Comments on: Virtual Worlds London – metarati and moving coffee – Day 1 Part 1 Raising The Eight Bar Thu, 10 May 2012 17:04:13 +0000 hourly 1 By: ek aq zi ij Sat, 13 Dec 2008 08:35:43 +0000 dclc
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By: UgoTrade » Blog Archive » Doing something useful with Virtual Worlds Tue, 28 Oct 2008 08:52:58 +0000 […] final keynote at the Virtual Worlds London was what Ian Hughes in his post on the conference for Eightbar, aptly described as a call to arms for the Virtual Worlds Roadmap. As Ian pointed out: “This […]

By: epredator Mon, 27 Oct 2008 11:31:43 +0000 Indeed this is a thorny and complex issue. The comments I make are merely my opinion. This is not a binary issue. Data will move from place to place whatever anyone decided to do. By gathering together as the technical experts the industry can help define some structure. It will then be down to the users and policy makers to help apply that.
We seem to be discussin freedom versus control, though it seems that you dislike any technical community involvement in exploring any solution.
If you have the answer, the complete, absolute, no other way will work answer for all these problems across every platform, and every system then please tell us.
DRM gets in the way, provdes a means for restrictive practice and generally penalizes those that are the good users. They are the ones impacted when the DRM service fails in someway. The hackers, well they would have got around it and be happily doing things.
When I used to buy music CD’s before itunes came along I would have been immensly suprised if I could only play the CD on the first 3 cd players I happened to listen to it on. If I go back to my CD collection in a few years I dont want to have to fight with a defunct DRM system to make the music work.
DRM if anything is precisely the sort of technical application that you seem to hate so much. It does work in places, it can be made to work and I guess each content creator in the world should be a liberty to decide which sort of DRM or openness they choose.
I do not like theft, but I dont want to be under martial law to prevent it.
Please dont call me dishonest either, those sort of personal attacks just seem to make any of the conversation about a very important subject into a my dad is bigger than your dad schoolyard spat. Feel free to disagree of course with the points I make as that is how we will be able to reach the solution.
Flame away.

By: Prokofy Neva Sun, 26 Oct 2008 02:21:36 +0000 epredator, you’re being terribly patronizing and terribly condescending here, but that’s helpful, because it exposes what you’re really about. You’re trying to talk corporate double-speak to me, and “reassure” me that IBM doesn’t steal content or “cares” about content theft. Of course IBM doesn’t steal some dress in Second Life, duh. But being busy making it possible for others to do so with interoperability with OpenSim *is* contributing to the problem.

Your philosophy shines through loud and clear here, and again, that helps expose your extremism. You see the world of IP operating like a giant Creative Commons. If you “see somebody’s photo copied on Flickr” you’ll “tell on them” and you’ll “band together” with others to browbeat that person. Ugh. What a system! Ugh! What a tribe! But that’s not what IP is about. It isn’t merely freely copying and merely getting credit. It’s being able to SELL content and make a living by having that content not merely credited, but protected to prevent resale.

There’s nothing “complicated” about this. In SL, we have a very primitive but effective operating mechanism that really does implement copyright and is not cumbersome nor does it cripple creativity. It’s the copy/mod/transfer — yes/no — regime. Simple and effective!

Your claim that if you “lock down” content you are harming creativity is bogus. If you don’t protect content you are harming creativity! Not everybody can work as a highly-paid IBM programmer! Creating the simple but effective regime — and demanding that similar regimes be installed in all hook-ups to the LL servers, through TOS obligations — would do *enough* to deter theft. It’s not a perfect solution, duh, we get all that, no need to tell us that a million times. But schemes such as that devised by Gwyn Llewelyn recently on her blog to encrpyt and make digital signatures for browsers and such are workable, and we have no real evidence that they make a hit on performance. They need to be tried and retried.

The hoary old chestnut that tekkies and copyleftists always thrust on us is this idea that DRM is evil because “it restricts my own use”. There is absolutely nothing wrong with being able to paly itunes on ipod. That’s how it works. That’s how the overwhelming majority of people using ipod use it. There is absolutely nothing wrong with having Spore only on three computers. The overwhelming majority of users have NO problem with this! It’s a total geek affectation to demand more.

Oh you “suspect” do you? Please, epredator. Do not take us for fools. There has been a decided discouragement of such systems, and you know it. There was even the need to fight over a bug fix to implement one. It is nowhere near the philosophy there, and you are being intellectually dishonest to slough off any concerns for ownership systems to other OS developers who can put it in there “if they want”. Please. Then the ritualistic cop-out “I have no idea what the answer is”.

Others do. And they are not the horrors of DRM cumbersome lockdown, as you always describe it, nor the ineffectuality of “call your lawyer,” which is what you do to “make it complicated”.

By: epredator Thu, 23 Oct 2008 19:01:59 +0000 Hi again Prokofy,
1. I dont know why IBM did not have a stand, other than a budget choice and not doing too many at once. There was a stand planned at the very close but susequently cancelled VWFE a few weeks before. We also had more speakers at this Virtual Worlds London. As it was, it was not a great expo to have a stand at unlike the US venues.
2. I am not sure what IBM as a whole knew about, but many of us know what is going on long before any announcements. So I guess I have to say I did (a little) . Does that count?
3&4%5 and proabably 6. There is a difference between interop and stand alone and the evolution path this may take. There are many systems that are locked away in the world. Some that work together. You bank account is locked away in the IT systems of the bank, but gateways exist between banks to move money around. (maybe a bad example at the moment).
As far as I can see IBM and Linden have entered into an experiment to try seeing what can be divided up where and how this might work. It is not designed to breach IP or any nefarious reasons.
The aim is to determine what is technically possible at the moment in interop, we then need to layer policy onto that for what is socially and commercially acceptable. IP rights are complicated.
This is not really about corporations vs single users. Each meta group across the internet will have things that they want to share, things they would like to keep theirs and things they would like to protect. Some individuals are willing to share a great deal, as are soem companies. Others are very secretive for various reasons. The same happens with private sims already, some are open some are locked, some groups you have to be invited into, others are wide open.
I dont want to see content theft, or people not get credit for things, but it may not be that that is a technical solution (though DRM exists in many forms). Making things that people want to use, hear, talk about see etc and making people feel they value things to pay or credit or reference the creator of should be the goal.
I know this gets mixed up in introvert technical discussions of protocols and bits and bytes, but this is as you know a social issue too.
Stealing content is not the goal of most people I would say. If content(any sort VW or RL) is too locked down though you lose the creative freedom.
A corporation is only made up of ordinary people though. Everyone shares the same concerns. If anything a corporation with its legal frameworks and business conduct guidelines is less likely to want to copy anything, but more pay its way and support the creators in a mass way. That mitigates the odd ordinary person copy the odd other ordinary persons stuff?
It is my personal hope that being a self organizing mass as we are on the web that we band together to support one another. If I see someone using a photo I know belongs to someone else on flickr and has not attributed the creator in anyway I will call it out. Same goes for content in a VW. However, if a DRM system is in place that is so cumbersome it restricts my own use of the content I have purchased (only play itunes music on an ipod, only get to use spore on 3 computers, only get to watch a movie from Sky on a single machine in the house) then I think we are forcing people to bypass that DRM.
I suspect Opensim is more likely to end up with someone creating the next clever but easy to use ownership system than anything. Its open source, so if you want one make it. I have no idea (for a change 😉 ) what the answer is though.

By: Prokofy Neva Thu, 23 Oct 2008 17:42:24 +0000 Thanks for that detailed report.

Now here’s what I want to know, if you’ll talk.

1. Why didn’t IBM have a stand? That seems incredible to me. They’ve had them at the last few fairs run by Virtual Worlds.

2. Did IBM know about the RRR/LL partnership with “Immersive Spaces” or did they find out about it when everyone else did? You seem to be declaring them an “alpha” tester “after the fact”.

3. I find it interesting that RRR’s project stresses “firewall” and “protection of corporate data, privacy, experiment” and does NOT stress “interoperability. The word “interoperability” does not occur in any of their literature.

4. And that’s a good thing. What I find destructive about the whole IBM/Architectural Working Group caper is that IBM triumphantly gets a firewalled sim arrangement *for itself* where *it* can protect its own data, IP, privacy, experience, and the rest of us chickens have to make do not only with the open wilds of SL, which has its advantages, but also have to watch as IBM (Zha Ewry/David Levine) busies itself undoing our IP protection and land/current/content value by trying to make interoperability with OpenSim, which is defiantly a project of copyleftism with no built-in implementation of IP protection inworld (except as a module add-on, but it’s not an integrated philosophy.

5. We are treated to endless lectures about “the analogue hole” and the “impossibility” of protecting content except…obviously RRR *does* protect content and experience with a *firewall solution*. As does IBM! So I’d like to hear: why isn’t what’s good for the goose, good for the gander?

6. Aside from all that, it doesn’t seem as if IBM is actually getting anywhere fast with the interop project, but I wonder how you square this circle of, shall we say, incompatibility: ordinary people get to have their content swiped; corporations get to hide theirs securely behind a firewall; those corporations also busily work at undermining such IP protections as the non-firewalled world has.