won't be able to eat, or pay rent in RL this month- nevermind the fact LL doesn't care that they had 2 fewer days to earn tier. 2 days without blogging means fewer sales due to less advertising. In fact, LL doesn't lose a single thing- they still get all the tier, the only way it _would_ effect them is if those 2 days of sales really did kill the content creators, so they couldn't cash out enough to be able to pay rent and eat, and had to leave SL entirely. And it's unrealistic to think that all the business you would have had in those 2 days will magically show up the day after- in fact, most of the people in SL will not have heard of the boycott, and out of sight, out of mind.

It's a gesture to try to feel like we can do something, but the only thing it does is hurt the very people it is trying to help. Instead, I urge you to support the original content creators instead! And, you know, inundating LL with emails and faxes about how they ought to do things about content theft wouldn't really be a bad idea either :)

So, no, I shan't be stopping shopping or selling for two days. Instead, I shall show you the outfit I wore for Achariya's post, something I put together of works of just a few of my favourite designers in Second Life, without whom we would have a much less beautiful world.

these are a few of my favourite things 1

outfit: ~silentsparrow~
hair: Calico Ingmann
horns: Illusions
earrings and necklace: Balderdash
lip ring: Lazy Places
wings: ~Scribble~
boots: First Flower
pose: ++ DESIRE++
eyes: Miriel, a content creator we have already lost in Second Life because while she created things of uncommon beauty, they didn't sell enough to be able to afford running a business in SL.

these are a few of my favourite things 2

I know a lot of the people whose work I'm wearing here- some of them I consider friends, some I don't know well- and some I've never met or spoken to, but I still love the creations of their beautiful minds. This is just a tiny sampling of the people whose work I enjoy, who have enriched my life. (Mostly it's just what I threw on last minute for the photo for Ach! So so many people aren't represented here who are such a deeply important part of my Second Life, whether they know it or not.)

Designers create your Second Life experience- environments, avatar enhancements, events, all of it is created with the time, energy, and skill that regular people choose to put into this world. While some people scoff at paying designers for their time and effort, how is it really any different from buying a game at the store? Then, you _are_ paying the team who created the environment, the difference is that here, the ability to create is open to everyone, and because of it, we can create something so much more diverse, more than just a game, but a world, an experience that is always expanding and changing.

Content theft hurts every single one of us. Because of it we lose the creators who make our world amazing, we lose the innovation that makes Second Life rich. However, choosing to boycott creators, even to send a message to LL, can easily have the same effect of forcing people out.


Scott said...

A-fucking-men, Alle.

- Mad

Green Dream said...

The path method presented by Artist's Voice and STEP UP! are not for everyone-

But in no way should it be labeled as "boycotting creators". I hate to be so harsh, but it's like labeling pro-choice as pro-abortion. The effort was to do *something* towards Linden Labs, and yes, there is a drawback for some creators not having as great a stream of sales for 2 days. Yet the actions proposed - not forced upon anyone - would arguably not last long enough to cause serious damage for most people. And for those that would, they could have material available to show how they depend on honest sales to stay afloat, underscoring in that way how content theft impacts them.

I'm sorry, but saying that me choosing not to buy, upload or sell anything is a statement that I do not support you or other content creators is very hurtful to me.

Allegory Malaprop said...

The problem is, right now, for many creators who try to make a living here, a loss of 2 days of sales WILL break them. Shutting their doors for two days is, quite simply, not an option, and the more people who don't shop, the more difficult it gets for them to be able to continue. Which is why many creators are not in support of Artist's Voice. It sends a far bigger message to the creators than it does to the Lindens, and the message to the Lindens could have been sent in ways that wouldn't be hurting the very people this is supposed to be helping.

Many, however, ARE in support of Step Up instead, and will choose not to upload textures this day.

However, of course, it is your choice in the end to choose what you wish to do. But this is why all the creators I know are having nothing to do with the boycott. It is, for us, quite simply, not an option, and the very existence of it is a threat to the ability to continue to EAT for many- far too many of the truly talented in Second Life are living far closer to the wire than you realize.

The problem is not that we don't _want_ to send this message to LL. The problem is that we _cannot_. All the discussions I've had with people about it have come down to "Two days without sales? Fuck. I can't afford that."

Elric said...

Perhaps I'm daft, but I never understood the concept of no texture uploads or shopping for 48 hours. I do not see how this will make LL see that something is very wrong.

LL is a company that makes money and that's all they care about. They make money off tier. They make no money off creators. And the upload charges are not money in LL's pocket.

But perhaps I'm missing the point.

Alle, I agree that a 48 hour ban on shopping and uploads only harms creators. Everyone has to voice their discontent their own way, yes, but I'm hoping the effects on creators will be minimal in the end. I'm really hoping those who participate in the ban will make up for it the day following or be a minority.

My thoughts and support are with all creators in these uncertain times of SL.


Elric Anatine

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