So, tip from a friend brought me back to looking at Boxed Heroes, but for this, as the victim of something terrible that happened alongside a gridwide hunt. (Though in trying to run down the tale, I did find this mention of the Armored Warrior Male avatar, which is tintable, beautiful, and original.)
So what happened? Well, the Gridwide Superheroes Hunt happened. It started June 1st, and purports to be a month-long hunt that tried to pull all the superhero/heroic/comic-influenced creators into one place, for the delectation of comics fans everywhere. Of course there's bound to be copyright infringement, and of course the organizers don't seem to care. This is nothing new.
But what I want to point out is the comments on that last link, really. (And I also want to make it clear that many of the items offered on the hunt were not copied from existing creations. This was a hunt that had original ideas and those stores that cared enough not to create another variant on Batman, Deadpool, DareDevil or the Flash--among others--should be celebrated for the good they're doing.) Namely, the ones that mention the last prize.
Which is the Boxed Heroes Armored Male Avatar. Which was, bafflingly, given away with full perms.
Where did the breakdown happen? I don't honestly know. I'm going to say it wasn't on Boxed Heroes' side, per se--because many hunts will ask for a full-perm version of the item, so that they can then give it away themselves, in their own product box. (Some hunts don't do this. Admittedly, I've always felt safer participating in the hunts that don't, though some of my favorite designers do ask for donations full-perm when putting together their hunts. It's not an uncommon practice.) But was Boxed Heroes involved at all, or was it a stolen item to begin with? That, I can't track down enough information to verify. I'd like to say that no business involved with superheroes would do something so underhanded, but...well. (It's especially irksome that this is happening with Boxed Heroes, whose group members still feel I caused irreparable harm to, but who--after my few posts--started turning out beautifully-crafted, fascinating, absolutely compelling in some cases, original avatars.)
(Insert from the Editrix, who failed to read the last message in the thread: seems it's even worse than I thought, but the taint is not specifically with the hunt organizers. Who apparently paid L$2500--nearly ten dollars, or put another way, nearly seven Euros--for the thing to be built. Instead, whomever it was--that duplicitous avatar has not yet come to light--pocketed the Lindens and lifted the Armored Male avatar from Boxed Heroes. So...yeah. It remains a mess, and a controversy, but Boxed Heroes didn't give anything to the hunt, and the hunt organizers apparently don't know Boxed Heroes' work well enough to recognize a copy when they see it. That's on them; if you're interested in superheroes at all on the grid, and you don't know about Boxed Heroes? That's just willful blindness, that is.)
The problem, though, is the genie's out of the bottle. At this point, it no longer matters who gave what to whom, or when; it's done. For all that an AR has been filed, the Lindens need to investigate, which takes time; and in the meantime, with the people who have acquired this avatar, the hunt organizers are just telling them to delete it. They're not giving it out anymore, so everything's fine now...
And of course, that's going to work, right? Because that's not a ridiculously naïve statement. Because everyone who got that avatar full-perms, of course, is an honest, law-abiding soul.
So expect to see knock-offs of this Avatar across the grid soon, only with much less care, sense of craft, and attention to detail. Can we all agree that gridwide hunts are getting out of hand? Or that at least the organizers need to pay some bit of attention to the hunts they organize!
In the meantime, until the filing and counterfiling frenzy dies down, I'd recommend sincerely that anyone who got the avatar full-perms just do the right thing and buy it on the Marketplace. You'll get your own copy, you'll support the business that the hunt organizers seem bent on damaging, and hey--in some small, minor way you'll be a hero in your own right.
Who doesn't like that feeling?
(Why yes, there's already an update to this issue. Read the follow-up entry.)
In other superhero news, there's a wonderful webcomic out there taking on the issues in larger comics publication and storylines, a panel at a time--and this week's issue deals with women in comics publishing. To be fair, I think it's an issue worth debating, but I also firmly believe most comic execs favor option B in the discussions.
There's someone on deviantArt who wants Notch to make Minecraft creepier and harder to survive by inventing the Sheeper--a half-sheep, half-Creeper who favors facing away from you and would only blow up when you saw the Creeper face. Notch, for the love of anything you hold sacred, please don't do it! It would make wool harvesting fraught with trauma and psychosis!
And finally, because after most of this I want to end on a less depressing note--have a bit of lusty bookbinding action. Abe Books for a few years now have been selling unique editions, textbooks, and chapbook editions to the public online, and this page is their gathering together of all the really unusually-bound books they have (not know about, have in house). Since posting that, eleven of the thirty volumes have sold. Guess I'm not the only one who adores unusual bindings.
(Actually, I know I'm not, and that's why I'm posting it here.)