What are they smoking?

anonymous-bank-of-ganja-1192588 Okay, so back in an earlier post we were all annoyed by the idea of banning all “adult content” from the mainland, and the initial definition of “Adult” that the Lab had posted. Then we were amused and frustrated by the replacement of that definition of “Adult” by a page saying “Oops!”, so that all the subsequent discussion of what to do with Adult content might as well have been about what to do with Frazmataz content, since “Adult” was undefined.

Now the Lab has put up a new definition of “Adult”, and although it’s nice that it’s marked “Note: This document is undergoing a round of edits. The final version may be different”, it’s sort of a pity that it’s completely bonkers.

Not only does it again define Adult regions very broadly (as any region that “advertises or publicly promotes… Representations of intensely violent acts… Photo-realistic nudity [or]… Expressly sexually themed content, spaces or activities (whether or not photo-realistic)”, therefore getting Michelangelo’s David and nude beaches again despite having assured us they would not, and for that matter probably getting most lingerie stores) it also (just a sentence or two before, and contradictorily) defines adult regions as those regions “that host conduct or display content that is sexually explicit or intensely violent, or depicts illicit drug use”.

Illicit drug use.

Illicit drug use!!

I mean, what the hell?

I had a slippery-slope argument in my original posting on the Adult Exile, saying that if sex-stuff was exiled to its own continent then people would start to whine and want anything else that they didn’t liked also exiled. I actually thought it was a rather weak argument, and I put it last, but here it is already!

Can I have a show of hands of how many people have been traumatized or offended, while innocently wandering the mainland, to come across someone smoking virtual mari-huana (the devil weed!), or shooting up virtual heroine? Or been offended by a virtual head-shop opening up next door? Or who thinks its reasonable that no one not age-verified should have been allowed to go to SecondStock (a fun virtual Woodstock that was chock-full of ganja references), or should be exposed to those funny “enormous roach” attachments that people bring out at parties, or should be able to use your typical cute group waterpipe, or should for that matter be able to play with the variety of “virtual drugs” that do strange things to what you see on the display and how your AV moves?

Anybody? Anybody at all?

I mean, doesn’t this wording even ban those anti-drug posters that show ugly losers smoking pot, with the words “pot smoking is very glamorous” under them? They’re depicting illicit drug use!

(If you read a little further on that page, you’ll also find that you can’t have a cocktail party on a PG sim; no social alcohol use.)

I hope I’m going to look really silly tomorrow when this turns out to have been a typo or cut-and-paste error or April Fool joke at the Lab, or that I’ve missed the entire point because I’m just back from a business trip and I’ve been out of touch and I’m too sleepy to think straight. I would be okay with that. I would not be okay with someone at the Lab actually thinking that this is a good idea, and that people who are not age-verified must not be allowed to see virtual people using virtual illicit drugs. I mean…

I mean…

What are they smoking?

7 Responses

  1. OK, woah. I’d love to be able to say that you’ve clearly got the wrong end of the stick and they can’t have possibly intended that… but I’m at the stage with LL that nothing seems beyond them. You’re right that this makes my post quite timely (yay me – and purely accidental). From my post you’ll already know that I agree with your stance here about the idiocy of what they’re doing (and that I don’t give a flying monkey’s if people are offened by what should be our rights anyway).

    *loud sigh*

  2. […] April 23, 2009 by London Spengler At least two bloggers had published a post about new LL policy about adult content, one approving it (a view I understand but don’t share, as you can see at my comment), and another wondering about how stoned was LL when they decided to mark virtual drugs as adult content. […]

  3. This entire adult “witch hunt” is beyond absurd and sadly incredibly damaging for LL, the product it created, the promise of its product, the culture and values they talk but seem to be having trouble walking. It’s like LL needs a new AO or something. The part in the definition that both made me laugh and alarmed me was their lumping in anything “passive adult” activity. Erm. What the hell is “passive adult” behavior? How many witch-ways are they trying to slice this?

  4. Yeah, that “passive” thing was odd. It’s part of this:

    “However, we may take into account whether apparent or reported adult content or conduct on a particular Region serves only an extremely limited or passive function, or an important educational or cultural function, and therefore would be appropriate for all Second Life audiences.”

    which I think means, decoded, “if you have something that fits the definition of ‘Adult’, but we like you and/or we think it would look silly if we were to classify the thing as Adult, we’ll give you a pass.” This may be how they’ll avoid having to classify every nude beach (photorealistic nudity!) as “Adult”, I’m not sure…

  5. Interestingly, both “adult-only explicit images” and “drugs” in SL are cited in the Taser lawsuit v. Linden Lab as concomitant factors that allegedly contribute to the disparagement of the company’s reputation.


  6. Hmmm, good point…

    “Hey, RL brand-owners! We have gotten rid of all those brand-damaging things that you wouldn’t want your advertisements seen next to; so come advertise on the Second Life mainland!”

    Could be, sigh…

  7. The kids are coming, it’s the only logical explanation for this nonsense. Ok they don’t have immediate plans, that’s obvious as the first stage has to be this cleanup to get adult content out of sight, then when that’s done, the kids can arrive.

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