Sunday, March 20, 2011

don't you think I know you're only trying to save yourself?

[19:43] Old enough to have a surname (ladyheart.sweetwater): i want to say sorry to anybody in the sand box for 1: crashing the sim and 2: smacking you in the head with a elevatory floor

Okay, then.

[19:55] Nazarr: mi internet conexion sucs
[19:56] Nazarr: im sorry 4 that
[19:56] Nazarr: suxs

The fact that he had to correct the spelling on "sucs" kills me...considering he got the word wrong both times.
"They've been had. Totally. Completely. The closer you were to this guy and the more you believed and trusted him, the more he ripped you off. He isn't your buddy, he isn't your friend, and he doesn't care about you--and he never did."
Axi Kurmin nails it again, and for anyone who still thinks xFire Xue was a good guy, just maligned by "the system"? Read that.

And this, from a founder of IMVU:
"When your customers become your allies, there’s almost nothing you can’t accomplish together.

There’s only one catch. You can’t stop listening.
That's nothing more than basic, unvarnished truth, and if ever anyone with any connections to the Lindens might be reading this, pass them that link. To this day IMVU still has image problems, big ones, because of that mistake. The Lindens have gone overboard with mistakes in community management, I don't think anyone denies that--but it could all be reversed if they would take the time to listen, instead of further fostering the impression that they don't--or don't want to hear what we want to say. Because that just leads to the impression that the Lindens do not care in the least about what we have to say--which is where we are now.

(And a tip o'the hat to Mr. Headburro Antfarm, who brought the link, and the blog, to my attention.)

About a week ago at this point, news filtered down that Elvina Ewing had lost her mind--again. She set her Ambrosia gowns on the Marketplace for sale on a 40% discount. (As of this writing, they're still at a 40% discount.) Why? Because--according to her--Evangeline Miles of Evie's Closet copied her dress.

No, really. That's what she's saying. So of course, I had to look into it.

From the Comparisons album

This is Caverna Obscura's "Ambrosia" gown, shade Orange. And I have to be honest with anyone reading along, this gown is gorgeous. The leaves on the upper skirt are all sculpted, but some plant leaves don't move a lot anyway, so it doesn't feel unnatural in the least. And the little drops of dew--which are also reproduced in smaller form along the flower-cap sleeves--very nearly iridesce in person. And for the gown I chose, this is absolutely a deep, rich, California-poppy orange. I admit to a definite partiality for California poppies, and Miss Ewing selling this particular shade didn't hurt in the least.

From the Comparisons album

Granted, the hair I picked to showcase this pretty much effectively hides the back detailing, though the lower back cut-out work can just barely be seen. This shot was mostly to show you that there are parts of the flower-sleeves that do move, and wonderfully.

From the Comparisons album

This gown comes with several attachments for whatever effect the wearer wants; this picture shows off the two back leaves that curl up like a structured corset along either side of the spine (they're both pectoral attachments, which is frankly genius).

From the Comparisons album

So far, all the shots have been of the maxi skirt length. This is the best shot I was able to get of the midi skirt. The midi length is less ballgown, and more tattered-petals, and it moves wonderfully.

From the Comparisons album

Finally, this is the mini skirt length, which is a blend of flexi panels and curving sculpted petals. The outfit doesn't come with stockings, so I didn't wear any for the shots. All three skirt lengths carry that hint of 'tattered petals', and while there may be some alpha flicker, I personally didn't notice any--and while I was on Tol, I did a lot of walking, running, flying, swimming, falling--so while it might be there, to be honest, I noticed more alpha issues on the hair I chose for these shots.

From the Comparisons album

There's also an included necklace of vines and petals, and coming this close to take the shot also shows the detailed shading on the corset top. I grant you, the shading on both skirt leaves and corset cup leaves are more reminiscent of rose leaves, but really--you won't care.

From the Comparisons album

Finally--and yes, I moved indoors for this one--there are both bloomer and glitch-pant layers included with the gown, and a separate sleeve style. This shot shows the bloomers and the secondary sleeves. I feel positive that the bloomers could be worn without the skirt as a little 'romper' style outfit, or with a silk-style skirt (one that's flexible panels on a chain belt, say) from another outfit entirely.

Being entirely sculpt pieces, the separate sleeves don't move, but again, they're charming enough you won't care.

This is a gorgeous piece, start to finish. It requires very little fitting out of the box--in fact, the only thing I did for these shots is move the necklace down. It's attractive, very well-made, and I am definitely thinking I need it in more shades.

So, you have Ambrosia's style firmly in mind at this point. Now, what Miss Ewing says is a blatant copy:

From the Comparisons album

This is Evangeline Miles' 'Eden' babydoll-styled dress, in Marigold. Just let that sink in for a while.

From the Comparisons album

It comes with wings, shoes, a vine-and-flowers crown (not shown), and stockings--all things the Ambrosia gown does not have. It also has a pair of separate-shoulder attachment wings (also not shown), and both a right- and left-oriented vine/petal 'brooch' (not shown, because one attaches to the spine, and the other attaches to the chest--the same place the skirt attaches to. So I had to scramble to get back in the skirt after that!).

From the Comparisons album

What does it have? This one skirt. Just this one. Which, in all fairness to Miss Miles, is lovely, but is also in the babydoll style that makes most of my AO poses look like I'm pregnant. While it can be edited (and I may make a copy, and see if I can't play with the length), this is also the only skirt, as I said.

From the Comparisons album

The shoes are adorable crossed-strap flats in a complementary shade, and there is the suggestion of leaves just under the breasts, though that's the only suggestion of petal-dress, really. (And I don't mind that, I'm just making the point.) The shading on the not-petals themselves, is subtle, with multiple slightly-sheer layers making up the skirt (130 prims in all) that tend to flow through each other, so now one has a hint of fluid lines, now one has sparkle, now one has a glimpse of smocking...Very, very effective.

This shot, in addition, shows the stocking toppers--sadly, none of the shots I took from the back really shows them off well.

From the Comparisons album

Baghera--he's the black panther off to the right of the shot--really didn't like me being in his territory, so most of these shots were taken while he and his mate, Miel, were snarling at me, pushing me aside, or toppling me into the daisies. Still, I think there are a few definite good things about this outfit, from the included shoes, to the stockings, to the fact that I think part of my pulling back from the babydoll skirt is form-based: on my normal (okay, five-foot-very-little, but still) form, it doesn't hit me right, but on my four-foot pixie? Especially if she's in flutter mode? This would be very nearly perfect.

From the Comparisons album

So, end results. Of the two gowns, I definitely prefer Caverna Obscura's, and I think with all the options, I'll definitely get more use out of it. This is not to say that Evie's Closet 'Eden' gown isn't a lot of fun--but I'll likely stick to gowns from her store that start off with longer skirts from now on.

The 'Eden' shoes are beyond cute, the stockings are wonderfully shaded and drawn, but
the only thing that's even a hint at any sort of copying is that it's also a petal dress. And there's only so many ways a designer can make a petal dress, after all, if one is being faithful to the concept of flowers in the least.

For all shots, I was wearing Nomine's "Calliope" skin from her Clown line, hair from Analog Dog (Maddy, Bleached, but tinted poppy-orange), and old Pixeldolls "Starry-Eyed" eyes in bright hazel--no longer available.

Evie's will set you back L$395, and depending on how the skirt edit goes, I may get the Wisteria shade as well. The "Ambrosia" gown (since it's on sale) is L$350 on the Marketplace (still), and I am beyond tempted to pick up the Lilac, the Pink and the Red (though I'd like it if it were a brighter, "rose" red). Another plus is that her Dream Thief line of outfits are (save for the Dark variant) done in the same shades as the Ambrosia gown, for ease in mixing and matching.

(While we're here, I'd love to know who the "other designers" were that she's forebearing to mention. Maybe she's so fixated on Evangeline Miles, every other designer of floral gowns pales in comparison...)

Go to Caverna Obscura if you like the thought of multi-petal gowns, that are excellently shaded (though in world, they're not on sale; they're at their normal price of $550). Go to Evie's Closet if you like the idea of a simpler pixie gown, that also comes with shoes, leaf wings and stem "crown".

Other than the price being similar, there's nothing that links these two dresses other than both being floral gowns, and I hate to break it to you, Elvina, but they've been around for a while. (And yes, that was five image links, all of them dating back at least a century, if not longer.)

(And while I'm at it, did I mention Miss Elvina's abusing Wizards of the Coast/Dungeons & Dragons copyright by having an outfit named after Mialee, a trademarked character in the D&D books? And her latest release is, by her own admission, adapted from a Guild Wars ranger armor. But noooo, she's the one whose outfits are being stolen...)


Miss D Ember said...

Good analysis, well done.

Sphynx Soleil said...

Good gods, people overreacting if you're in the store too long, standing in one place too long, and now, freaking out if a design uses the same colors?

No wonder there's so much "copybot" fear - they're doing it to themselves with their overreactions!

Emilly Orr said...

Miss Ember,

Thank you! Though on the second read-through, I caught some things I may well change--when I first plotted this out, almost two weeks back, I didn't have the funds to buy the gowns in question, so I had taken a great many vendor pictures instead.

But I do actually own both gowns, so. :)

Emilly Orr said...


To date, the list is likely more exhaustive than I can imagine, but so far, the things I know about that paranoid merchants scan for when a 'suspicious' sort is in their store:

* Standing at the beam-in point too long (these days, I make a point of moving QUICKLY off the central point, even if nothing has rezzed in yet)
* Not moving, or ceasing to move (most of the time when I do that, there's lag, and I'm camming around looking at vendors)
* Wearing the same hair/dress/skin/outfit as someone who ported in before you (this doesn't happen often, but it's based around early explanations of copybot programs that can walk one av up to another, and copy everything they're wearing--what's become myth is the copying part, which some merchants believe can be done instantaneously)
* Having the same groups as someone else in the store (This one just baffles me. How can having the same groups as someone else, even one same group, indicate a copyright infringer? I don't get it)

* Mentioning another av who's also in the store in your profile (so I suppose you're never supposed to shop with friends, SL family, partners...)

* Flying around the store (This one's just silly. But flying--especially flying without an AO--is viewed the province of newbs, and newbs are all copybotters, in the perception of some merchants)

* Not using an AO (This one's also silly. Some people go years without animations, actually preferring not to have the lag and the scripting interfere with their enjoyment of traveling about. But again, no AO to these paranoid merchants means you're a newb, and if you're a newb, you're looking to steal their products)

Now, does anything on this list leap out at you, and make you think "A-HA! That person is a THIEF!"? Me neither. But these are the myths going around.

Sphynx Soleil said...

....the HELL?

May as well add "having an empty profile" and "no groups in profile" and "no payment info on file" (especially now with TEENS on the grid *eyeroll*) to the list. I've seen some assorted gripes about those cross group chats.

Some people go years without animations, actually preferring not to have the lag and the scripting interfere with their enjoyment of traveling about.

*blinkblink* really? for female avs too? I can understand that for the male avs, the default anims aren't great, but don't suck as bad, but for the females too? *twitch*

Emilly Orr said...

I admit, that's one of my pet peeves in any virtual world--if you have a profile, FILL IT OUT. But yes, I've heard that too, so adding to the above list:

* The "blank" bio (AKA, no groups, nothing in FL, nothing in the front-page bio.)

* No payment info on file (I am proof that this one DEEPLY bugs people--I became payment-verified my first month in, because no one would hire me without being payment-verified. And I can't count how many people I had to turn away from the Enigma who didn't have it)

* Not age-verified (Unless you're on Zindra, why does this matter? But some people look for it.)

And what I consider one of the most ridiculous accusations:

* Misspelled group names (This is especially ludicrous coming from someone ranting about it who can't spell in their own rant, but the thinking goes that if they're in a group whose title is misspelled, or that has randomly capitalized letters--like, oh, say, PiNKMaRe'S HoUsE--then they're obviously a copybot griefer twelve-year-old who will nuke their sim ZOMG)

As far as the AO issue...yep. In fact, I know more than one Caledonian who swears they will never own an AO--male and female both. Apparently the duck walk soothes their heads, or something.

Sphynx Soleil said...

Wouldn't catch me dead without SOME variety of walk anim at the very least, in a female av. Never ever. But I have gone with just a walk and nothing else...that duck walk...ewww....

(That said...I'm still using ZHAO - I don't know how laggy other AO systems are, but ZHAO doesn't seem to be too horrid.)

Emilly Orr said...

Oh, me too. I like the structure, and about all I've done over the years is change animations, and upgrade from ZHAO to ZHAO II.