There are further public ripples in the pond resulting from the August 15th changes to LL’s Terms of Service
Machinimatrix Refocus Terminology on OpenSim
Recently Linden Labs have changed their TOS. First and most important for you:
This has no direct impact on our support and we will continue our offers as before.
However we feel uncomfortable about the change of the TOS and we have made a few moves to support those who no longer have access to Second Life. And finally we have decided to reduce indirect advertisement for the Second Life platform.
The post goes on to state that:
- Specific changes will see the team introduce a wider range of payment options for their products
- All web documentation has had references to Second Life replaced by OpenSim, unless a reference is directly relevant to Second Life, in which case it has been replaced by “SL”
- A top-to-bottom renaming within the Avastar user interface which sees all references to Second Life replaced with references to OpenSim,
- A similar removal of references to Second Life in the Blender Collada exporter, with references to OpenSim replacing it. Other products within the Machinimatrix
The team also make it clear that in making these changes, no actual functionality has changed within their products.
Bryn Oh Resigns from LEA
Bryn Oh, perhaps once of the most high-profile members of the Linden Endowment for the Arts has publicly resigned from that body.
Having already commented on the revision to Section 2.3 of the ToS, Bryn has now written publicly on the subject from apersonal perspective, and does so quite damningly, highlighting one of the principal issues which has come about as a result of the wording of the section 2.3, noting:
One thing I do in both first life and Second Life is try to convince artists that they and their art are worth something. You see, artists are quite often taken advantage of. People will pay a plumber to fix a sink or a roofer to fix a roof because it is a skill they do not possess themselves, and they accept and recognize that. However, most people also can not paint pictures, yet they will suggest that it would be great “exposure” to put things in their Law Office or Hotel. When I was just out of art school I was convinced to do 25 pen and ink drawings for an expensive coffee table book.. for “exposure”. They thanked me in the back of the book. And somehow I felt like they did me a favour. They probably paid everyone else but me.
She goes on:
As it stands now I don’t feel comfortable luring artists into creating content for Linden Labs who can pretty much do whatever they want with it. I will take the risk with my own content but I wont encourage others to do so. For example, if you developed a revolutionary method for treating people with Schizophrenia by using specific techniques combining art, original music and the virtual space then built or demonstrated it in SL, it would no longer be yours exclusively. Linden Lab could scoop it up and put their money behind it, while you struggled to promote it from your basement … It is just another indignity artists and thinkers must suffer and I don’t want to be a part of it.
What actually matters is that the wording, as given in the ToS today, is untenable for many, and with very good reason, and is – as I’ve said before, and Bryn underlines – a further erosion of community / company trust which really should be more directly and clearly addressed by the Lab.
Sadly, and while continuing with efforts to encourage them do so elsewhere, I don’t actually believe they will.