SL5B: Opening Keynote text transcript NOW UP

Friendly greetings celebrants, I was flying around the SL5B regions with my wife yesterday and wowza, there were a lot of visitors! Regions packed left and right. To give you an idea of awesome scope, Prad Prathivi shared this picture of architecture he contributed to; click-through for OMGYOMZBBQ EPIC HIGH-REZ:

I’ll be sharing more memories from the events soon — but I wanted to let you know for all who requested, we now have a TEXT TRANSCRIPT of yesterday’s Opening Keynote by Philip & M Linden… beneficial for our hearing-impaired Residents and those who’d prefer to parse words.

This comes in addition to the video and audio recordings because we love ❤ making this stuff accessible if you couldn’t make it in-avatar.

We’re also archiving/linking to future Event Recordings on the SL5B wiki page, so please bookmark it for your sheer convenience.

Severely hope to see you inworld!

Torley Linden
     Resident Enlightenment Manager… I… share… stuff…

About Torley

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43 Responses to SL5B: Opening Keynote text transcript NOW UP

  1. Marianne McCann says:

    I noted this in M’s speech.

    When Philip asked me to join Linden Lab, I was real excited because it is the perfect intersection of creativity, technology, and business and it is so exciting to see what is possible when great minds come together to create something really, really unique.

    He missed one important part of the SL intersection that points to a lot of the issues as of late: community. This world works because of the community, much int eh same way all those places like AOL used to. When they moved away from their community model, they failed.

    I hope this was simply an oversight, and not a sign that El Presidente Nuevo doesn’t understand this important part of the puzzle that is Second Life. 🙂

  2. Ann Otoole says:

    M Linden Said: “One of the interesting challenges that we face is that, as Second Life becomes much more international and about 60% of our Residents now are outside of the US, we have a whole set of diverse values, beliefs, and even laws that we have to take into consideration. Nevertheless, we believe in individuality, we prize creativity, and we are going to do everything we can to keep Second Life as open and free flowing as it has always been. ”

    Being gay in Iran carries the death penalty. Will LL be banning homosexuals? Will femal avatars have chat and voice disabled and be required to wear a big bag over their heads too?

    Hint: People in other countries are visiting the USA when they enter SL. Not the other way around. The laws of the USA apply. Not the other way around. This isn’t the UN.

  3. praddles says:

    Wow – thank you Torley.. Was a great honour and a pleasure to build the Mainstage and welcoming plaza for SL5B, and I’m glad to see so many people enjoying it! =)

  4. Doris Haller says:

    No Ann, it’s not the UN and it’s not that easy as you say.

    It’s globalisation.

    It changes both ends of the chain.
    You can not just take the foreign money, buy foreign oil to run local cars (with foreign spare parts) and blow the dirt in your local atmosphere.
    You need to learn to think global and SL is a very good tool for teaching that.

  5. Lukas Mensing says:

    @Marianne: Its so true Marianna, community should be the first concern…
    @Ann: In the sixtees, there was a beautiful phrase: Make Love, not war..
    Thanks (again) Torly. I couldn’t listen to the speeches, and reading extends comprehension…

  6. Sinead McMillan says:

    @Ann Otoole
    I am utterly against banning gay people or any other kind of prejudice in general. With that, we’re both d’accord. But – paying VAT for SL as a Citizen of the European Union in RL, complying with legal requirements of the EU fiscal authorities means in fact, that I do not visit the United States when entering SL. You mentioned it, 60-odd % of our residents are actually outside the US. We’d try to keep SL as an international metaverse of socio, socio-technological enlightenment and pls remember that capitol punishment is still a vivid part of the judiciaries in the US. (Btw, i am against UN- and muslim-bashing 2.)

  7. Darien Caldwell says:

    Sinead, you say ‘our’ and ‘we’ a lot, are you a member of LL’s staff? Just curious…

  8. Kuroyanagi Habsburg says:

    @2 Ann. I hope they do maintain a liberal Western values when applying these laws to the Grid and I really hope that LL will work to promote a more diverse and global Second Life. I think your extrapolation may be taking the argument to an extreme conclusion.

    IIRC, some European nations ban certain WWII emblems by law otherwise they block access to internet services that do not remove them upon request. (I think the landmark case for this was LICRA v. Yahoo) From my POV, it is acceptable to comply with this.

    I think what’s more likely to happen with this is that some of those most conservative countries may block access to SL.

  9. Argent Stonecutter says:

    Thanks for the transcript, Torley!

  10. isadorafiddlesticks says:

    thanks for the transcript, this helps documenting sl5b’s opening for the press.

    just my opinion, some sims are way too lag-alicious. i want to take pics of the beautiful builds but i couldn’t. 😦

  11. #2

    I think it is impractical and unconstitutional to impose the law of foreign countries on citizens of the US regardless of the international nature of this service. A more appropriate measure is to expect that users who log into the SL service follow US law, and if they are foreigners also follow their countries laws in addition to US laws.

    Foreign laws should be excluded from all aspects of the Second Life service for US residents. An example of this, as a US resident who is identity verified I should not even SEE the VAT options on my account screen. However, if a foreign resident is required to pay VAT then it is appropriate for this to be visible on his/her account screen.

    The more LL caves to outside pressure from foreign governments the more they will force their laws onto the SL service knowing full well if they raise enough Cain LL will simply comply rather than stand for it’s rights. I think the issue with VAT only emphasizes the need for LL to re-examine it’s stance towards foreign political pressure. When LL concedes to the sovereignty of another nation, it is undermining the sovereignty of our own nation.

    Additionally, LL should not be in the business of enforcing foreign laws even if it chooses to abide by them. If a foreign law is broken during use of the SL service the burden of enforcement should be on the country whos laws were violated, not the LL staff and definately not in the US court system using taxpayers money. In the case of VAT, only LL’s UK office should be expected to strictly abide by UK law. A foreign country should not be capable of imposing it’s will on a US company by virtue of that company holding a branch of it’s services in that country.

    In this instance I feel the UK has overstepped it’s jurisdiction and has extended it’s law onto US soil. This simply cannot be allowed to happen again. One word: Sovereignty.

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  13. ChatNoir Moonsoo says:

    @1: After that post comments should have been disabled to make room for LL responses on how to address this central issue. Right to the point!

  14. ChatNoir Moonsoo says:

    @11: “I think it is impractical and unconstitutional to impose the law of foreign countries on citizens of the US regardless of the international nature of this service.”

    It is not unconstitutional. It is, in fact, accepted practice of international law (unless a local law contradicts the constitution of the the citizen’s country of origin).

    When you travel to, say: Italy, you *are* subject to Italian law, no matter your nationality.

    SL is no different: you enter a different legal domain.

    Anyway, you make some interesting points which certainly need to be addressed fairly soon.

    The problem with this newfangled thing “Internet” and “Virtual Worlds” is, that there are no accepted international standards on how to resolve conflicts of jurisdiction and jurisprudence. It’s just too new for that (International Law, little as there is, took centuries to develop).

    You rightly oppose being subjected to a possible “legal prejudice” of a country you may not even have known existed.

    But by the same token: why should citizens of that country be subjected to legal (and moral) concepts valid in the USA when they conflict theirs? Is their protest against being dominated by someone else’s laws less valid?

    “Spaces” like SL need to become separate legal domains, and for that you need a constitutional footing (“nyah” at the UN-bashers; it’s the best we have so far, warts and all). I do not want to give up my inherent human rights of free expression etc when logging into SL (or the internet in general). At the same time I do not want to give up my cultural identity, and I do not expect others to abandon their identities for my benefit.

    That can only work when there is an undisputed basis for what eventually could become a separate legal domain. We don’t have to accept burkahs or genital mutilation of girls or dogmatic positions or racial prejudice (not exactly unknown in the US) to be inclusive; there are limits to inclusiveness. But that also means that no one can expect that their legal context will be the law of SL or any other similar environment. These laws have yet to be developed and, eventually, recognized by localized governments.

  15. Argent Stonecutter says:

    ChatNoir@14: SL is operating out of the US, it’s not a different legal domain. This is perhaps unfortunate, but it’s the fact. I would love to visit a virtual world in Italy… so long as Babelfish can be made to work with it. 🙂

  16. Fulano de Tal says:

    LL needs to tackle this big problem regarding the rule of law in SL. While many griefers deserve to be banned, sometimes accounts are suspended or banned without good reason, and without an adequate investigation (despite LL’s insistence that it investigates thoroughly first).

    When LL does this, it is a breach of contract. LL claims that they can take away your privileges at any time without a refund, relying on the wording of their terms of service, but that is not simply not true, and an inaccurate representation of contract law. You simply cannot offer a service like this, charge money, and then take it away for no reason and without a refund. Their lawyers should review the concept of an illusory promise.

    Yes, my account was recently banned, as you might have guessed. I was banned because someone confused me for the person who had violated the terms. I was in the wrong place at the wrong time. Because I was in the sim that had lots of spam, I was immediately logged out and banned. (That is a thorough investigation?) I promptly opened up a support ticket to protest the ban, and days later, still banned. Worse, I have yet to be given an explanation or reason for the action. LL is not the government, and this is no court of law, but there needs to be some form of due process, after all, LL is violating real-world laws here when it does this. I pay for my account, and I own money and other items of real value tied to my account.

    The fact that I am a long-time resident, premium account holder, business owner, land owner, and daily visitor of SL did not seem to matter. How a company treats its loyal customers says a lot about the entire organization. That’s too bad, and I hope it gets fixed.

    I’m not saying that SL needs to have all the constraints of the real world, complete with a roaming police patrol. On the contrary, I quite like the freedom that exists in SL most of the time. However, LL needs to think about how oppressive their actions appear. Anyone who has ever been a victim of the professional griefers in SL knows how great it is to finally have a Linden show up to help fix the situation (ban the bad guy and get rid of the junk). I have been in that situation a few times, and I have been very pleased with the result. On the other hand, there needs to be a balance struck between strict enforcement and over-enforcement / abuse of power. I don’t like the idea of banning people simply because they are nearby a griefer. I do understand a temporary freeze or even kicking everyone out of a sim until it returns to normal, but that not banned for days for no reason. I don’t like the idea of Lindens spying on private conversations, confiscating property, banning accounts, etc. without justification. We need freedom not only from griefers, but also from those in charge.

  17. I can drive in SL; will that change if SL gains a presence in Saudi Arabia? Do other countries’ so-called “hate speech” laws apply to me in SL? I certainly hope not.

  18. Wyald Woolley says:

    Before this blog gets all tied up in discussions of U.S. law and sovereignty and VAT, let’s not overlook that the keynote speeches were a couple of the least inspiring and devoid of content I have ever listened to.

    I was really looking forward to some forward-looking content, not pointless rambling about the past and near-present.

  19. Coon Surya says:

    Thank you for keeping your hearing impaired residents in mind.

  20. uh-oh says:

    is there something wrong with search? I typed in sl5b in search and other than a few ads for skin and gestures and two fashion shows, I do not see anything telling me where the exibits are.

  21. Kyder Ling says:

    I’m really excited for 2008. I joined in July of 2007 and man, there were plenty of issues with the fun, and I had a good beefy PC then. Stuff was laggy, there were crashes, and of course inventory/rezzing issues. Now it is almost rare when those happen now. I hardly have a failed TP or issues with rezzing things.

    Hopefully in 2008 things can be wrapped up and polished up in a new way to really revamp SL. ^^

  22. alex says:

    eu quero me cadastra

  23. Razrcut Brooks says:

    ….Isn’t Katt Linden in charge of communications with resdients? Why did Torley feel the need to post this transcript…was he asked?

  24. Roman McCullough says:

    I agree with an earlier poster about the lack of real content in the speeches by Rosedale and Kingdon. It just goes to show that you can spew a considerable amount of verbiage that is as empty as the Moon substancewise.

    You guys should go into politics.

  25. Sandor Balczo says:

    I wholeheartedly agree that the opening speeches were so devoid of actual content to make all the waiting useless, and that worries me. I feel like SL is going to be acquired by some important corporation who does not seem to like the way it is now.

    As for the discussion about international or US laws applying, well, on one hand there is no such thing as rules and regulations that are designed for the world: there are international standards, conventions, practices, but still, when one signs an agreement with a foreign company, the laws of the prevailing party apply, generally those of the party providing services.

    It is also true (and I am referring to VAT here) there are some rules and regulations in countries and groups of countries such as the European Union (25 countries) that apply specifically to the residents of those countries.

    In complying with European VAT regulations, LL has behaved correctly from a legal standpoint and allowed SL to still be used by EU customers. Had these regulations not been implemented, I believe LL would have had to choose between paying high fines and stop serving EU-based customers.

    To those saying that imposing foreign laws is a breach of US sovereignty I would like to remind that, as suggested correctly by another user, the US position as a world leader does not automatically authorize it to impose its laws elsewhere, although some chauvinists might try to prove me wrong.

    There is, of course, the power of a stronger stance that allows for certain criminal acts by US citizens abroad to be persecuted nowhere else but the US, but if you commit a crime in my country, Italy, and you are arrested, we are not going to release you immediately because you are American, we will of course try to respect your rights as an American citizen. If you are an American carrying a gun here in Italy and have no license to use weapons (a requirement which implies several steps that make these licenses rare) your weapon will be seized no matter how many articles you may quote from the US Constitution. The Italian constitution does not allow the free use of weapons and in my country, it prevails.

    If the government of our country should decide that SL carries content that violates our laws against weapons use, child abuse, slavery, cannibalism, whatever, we would block access by legal means with our own police authorities explaining the reasons to the FBI, which would in turn investigate the compliance of LL to local laws in the US. This would still allow Americans to be on SL, Italians would not go there because it would violate our laws or infringe our rights.

    Because Linden Lab is a company interested in closing the balance book with profits higher than costs, I think it is fair to think that they are trying to be more alert on the repercussions of certain practices on other countries and the possibility of losing customers because of them.

    And I am talking about countries that respect the basic human rights, not those which someone quoted as an extreme example. It is very unlikely people from Iran visit Second Life, unless they belong to the government of that country (we all know that people who crush other people’s rights keep those rights to themselves).

    Sandor 🙂

  26. Sandor Balczo says:

    I am sorry for a few syntax and grammar errors in my previous post. I still need to wake up 🙂

  27. Dajobu Ling says:

    You sure seem to have your hands full, Torley. Hang in there!

    My thoughts on the speeches: I wasn’t impressed. It felt like it was mostly filler material. Glad to see both of the top guys out with the residents, though. The biggest thing from M that I got was that he’s really focused on what SL can do for big business, with no mention about SL’s community – us residents. Probably just an oversight.

    My thoughts on the globalization legalities: Did you know in some towns in the US, it’s illegal to walk down the street with an icecream sandwich in your pocket? Oh, and peacocks have the right of way in a Los Angeles-area city; that holds true even on private driveways. What’s my point? There’s lots of laws and rules that just wouldn’t fit if carried into SL – whether forbidding icecream sandwiches in our virtual pockets, banning gay marriage, whatever. It’s all the freedoms SL allows us that I feel really makes it what it is – a second life, full of nearly endless possibilities (I miss being able to orbit myself. Ultimate skydiving, anyone? lol). I feel that imposing broad limitations to appease foreign governments would turn SL into RL, which would kill the magic for me. I think it’s unfortunate how some constricitve governments can really detract from the diversity we have in SL, but on the other hand, the Lindens are just in the middle of it all and just have to strike a balance. I just hope it’s a balance we can all live with – in RL and SL. (/me wonders if SL will get sub-licensed to certain countries the way games like MapleStory have.)

    Happy Birthday, SL! (/me whips out his toys to go lag-monster huntin’) 🙂

  28. uh-oh says:

    Never mind i found the Sl5b places. i thought we were showing the best of SL not some Forced fantasy RP sims. Oh well every bushel of apples has a bad one in it.

  29. Indeterminate Schism says:

    Simply: Thank you XX

  30. Jonathan Snow says:

    Me and my schrink are still figuring out how I can love a product so much from a company I “dislike” more and more with every step they take and each publication they make. (Using a soft expression here as you always have to be careful with dictatorial regimes).
    Announced as something big there was this speech with nothing in. The speech sounded like a bunch of succesful kids playing in the garage still confusing being succesful with leading a business well. I guess we still have to wait for some real compettion before this will change.
    Of course this all is just my personal heavely frustrated opinion 🙂

  31. Linda Brynner says:

    #2 Ann, There is more in the world than the US.
    SL is also about globalisation. One of the reasons I’m not very active anymore in SL is because it lacks cohesion and protection…
    It is a total anarchy. And I just don’t believe in that anarchy in any way.
    What I mean is that I can be exensively griefed or harassed by someone who believes in something very fanatical whithout tolerating other minds.
    This anarchy does not make me smile when I’m playing inworld. I should be able in sl to have a good time, but too much drama is always around a corner… In rl we are already walking on our toes very often. I don’t need sl to multiply that.
    I do hope that LL will find an answer for that… by any means of global justice and inworld enforcement.
    There are some international standards and agreements about human rights that could be applied for example.
    There could be an inworld police force or something like that, solving disputes. Helpers have done that before, but when he/she was a member of a specific community they lacked neutrality and even started to grief also ( happened to me ones ). Later the person was even allowed by LL to volentere in a project, unbelievable.
    Anyway, I do hope that LL finds a way. Untill they have not, let’s focus 100% on RL.

  32. Linda Brynner says:

    Btw… what have worried me is that Philip’s and Mark’s speeches sounded so flat and unpassioned…

  33. Daniel Voyager says:

    Hmm, I still would like to know why Teen Grid did not have any TSL5B islands and no shedule in place for celebrations in Teen Second Life?

    The only thing that was said was that M Linden will be doing a speech in TSL which is planned for July 3rd 2008 at 11am SLT, is this it?

    There should be more posts on this Official Second Life Blog about Teen Second Life.


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  35. Thanks Torley!

    Can a few of us can kidnap you off to kids5b tomorrow after your office hours? puh-leeeeeze? 🙂

  36. Corcosman Voom says:

    To be fair about the cutting and pasting, I do believe M understands that Second Life is worthwhile because of the Residents, as individuals and in groups:

    “It is amazing when you see such individual and community collaboration going into a project like this and it is really what makes Second Life the rich experience that we all enjoy today.”

  37. Argent Stonecutter says:

    What happened to the avatar icons in the blog? I miss them.

  38. Metacowboy says:

    First at all soory for the bad English you have too read here from me .
    But i real realy woundering .This is a Burthday of one of the most inovativ Grids and /or ideas since long time .But the Posts and responds dont sound that party like .And here i dont wounder .
    As a not first time but quite long time resident i realise a dangerius tendenz in Europe second life and Linden is lusing on trust !
    If they dont care on european comunitys and Culture they will lose them all just over night .And i hope i realy hope they will be one next burthday .
    All the takings in this treat about law and order are intersting but that was not the power that makes Second life big and even not the wounderfull technologie what is behind SL and not the rapid Developemnt of the Platform .We all get used too it becouse its ours.
    Like a bad child you still love it becouse its yours.
    We had massiv bad press in the german area whats hurts most of the German comunities ,you can even not talk about -first matter comes Sexual abuse of children.
    In a company and in a serius Platform is intersted on publik and new residents its one of the most important things .”If they dont care media kills .This is a litel part of our real work ,we know about very well. To cooperate with big Brands and Company its important but wthout the normal resident they will fail and linden too.
    So my wish on MY Burthday in Second life woud be a biger party than in real life not just 100 Avatars and a short speek .Like 2 years bevor
    a party with 3000 Guests at the same time . my 2nd dont blow out the light on the cake .3th show more cultural conection to eruope thats the place where hystory and culture of any kind comes from .
    (i hope this post will stay a bit and was not too hursch for a burrthday )
    My best wishes to all creativs in ALL worlds

  39. alex says:


  40. Sir Jake says:

    Now to get back on the topic…. of course the sims were packed. SL5B is advertised in the News on everyone’s login page plus again when we are rezzing inworld. With that kind of promotion you could fill a totally empty sim, (just water) the same way. I do have to admit though, there was actually a few interesting builds there this time… unlike the gopher or mole people sims, Bay city had the same promo and traffic but turned out to be a yawner. As for the text transcript, um, the video is all that is necessary really since in that state it is SL, recorded yes but still a 3D inworld event. Text? I guess that would be good if SL was just a book.

  41. Marianne McCann says:

    @Torley via 36 Caitlyn Clawtooth

    Can a few of us can kidnap you off to kids5b tomorrow after your office hours? puh-leeeeeze?

    Yes! If not, yer really missing our on the *bestest* birthday stuff evar!

  42. I think a couple of you took my comment completely out of context. I did not say anything about Americans abroad. What I referred to is US citizens on US soil using a US service. We should not be subject to the rule of law in foreign countries when we are on US soil using a US service.

    If I travelled outside the US I would fully expect to be subject to laws and regulations of the country I am visiting. If I logged onto a UK service, even if I am in the US, I should be expected to follow UK law as if I were IN the UK. When foreigners log into SL, it is a US service, on US soil and they should be expected to follow US law.

  43. Sinead McMillan says:

    @25, Sandor Balczo
    your argumentation benefits my own reflection as well, thanks a lot for your contribution!

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