Change. Change on the wind, change within, change without. I'm left to sort good from bad, meaning from casual chance, and doing my best not to over-analyze.
First, the news that Robin Linden is leaving. Of course, she says it's due to her wanting to experience new things, but I detect power plays behind the stage. We may never know; what I do know is that Robin Linden (who will abandon Linden status February 15th) and Katt Linden (who is also seeking fairer shores) were the two most vocal opponents to a merged grid. In addition, they were two of the most vocal proponents of censorship, age verification, and "sim rating" that the Lindens had. I know this quite well, as Katt Linden and I tangled to some small extent during the chaos surrounding the nigh-daily revisions of what was and was not allowable during SL5B.
Will this turn out to be a good thing? I don't know yet. All I know is by mid-February, they will be gone, and six months from now, we'll see what the changes wrought now will lead to...be that a merged grid, with eighteen-plus age verification, and parental responsibility called down on any minor who misrepresents...or, as I very much fear, a merged grid that is 'dumbed down' to a family friendly rating grid-wide, PG for everyone.
Considering the international situation, I'm not for either of these; the tale of Germany still resonates for the Lindens, whether or not they're an American company on American soil. But I'm closer to accepting of the first scenario; I do not want to live my Second days on a kid-friendly grid where, if it's something a thirteen-year-old can't see, it doesn't exist.
One eye on the horizon, one eye on the grid; it's not a comfortable position to be in. We can only wait, and watch, and see what changes these departures bring. Six months from now, if the adult grid merges with the teen grid, then we'll know.
[UPDATE: This from a friend:
[14:30] Sphynx Soleil: they may already be essentially merged
[14:31] Sphynx Soleil: I saw a note scamper across the blog aggregate that someone saw the teen grid islands appear on the main grid map
Does anyone know if there's truth for this? Who knows the names of the teen islands? Can anyone verify this?]