Friday, January 23, 2009

everything you are you've been once before, everything you hear you've heard it once or more

I had intended just the two posts on the topic of Miss Commons, and believe me, this is not going to be the third--but considering the very nearly insta-modded post that surfaced in the Babbage forums, I do have to comment on a few points made there:

1. I don't live in Winterfell (or at least, not yet); I only work there.

2. I'm not calling the hounds on rabbit hunting; I am, at least a third of my time, some stature of rabbit myself: white angora usually, but I also have a small grey bunneh girl and a Tiny black rabbit.

3. Having spoken at some small length with Miss Cornelia Rothschild yestereve, while my essential position remains unchanged, I cannot completely view as an entire waste of pixels anyone that she values to such an extent. There must, I can only conclude, be something likeable beyond the bile.

I do not anticipate finding it, nor do I plan to extend the laurels of peace and go looking: but I am now convinced that somewhere, perhaps deeply buried, perhaps only on view to her intimates...there is someone underneath it all who cares, who understands, who loves.

I've just never seen it. And few others seem to be looking under the sheer weight of accusatory vitriol.

So. Moving far on.

Did I mention the Steampunk Monopoly set earlier? If I haven't, I should have, and if I have, there's little wrong with mentioning it again. It's quite inspired, and the instructions--though mostly "shown", not "told"--are fairly clear as the pictures go along.

The roots of the uncanny valley theory. (This, also, explains things, more directly, but why I'm linking that is because I'm fairly sure Dr. MacDorman's depiction of a "healthy human" is a young Michael Jackson...)

The concept of Will Smith as Captain Nemo kind of scares me. I'm all for updating things, to translate to new audiences, but Will Smith? Seems far-fetched.

I've been steadily falling in love with Twisted Thorn Textures; nearly every Friday, if one belongs to their group, one gets the chance to participate in their half-off sales of various objects from the store. It's a five or six artist collective, now, so there's genuinely always new items every week.

Currently in the want-but-cannot-afford list: a set of "Steampunk Vacuum Tube" sculpts. They want L$1000 for them. I'm very tempted, but a) I don't have (non-rent) Lindens to spend, and b, there's no tube textures included, just the ten sculpt maps.

Still, if I found vacuum tube textures somewhere, I'd adore getting the set.

Finally, I must mention Miss Ordinal Malaprop's latest entry, SLXStreet, Product and Faff. It is an excellent essay on what potentially is going on behind the Labs' purchase of ShopOnRez and XStreetSL, and it brings up a truly impressive point, which I also do not think the Labs have fully considered: that of content theft.

Content theft, while occasionally the large sensation in world, has never effectively been dealt with on either ShopOnRez or XStreetSL, even back when they were SLBoutique and SLX. Oh, yes, there were complaints, of course; they freely encourage reporting providers of stolen content. But by and large, most of these texture, skin and object hacks would remain selling their stolen goods for little to great profit, and nary a hiccup in their operations.

Why? Because in the end both services chose to reserve policing of stolen content, by and large, to the Labs themselves. Sorry, they would say, you must take up such issues with Linden Labs; we just provide a reselling service and do not have the ability to know what is and is not stolen content.

Which is fair, I suppose, save for one thing: now the Labs own XStreetSL and ShopOnRez. And even though they are phasing out ShopOnRez for XStreetSL, the problem remains: now they cannot say blithely that we, the end consumers of content (who do not wish to consume stolen content, by and large) must then go in-world to the Labs to register complaints. As they are the owners, any content claims will go directly to them--in fact, their words supporting this purchase all but confirm that merchant support will be handed over to the Labs, that they may integrate in-world search services to support XStreet merchandise, that they may update both the interface and the in-world vendors to reflect more of the 'official' Linden Labs look.

Which means they cannot then say, sorry, not our problem--because it will be. Which means every time anyone complains about stolen content on XStreet, someone at the Labs is going to be assigned to look into it.

This may be good in the long run. I hope it will be, I truly do. But where the Labs are concerned, I have become quite the pessimist, so I will simply wait, and work on transferring my content, and see how the Lindens manage to bork up web-based SL shopping as we know it.


Rhianon Jameson said...

For better or worse, all loner-heroes-with-a-sense-of-humor must be played by Will Smith. It's an immutable Hollywood Law. I'm not certain why, except that, in Hollywood, imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. "Hey, Will was great in 'Independence Day.' Let's cast him in the same role again...and again...and again." "Brilliant, MD, just brilliant! That's why you're a Hollywood mogul."

Emilly Orr said...

I suppose so. It just seems odd, him as Nemo. On the other hand, he's already been in another steampunk-esque drama, so...

(Of course, I thought he was an odd choice for Jim West, too.)