"Until they became conscious they will never rebel, and until after they have rebelled they cannot become conscious." George Orwell, 1984.
Go and vote and put "watch" on this JIRA before it is closed, and while voting still exists.
And why aren't you voting to keep the vote in the JIRA?! I see only one JIRA proposal for this -- with only two votes (!).
There are rumours swirling around that some TOS fix is being put in to solve this Red Zone scandal, which has angered 1,381 people enough in SL to vote for fixing the problem.
It's too bad we don't have real media in and around SL at times like this. The Herald, which used to be the leading tabloid is down 50 percent in readership and the whole staff is on an LSD trip now looking at zoots dripping. A zoot, for those of you who were born way past this curious era, was a lengthy rope made of plastic garbage bags twisted and knotted together, then hung from a ceiling beam over a pan of water (important!) and then set on fire. It would burn slowly, but suddenly make long fizzling tongues of flame whizzing down like a bullet with a cool "ffft" and "zoot" noise before falling into the pan (so you wouldn't set the place on fire).
This JIRA is a lot like one of those 1960s zoots -- on fire over the Red Zone. Go read it before the Lindens "sequester" -- a practice they engaged in during 2004-2005 forums wars, when there were certain "hot" threads that they entirely moved from view while they examined them, and then put them back, sometimes redacted. (Now they tend just to delete them).
This JIRA shows you how the era of the software geeks is coming to an end. Oh, happy day! It's coming to an end because ordinary people get educated; they find out how stuff works; they learn enough about it to go vote on it -- and they vote.
And they talk. They discuss things like how parcel media tabs even if autoplay is disabled can still suck in the IP address to a scanner like Red Zone -- sophisticated stuff. They barely can spell some of them, and are probably not burdened with college educations in a number of instances, but they are passionate about fighting for their rights.
It's really a wonderful thing to see, after all the years of FIC oppression, incitement of hatred against ordinary people -- all the awful stuff the Lindens and their friends encouraged.
And of course voting isn't enough to change things -- it never was, and we don't pretend it was, and Lindens of course are lying that the only story is about "whether we have a democracy" and they "do what we say" in a vote.
And even if they take out the vote now, it will come back in -- the web routes around.
There's some great arguments in the thread but what's astounding is how the jackbooted Lindens come in.
Oz Linden is absolutely disgraceful. Skim down and find him on February 8:
"This is not a viewer issue, and should be dealt with through Support."
What a skank.
The originator of this world-historical JIRA, SugarPutty, says:
"Under what kind of surport Oz!? there are no options in the submit ticket. for this kind of tos violation.. How else are those of us with honest concerns surpose to point out the tos violations to LL."
Darren Scorpio adds "@Oz Linden, shame on you."
And that's the living end. When it's ordinary civilians -- not the proclaimed dissident Prokofy -- standing up to the odious Oz and telling him that he's shameful, you know there's a real rebellion. Not one easily put down. (They banned me from the JIRA in 2008 for complaining about a bug they claimed was a feature request, accusing me of "editing wars" although I merely re-opened a JIRA that was closed only twice, and others in the thread opened and closed it many more times without action.)
Oz then played hardball: he threatened anyone reopening the JIRA that his little myrmidons had closed with banning:
Regardless... this is still not a viewer issue.
If you reopen this here, your Jira privileges will be revoked.
Wow -- what a scumbag. And others on the JIRA let him know what they thought of that instantly. This is a mob that is learning how to be a crowd -- and there's a difference.
Says Denver Ghost, "The comments by Oz are incredulous. Unbelievable slap in the face and insult to the intelligence of every resident here. I'm speechless and disappointed."
I checked the date this JIRA was opened: February 7.
I checked the date that Amanda Linden posted the news of a new communications system -- and tucked the news that the JIRA voting would be closed: February 9.
We can't know unless a Linden talks who decided to turn off voting and why -- and when. My guess it was Rodvik; he had to sign off on it anyway (although there is a belief that the CEO doesn't run certain things there). He may have taken one look at people standing up to Oz, the head of his viewer open source team, and said "Can the voting". Or there may have been a claque of JIRA Lindens -- Soft, Alexa, etc. -- agitating to get voting turned off as it was a "demotivator" and "demoralizing" to their work (showing up popular opinion over and over again against their narrow sectarian interests). Maybe the killing of voting was long in the works; I somehow don't think so.
Sling Trebutchet is the most vocal and passionate on trying to find a mechanical solution to this issue through turning off the ability to match the name of the avatar with the collected IP address, or collect the IP but then not inform the device of what is collected. Many people would trust Linden Lab to keep this info (they already have it) -- it's like how the government already has your social security number. They'd love LL to institute something in the regular viewer that enabled bans in parcel lists not just to be configured by name, but to automatically ban all that person's alts, and do this not by how they registered, but by the IP address they appear with at the moment, and even their hashes, i.e. the configuration of the aspects of their computer as an identifying set of characteristics, so they can be IP and hash banned. It's a tall order because of the false positives and ingenuity of griefers, but more to the point, anything harming Linden's ability to let third parties gather data on us means they can't sell their platform.
But this, while it seems "simple and doable" and admirable, is not something the Lindens may like. It hobbles the ability to gather the data they want to gather, and create that "investment climate" they'd like to create for data-miners.
Example: Zynga on Facebook has our IP and much about us -- what we like, what we buy, etc. If Facebook didn't let third parties scrape data, they'd have nothing to sell. We're the thing being sold here, and we need to play along.
The Lindens aren't going to hobble that just because suddenly, a diva is too stupid to shop on her alt in a different place than where she shops with her main.
I do get all the screaming. I do, truly. I just want the arguments to be sound. And I think argumentation about false positives and dorm sharing are retarded and stupid and the Lindens know that, and they have the info; I also think arguments involving elaborate patching of the media capacities of the patches are non-starters -- Lindens want a system where people share media and you are coerced into playing it as you fly around. But just as they now have an option even in 1.23 to turn off the automatic playing of media and just as your URL for music is hidden if you want it to be, so that can be done more elaborately to protect privacy.
There are wild rumours going around that zFire Xue is about to release the whole dbase of millions of items and out everybody's alt. I think that's unlikely. zFire does not comport himself like Lonely Bluebird and Discrete Dreamscape. He does not grief critics inworld; he doesn't troll comments; he just speaks like an indignant businessman whose cash cow is disrupted. He knows he has a winner -- people fear copybot and will stock up.
But here's an interesting comment from MilosZ Milosz an oldbie, an aquaintance I know inworld who has a nice furniture and plant store and great builds:
I am writing my comment as a 5+ year resident of Second Life. I am also writing a a former user of the RZ system. I ran an adult club in Second Life, and thought this would be an effective tool to ban griefers and people with throw away avatars who frequent adult clubs just to irritate people. However, I ceased using the product once I realized its true and obvious purpose. This tool is marketed to ban copybotters and griefers, when in reality all the product does is promote griefing, and it promotes drama mongering. The fact that this nefarious product is available as a wear anywhere, use anywhere HUD now is very disturbing. In fact, I saw a girls profile advertising her willingness to detect and reveal anyone's alts, for the modest fee of $500L.
Are there legitimate reasons a person might purchase this product? Absolutely. But the negatives far outweigh any positive aspect of this product. If I could turn back time and reclaim the $4000 I spent on this, I certainly would.
Linden, if you read these comments please consider the residents who dwell in this community. This product should be banned and stripped from the grid. And those using it need to look inward at themselves, and ask why they are really using it. I asked myself these questions when I, too, spend time looking to see who was whos alt. The compulsion to do this-
even if it is not your initial reason for buying this product-is strong, and anyone owning this product who says they do not look at a persons alt is living in self deceit.
On that note, I'll end my comment and hope Linden makes the right move and abolishes this product.
He's right. Most people will not resist the temptation to check alts, and soon, that becomes the main purpose. Now that it seems more like zFire is selling a peepshow to take a gander at people's alts, and not really stop copybotting, the tide is turning more against him.
Years ago, I raised this issue of the harvesting of IPs regarding Cristiano Midnight and Sluniverse.com when the Lindens "graced" him with an astounding feting. For a time, they had a system where anyone could send a postcard of their SL to the front page of Second Life (imagine!) But because the postcard system has to have a destination, an email address to send the thing out, even if it stops along the way to display on the front page first, they decided to make that destination sluniverse.com, which already had a huge trove of pictures, like the Flickr of SL.
So that meant everyone excited about sending a postcard to get on the front page for a minute was now inevitably sending pics to Slun. And as they did this, Cristiano, the site manager, got the *email that people had signed up with for SL, often their concealed real email* and he got *their IP address and avatar name*.
I immediately began protesting strenuously in the forums. What happened is what happened to the RZ complainers now in that JIRA thread and on the forums (only with no company and reinforcements like they had).
I was pilloried. I was ridiculed. I was told that I was an ignorant asshat. Didn't I realize that "everywhere on the Internet" the IP address was harvested? Didn't I realize that "the Internet worked this way"?! Etc. etc. At one point in the heat of argument when I typed "ISP" instead of "IPS" I was ridiculed some more -- didn't I realize the difference between Internet Service Provider and Internet Protocol address? Blah blah. People were savage assholes, even though my point was absolutely crystal pure and correct.
No one should have been gathering the emails that people used to sign up to Second Life! And matching it to their avatar name and IP address!
Linden Lab should NEVER have sent out to a third party the entire list of emails people used to sign up with along with pictures and their avatar names and IPs!!! This was really an LL problem more than a Cristiano problem, but I didn't see the wider picture then (I hadn't read Julie Angwin's amazing book about the greedy data miners of MySpace).
Cristiano witheringly claimed that he "discarded" those emails as they came in to his server, but I didn't believe him. Of course, he was the one who published Nolan Nash's accounts that outed my real life as an effort to harass and stalk me and silence my criticism of the geek squad and the FIC on the forums.
Even Robin Linden conceded that yes, the e-mail thing could be a problem and said as much in this thread, something I pointed people to -- to no avail.
But then I was banned, amazingly, merely for raising a LEGITIMATE concern. I was suspended from the forums for a 7 day period not for flaming or trolling or anything like that, as it was told to me by Lindens, but because of a huge slew of people abuse reporting, and Lindens feeling like they "had to do something" because the "community wanted something done". They were able to make it seem like raising the LEGITIMATE concern about Cristiano harvesting data like that was a "personal attack" on a "community leader".
Even banned, I stuck to my guns and kept complaining everywhere about this. Cristiano squealed like a stuck pig. He kept saying that he discarded the addresses. I said we had no way of knowing that. He said the FICifying was forced on him -- he didn't ask for this set-up. He said the Lindens just wired it up and told him later. This was barely believable. Ultimately the Lindens took the system down. Not because of Cristiano, but because naturally people started posting not even so much porn to the front page, or ads for their rentals -- there actually wasn't much of that.
What they started posting were protests. People with signs protesting in the welcome area. I forget what some of them were now that got particularly visiblity. I know what mine was. SAVE OUR TELEHUBS. I posted protest textures inside the ad system at each telehub on the night they began deleting them, trying to stay one step ahead of them. I would post the ad and make a postcard and it would linger on the front page of Second Life for about a minute; the Linden assholes deleting the telehubs with malicious glee had prepared a nasty special effects -- they had made an "exploded and burning telehub" build that they'd show in the place of the deleted hubs, and they themselves would photograph that, then upload it as a postcard coming in after my SAVE OUR TELEHUBS. So we played cat and mouse. There were 40 plus telehubs. I struggled and struggled with about 20 ads, teleporting around, fiddling with that stupid annoying ad system that timed out. So I had my say. My protest was visible. But they deleted the hubs. Then, later, they deleted the entire system of postcards on the front page.
Why do I go into ancient history? Do I have a grudge that my issues of a very similar nature were never dealt with 6 years ago, and I had no company, and today there are 1,361 people angry and prepared to fight back against Lindens?
No, of course not. These kind of struggles always take many rounds, with many peoples, and you can only be happy if someone else gets the issue finally on the table and dealt with.
Well, it's in part a cautionary tale. Those who do not know their history are doomed to repeat it.
Many people think of me as being banned for "vitriol". They can be shocked when they look at the actual text and find it isn't me, it's the others. And what this is really about isn't my speech, but the issues I raise -- issues lots of people raise, some of whom get disappeared and banned, some don't.
The Lindens hold their own close. Cristiano was an NDA's beta tester, charter member, and beloved seller of animations with a huge income. I was a nobody. Do the math. They didn't let me articulate legitimate concerns that the general public always does end up speaking about with these services -- instead, they let the junkyard dogs go after me.
Another beloved oldbie who was co-owner of then-X street was dispatched to scour the Internet for dirt on me. He came up with a story of someone who had the exact same RL name as mine -- it's common -- who was a journalist in Minneapolis who was found guilty of plagiarism -- it was an article about bikinis she had copied.
So this merchant of animators and founder of Awakening Avatars, the largest SL group at the time, and co-owner of Xstreet, posted on the forums that I was guilty of a RL crime and I should shut up, or he would out this to the community what I had done. I should cease criticizing people like Cristiano -- or I would "get it" -- in the neck.
I was puzzled and didn't get it. Huh? I was banned for 7 days, but I came on an alt and posted a refutation -- that no, that wasn't true. I hadn't committed any RL crimes. *For that* I was then *further* sanctioned for additional time in ban for "alt abuse" and given my "final warning". How about that!
My good name was being slandered; I could do nothing. I couldn't get anyone to act. Strange posts were showing up, including by the awful Maxx Monde, a really grade-A asshole, gifs with women riding a bicycle in a bikini with bouncing boobs. I didn't get it. Eventually, Cristiano revealed to me that they were all taunting me and threatening me on the basis of a mistaken identity. A Google witch-hunt. A story that the sinister and vindictive Soft Linden (Brian McGroarty) would dredge up later to charge me *again* falsely on Twitter of "plagiarism". I'm not guilty of plagiarism.
I flag this because you have to be prepared to fight and suffer, as I have, to try to curb the rapacious appetites for data of these ethics-free people. And they fight dirty, and they will try to ruin your reputation. Only human solidarity and persistence can save you.
Perhaps the tide is turning? Even Mitch Kapor has had something of a dark night of the soul lately and posted an interesting tweet that indicates the depth of his awareness of the immorality of what they all do:
@mitchkapor The more I learn, the more I see how the whole biz side of social networking is built on surreptitiously stealing personal data
Which brings me to my recurring points about all this:
o yes, the Lindens may patch the RedZone exploit, if you will, and fix that media thingie, and solve just that issue -- although hobbling their share-bear Facebook media stuff may go against their religion, so we'll see
o yes, they may take Sling's very soft option, which is merely a pop-up of warning. That's pretty retarded, frankly, as pop-up warnings don't stop people. It might be too late to stop the collection of data by the time the pop-up comes, or maybe all it does is remind the clueless git shopping at the same store on an alt that geez, that was dumb, they need to hide their tracks better.
o but more important is the issue of data-mining in general. Nothing is going to prevent Linden from behaving like every other California company which, as Mitch points out, makes a living on data scraping.
o so they may merely make this one guy a sacrificial lamb -- he was untrustworthy or he did some minor infraction or he gets a talking-to -- and it's a one-off. Not a policy or a tech fix, but just banning him
o he may retaliate with exposing the entire dbase in revenge -- but I don't think so -- if he does that, the Lindens will hunt him down and get him with real life law -- and it's no accident that they may be ready to sit up and bark on this finally because California passed a law making the zip code a piece of private information that stores and such cannot collect without your consent. This is engendering the usual software thinking from the usual Internet thugs on forums everywhere, scorning people for not realizing their zip code is "already public".
Well, no. Not next to the list of where I shop. Not next to a list of what I bought. Not next to my credit card number. Not next to a list of other people near me. And so on.
Is it possible to win the whole world and lose your soul, like the Bible says? Yes, as people will not keep fighting for the right to vote (like the right of collective bargaining); they will be bought off with one patch, one tweak, one pop-up, or even merely the banning of zFire and removal of his product from the grid -- and accept that voting is being deleted for evermore (like unions are often placated with merely a pay hike).
A lot of the work I tried to do on the JIRA (before being unjustly banned) was to get at the system itself:
o Bugs and Proposals on the JIRA Should Not be Closed Without Author's Consent -- obviously they figured out later how to do this in other ways
Note also this interesting tid-bit -- the JIRA to open up voting itself on the JIRA -- in which the late Jesse Malthus participated, a devoted student also of the system who was tragically killed in a car crash in RL back then.
And this one -- a warmongering weapons salesman and Linden loyalist Oprichina type urges the closing down of the old Features Voting System -- which would have been better than the JIRA.
And this -- trying to get the "note" vote -- and the "won't do".
Or this from me -- Feature Voting Should be Separate from the JIRA and Reformed.
That's what we need, and hopefully we can get that struggle back on the boards.