Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Sickness of Spirit

We all bitch about the technical problems. And I say bitch in the way I understand men in business use the term, a beast of burden, a slave, a person who must put up with abuse beyond reason just because they have to. Once upon a time I escorted here. Once upon a time I put up with the sickness of Second Life because I was paid to do that. Now I am not paid to do that, and as a result, I don't tolerate it any more. It's just foolish. I'm not Second Life's abuse bitch for free.

Recently I had a series of very negative personal interactions, and they remind me that men treat people very badly when they can't get something out of that person. The person's name is Dirk Talamasaca, he's sort of a big noise in SL, for reasons that elude me, and he does, or will soon, know precisely what I think about him. There are going to be consequences for me, because of the many lessons of the world of nasty people I've learned, it is that nasty people close ranks very quickly. So I am going to be more specific: Dirk is a nasty racist pig, and I am not putting up with it from him.

But that's not really worth a post. It's barely worth what I did do. What is worth it is what the last week of interactions have said to me about the problems in Second Life. Namely, they aren't technical, but personal. The problem in second life is that there is an abiding anger and rage in a lot of people, and they are so ashamed of it, that they then proceed to act behind people's backs rather than deal with things. This is reinforced by the social fears which make it so that when people do try and deal with these problems, they are treated horribly. The only thing worse than being abused by a racist pig like Dirk, is having other people say you have to sit there and take it. And that is the social rule around here: abuse is almost a holy ritual like, burning incense or money at a temple, and the target of that abuse, is told that they have to put up with it or else. That's how abusive relationships work, by the implicit threat of ostracism if the person comes forward. That leads to shame and anger. Well I've had my week of shame and anger, and I am coming forward. This wasn't the first interaction, but about the fifth or so. Including one with an employee of Linden Lab.

There is no solving this problem. The people who come to here filled with this kind of inner ugliness and a desire to express it, aren't going to be changed or removed from their positions of importance. It's killing LL, because ugly people do ugly things, make ugly things, write ugly code, and in general leave a trail of ugliness behind them. More over, when called on being ugly, the go into overdrive.

A good recent example is the NPIRL show. I wasn't going to write on that either directly, but now, since the topic is ugliness of Second Life's social structure, no reason not to fit it all in. The show was wall to wall slugly. There were a few interesting pieces, but the whole show was behind the curve, and as many people noted, designed to celebrate the organizers, not the art. The problem was rather simple: such a show needs to be spread out, decentralized, and put on openspace sims so that the clutter effect does not lag people into immobility, and works are not cross effected. The show was horribly mounted and a clear sign that no one involved could even define museology, let alone had any innate understanding of it, or training for it. It lacked context, education, design, and taste.

And yet people felt obliged to talk about it, even when almost all admitted it was a horrible disaster of a show. Why is this? It is because we have made our social realm very much like high school. People who are cool are not creative, and people who are creative are not cool. Hundreds of thousands of ugly prims have been laid down, and there's nothing to be done about it. I can't even get my own world in order, because the costs of Second Life are so high, that allowing people to do ugly things for money is a virtual requirement. It was true of escorting too.

There is no solution for this, however, there are ways of striking back. I'm striking back now, by underlining that what is commonly accepted behavior here is not acceptable behavior. I'm striking back by doing my own work, even if it is uncomfortable to do so. I feel sorry for the people locked in ugliness, but that doesn't mean that enabling them to continue is acceptable.

It is easy to hate everything, and easy to get attention by giving people a good dose of hate. However, while hating everything means being right most of the time, it also means always being wrong when it matters. The reason the critic condemns is because they showed up hoping to praise.

I've had several people fail to live up to expectations recently, and that colors my view, and I am adapting to things that I didn't want to adapt to. But that's how it is. In the last week I've written a great deal irl, I've build In the Belly of the Beast and made progress on two other projects that I will be showing off shortly. It's not that there is a creative frustration. And my rl personal life is happy, part of my reason for not having patience for nonsense here at this point. It's a lot easier to put up with scraps of personal attention when there is a drought irl.

But I am drawing the line here. Don't expect to belch at me and have me take it, don't expect to engage in sexual harassment and have me forget it. Don't apologize for obvious racism, engage in blanket smears and defamation, and expect me to write it off. It's time people here grew up enough to realize that this drah-mha-tiziation is not going to work. That's why we have so much drama, because people dump their drama on others, and then get away with it, because the people who are in charge believe that whoever is dumping needs to be allowed to, but if the person being dumped on replies, then it spirals. This means that we are always in a position that the personw who abuses others first is at an advantage, and leads to a kind of vicious circle where people just leave rather than take it.

Each time people leave rather than take the abuse that is dished out here, that is one less person to build second life. And that can't go on for much longer.

I know this post has a cost for me, and other people who have been through this kind of thing have advised me not to do it. But here it is, I'm not an escort any more, and I don't have to put up with this kind of thing because it is not my job.


  1. The beauty of Second Life is, we can be who we wish to be and do what we wish to do. I could never understand why some people feel they can do things to others that they would never think of doing in real life. They seem to think its their duty to make other people's lives miserable and I'm sorry to hear this is happening to you. Lillie your a wonderful person, you have good friends that care, keep smiling girl.

  2. Thank you! The best response to ugliness is to plant some flowers...

  3. Been where you've been, recently, love.

    I'm with you - I'll *never* sit by in the face of being publicly lied about, and if I get mocked for being "emotional" when I'm slandered... oh well.

    And, living well *is* the best revenge!

  4. Lillie, I have just read your post "Sickness of Spirit"it saddens me to see you being treted like this. Next time we are inworld at the same time I hope yu'll allow me the privilege to take you firs to a good restaurant, afterwards to dance and finally to a resort in the mountains where we can sit beside a fireplace and chat the night away

  5. Lillie, I have just read your post "Sickness of Spirit"it saddens me to see you being treted like this. Next time we are inworld at the same time I hope yu'll allow me the privilege to take you firs to a good restaurant, afterwards to dance and finally to a resort in the mountains where we can sit beside a fireplace and chat the night away