A Kat and A Mouse


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Germany fights Facebook thus perhaps paving the way for using pseudonyms

Kat Feldragonne:

I find it interesting that Facebook continues to insist that users use their ‘real names,’ when clearly, LOTS of users don’t want to. While it’s certainly Facebook’s right to set their TOS as they want, it seems to be a TOS at odds with many of their ‘real’ users.
I’ll be interested to see if this actually changes anything or not. Same song, different day.

Originally posted on Jo Yardley's Second Life:

The Hamburg data protection authority is confronting Facebook on its ‘real name policy and telling the social media site that it can’t demand its users to provide them with a photo ID.

The German regulator said that this violates the right to privacy and in a statement (click here to read, in German) could not force users to send them copies of their official identification papers nor could it force them to change their chosen names to real names.

These real name rules have been making things very hard for people who for one reason or another prefer to use a name that is not their official one or one not recognised by Facebook.
Artists, transgender men and women, American natives, people hiding from abusive relationshiips and of course those of us with a virtual identity.

Many of us at one time or another have had our profiles deleted by Facebook because…

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LOTD #176 – Summer Sun

LOTD 176

She stopped a moment to bask in the warmth of the sun.

Closing her eyes, she lifted her face skyward and smiled.

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Details:

Hair: Truth – Maya – Gingers03  (64451)

Skin: Eye Candi – Nina – Tone 4

Eyes:  IKON – Utopia Eyes – Pale Cerulean

Shape: Laqroki – Glow (modded)

HandsBody: Maitreya – Lara

Feet:  Slink – Flat

Dress:  Zenith – Bra Top with Skirt – Khaki  (@FaMESHed)  (2674)

Necklace:  Maxi Gossamer – Savannah Heart Key Necklace (@Mix)  (10151)

Bracelet: Maxi Gossamer – Bangles – Painted Pansies (1707)

Shoes: Maxi Gossamer – Lotus Flower Blossom Sandals (@Mix)  (2406)

Pose:  Verocity

Location:  Frisland

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I can’t believe it’s almost the end of July already.

This summer has flown by!

School is right around the corner and I’m busy with enrollment and school supplies.

So it’s nice to be able to find a few quiet moments here and there in SL.

Frisland has become one of my favorite places for pictures – it’s always so lovely.

I saw this adorable dress from Zenith at FaMESHed and had to have it.

I dug through my inventory and found a few accessories from Maxi Gossamer to pair with it.

The bangles are color change, so it was easy to mix and match.

This key necklace is one of my favorite pieces from the MG Look Book for Mix this month.

Also included in the MG Look Book were these darling sandals.

I wish it was this nice where I live.

We’re going on week 3 in triple digits. :-P

Hope your Wednesday is sunny and warm!


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Where Do You Shop?

EventsI’ve been reading with interest a new series of blog posts from Auryn Beorn regarding resources for new merchants.

She’s only written a couple of posts so far, but I’m finding it fascinating reading.

After reading her latest article, I was scanning through recent blog posts in my reader.

I saw yet another notice of a store moving to Marketplace only.

It got me to wondering – is Marketplace replacing mainstores in SL?

I know that cost is almost certainly a factor, given the price of land/rentals.

It also seems that events (where there are lots of different merchants in one location) are much more popular than mainstore shopping.

There have been a few events that have attempted to get shoppers back in stores (The Mix, currently running its July round, is one of them).

However, the general consensus from what I’ve read in various places (forums, social media networks, etc.) seems to be that events work and mainstores are just a money drain.

I am a little surprised by this, but clearly I am in the minority.

Given that the most popular complaint about SL besides land cost is lag, I don’t understand why shopping at a large event where the lag is generally horrible is preferable to shopping at a mainstore.

Some of the more popular events (like Uber, Collabor88, FaMESHed, etc.) are so jam-packed that it’s often several days before I can even get in.

When I first heard about Mix, I thought it was a great idea.

I loved the thought of not having to fight horrible crowds and laggy conditions just to do a bit of shopping (especially considering that sometimes I don’t even make a purchase at the event).

Plus, I had the ability to look around the store and see other items the creator had for sale.

If I like one item, I’ll probably like two or three.

I use Marketplace quite a bit, but generally only when I am looking for something specific – like a certain costume for a routine, or a certain accessory, etc.

Which isn’t always that easy (or successful), given the horrible search functions on Marketplace.

So, I thought I’d do a quick survey and see if I’m (as usual) standing over in left field by myself. :-)

Where do you prefer to shop and why?

Please share the poll – the more responses the better!


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LOTD #175 – Warm Sands

LOTD 175

He’d been trying to get a picture of her all day.

He snapped the pic as she turned to ask him a question.

She glared as he grinned.

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Details:

Hair: Elikatira – Kara (@Hair Fair – Free Gift)  (61525)

Skin: WoW Skins – Sara – DarkTan

Shape: Laqroki – Glow (modded)

Hands/Feet/Body: Maitreya – Lara

Top:  The Annex – Nickie Bikini – Blue Striped (@The Chapter 4)  (1106)

Skirt:  Coco – Sheer Panel Skirt – White (@The Chapter 4)  (11410)

Necklace:  Meva – Anchor Necklace (@My Attic)  (2700)

Bangles:  Maxi Gossamer – Athena – Silver (@Mix)  (50035)

Eyes:  IKON – Utopia Eyes – Pale Cerulean

Shoes: United Colors – Crystal Snake – Silver (@The Chapter 4)  (12196)

Pose:  Elephante Poses

Location:  Bamboo Beach

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The last few days have been blazing hot where I live.

100F and above – even in the shade!

While I love warm places, I don’t love feeling like an ant under a magnifying glass every time I step outside. -.-

I want warm, not fiery.

Warm sand, warm water, and cool breezes. :-D

So, I found a nice warm beach in SL – the beautiful Bamboo Beach.

One of my recent shopping trips included a stop at The Chapter 4 event.

(It ended on July 24, so if you like what you see, check the mainstores or MP!)

I found this cute little bikini from The Annex and paired it with this darling skirt from Coco.

I love the little sheer strip detail on the skirt.

While I was there, I couldn’t resist these adorable sandals from UC.

I love the color and detailed ankle strapping.

The hair is a free gift from Elikatira at the Hair Fair this year.

I love the color change bow – it adds a touch of fun to the hairstyle.

I recently joined the WoW Skins group and have been wandering around in their Sara skin.

The bangles are from Maxi Gossamer – yet another piece from her Look Book for Mix this month.

I love the cut-out detail of the bracelets – delicate, but substantial.

The anchor necklace from Meva is a find from this round of My Attic @ The Deck.

It was the perfect whimsical touch. :-D


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Guerilla Burlesque Show

This last Friday I was able to make it to another Guerilla Burlesque show.

The new 7pm Friday show they have introduced will be a ‘best of’ show.

Which is fine with me, since I can’t make the Friday midnight shows. :-)

Zahra GBFriday’s show was kicked off by Zahra, one of my favorite performers.

This number is hard to describe – you need to see it for yourself.

There were a number of set changes, ending with a rather spooky cemetery.

I love the costume changes at the end of this one.

After Zahra was a number by Cordelia.

She was a lovely fairy dancing in a field of flowers to beautiful classical music.

Another act that you need to see for yourself, so mark Fridays at 7pm on your calendars!

AubsAfter Cordelia was one of my favorite performances of the evening.

Aubreya did a lovely routine to a version of “Who Wants to Live Forever” – one of my favorite romantic ballads.

The special effects were used so effectively in this number.

Moving water, splashing waves, rain, lightning – very well done.

One of my favorite numbers so far.

Next up after Aubreya was Chewie, with a fun routine to a Pink Panther mix.

It involved a safe and lots of pink latex.

AzabellaTaking the stage after Chewie was Azabella.

This one was a bit of change – starting with Azabella in lingerie and then ending with her fully dressed.

One of those routines that makes you sit back and think.

Next up was Oodlemi Noodle, with a routine that made my brain hurt.

There were floating picture pieces in constant motion – the amount of time it must have taken to set up the routine boggles the mind.

Another must-see. :-)

BlazeThe last act of the night was Blaze in pirate gear.

There were skulls, treasure, and, of course, booty. :-P

If you haven’t made it to a Guerilla Burlesque show yet, you’re missing out.

And now you have two opportunities – Fridays at 7pm or the regular midnight show.

Arrive early – seats go pretty quickly, but they are well worth the wait.

See you there!


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LOTD #174 – Beautifully Carefree

LOTD 174

The scenery here is beautiful, he thought to himself.

She seemed so carefree and relaxed.

He’d have to break the news soon.

But not today.

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Details:

Hair: Elikatira – Fiona (@Cosmopolitan Room)  (59269)

Skin: WoW Skins – Sara – DarkTan

Shape: Laqroki – Glow (modded)

Hands/Feet/Body: Maitreya – Lara

Dress:  Valentina E. – Zoe Cotton Knit Dress – Raspberry & Teal  (@On9)   (614)

Eyes:  IKON – Utopia Eyes – Pale Cerulean

Shoes: Ricielli – Thayla – Fuschia (@On9)  (3144)

Pose:  Chisa Creations

Location:  Timeless Memories

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Today I was too lazy to create a scene of my own, so I took a quick little trip to the Timeless Memories sim.

It’s always so nicely decorated, and I love taking pictures there.

I stopped by the On9 events a few weeks ago and found these gems.

The amazing dress is from Valentina E.

There were several different color options, but I love the combination of the raspberry and teal.

I paired it with these to-die-for shoes from Ricielli.

I love a sexy heel, and these were just the ticket. :-)

I tend to go for items with a vintage/retro vibe, and this hair from Elikatira was screaming my name.

This round of the Cosmopolitan Room had a lot of cute items, but the hair HAD to come home with me.

If you get a chance, check out the Timeless Memories sim – you won’t be disappointed.


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Copyright – Where Do You Draw The Line?

As a teacher, one of the topics I taught in all of my classes was plagiarism.

In academics, plagiarism is a serious offense and can have severe consequences, from course failure to expulsion.

Students in my classes learn how to properly credit other people’s works and ideas in their own work.

Plagiarism vs. Copyright Infringement

Many people think that plagiarism and copyright infringement are the same thing.

Though they are similar concepts, they are not the same.

Plagiarism is using someone else’s work without giving them credit and is a policy enforced by schools.

Copyright infringement is using someone else’s work without permission and/or compensation (if appropriate) and is a law enforced by the courts.

Plagiarism doesn’t have to include copyright infringement, though it can.

Some works are so old they are not subject to copyright laws – like The Odyssey or works by Shakespeare, for example.

Legally, a student could copy parts of Shakespeare, because the works are not copyrighted.

However, it would be plagiarism if the student did not credit Shakespeare.

Copyright Basics

First, let me preface this by saying that I am *not* an attorney.

If you have legal questions or concerns regarding copyright, consult an attorney in your area/country.

I was curious about copyright laws and Second Life and where users of SL draw the line.

After a bit of basic research, copyright law (which covers written works, music, videos, movies, and electronic/digital works) and is generally in effect for a term consisting of the life of the author/creator plus 70 years.

So if I write a book one day and drop dead the next, the book can be covered under copyright for another 70 years.

However, if the book was written jointly with someone else, written anonymously or pseudonymously, or written while I was working for someone, the rules are different (see Section 302 of the Copyright Law of the United States for additional information).

Contrary to many people’s belief, you do not have to register your work through the Copyright Office in order for it to be covered under the copyright law.

You can, but you do not have to.

Copyright Can Be Messy

When you are talking about copyrights for things like music, it can get even more complicated.

Say you write a song and Taylor Swift sings it.

(It could happen, right?!)

Then you have a copyright on the composition, but Taylor Swift (and her record/production company) have copyright on their recording/arrangement as well.

Figuring out who owns what can get messy.

Music Copyright

Most music you hear in SL is copyrighted.

As a dancer, I used popular music all the time in my routines.

I justified my use because I always purchased the music I used, I didn’t just rip it from somewhere.

However, my purchase only legally entitles me to ‘personal use’ of the music.

It doesn’t legally allow me to share my music file with someone else, nor to use that music in a performance (digital or other).

It’s something you see on YouTube all the time as well.

Someone will make a video using a copyrighted song.

Some will even post a disclaimer about the song belonging to the original artist.

However, the disclaimer is irrelevant.

They could still be prosecuted for infringement.

Are they?

Not usually, because it’s not cost effective.

Have you ever noticed that some videos on YouTube have links to purchase the artist’s music?

YouTube may have an agreement with that particular artist to leave videos that use the song, as long as they add the purchase link.

Even using on-hold music can fall under copyright, according to ASCAP.

Told you it could get complicated. :-)

DMCA

If you use Second Life, you’ve probably heard of DMCA – the Digital Millennium Copyright Act.

You can read a summary of the act here.

Because you hear about DMCA on a fairly regular basis in SL, and because it is part of the copyright law, I began to wonder where people draw the line.

For example, a quick search on Marketplace for ‘superhero’ netted results that included costumes for Superman, Batman, Spiderman, X-men characters, etc.

All characters copyrighted and owned by large corporations.

I’ve purchased a few superhero costumes, and at least one of them included a notecard warning that the creator would file a DMCA if they found evidence of copybotting or other misuse.

Which would be ridiculous, since the odds that they got permission to use the copyrighted character themselves are slim to none.

There’s a lot of copyright infringement in SL – Star Wars, Star Trek, Disney, Marvel, DC, etc.

Could people be sued for infringement?

Yes.

Will they be?

Unlikely.

For many franchises, they are willing to ignore infringement if it is likely to bring them benefits (more fans) and/or not cost effective to pursue legal action.

Lawyers are expensive. :-D

Copyright law also has a fairly short statute of limitations.

For civil actions, the statute of limitations is 3 years.

For criminal proceedings, it is 5 years (see Section 507 of the Copyright Law of the United States.)

Your Thoughts?

Is it ok to use music as long as you don’t charge?

(Side note:  According to the law, whether you make money or not is irrelevant – if you use the copyrighted work without permission, it’s infringement.)

Should DJ’s in SL have to obtain licenses for their work?

Should dancers have to obtain licenses for music used in their routines?

Should creators have to obtain permission to use copyrighted characters (like Tinkerbell, Captain America, and others) in their creations?

What about items like replicas of the Starship Enterprise or the Millennium Falcon?

As I’ve become more active in various forums, I’ve seen threads dedicated to tracking/outing copybotters and the like.

I don’t play a lot of video games, so the amount of things that are ripped from video games I found surprising.

What about movie rentals in SL?

Is it even possible to keep track of copyright (and infringement) in this digital day and age?

Is there something you won’t purchase because of copyright?

Where do you draw the line?

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