A store I’ll never patronize

I’m doing the House and Garden hunt until I get bored. I came across an item at rbcg (#14) that insures I’ll never shop there. And the hunt conveniently provides all the places, so I’m not dependent on taking whatever they’re offering, either!

The offending item? A mask of some sort that attaches an elephant trunk and tusks to your face. That’s fine, as far as it goes. But the item is called “you have aids!” and the sign has a letter in the image, which reads: “hello. we are writing this letter in regards to your last visit here at the unplanned parenthood department. we regret to inform you that you have been diagnosed with aids. sucks for you.”

Sadly, I don’t think just being deeply, deeply offensive is on the list of things I can abuse report the creator for, so I thought I’d do the next best thing and tell teh intarweebs that rbcg sucks, and don’t shop there.

Supporting alternative music in Second Life

If you enjoy the kind of alternative programming Radio Riel provides to residents of Second Life and other denizens of the internet, and if you have a business you would like to promote to that community, I encourage you to check out the Radio Riel Sponsorship Program. In short, in exchange for a monthly sponsorship, we will broadcast a brief message about your support and how to contact your business several times a day on all five of our streams.

The daily programming on Radio Riel is provided gratis by that day’s programmer. We have regular ongoing costs for stream rental, venue rental in Second Life, and very modest payments to presenters for events. Please consider making a commitment to our work through a monthly sponsorship. For details, see the link above or contact Gabrielle Riel in Second Life.

Is this a persistent login?

Lo these many, many ages, we’ve been asking why Linden Research, Inc., can’t manage to have a single persistent login across the assorted websites its customers might want to access (secondlife.com, xstreetsl.com, marketplace.secondlife.com, jira.secondlife.com, blogs.secondlife.com, wiki.secondlife.com). Well, they seem to have managed it for SL, xstreet, marketplace, and the blogs, but not the jira or wiki.

On the other hand, I now have to log in *every* *single* *time*.

Music for walking

For the next 24-36 hours, I’ll be playing music on Radio Riel in honor of Relay for Life of Second Life. The program ranges from gospel to new age, with a bit of classical cello and viola da gamba to bridge the gap. Notable among the religious music is a variety of Sacred Harp selections, including both highly stylized and very traditional renditions.

Please consider donating to Relay for Life, which supports the work of the American Cancer Society and their international partners.

Klezmer, polka, and drones

On Sunday, July 11, 3-5pm SLT, I’ll be DJing for Riel Day for Life, a fundraiser for Relay for Life of Second Life. I’ll be picking up from “French Classical Music” at 3 and playing a set of Klezmer and polka, as requested by Frau Annechen Lowey, until 4. Then from 4-5, please join me in celebrating the vibration, the overtone, the rasp, the twang–yes, the drone, in all its varied glory.

Riel Day for Life is in support of the New Babbage RFL team.

Let’s try this again . . .

Due entirely to my own technical difficulties (Linden Lab has enough of their own, so there’s no need to blame them for this!), I was unable to play for “Dancing Under the Stars” last week. So we’ll be repeating the grand reopening this week!

I’m delighted to be supporting the Relay for Life of Second Life by providing music at “Dancing Under the Stars,” June 12 19 from noon to 3pm SLT. Captain Veles is holding the grand reopening of the Harborside Horizon Ballroom in Steelhead with a dance in support of RFL in SL.

Suggested dress is formal fantasy.

Please join us!

Dancing under the stars

I’m delighted to be supporting the Relay for Life of Second Life by providing music at “Dancing Under the Stars,” June 12 from noon to 3pm SLT. Captain Veles is holding the grand reopening of the Harborside Horizon Ballroom in Steelhead with a dance in support of RFL in SL.

Suggested dress is formal fantasy.

Please join us!

Compare and contrast

Watch out, everyone, I’m on a tear!

Here is the rather simple description of the Victorian Shopkeepers Association, a smallish group that I created in an attempt to help both shoppers and business owners:

The Association exists to enrich the 19th-century communities of SL.

* Discerning consumers, consolidate notices of new products and specials in a single group.

* Shopkeepers, reach a wider audience through cooperative effort.

Shopkeepers may send up to one notice fortnightly announcing new products or sales.

No general advertising. No general events. No land sales. No chat.

Rules strictly enforced.

Recently I noticed a number of land rental notices, freebies, and general advertising, and I was tired and just shrugging it off until I got two IMs from members who asked if the rules had changed. So I decided I should send “a gentle reminder” on May 30:

Shopkeepers may send up to one notice fortnightly announcing new products or sales.

No general advertising. No general events. No land sales. No chat.

I’ve attached our logo and group joiner in case anyone is in need of them.

On June 2, just three days later, “guilty party #1” sent this notice:

Visit Guilty Party #1’s to look at some of our conventional, weird n wonderful furniture, home decor, v 2.0 media systems and much more!

Be sure to IM guilty party #1 if you are interested in custom building, projects or entertainment services!

Then on June 6, “guilty party #2” sent a rental notice (a duplicate of a notice sent just on the 29th before, part of the impetus for the gentle reminder).

And so, also on June 6, I sent “a not so gentle reminder” and added the two aforesaid guilty parties to the new “rule breakers” role.

There is now a new role in the Victorian Shopkeepers Association: rule breakers.

This group is to announce new products or sales. No rentals, no land sales, no events, no general advertising.

The first response I received to my not so gentle reminder was this email from someone I had not placed in the rule breakers, as there had been no transgression following my initial gentle reminder:

I realized I goofed a couple of weeks ago by sending out two notices with a couple of days of each other. I wasn’t paying attention to which group I had entered the second message into. I blame the chemo drugs, but it’s still not an acceptable excuse.

Please be assured I will be more vigilant in the future, because I greatly appreciate the promotion that VSA offers my business!


Not Guilty Party

(I replied that chemo is always an acceptable excuse.)

And then I received an IM from “guilty party #1.”

a small point for attention. there is a proliferation of junk advertisements in victorian shopkeepers. there are further, numerous ads for old products with no “sale” associated with them. on the rare occasion i have sent notices, they offer very specific products, note sales or offer niche services. fortunately, the only work i do in SL is commissioned, many requests which are turned down. consequently, i do not tolerate defamatory action without an ounce of procedural fairness and have gladly left the group.

I congratulate guilty party #1 on his/her/its success in doing commissioned work. But quite obviously, guilty party #1 was simply in the wrong group. Why he/she/it would want to be in a group with “junk advertisements,” I don’t know.

The Victorian Shopkeepers Association is perhaps a misnomer, as it is not an association. There is no procedural fairness. I “own” the group, in the parlance of Second Life groups, and I initially set the rules after a fairly small amount of consultation. It is neither more nor less than what it is. If that works for you, I am delighted to have you join. If it does not, I prefer that you not join. Mr Excalibur Longstaff provides an excellent aether forum at Steamlander.com for all manner of announcements and discussion, and there is the nascent Aether Chrononauts group (in-world, or Subscribe-o-Matic) for event announcements from across (and beyond) the Steamlands.

Observant readers will note that I myself do not own a shop and have no personal, vested interest in being able to do cooperative promotion such as the Victorian Shopkeepers Association. This (both the good and the bad examples I have provided), by the way, is just small potatoes compared to what some people who are public figures in the Steamlands get. It goes a long way towards explaining why people who try to serve our communities so often burn out or make mis-steps under pressure.

a-hunting we will go

All names and numbers have been fictionalized to protect the guilty.

Dear hunt organizer and store owners,

Thank you so much for your kind notecard explaining what you expect of me as a hunter. Please accept this in a similar spirit.

1. This is meant to be fun, so don’t be a dick when you hide the object.
2. We have wonderful hunters who are doing you the favor of visiting the hunt stores sight-unseen, so please be respectful and do NOT bother them with notecards, viewer dropdowns, dialog boxes, or group joiner spam.
3. Give clever, accurate hints. Make sure your blog is up-to-date. Don’t be a dick.
4. Make sure there is actually something in the hunt object. If there isn’t, drop that store from the hunt immediately.
5. Make sure every store is identified and provides a SLurl on your blog or in a notecard so that difficulty finding a specific object won’t prevent hunters from visiting all the following shops.
6. Do not just throw garbage into the hunt item. Be sure to put an effort into creating an item that will make the hunters want to return to your shop. This goes double if it is a themed hunt.
7. Do not have stores in Adult sims without letting the hunters know before they begin.
8. Please be respectful of the hunters. Yes, you are giving something away for free. It’s called a sample, advertising, or a loss leader. You are getting potential new customers to come to your store sight-unseen, giving you traffic and visibility while they are at it. If they don’t like what you are giving out, then you have picked the wrong audience to try to market your product to. Either that or you make crap or you ignored rule #6.

Dear stores 75 through 91,

I’m sorry, but I have absolutely no idea who you are, what you sell, or what you so carefully created for this hunt, because the owner of store #74 was a dick/I was frustrated by crap prizes/the hunt blog was useless/the organizers didn’t follow rule #5.

Dear store 49,

By putting out a long, twisty path of the hunt emblem, did you really think I’d see what I was passing by? Those emblems rezzed just fine from my cache, but I didn’t see any of your crap as I was walking by. And then having the hunt object swirling around in a cloud of similar objects, so I had to keep right-clicking at random to try to hit it? You are the reason I decided to blog about what dickwads several of the stops on the [insert any hunt name here] are.

Dear store 37,

Everything in your 1/2-sim parcel had alpha textures, rotation, and very high glow. Plus, there was a DJ when I visited who used the word c#nt in open chat. And as if that’s not bad enough, you don’t seem to actually sell anything, anyway. If only this hunt’s organizers followed rule #5.

Dear store owners who belong to 17 hunts,

At least it’s clear up front that you’re only in it for the traffic. I can respect that, but it does make me think the themed hunt organizers aren’t selective enough.

Dear store 52,

I didn’t appreciate going to a sim rated Moderate but then being exposed to sexually violent products, so I ARed you.

Dear stores 8, 11, 13-20, 33, 56-60, and 84,

Your vendor images were taking way too long to load, so I’m not actually sure what you sell, but if I like whatever it was you were giving away, I may go back to shop. I hope you followed rule #6 (as well as putting a LM to your own store in your package and having your store in the picks in your profile).

Dear stores 1-7, 9, 22-27, 35-55, 63, and 70-100,

Your prize was a dress/a man’s outfit/biggie sized, but this avatar is always a man/woman/tiny, so I trashed the whole folder as soon as I opened it. There were too many stores to remember yours specifically, so even if you have menswear/womenswear/tinywear/furniture, I don’t know it.

Dear everyone else,

I can’t wait to open your gifts. I joined a couple of your groups. I sent landmarks to some of my friends who might be interested in your products. I bought a few things while I was in your stores.