Posted by Amanda Chapel
This just in... what is being billed as one of the most significant developments in the history of virtual worlds, residents of the Second Life gated community Dreamland have voted to ban PR practitioners from their region. By conservative estimates Dreamland constitutes 10% of Second Life's land mass and 10% of its active residents.
According to Second Life Herald editor Urizenus Sklar, "Residents were apparently incensed by the recent spate of false claims by PR Flacks, marketing mavens, and clueless corporations."
The resolution read: "Some PR agencies and RL companies have abused SL and made claims in RL media of being first to do things many SL residents have done long before them ("1st radio station in SL", "1st fashion brand", "1st tabloid"). SHOULD WE BAN THEM FROM DREAMLAND?" The Dreamland Citizens Proposal subsequently passed.
Dreamland developer Anshe Chung indicated that she had not yet determined how to enact the initiative. A formal public statement is imminent.
Sklar said, "The resolution does give residents who make false claims the opportunity to retract their statements. Of course, they are free to stick to their guns and stay away from Dreamland and whatever regions ban them next even if that leads to a total ban from Second Life. The sad thing is that it had to come to this. Apparently, this is just the most recent in a string of episodes in which the PR industry has invaded a social space and deeply offended the residents. Clearly they are not learning. I guess it comes down to this: hubris dies hard."
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The ban is useless because the PR firms play in the 3-D world of reality. They can claim any thing they want and the denizens of second life can't do anything about it, (except ban them from their digital party A-list...).
You lost me in your first sentence. I guess if you argue that fraud is the dominant characteristic of our 3-D reality, well... okay.
As to SL banning PR from the "digital party"... there seems to be a trend in the making (see http://www.strumpette.com/archives/201-Has-Public-Relations-Become-Synonymous-with-Spam.html ). That said, where is PR and its "Me2REvolution" when it's finally banned in total from social networking? What happens to PR in a world that can detect, and is not tolerant of, fraud? I spend a majority of my imagining it.
PR spin is easily seen in SL and in RW (Real World,0 why make a distinction...
"PR spin is easily seen in SL and in RW"?
If that were true, there would be not PR business; And they certainly would not be licking there chops over the prospects of social networking.
What makes fraud a crime is that you DON"T know you're being spun, i.e. PR at its best!
It's amusing. That's about all it is. I wrote about it already (here: http://www.knowprose.com/node/16627 ), but basically - if they weren't going to Dreamland anyway, what have they done but given themselves something to do for a few hours and give the downward spiraling SecondLifeHerald something senseless to publish?
So I laugh, and move on.
Amanda, there aren't 1.4 million members of second life, that is just the number of (free) accounts that have be created over the last three years. How many of those are actually active members? There is reason to believe the numbers are badly inflated by linden lab.
What Urizenus means, of course, is not that all 1.4 million accounts are linked to people, and that some of them are linked to the same person. Some are alternates - some paid accounts, quite possibly the majority are free.
Linden Lab didn't inflate the numbers. They count accounts. A discerning reader can tell the difference; the problem is that the media that has reported on SecondLife have not been very discerning readers and also have lacked any real investigative journalism in most cases.
Incidentally, the number of actual votes is as questionable as the number of accounts in SecondLife are free. That's an amusing thing to consider as well.
Taran, you are getting yourself confused on a lot of points. In your post on your own blog post seem to think that dreamland is one island with 400 residents, but it is a continent, consitituting 10% of second life, supported by 400+ simulators (or servers).
Second, while it is true that you could perhaps vote with an alt, the alt would have to be added to the Dreamland usergroup by Anshe Chung before it would be able to vote. Do we know that she adds alts freely? Second, to vote you at least have to log on, and many of those million plus accounts have been dormant for ages, which was my point.
Third, your claim that Linden Lab doesn't inflate their numbers is disingenuous. Of course there is probably a counter somewhere that registers 1.3 something million something or other, but on the Linden Lab home page the number is labeled "Total Residents". At a minimum that is horribly misleading. Furthermore, it has now been established that the number labelled "US Dollars spent" registers nothing of the kind. It is merely a measure of money that passes from one hand to another. Hence a user was able to boost the figure by one million dollars by passing money back and forth between two avatars for an hour and a half: http://www.secondlifeherald.com/slh/2006/11/linden_lab_boas.html.
Fourth, isn't the real issue here simply that it came to this? If the PR firms weren't doing their bull-in-a-china-shop thing this would never have come to a vote and Anshe would not be contemplating implementation of the ban.
Urizenus, really - if you want to comment on my post on my blog, why not do it there? Are you afraid?
Let us face facts, Urizenus. You're hyping things so you can write inflammatory things which have no effect on reality or virtual reality. You try to tie people down in pedantic discussion to mist the issue. The issue here is that effectively, the ban of people related to the problems you believe are so important has no positive effect.
In future, if you want to comment on my blog posts I suggest you do it there. As long as it isn't Spammish or blatantly inflammatory, it will go up. If I can get flack from real life people with real names, a few fictional names won't hurt my feelings. :-)
Taran, as for whether it is good or bad that dishonest PR flacks are banned from Dreamland, I'll let others decide. I'm just reporting what happened. YMMV.
People do read my blog and while I'm not in the mainstream, I'm not out to make myself popular. Of course, for people who wish to be popular, what you wrote would be an insult. I'd rather be right than popular, and make no apologies for not sensationalizing in the hope to get more hits to my website.
As for the rest - you've been pushing on this quite a bit in an uncouth manner (example on THIS site: http://www.strumpette.com/archives/218-Fucktards-in-Cyperspace.html ), so I find your claim of something along the lines of 'journalistic integrity' to be suspect - at best.
I really wish a few people considered what their goals were and how to achieve those goals. Please read: http://www.knowprose.com/node/16630
Taran, you have been running from blog to blog as a one man cheering section for the clumsy behavior of PR and marketing folks in Second life. You've done it here on Stumpette, you've done it on my blog, you've done it on New World Notes, you've done it on your blog, you've done it on Steve's Rambling (http://stevesramblings.com/2006/11/residents-vote-to-ban-pr-companies.html) and probably a zillion others I don't know about. In all of it you are missing the point, which is not even about second life. The point is about the inept behavior of meat-space corporations when they try to market in online social spaces. This problem didn't begin with second life. They are not just getting themselves banned from Anshe's Dreamland, but from wikipedia and their operations are leading to channel abandonment in other venues. You may think it is not constructive to be "uncouth", but is it really constructive to cheer them on as they continue to destroy virtual communities and/or send nettizens fleeing to newer flack-free environments? You aren't helping the PR and marketing firms when you keep telling them they are swell. They are messing up big time and they are pissing people off. Some people are voting with vituperative blog posts, some people are voting to ban them from Dreamland, and some people are simply voting with their virtual feet. Those are the facts.
When the lemmings are charging off the cliff, applauding doesn't help them.
Urizenus, I'm sorry. You've turned this into a bunch of personal criticisms. You've missed the point entirely, and if the best you can do is resort to misting of issues then... eventually people will figure out what I have.
That you exert your energy in one place is to be commended. That you criticize the distribution of energy demonstrates an antiquated paradigm.
Shift, Urizenus, Shift. Progress beyond any one person is inevitable.
I'm not interested in this 'discussion' with you anymore, and I wish you and yours well. Take your vitamins, drink calcium fortified milk, whatever it takes. Know that I support your right to live and express yourself, but my support for your antics simply does not exist - it could, if you changed your paradigm.
Have a fine day! I'll be over at KnowProSE.com welcoming my few visitors. Hold on. I think someone's visiting! Got to run! roflmao
OK Taran, I'll be here "misting issues" while you are working on the new paradigm. Call if you need anything.
whispering to others: i thought he would never leave...