Wednesday, August 8, 2007

it doesn't seem right to take information given at close range

I'm finding something terribly amusing, that, all things considered fairly, probably isn't for any of the participants involved.

That someone is now on my watchlist of harmful people is due entirely to reports of her own actions over the course of several events, several incidents, and several months. One single slight didn't put her there. One single slight wouldn't put anyone there.

But I'm finding it amusing, the groundswell of support she seems to have. It intrigues me. Perhaps I'm being unfair to the individual in question, though I do highly doubt such.

We all have our partisan moments; this is mine. The sharing of personal information above and beyond the rules of the game. Disregard my friendship with the one attacked. Disregard that I haven't met the individual who spoke such more than once, formally, and once, informally. We don't share anything resembling a social circle, after all.

That is where I draw the line.

Once, many months ago, one I used to favor shared personal information that was not his to give out with a love of mine. Had this love not known, beforehand, the information so revealed...this would have staggered him. This is not information I share beyond a bare handful of friends. It is not something widely known. It is something private, personal, and--not in small measure--painful.

That this information was so revealed staggered me; stunned me; hurt me. I reformatted my profile to remove all reference to any friends I had in my picks, in case this someone was going down the list, and would reveal to all what I wanted revealed only to those of my choosing. I panicked, yes; but I felt it was my only recourse.

For that month, and one month following, this individual was very carefully watched, and very carefully dealt with, because he'd made my list of harmful people. Yes, that he made that list was predominantly based on this one incident, but there was also a pattern of behavior behind it, that largely contributed. It was not that single, solitary moment that placed him on the list. Not even him.

He's not on it now. It is possible to get off this list. It takes care, and sincerely meant apologies, and demonstration that such behavior has changed. That the likelihood is greater than average that such behavior would not recur.

It's possible for this individual to move from the list, too. Though I think it's quite unlikely, as she's still denying she was in the wrong. I suppose we simply must wait and see, and guard, and watch.

From the Terms of Service, which have slightly changed of late (section of 4.1.v.IV bolded by me):


4.1 You agree to abide by certain rules of conduct, including the Community Standards and other rules prohibiting illegal and other practices that Linden Lab deems harmful.

You agree to read and comply with the Community Standards posted on the Websites, (for users 18 years of age and older, at; and for users of the Teen Area, at

In addition to abiding at all times by the Community Standards, you agree that you shall not: (i) take any action or upload, post, e-mail or otherwise transmit Content that infringes or violates any third party rights; (ii) impersonate any person or entity without their consent, including, but not limited to, a Linden Lab employee, or falsely state or otherwise misrepresent your affiliation with a person or entity; (iii) take any action or upload, post, e-mail or otherwise transmit Content that violates any law or regulation; (iv) take any action or upload, post, e-mail or otherwise transmit Content as determined by Linden Lab at its sole discretion that is harmful, threatening, abusive, harassing, causes tort, defamatory, vulgar, obscene, libelous, invasive of another's privacy, hateful, or racially, ethnically or otherwise objectionable; (v) take any actions or upload, post, e-mail or otherwise transmit Content that contains any viruses, Trojan horses, worms, spyware, time bombs, cancelbots or other computer programming routines that are intended to damage, detrimentally interfere with, surreptitiously intercept or expropriate any system, data or personal information; (vi) take any action or upload, post, email or otherwise transmit any Content that would violate any right or duty under any law or under contractual or fiduciary relationships (such as inside information, proprietary and confidential information learned or disclosed as part of employment relationships or under nondisclosure agreements); (vii) upload, post, email or otherwise transmit any unsolicited or unauthorized advertising, or promotional materials, that are in the nature of "junk mail," "spam," "chain letters," "pyramid schemes," or any other form of solicitation that Linden Lab considers in its sole discretion to be of such nature; (viii) interfere with or disrupt the Service or servers or networks connected to the Service, or disobey any requirements, procedures, policies or regulations of networks connected to the Service; (ix) attempt to gain access to any other user's Account or password; or (x) "stalk", abuse or attempt to abuse, or otherwise harass another user. Any violation by you of the terms of the foregoing sentence may result in immediate and permanent suspension or cancellation of your Account. You agree that Linden Lab may take whatever steps it deems necessary to abridge, or prevent behavior of any sort on the Service in its sole discretion, without notice to you.

Cumbersome, to be sure...but is it in any way unclear? I don't think so...

No, it doesn't seem right
To take information
Given at close range
For the gag
And the bind
And the ammunition round...

(Stanza taken from "Not About Love" by Fiona Apple.)


ErasmusMargulis said...

Yes, Miss Orr, the part about being defamatory and libelous is VERY clear.

Perhaps that is why it is so important to verify information and/or create your own opinions instead of relying upon the word of others.

To that end, I am offering to meet with you on SL at a place of your choosing and discuss what you may have heard about the person in question and see if we can resolve this.

turnerBroadcasting said...

Wait a minute before we riff on this TOS violation because no matter what funk I'm in, the very practice of who I am in SL - I will head after a minor or someone who is TOS with all the speed of a flaming telepathic lidless eye.
And to similiar effect if I can fang them.

(assume voice of fozzy bear)

Ok. Now where were we.
Whatever should we do?

Skull fuck them.

Case. closed.
Actually it pays to be nice, if you're doing more than one. But if you're only doing one.

Adios muchachito.

emillyorr said...

Major Margulis, I'm happy to meet with you, should you so desire, but I truly don't see what good it will serve. I hold no intense animosity, nor is my opinion likely to change. However, as I've said to others, we do not share anything resembling a social circle, are far from likely to be spending time together nearly anywhere, and I feel assured will find ourselves equally capable of being civil in each others' presence if we do manage to meet at some event.

That having been said, if you wish to meet, I'm at your disposal, within reason.

emillyorr said...


Not helping.

Seraph Nephilim said...

I think you might also want to refer to the Community Standards (AKA the "Big Six), especially #4:
4. Disclosure
Residents are entitled to a reasonable level of privacy with regard to their Second Lives. Sharing personal information about a fellow Resident --including gender, religion, age, marital status, race, sexual preference, and real-world location beyond what is provided by the Resident in the First Life page of their Resident profile is a violation of that Resident's privacy. Remotely monitoring conversations, posting conversation logs, or sharing conversation logs without consent are all prohibited in Second Life and on the Second Life Forums.
[emphasis added]

emillyorr said...

I wanted to go above that, to what the initial TOS actually states, but you bring up a very good and relevant point. The Community Standards--especially that provision--are in no wise unclear.

Now, the points Major Margulis are trying to make are interesting in this light, and the light of the original TOS quoted material. To wit:

Defamatory: harmful and often untrue; tending to discredit or malign.

Libelous: An untruthful statement about a person, published in writing or through broadcast media, that injures the person's reputation or standing in the community. Because libel is a tort (a civil wrong), the injured person can bring a lawsuit against the person who made the false statement. Libel is a form of defamation, as is slander (an untruthful statement that is spoken, but not published in writing or broadcast through the media).

I cannot imagine a single thing I've said that has injured the individual in question more strongly than her own actions have done. In fact, when requested, I've pulled back on all commentary, save for here, in my own personal blog, and believe me, I don't intend to engage much further here.

So I don't see how I, specifically, in word or deed, am being "defamatory" or "libelous". Interesting points though they are.

ErasmusMargulis said...

Miss Orr,

When statements that hurt others get traced back to you, and those statements are proven to be false, that is both defamatory and libelous. I would rather go into specifics privately, rather than airing them publicly. Now if you are receiving information from another source and that source is feeding you incorrect information, that's another point entirelly.

None of the information covered in item #4 was disclosed.

If LL will ever let us on, I would be glad to meet with you. Again, I would be happy to do so at a location of your choosing. I don't want you to feel that I am putting you into a position that is uncomfortable or untenable for you.

turnerBroadcasting said...

I retract my previous statement about a horrific act of violence being appropriate to this situation.

Of course, this only after three days when the whole thing is already settled and it just makes me look good to retract my statement.

Never theless, in the interest of decorum, I feel it imperative to rescind my previous statement in lieu of the previously departed repartee.

Truly. Such conflicts can and should be resolved amicably. I predict that in the next post, Emily will apologize!

heh heh heh

emillyorr said...

Don't make me SMACK YOU.

Actually, it's generally my position in life that there are few personal problems that cannot be solved with a suitable amount of high explosives.

Maybe even this one, could have been so resolved. It just didn't have to be.