Wednesday, December 30, 2009

but a smile never grins without tears to begin, for each kiss is a cry we all lost

What's signal and what's noise?

Massively reviews the happenings in SL in 2009...and concludes that, overall, it was a "relatively quiet year". The hell? Trauma, drama, content loss, personal and official, the subsequent acquisition and restructuring of XStreet, paired with half the known Lindens who worked well with people fired or forced to step down? And Miss Nino calls that quiet?!?

Meanwhile, Step Up! is at it again, now involving a mobile 'university' of sorts to train people on how to recognize "stolen content".

Words cannot describe my loathing of this term, but I'm going to try to be fair.

1. They're not bad people. They're trying to do the responsible thing, here.
2. You can't always control the idiots in charge of your logo design. Sometimes you just have to take it and accept such things, and hope for a better redesign later.
3. They're not 100% responsible for the concept of "content theft". They don't correct their thinking when it's pointed out, but it was a term bandied about on the grid, and it's a term people think they understand, so Step Up! is trying to stick with things people get. It's not actively malicious on their part, just misguided.
4. Teaching people how to recognize copyright infringement, what to do when they think they've found it, how to report it, how to urge content creators to report on their own...these aren't bad things, either.

However:

1. Continuing to call it "content theft" or "stolen content" muddies the waters considerably. It is stupid, and stubborn, for them not to use the proper terms. It's not content theft; it's NOT stolen content. It is copyright infringement, and infringing content. Stolen content and infringing content are not the same thing.
2. Developing an RL component to match Step Up!'s SL efforts is not bad, per se, but they need to realize that the decision needs to be made now on whether or not to include just Second Life, or all virtual worlds. And if they decide to integrate all virtual worlds, they're going to need a dedicated team of 50-250 avatars whose sole job in the organization is checking out everything that comes into any OpenSim. Because importation of SL content into OpenSim regions is rampant at this point.

The worst design for a VeggieTales tie-in ever.

In the meantime, Spider and Jeanne Robinson are asking their fans to help. This one should go beyond the fans, though. This one, everyone should try to help. Not only will it go to pay medical bills incurred by Jeanne Robinson's cancer, but it will help two writers of some wonderful sf out. And don't forget, without Spider, there would be no Callahan's. No #callahans on IRC. And no Callahan's on the grid. Donate if you can, buy a book, or at the least get the word out.

Because sometimes...there isn't enough time.

2 comments:

Fogwoman Gray said...

Thanks for the info on Spider and Jeanne's fundraiser. Not much I can think to say that doesn't sound lame or trite. So go and spend a couple of bucks and download a damned book to help out some of the most awesome people in the frelling universe.

Emilly Orr said...

Pretty much. I'll post any other fundraisers I hear about from their direction, when I get word.