[Air-L] FW: [CC] [NetBehaviour] Second Life To Remove Free Content From Web Search. (fwd)

Michael Gurstein gurstein at gmail.com
Sun Nov 22 08:19:13 PST 2009

Putting up toll booths in (what had been seen as) a commons?

---------- Forwarded message ----------
Date: Sat, 21 Nov 2009 11:42:32 +0000
From: marc garrett <marc.garrett at furtherfield.org>
Reply-To: NetBehaviour for networked distributed creativity
     <netbehaviour at netbehaviour.org>
To: NetBehaviour for networked distributed creativity
     <netbehaviour at netbehaviour.org>
Subject: [NetBehaviour] Second Life To Remove Free Content From Web Search.

Second Life To Remove Free Content From Web Search.

"In a move that continues to shake the Second Life community of content 
creators, merchants, and consumers, Linden Labs has declared that free 
virtual content will no longer be searchable without listing payments on 
their website portal 
and additional fees will be added with the intention of discouraging 
content listed for inexpensive selling prices. The move is particularly 
troubling because the online Web listing service is the de facto search 
engine for virtual content in Second Life, since the in-world search 
tools are unable to provide information about an object beyond name and 
location - basic textual descriptions, pictures, or descriptions of 
licensing, size, or content-category are not possible. While initially 
the change was explained as a response to community feedback, the 
residents involved in this feedback process were revealed to be fewer 
than 100 in number, primarily larger merchants among a community of 
millions. Within 24 hours of the announcement, the feedback thread 
(https://blogs.secondlife.com/message/38923#38923) has swelled to over 
1,000 overwhelmingly negative responses. Additionally, in-world protests 
have erupted throughout the day, and over 20,000 objects have been 
voluntarily removed from the online store by angered merchants."

Read on for more details on the brouhaha.

Adding to the controversy are the officially stated justifications in 
the FAQ 
such as 'They [free content listings] hinder the shopping experience 
because a "sort by price" puts all freebies first,' and the perplexing 
statement 'They [free listings] garner so much attention that Residents 
are driven toward the freebies instead of quality, fairly priced items.'

Various independent virtual content listing sites have been proposed, 
such as Meta-life.net (http://meta-life.net/) and Slapt.me 
(http://slapt.me/), but attempts to post this information on the Second 
Life forums has been met with aggressive administrative censorship of 
these links.

Found originally on slashdot.org

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