Where is Big Brother when you need him?

Is there anyone who regulates xstreetsl.com, formerly SLX? I’ve been hearing so much about these get-rich-quick scams there. I wanted to see what was available so I did a search for ‘full perms’ and one for ‘business in a box’  over 500 pages of results for both. Now, let me say that I’m sure there are legitimate people out there selling full perms versions of things they have made. However, knowing a few content creators personally, I’ve heard lots more stories of ripped items and copy-botted prim pieces that are there without the permission and usually even the knowledge of the original creators.

I’m not trying to point any fingers here, and I’m definitely not interested in getting into a debate about whether or not designer should be using purchased clothing textures or prim items. That really isn’t the point here. My question is, who polices SLX? A good friend of mine who runs a *very* profitable game in SL told me that some of his scripts were ostensibly for sale, full permissions on SLX. He purchased the package, and it ended up being junk scripts, but he spent $400L on these and lord knows who else had. Not to mention that he does not sell his scripts or anything he makes full perms, why would he, when he’s making money off them?

With theft running rampant and seemingly unregulated, I’d definitely think twice before I purchased any BIAB’s from SLX. Not to say that there aren’t real ones out there, but I’d rather be safe than sorry. If a person buys textures from SLX in good faith, and then it turns out that they were indeed stolen ripped textures, the line is seriously blurred between right and wrong. At that point it’s not fair to anyone in the situation and both Designers end up losing. The person who originally ripped the textures is the only person who gains, because they are still making money, and honestly, if they’re stealing, they probably don’t care about having a
good name or not.

Perhaps a good idea would be an SL mentorship program, where you go and learn from experienced residents for a fee (so you’re not completely wasting their time) and figure out just how to do those pesky seams and get the proper shine on fabric. I know I would love something like that, as I’m trying my hand and clothes, and discovering just how difficult it is. But I just don’t trust that purchased textures are genuine, and if I were going to find them, I’d look in-world first.

Also I’d love if we could institute some kind of Better Business Bureau in Second Life, someone we could go to, to mediate when we have a genuine  customer service complaint, or are worried that someone is stealing. Alaska Metropolitan suggested several things in her post. She had some really great ideas, and I think that the idea of a website and also an in-world presence would be the best way to get around the likely-hood of SL bork-ups or people cheating the system somehow.

In the end, I think we can all agree that we’d prefer creators to make their own textures, but if you choose to go another route, check the sources, do your homework, make sure that they are legit and can back them up with layered .PSDs. Do your homework and it might save you some heartache in the end.


7 Responses to “Where is Big Brother when you need him?”

  1. Washu Zebrastripe Says:

    There is definitely a lot of blurry lines. There’s been talk for years about the want of some sort of BBB program in SL, and it would really be nice for something like this. It would have to start with a person or people who have the knowledge and the desire to put it together… I don’t know when or if it would ever happen.

  2. hawksrock Says:

    Excellent post Autumn. I think that if there really is significant monetary loss taking place via theft, then it shouldn’t take much initiative to get some sort of BBB thing going. I think that a large proportion of the public would feel better buying from a designer who has some sort of seal of approval and is validated by his/her fellow designers as selling original content, although there will always be those individuals who will buy the cheapest product, regardless of ethics.

  3. LL has a content creator’s ranking system that they’re working on. It’s supposed to give creators who register with LL a specific icon on their profile. They’ll be allotted points for specific things. Like, registering your RL name and address with LL will give you x points. Adding your telephone number will add another x points. SSN will be x more points, etc. Last I heard it wasn’t going to cost anything to do this. Basically the theory is if you’re willing to verify all your personal information with LL, you’re pretty serious about your content and your business. It seems like I remember Blue Linden saying there will be some kind of agreement that you have to agree to as well stating that all of your creations are yours and/or you have complete rights to use them.

    I wish I had a time frame of when this was going into the grid. Most creators are very anxious to see something like this come into effect.

    I know that one of my styles has ended up in a BIAB, and I most definitely never agreed for it to go there. The probem with these BIAB sellers is that they just don’t care. They know most of that stuff is stolen. They’re making money, or they’re not making money and tout “It’s just a game.”

    I think there is a website similar to a BBB, but I don’t have the specifics on it. I wouldn’t even be sure that it’s still around but someone will know.

  4. PS – whoever made the text box backgrounds white on white, PLEASE reconsider. That’s really harsh on the eyes. -.-

  5. Hey Tiger – the reply box is white text on grey background…but I’ve noticed some weirdness with the blog themes sometimes. :\

  6. Mine is definitely white on white. The hub even walked over and said “OMG that’s not cool.” I have to highlight it to read what I’ve typed. Maybe I have a glitch? But hopefully everyone else has it a leetle easier 🙂

  7. AlaskaMetro Says:

    Someone read my blog post 😀 😀 😀

    I would definitely take part in any official LL system for accrediting content creators, it’s worth it to me. I hope that would also give us a bit of an advantage over non-sanctioned creators, though, such as a listing on the official website, or faster response time to filed DMCAs, or something. If LL offered that it might even be worth it to pay a little extra.

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