Yet another @!$^$µ@ post about Redzone

Posted: 3/01/2011 by .Loviathar Hellman in

There are times in life when, even though you've been carefully trying as long as possible to keep away from the influence of those who have as a bad habit to compulsively overreact to any subject, you end up being forced to face the fact that the time has come to remove your earrings & hop in the fight.

In the last past week and days, Redzone has become the n°1 fight & drama subject on Second Life & on related forums.

One more time, I'm not gonna be manichean so please excuse me if I won't take sides between RedZone & GreenZone.

Let's start by explaining what Redzone is. Redzone is a security tool used in Second Life by a lot of designers in the aim to protect their work.
The need to protect comes from the simple fact that some people in Second Life think that they can perfectly steal someone's work to resell or redistribute it. We call those people copybotters & they are a pain to get rid of.

A few weeks ago, I noticed a copybotter @my mainstore. I had to ban him to protect my work. After having tried to estate ban him, I noticed he wasn't searchable. I got in touch with LL's support & got told by a helper that that guy was BANNED by LL since MONTHS & that he shouldn't be online.
Maybe he shouldn't, but he was. Was there a solution ? Yes. Adding him to a security system ban list.

Different designer friends informed me that a good security system called Redzone banned blacklisted copybotters AND their alts.

Seen like this, it seemed like perfect.
We were a TON of designers to install Redzone at that moment.

Unfortunately, that's experiencing things that you see the fails in it.

Redzone listed my RL husband & assistant designer Moolfryt Klang as my alt. His alts were also listed as mine and mine as his.

Why ? Because Redzone works on an IP detection system. It means that it takes the conclusion that if two people share the same IP, they are the same person & are therefore each other's alts.

That doesn't work AT ALL if you are sharing your connection or if your IP is dynamic & if by chance, some people end up logging in SL with the same IP as yours.

We agree on the fact that it won't happen everyday but in situations like mine (two SL players in a same home), it can be confusing. I therefore notecarded Redzone's creator and I didn't get any answer, so far.

There is something that deeply disturbed Moolfryt Klang & myself when we installed Redzone : If someone joins your sim & is detected by Redzone, his alts list was immediately showing up on your visitors' list.

A lot of people have been concerned by this privacy issue.
What I think is that every single person will have a different opinion depending on the use she/he makes of Second Life & his own ethics.

My own ethics is simple : I don't give two shits about the fact that anyone knows who my alts are because I don't do anything bad with it :
- I'm not the woman to practice polyandry, using tons of accounts to date different people & lie to them;
- I don't grief nor copybot.

I have PERFECTLY conscience that Second Life is a favorable place for liars. I've seen his before. Tons of people hide behind different identities & alts and have a huge problem to see their alts discovered because they want to keep those lives seperated.
I totally, on an ethic point of view, disagree with that way to act.
However, is it my role to point at some strangers' moral ?

I'm going to be ironic here. Is there an international law saying that Second Life's alts list can't be given away to anyone ? I doubt of it.
Everyone thinks that he's right about it but let's say it honestly : No one in the real world cares about that. There are bigger things happening atm like revolutions, murders and people starving.

The privacy concerns is an interpellating subject. However, I don't understand that some people feel that their point of view is the right one and therefore feel secure enough allow themselves to grief Redzone's users, to insult them or to list their sims on blacklists.

Let's make things clear : Redzone's used by designers to protect their work against copybotters. Not to know who fucks with who. Cause we don't care. I saw people with 80 alts on Redzone and I really wonder what you can do with that number of alts but heh, it's their problem, not mine.

On the 27th february 2011, Redzone's owner, in cooperation with LL to what he said, took the decision to remove the ability to see alts' lists.

The alt list not being visible, Redzone switched for another system : people having a doubt on one's identity can ask, through a popup, to a resident to allow him to see the detected alt's list.
This would be way better if there wasn't an "auto" option that allows a sim/redzone owner to ask DIRECTLY to anyone on the sim to give out their agrement. Some will use it, some won't. I think that this shouldn't be used.

Another concern of mine is this :
Me and a lot of designers friends have been facing this problem : a copybotter or at least someone told as being a copybotter on the redzone system joins our sim. That person is rated -4 for example. That kind of resident should DIRECTLY be banned.
Unfortunately, sometimes it's not the case. What is the aim in having Redzone if it doesn't work every time ?

When someone gets a bad rate on Redzone, you can check out the reason why he's been banned from other places on the "neighbourhood watch" part of the website. It means that you'll be able to see who banned him, where and why.
Unfortunately, I often noticed that a lot of people are banned for personal reasons (aka drama) & are then rated -2 and banned from a lot of sims (when Redzone works, sic).
Should someone be banned from all over SL for having been fighting with someone who owns the Redzone Weapon (irony) ?
I don't think so.

It is also possible to give a positive rate to someone. I therefore saw different people voting for friends. Is it some popularity contest that you lose if no one likes you ? Oh fuck, I'm screwed, then.
Unfortunately, I've heard that a lot of people are getting banned from tons of sims at a time for unfair reasons & can't justify & prove that they are not guilty.

All of that makes me believe that Redzone has been for a while the less bad solution to fight copybotters. It would have been a good solution if things had been made differently.

Today, we have no proof that some people aren't unfairly banned & I noticed myself that some REAL copybotters weren't always banned by Redzone when they should be.

The aim has never been to use a kind of vigilante instead of using LL's ressources against copybotters. The aim is to protect our stuff & not to install terror on SL.

Redzone isn't efficent in the way that it is working at the moment. We therefore decided to remove it & to keep our other security systems.

We will also be clear about it : we are not on anyone's side. There is no place for Greenzone huds at our sim nor for drama, grief of harassement. We don't at all appreciate to be sent notecards about some other people's sims where we have satellite stores at. Would you keep on sending us stuff, we would report you to LL, mute you & ban you. Clear enough.

I need to tell that us, designers, really need an official way to protect our stores against copybotters. If Redzone ever existed, it is because the copybotter's fight can't be done just using estate bans.

Thanks for reading.

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