Second Life is trying to get rid of the nasties

Ahh, the people asking “Are Furries Doomed?” about Second Life trying to get rid of the nasties are looking at the wrong thing.

We learned what is wrong with Second Life back last year at Gnomedex when my son was yelled at by a Linden Labs’ employee because kids aren’t allowed to interact with adults on Second Life.

THAT is what’s wrong with Second Life, and continues to be. I haven’t been back since.

Fix that problem, Linden Labs, and all the rest of this gets cleaned up too.

How would you fix this problem?

Well, we have red light districts in the real world, don’t we? Does anyone worry about how children can be brought up in such a world? Maybe some of the most fanatical religious folks do, but normal rational human beings don’t mind that at all. We just stay out of the red light districts if that kind of behavior doesn’t match what makes us happy.

But in Second Life my son continues to be locked out of my world. Why?

Why do we have such stupid architectures when the real world shows us the way out of these kinds of problems already?

I’d love to sit down with Linden Labs for a video interview. I’m pretty open this week. You know where to find me.

It’s interesting. Since my son got yelled at, he’s spent hundreds of hours in World of Warcraft, which is a more beautiful world and where me and him can play together, if we like. Of course there’s no nasties in that world. Now, if you want “nasties” then you gotta put them in a walled off part of the world.

It really pisses me off that software folks don’t learn from the real world and don’t invest the time and energy it takes to let kids and adults play together, even if they are in the same family.

Think this doesn’t matter? Well, I’ve talked with various companies and they are scared of getting into Second Life because of brand protection issues. When CNET had a bunch of penises thrown at it every marketer had a heart attack. THAT happened BECAUSE Second Life’s architecture sucks. The fact that they won’t let kids into the world I’m a part of was just a separate demonstration of that.

Even after Linden Labs solves that problem there’s another one to solve before companies can really get into Second Life: each island can only support about 100 people. So, that’s two places where the architecture in Second Life sucks. When will Linden Labs fix both of these issues? Will it be another year? Why wasn’t this issue fixed in the last year?

108 thoughts on “Second Life is trying to get rid of the nasties

  1. If interested, there is a contest written out for ‘parental control software’ for second life. Maybe this will help with getting the two grids merged, but I wouldn’t get my hopes up to high.

    But I agree with you, parents should be able to ‘join’ their kids in SL (or kids their parents) although I’m not sure how much of our ‘adult content’ I’m willing to give up for that. :/

  2. If interested, there is a contest written out for ‘parental control software’ for second life. Maybe this will help with getting the two grids merged, but I wouldn’t get my hopes up to high.

    But I agree with you, parents should be able to ‘join’ their kids in SL (or kids their parents) although I’m not sure how much of our ‘adult content’ I’m willing to give up for that. :/

  3. Robert it’s all very well comparing Second Life with WoW and saying “Hey I can play with my kid in WoW” but the other side of the coin is the mess that sites like MySpace have gotten themselves into with regards to having adults and kids mix.

    I do believe however that Mr Rosedale shares your vision of an area where teens and adults can mix, personally I think they’d run into the MySpace issues if such an environment were created, rather than create the WoW model of wholesome fun.

  4. Robert it’s all very well comparing Second Life with WoW and saying “Hey I can play with my kid in WoW” but the other side of the coin is the mess that sites like MySpace have gotten themselves into with regards to having adults and kids mix.

    I do believe however that Mr Rosedale shares your vision of an area where teens and adults can mix, personally I think they’d run into the MySpace issues if such an environment were created, rather than create the WoW model of wholesome fun.

  5. Kami: that’s a nice theory, but it actually doesn’t go over well with adults. The usage on Second Life isn’t that great. iLike got six million users in two weeks on Facebook. Now THAT is usage. How many does Second Life have after three years? Far far far less.

    Most adults I know say “ew” after someone offers them a penis for sale (as happened to me in Second Life).

    The fact that it’s an adult-only world with very few rules (until now, because they realize if they want to grow the number of users they’ve gotta do more than just be known as an adult-only place) is one reason it hasn’t taken off.

  6. Kami: that’s a nice theory, but it actually doesn’t go over well with adults. The usage on Second Life isn’t that great. iLike got six million users in two weeks on Facebook. Now THAT is usage. How many does Second Life have after three years? Far far far less.

    Most adults I know say “ew” after someone offers them a penis for sale (as happened to me in Second Life).

    The fact that it’s an adult-only world with very few rules (until now, because they realize if they want to grow the number of users they’ve gotta do more than just be known as an adult-only place) is one reason it hasn’t taken off.

  7. Robert: “if I tried to take my son into a casino a cop would ask me kindly to take him outside. Same if I tried to take him into Amsterdam’s red light district.”

    The cops did stop you up front. Linden Lab designated most of SL as “Mature” regions, equivalent to the Vegas strip. You do know that “Amsterdam” in SL is a sex-based sim that sold for over US$50K?

    Yes, it’s kind of unfortunate that they didn’t create a separate PG continent where you would never be exposed to adult activities (sex or otherwise), but it wasn’t a problem for most of us, because we didn’t want to be around children.

    “It’s all due to a sucky architecture in the first place. Imagine making a game with cute furries and build-it-yourself 3D only for adults. Yeah, that’ll go over well.”

    It goes over very well with adults, who generally don’t want to interact with children all that much, and would like some place where they can just be adults without the constant “FOR THE CHEEELDREN!” whining of parental groups.

    There’s an equally-functional Teen SL grid, which isn’t for you and your filthy penis attachments. It’s not very big, but it works well, seems to be censored reasonably well, and the teen grid residents who’ve spoken up seem pretty interesting and have done good work.

  8. Robert: “if I tried to take my son into a casino a cop would ask me kindly to take him outside. Same if I tried to take him into Amsterdam’s red light district.”

    The cops did stop you up front. Linden Lab designated most of SL as “Mature” regions, equivalent to the Vegas strip. You do know that “Amsterdam” in SL is a sex-based sim that sold for over US$50K?

    Yes, it’s kind of unfortunate that they didn’t create a separate PG continent where you would never be exposed to adult activities (sex or otherwise), but it wasn’t a problem for most of us, because we didn’t want to be around children.

    “It’s all due to a sucky architecture in the first place. Imagine making a game with cute furries and build-it-yourself 3D only for adults. Yeah, that’ll go over well.”

    It goes over very well with adults, who generally don’t want to interact with children all that much, and would like some place where they can just be adults without the constant “FOR THE CHEEELDREN!” whining of parental groups.

    There’s an equally-functional Teen SL grid, which isn’t for you and your filthy penis attachments. It’s not very big, but it works well, seems to be censored reasonably well, and the teen grid residents who’ve spoken up seem pretty interesting and have done good work.

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