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There is a long-standing existential and philosophical question that persists to this day. If you dream it, do you experience it? That holds true for so many things in Second Life. Exploring foreign countries and learning about diverse cultures, swimming with dolphins, meditating from the blissful zen of a Tibetan temple, or hanging ten in the open water wave rush of the ocean on a surfboard. The surf is up in Second Life, and the sunshine, beach sand, and horizon are the perfect place to feel the thrill of riding those waves!
This week’s Destination Guide video is all about the joy and art of surfing in Second Life. Meet Lady Di - who really enjoys surfing in Second Life.
Where else can you thread (and shred) the needle and wipe out safely, hop right back on the board and make a perfect run?
Just because summer is over, doesn’t mean you can’t follow the sun in Regions all over the Grid - in fact, there is a whole dedicated category to surfing in the Destination Guide.
Now, go catch a wave - the water is perfect!
Video by Draxtor Despres
Featured wetsuits by Salt & Pepper
Once again, Halloween came and went - creeping back into the shadows, and leaving us with a sugar crash and fond memories. But, if we blink - the winter holidays will be upon us like a creepy creature before we know it - so it’s time to start planning!
Winter is coming...and that means festive tunes, glitzy decor, snuggly scarves, and lots and lots of shopping adventures.
Our last big inworld shopping event for SL16B was a great success, and this is gearing up to be another one for the books.
Like previous years, we’re winding up for a winter inworld shopping event - and we’re now looking for Merchants who would like to participate!
This event, which opens on December 13th, 2019 and runs through January 6th, 2019, is an opportunity to bring a ton of new customers to your brand, offer some of your best items, and celebrate the holiday season in a huge shopping event across several Regions.
We are looking for merchants willing to offer a discount on some of their items (think Cyber Monday deals!) and provide a small gift to holiday shoppers.
If this sounds like something you would be interested in, please fill out this form as soon as possible and no later than Wednesday, November 27th, 2019. The cut off will be at 12:01 am (SLT) on Wednesday the 27th of November. Event set up starts Dec 4th.
Pic from Stefani Young Hwang
This week’s Second Life Destinations video takes a close look at the 13th Annual Second Life Veterans Tribute 2019, which serves the SL community by offering a venue to honor Veterans from around the world.
In recognition of Veterans Day and Armistice Day each year, this event reappears in Second Life to provide a space that transcends nationalities, as people from all walks of life can visit, provide remembrance, engage in conversations with each other and honor those who serve or served in the military in their respective countries.
At the heart of this event is a Veterans Wall that includes the names of veterans to be honored as the result of submissions from Second Life Residents. The venue is surrounded by reflective areas to think about the lives of those who have served, and also includes the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and a Pearl Harbor Memorial.
“People from all over the world come together...for the same purpose,” says veteran Flattop Ewing who manages the venue with his partner Sarah Ewing. “It is the one bond that we do have in that it is what brings the Second Life Veterans Tribute to life every year.”
Adds Sarah: “There are real people behind the avatars. They have had real-life experiences and this helps them to talk about it and reflect.”
Second Life creator Astralia has been working hard to bring a celebration that embodies the joy and excitement of a character who has brought delight to millions of people many times over. This official Sanrio event features an interactive immersive game as well as rides, food, entertainment, and adventures that are absolutely purr-fect.
Check out Astraliaworld.com to learn more about this special limited-time event, which also includes an exclusive virtual collection of Hello Kitty fashions created in collaboration with designer Jimmy Paul and Difuzed.
Opening today - you’re invited to join the party until Nov. 15 - so do not miss out!
Astralia x Hello Kitty Event
Hello Kitty celebrates her 45th anniversary with a huge two-region experience developed by Astralia in Second Life. With two regions to explore, you can also play interactive games and shop. For more info, visit astraliaworld.com. Event opens Nov. 1.
Visit in Second Life You can also catch Astralia on our next episode of Lab Gab with Xiola and Strawberry at a special date and time - Monday, November 4th at 10:00 am PT. You can tune in to the live stream than on our YouTube Channel, Mixer, or Facebook Live.
Now, head on over to enjoy the fun!
Video: Draxtor Despres
Map image courtesy of Astralia
Hello Kitty Sanrio License © 1976, 2019 Sanrio Co, Ltd.
We have some de-frightful spots to explore and need your help to make sure we survive the trials of our adventures in - The Spooky Side of Second Life Returns!
We’ll also be sharing some of our top Halloween themed things and scary stories - there’s a ghost story in there somewhere!
We might need to take a trip to a lovely autumnal experience after the bone-chilling venture - good thing there are so many scenic spots for us to lighten the mood and recover after our journey into maniacal madness.
Tune in to our Official YouTube Channel (or check us out on our new Mixer channel or Facebook Live! Via our Official Facebook page) to watch on Wednesday, October 23rd at 3 pm PT/SLT.
You have not missed out yet on the chillingly spook-tacular prizes and events taking place all over the Grid.
The Swaginator Hunt ends Nov 4th - so be sure to explore this trick-or-treat style hunt for free, limited-edition treats and prizes. Everyone can collect the incredible gifts, but the first rule of horror movie survival is NEVER SPLIT UP - so grab your friends and head out for some swag grabbing!
Halloween Swaginator Hunt
Four exclusive Halloween decorations have been scattered across the Bellisseria continent. The hunt runs through the month of October, pick up your HUD at Meauxle Bureaux. Happy hunting!
Visit in Second Life Our own Xiola and Strawberry Linden took on the hunt on last week’s Lab Gab - and had a blast!
This year’s Creepy Crawl is going to be epic!
The second rule of horror movie survival is to make sure you stay in public, highly-populated areas! On October 31st - Halloween - from 11 am to 2 pm SLT - we’re going to venture around the Grid in costumed celebration. Jumping from spot to spot, dancing, and hanging out for Halloween.
There is still time to submit your venue for consideration for a spot on the crawl.
HALLOWEEN HAUNTED TOUR
Halloween Haunted Tour
The bone-chilling Haunted Tour is back again - and this sixth installment offers some new twists! Hop in a coffin and enjoy the wild ride through the twisted mind of madness.
Visit in Second Life
The third rule of horror movie survival is at some point, you will need to face your fear head-on! This haunted ride is filled with horrors, chills, thrills and much much more. Proceed with caution, but be sure to make time to visit. Hop in a coffin, and brace yourself for a ride through terror!
The fourth rule of horror movie survival is to use your environment and surroundings to your advantage and understand what you’re up against. There’s a good chance you’ve seen some of the television shows where they hunt ghosts. Become your own paranormal investigator and explore the growing number of haunted locations in Second Life. The Destination Guide has an assortment of full-sized snacks in the candy bowl for you - just visit the Haunted category of the Destination Guide.
NEW PREMIUM GIFT
The fifth rule of horror movie survival is to ward off the evil spirits with pumpkins and decor. Are you a Premium member? If so, you won’t want to miss the newest Premium Gift that is now available at one of the many Premium Gift Collection kiosks in Second Life. Note that this premium gift goes well with the additional gifts available in the Swaginator Hunt - a match made in Halloween heaven!
Stop by one of the Premium Gift Collection spots to grab your gift pack!
Premium Gift Collection Spot 3
The latest Premium Gift is a Halloween decorating kit that includes a variety of decorations for interior and exterior use on your property, Linden Homes or otherwise - available now to Premium members at any Premium Gift Kiosk.
Visit in Second Life
Have fun, check your treats for danger before you eat them, and put your new-found horror movie survival skills to the test. See you on the Grid - but you might not see us - BOO!
This week, we’ll be talking about Halloween in Second Life as well as taking a field trip to venture into some Halloween-themed events. Join us as we wander the spooky, spoopy, and downright kooky side of Second Life!
Tune in to our Official YouTube Channel (or check us out on our new Mixer channel or Facebook Live! Via our Official Facebook page) to watch on Wednesday, October 9th at 3 pm PT/SLT.
Many people who start off in Second Life as Residents find that they enjoy exploring creating virtual goods inworld. Fashion, hair, home decor, accessories, and unique items that allow the community to express itself more freely and for individual Residents to customize their avatar in ways that are not possible anywhere else.
“If you are able to transport something that others can feel, then you’ve reached the goal,” says creator xxsaltandpepperxx, whose brand Salt & Pepper can be found inworld, at events, and on the marketplace.
Interactive products and designs are one of the things xxsaltandpepperxx likes to focus on - such as clothing items that interact with default Second Life water or a special “water gun” and change textures to a wet look. While she admits that these are not always the kind of items she would wear, she enjoys creating them, and the flexibility that applying her degree and skills to make a living doing so in Second Life affords. It allows her to balance her work and life in a way that benefits her family.
Find out more in the video below, and visit the Region inworld - there is a main store to peruse as well as horseback riding and beautiful views to explore.
Salt & Pepper and The Birdcage
The Birdcage is a region in a desert setting, surrounded by canyons. You can ride horses to explore the beautiful scenery, hang out, take pictures, or enjoy a shopping experience at the Salt & Pepper main store.
Visit in Second Life Production Credits:
Video produced by Draxtor Despres
Logo designed by Marianne McCann
Curious about how to get started with skill gaming? This weekend, several skill gaming operators have come together for the first time ever to participate in an official Free to Play Fair that features free play on some of the grid’s top games including Spin2Pot, Lucky Rainbow, Deal Classic, 4Play Classic and more!
Skill Gaming Free to Play Fair
The Second Life Skill Gaming Free to Play Fair starts this weekend at 10 a.m. (Pacific) and will run from September 27th to 29th. There are rides, photo opportunities, and of course free to play skill games! Three regions in total to explore, come have some fun!
Visit in Second Life Join the fun Sept. 27-30 for your chance to learn how to play some of the top skill games in Second Life and also grab a special Limited Edition Skill Gaming Linden Bear! Of course, what would a fair be without rides and attractions, too? In addition to the many free-to-play games, you’ll find Ferris wheels, bumper cars, petting zoos, and much more!
This event is open to everyone, so come learn more about skill gaming and join the fun! To learn even more about skill gaming in Second Life, please see our official wiki and visit the Destination Guide to explore skill gaming regions year-round*.
*While this limited-time event is open to everyone, please note that skill gaming Regions in Second Life are not accessible to Residents in some U.S. states and countries. For this event, Residents from areas with Skill Gaming access restrictions will not be able to use any earned Replay credits.
This new community initiative aims to promote high-quality, independent blog content to the Second Life community via high-visibility channels including the Second Life Community pages, social media channels and eventually the Official Second Life Viewer login page. Examples of the type of content we wish to promote include how-to tutorials, fashion makeovers and/or looks, community and event news and destination walk-throughs.
The Second Life Blogger Network aims to drive traffic directly to your own blog via summaries of and links to curated posts selected from participating bloggers including the use of a brief text intro using the opening sentences of your post and usually one related image from the post. Readers will be directed to click through a link that directs them to your site to read the entire article or blog post.
This is your opportunity to reach a wider audience for your own Second Life blog! Participation in this new promotional program is non-exclusive and free. We encourage bloggers to continue to also work with other community blogger networks (such as BVN*) and inworld groups for the promotion and distribution of their original editorial content.
Interested? Here’s how to participate:
Review the SLBN Terms & Conditions and Content Guidelines. This initiative does not aim to influence the editorial content of your independent blog, but we do have standards for the text and image content of those posts that we will promote. For example, images with nudity and/or copyright-violating content will not be considered for promotion.
If you want to participate, fill out the submission form and consider adding the optional Second Life Blogger Network badge to your website. You can grab the badge and learn about guidelines for placement here.
Once you have opted-in, you are eligible to participate! We will then watch your blog for consideration for potential inclusion in our curated Community News thread and social media channels.
Linden Lab staffers will frequently review posts from participating bloggers. While not all of your new posts will be selected each day, we do aim to promote several entries during the week from the pool of participating bloggers.
Want to opt-out and no longer participate? Simply let us know by selecting the opt-out notification on the submission form and we’ll stop monitoring your blog for our curated news thread.
That’s it! Ready to get started? Check out the Community News blog to see examples of the types of independent blog content that we’re already promoting. We’re thrilled to already welcome bloggers Inara Pey (Modemworld.me), Sasy Scarborough (sasyscarborough.com) and Kess Crystal (theglamoursauce.com). Will you be next?
We also spoke to Kess about her group, BVN and announced out Official SLBN on our live-streaming show Lab Gab with Xiola and Strawberry - you can catch the replay below.
* Note: The Second Life Blogger Network is not officially affiliated with the Blogger & Vlogger Network (BVN) of Second Life, but we encourage our community to check them out at bvnsl.com!
Kess has been a Second Life Resident for almost a decade - much of which she has dedicated much of her time to running the popular BVN or The Blogger & Vlogger Network.
Blogging in Second Life is something that a large base of our Residents participates in to some degree or another. Whether it’s via posting pictures on Flickr, creating branded blogs, sharing tutorials, creating event videos … there is a ton of incredible content being created from the community.
Tune in to our Official YouTube Channel (or check us out on our new Mixer channel!) to watch on Wednesday, September 25th at 3 pm PT/SLT.
The element of journey and discovery that Creators in Second Life build and breathe life into is something that is difficult to replicate anywhere else - which is why we enjoy highlighting these destinations on the blogs, our social pages, and in these destination videos. There is so much to experience and see across the Grid!
This week, we’re highlighting Escapades Island - a conglomerate of fantastical and whimsical genres to tease your imagination. If you think you’ve seen it all - think again! Escapades Island has just undergone some new construction, and is now revamped and ready for daring and curious adventurers alike. You’re going to want to plan a trip with your best friends to embark together on this playful and whimsical trip.
Watch this small glimpse into what you can expect, then hop in for yourself and prepare to discover something exciting and new!
Looking for adventure? Look no further than Escapades Island, a place jam-packed with interesting places to see. Explore steampunk houses, pirate seafronts, castle ruins, and peaceful forest walks. Grab a free Escapades bashing stick to uncover prizes and monsters while exploring the many secrets and games on the island!
Visit in Second Life For more Destination videos, check out our Destination Video channel on our official YouTube Channel.
Video production courtesy of Draxtor Despres
Second Life has always been brimming with visually interesting assets, so it is exciting to see the sheer amount of creativity on display this month at E.V.E. as it celebrates its fourth anniversary with impressive contributions from acclaimed artists Bryn Oh, Regi Yifu and Cica Ghost. E.V.E creator and owner Noke Yuitza is also an accomplished artist with works that can be seen throughout the Imaginarium Region. With themes that range from surreal, fantastic, dystopian, and other retro-futuristic ideas, you’ll want to visit these special creations before they disappear at the end of September.
Take a sneak peek in the video below or on the Destinations Channel of our Official YouTube.
You can visit the following art installations at E.V.E until September 29th:
From the invited artists:
• SKY FISHING, some artworks by Bryn Oh
• UNDER THE SEA?, by Regi Yifu
• TALES FROM THE CROCODILE, by Cica Ghost
Works by E.V.E. creator and owner Noke Yuitza:
• DREAMER BOY – Scene: Mirror
• ELF 2255
• MUSIC MACHINE – Elfic Bells Notes
Currently Unlimited Installations by Noke Yuitza
• Permanent: ETHEREAL SHAPES – Stage 1: The Dreamer
• Permanent: INFERNO – Scene Scatha the Dragon: The 2 Shapes
What is Bakes On Mesh?
In short, Bakes On Mesh is a feature that allows you to apply a server baked texture to a mesh attachment, similar to the way that standard system avatars currently work. Using this feature, you’ll be able to apply several texture layers to customize skin, tattoos, clothing, etc on your mesh object as a single server baked texture without the need for multiple transparent layers.
Any face of a mesh object can be textured using any of the server baked textures.
The corresponding region of the system avatar is hidden if any attached mesh is using a baked texture.
New texture bake channels have been introduced to give more control over how meshes get textured.
A new “universal wearable” is now provided with support for the new texture channels.
Avoid the need for appliers, leading to an easier customization workflow.
Avoid the need for “onion” avatars, leading to fewer meshes and fewer textures at display time.
Allow for customization of any mesh that’s set to use Bakes on Mesh by simply equipping the appropriate wearables, without needing to modify the mesh itself.
You can read more about how Bakes On Mesh works, and the wide variety of possible uses, in our Knowledge Base article on the topic, or watch an early demo created after our original post! We are excited to put this new tool into your hands and see what you all come up with!
You can download the Bakes on Mesh enabled viewer release and start checking out Bakes on Mesh now.
Join us as we creep and crawl our way to some of the spookiest spots on the Grid. We had so many wonderful submissions, that narrowing it down to just eight was a Halloween nightmare!
Our fate begins at 10 a.m. (SLT) - please see the full schedule below. This schedule is final, but may be subject to change - so be sure to check back on the day of.
SCHEDULE TIME DESTINATION 10am - 10:30am SLT Bay City's Halloween Hay Maze 10:30am - 11:00am SLT Dreadville - Halloween at Cay's 11:00am - 11:30am SLT Sanctuary of Rock 11:30am - 12:00pm SLT All Hallows 12:00pm - 12:30pm SLT Club End of Days 12:30pm - 1:00pm SLT ShenaniganS Music Cafe 1:00pm - 1:30pm SLT I Am A Rock 1:30pm - 2:00pm SLT Ambrosia Dance Club The rules to surviving The Second Life Creepy Crawl:
Bring friends - we’re less likely to get followed by a slasher movie villain if we stick together and travel in a group! Also - you’re going to want to have your best dance crew on hand in case some spooky dance battles break out on the dancefloor. Dress up - costumes are sure to confuse those pesky serial killers! They’re also fun all year - but especially on Halloween. Have fun and stay with us - A ‘brb’ could mean doom for anyone. The person who leaves the group first in a horror movie is most certainly the first to meet a terrible fate. Never answer the phone or wander off to the basement while the Creepy Crawl is going. Bad things always happen if you do! See you there!
Among the haunted highlights featured in this week’s clip are Snuggles, Gooseberry Lake, Whymsee, Halloween Town, Trick or Treat Lane, Salem and MadPea City.
To get a more detailed rundown of the many Halloween events underway in Second Life, check out our recent blog post “Spooky Swag, and All Things Halloween in Second Life.”
Video production courtesy of Draxtor Despres
Fire burn, and caldron bubble.” - from Shakespeare’s Macbeth
Oh, there are strange ( and stranger) things afoot, and all over the Grid, Residents and Creators alike are brewing up some Halloween mischief. It is -- after all -- one of the most exciting and celebrated holidays in Second Life!
All Hallows Eve, Samhain. Hallow E’en - a time when the spookiest, kookiest, and most mystical of mayhem rolls into our world like a thick and possibly sentient fog. The veil between the living and the departed grows thin, and everywhere you look, you see pumpkins, skeletons, ghosts, and ghouls. And don’t forget the treats, and sweets, and tricks and broomsticks - it’s magical!
This week’s destination video highlights just a few of the scarier Regions you can experience in Second Life, and while many embrace the spookier side of things all year round, be sure to haunt the Haunted category of the Destination Guide, throw on your favorite costume, and explore. Then join us on Halloween from 11 am to 2 pm SLT for our annual Creepy Crawl. More details on the schedule for that are coming …
Locations featured in this video are:
Explore the timeless coastal island of Arranmore, with its haunted manor house and photogenic scenery. Enjoy the creepy landscape shrouded in mist. Remember, it is not what you can see that is scary - it is what you can't see. Don't forget to take the flashlight from the station platform when you arrive.
Visit in Second Life Everwinter
Welcome to Everwinter, a post-apocalyptic theme park. Many years after a nuclear disaster, Everwinter sits frozen in time. Explore the aftermath, take in the sights and sounds, or maybe find a quiet spot in an abandoned building. Frequented by scavengers and those lucky enough to survive, only time will tell how long you'll last in Everwinter.
Visit in Second Life Pendle Hill
Welcome to Pendle Hill, a new creepy build by Lauren Bentham. Explore the dark side of Second Life at this creepy haunted island. Bring your friends and wander the misty shores and haunted house of Pendle Hill, but remember, it is not what you can see that is truly scary, it is what you can't see. Don't forget your camera, so you can take home some photo memories of your visit.
Visit in Second Life These regions are made by well-known UK-based designer Lauren Bentham, whose work - with her unique style that includes delicate windlight design - includes more lighthearted fare such as beaches and other relaxation spots.
For more Destination videos, check out our Destination Video channel on our official YouTube Channel.
Video production courtesy of Draxtor Despres
Featured in this video: Masks and avatars by Walton Wainwright
Some may argue that the winter holidays are the most wonderful time of the year, but in Second Life, we know how to celebrate year-round. Halloween is easily among the most popular holidays amongst the SL community, and we are so ready to have some screaming good times as the Creepy Crawl is back in all its creepiest and crawliest glory. We are looking for venues to host us as we hop from spooky spot to spooky spot for some conversation, dancing, and fun.
What is the Creepy Crawl?
Like a bar or pub crawl, but instead of walking from one watering hole to the next. We will teleport en masse from spot to spot and monster mash to our little avatar hearts’ delight - on Halloween! This year’s Creepy Crawl will happen on Halloween (Thursday, October 31st) from 10 am - 2 pm (SLT/PT).
If you’d like to host a stop along the Creepy Crawl, own a spot that will be decked out for the holiday, and don’t mind if a parade of Residents and Lindens come through, then you might be just what the witch doctor ordered. We’re looking for spots that have entertainment (we like to dance around in our costumes!), are appropriate for general and moderate audiences, and can handle a crowd.
Here’s how to submit your venue for consideration:
Make sure your place is listed in the Destination Guide - here’s how to submit.
Hop over to this form and fill it out before October 25th - we’ll start selecting the venues after that!
Keep an eye out for an email and/or notecard after the 25th to let you know if your venue was selected.
We’re excited to visit as many Halloween spots a possible - and can’t wait to have some thrillingly good times.
Halloween Swaginator Hunt
The Halloween Swaginator Hunt is on! Four exclusive Halloween decorations have been scattered across the Bellisseria continent - can you find them all? To get started, look for the special haunted edition of the Swaginator gift-giving station to grab your free HUD.
Here’s what to look for:
Once you have the HUD, you can seek and find your free gifts through the month of October.
New Premium Gift: Halloween Decorating Kit
Are you a Premium member? If so, you won’t want to miss the newest Premium Gift that is now available at one of the many Premium Gift Collection kiosks in Second Life.
The newest gift pack contains over a dozen Halloween decorations that you can use for interior and exterior use on your property (Linden Homes or otherwise). Contents include spider webs, hanging spiders and bats, a cauldron filled with Halloween candy, a pumpkin barrow, hay bales, chrysanthemums, uncarved pumpkins/gourds, spell books, potions, hanging string lights, an autumn wreath, “Happy Halloween” sign and “Trick or Treat” hanging sign.
Creepy Crawl Tour
Our annual Creepy Crawl Tour is back! Once again, Residents can dress up in their Halloween best to hang out and join us as we hop from venue to venue on Halloween (Oct. 31) from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. (Pacific). If you own a venue and want to host a stop on the crawl, then stay tuned for a separate announcement in the coming week on how you can participate.
Halloween Haunted Tour
Halloween Haunted Tour
The bone-chilling Haunted Tour is back again - and this sixth installment offers some new twists! Hop in a coffin and enjoy the wild ride through the twisted mind of madness.
Visit in Second Life
The bone-chilling Halloween Haunted Tour is back again! Hop in a coffin and enjoy the wild ride through the twisted mind of madness. Some unwanted Glytches are still occupying the house - so if you’re a bit of a Glytch-buster, bring your Glytch capturing equipment and see how many you can capture! To begin your journey, head on over to Portal Park and look for the Halloween Haunted Tour sign to enter the portal...if you dare!
Dozens of Haunted Houses & Other Spooky Spots to Explore
Of course, the community has also created dozens of other haunted experiences and events that you’ll want to explore. The Haunted category in the Second Life Destination Guide is home to over two dozen spooky spots already - and it isn’t even Oct. 1 yet! Expect dozens more to explore in the coming weeks.
We’d like to extend a sincere “thank you” to all of the blogging community for the many years of coverage of Second Life culture, communities, creations, and, yes, even controversies. The Second Life blogging community is never dull, to be sure -- and it serves as a key information source for so many who seek to stay connected to so many aspects of our shared virtual society. SLBN aims simply to call more attention to the many fantastic bloggers that are out there so that more people discover their work.
We do ask for a bit of patience during our launch week as we sort through and strategize how to both efficiently and fairly review the many blogs who have opted-in. In all honesty, we’re a bit overwhelmed by the number of bloggers who have responded in the first 24 hours!
So, what’s next? We’re already reviewing posts across all bloggers who have opted-in to begin the process of selectively sharing a handful of posts weekly via many of our official Second Life channels including the new Community Newsfeed, social channels and (in the near future) the login page of our official Second Life Viewer.
Since the launch, there have been a few questions from the community that we’d also like to address. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions we’ve received so far:
If I opt-in, are you going to censor my blog or penalize me if I post something critical?
Absolutely not! By opting in, bloggers do not cede any editorial control as they remain completely independent. We have no implied or actual say over what bloggers choose to publish -- and, to be clear, we’ll still consider posts from blogs that are often critical of Second Life. Specifically, we review individual posts when we consider what to feature - not your overall blog.
It is true, however, that we do have content guidelines shared publicly so that we are transparent on our editorial criteria used in determining what specific posts we choose to promote on our own channels. One thing that we do want to clarify: we will not deliberately promote or support blogs that frequently post illegal, unauthorized or hateful content.
We also want to clarify that we do not expect nor recommend that bloggers alter their editorial strategy with hopes of being featured. With the high volume of new posts published daily across all participating bloggers, we anticipate only a very few will be featured any given week.
My blog features some adult content or nudity. Can I still apply?
Yes! While we won’t feature posts that contain sexually explicit content or other types of ‘adult’ content, we’ll still consider your individual posts that are compliant with our content guidelines. Since featured blog posts may be seen on our general Secondlife.com website and/or some social channels, we aim to follow industry-standard content guidelines (such as those published by Google and Microsoft).
We understand that one of the great things about Second Life is the abundance of self-expression and creativity across a breadth of topics and genres, including adult-oriented content. However, to stay in compliance with the aforementioned industry-standard content guidelines, we simply aren’t able to highlight explicit ‘adult’ content on our website or social channels. At our sole discretion, we may make exceptions to these policies in limited educational or scientific contexts.
I’m unclear about what happens after I opt-in my blog. Do I need to do anything else?
No! Once you have opted-in, you will automatically be added to our internal blog feed for ongoing consideration. You do not need to do anything else - and you can opt-out at any time if you change your mind. By opting into the SLBN, you are giving us permission to potentially promote and link to one of your individual blog posts including the use of a brief opening sentence or two from your blog and a single image. We will not reproduce your entire post! All SLBN content links outbound to your site for the full blog post.
I opted-in but now I want to opt-out. How do I do that?
The same Submission Form used to opt-in can also be used to opt-out. Just go to the form and select the opt-out notification.
Why should I opt-in? What’s in it for me?
We hope to give more exposure to the independent blogging community via some of our high-profile channels including our official blog and social media channels. While a featured presence might not send millions of new pageviews your way, it can’t hurt to get a bit more traffic and awareness to your site - particularly for those who might not have yet discovered it on their own. Your traffic boost might only be modest, but hopefully, you’ll get some new readers from the exposure.
For those that follow industry “best practices” in search engine optimization (SEO), we think that independent bloggers will also benefit from getting another prominent inbound link to their site (which can help with their establishment of “relevancy” in the search engine ranking algorithms).
For us, we benefit by giving new Residents, in particular, another way to get connected with the broader Second Life community as they quickly learn more context about Second Life communities and cultures (and clothing!). We also hope that existing Residents will stay logged in longer as they discover new events, fashions, and experiences from your blogs.
What about Flickr and YouTube? Do my accounts and content qualify for inclusion in the SLBN?
Yes! We recognize that many bloggers and vloggers publish videos and photos directly on YouTube and/or Flickr. Please use the Submission Form to submit your social account for consideration.
I have a blog for my store or fashion line. Can I still submit my blog and will you consider my posts?
Yes! We recognize that some of the best blog posts come from bloggers who also have their own stores or creations in Second Life. However, we aren’t likely to feature posts where “the editorial content is primarily promotional in nature and reads like a press release or ad for a particular merchant, creator, destination or event,” according to our Content Guidelines.
What can I expect if my post is featured?
Once you opt-in, we’ll begin monitoring your blog posts for potential inclusion in one or more of our official Second Life channels, including our new Community Newsfeed on Secondlife.com, one or more of our social media channels, and (eventually) a feed on our official Second Life Viewer login page. Please note that not all posts will always appear in all distribution channels.
I am worried that my blog might not be compliant with the Terms & Conditions and/or Content Guidelines. Do I need to change anything to qualify?
We are NOT asking anyone to change anything as part of this initiative. However, bloggers who opt-in must also agree to the Terms & Conditions. Remember that we are reviewing content on a blog post level, so some of your posts may qualify for consideration and some may not, but your blog can still qualify. Of particular note though, please be aware that for legal reasons the criteria does mention that Linden Lab trademarks or logos should not be included in the blog domain name for participating bloggers.
Why is LL doing this when there are other similar initiatives driven by community members! Stay in your own lane!
Fair enough. We acknowledge that over the years there have been many community groups and members who have provided blog feeds and similar initiatives. We see the SLBN as additional and complementary to those established initiatives. Our goal is to further highlight the incredible community content on our platform. We feel that this is a mutually beneficial program that helps show off Second Life and helps send some traffic to bloggers and their content, and we also appreciate and want to support those groups and community members who have been doing so already.
One of our key goals with SLBN is simply to help introduce even more people in (and outside of) the Second Life community to the many different bloggers that are out there.
How can I get in touch with you if I have more questions?
Feel free to reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org with further questions.
As a company, we do things that no one else does and we aren't afraid to take on complex challenges that drive innovation and improvements on both our established and emerging virtual world platforms. That’s why we’re excited and proud to share with you the latest news about what we’re up to for both Second Life and Sansar.
Today Sansar introduces new features including improved avatar editing, experience points and titles, and new core worlds. We also have first-of-their-kind partnerships with several established music and entertainment companies. Now with a rich backstory and new quests, Sansar has come a long way since it debuted in beta in 2017 and is worth a second look!
As for Second Life, we continue to work hard on making substantial improvements and new additions to ensure that it stays fresh and relevant for many years to come. Here’s an update on what we’re working on:
New Features & Enhancements
Over the past year, we’ve shared our plans to add multiple new features and enhancements to Second Life. Our engineering and product operations teams are continuing to do the heavy work on making these and other improvements available as fast as possible.
We’ve already delivered Animesh, which allows independent objects to use rigged mesh and animations. We’ve been having so much fun watching residents’ creations come to life! So far, the creator community has developed over 1,300 animated objects on the Marketplace.
Bakes on Mesh
Just last month, we released the official Bakes on Mesh-enabled Viewer, the last piece of the Bakes on Mesh project. To learn more about this cool new capability, watch the video below!
Learn more about Bakes on Mesh in this community-created “How To” video from Novata.
We're also getting the Environmental Enhancement Project (EEP) Viewer into shape to promote to our default official Viewer. EEP is a series of new customizations in the environment rendering system that will allow for the creation and sharing of advanced environment settings, including up to four different sky layers which can be set independently.
EEP We're also getting the Environmental Enhancement Project (EEP) Viewer into shape to promote to our default official Viewer. EEP is a series of new customizations in the environment rendering system that will allow for the creation and sharing of advanced environment settings, including up to four different sky layers which can be set independently.
This video from Tao UminoB shows Second Life EEP skies deployed in the Miyazaki Region
Migration to the Cloud
We have been hard at work moving the services that bring you Second Life from our existing data center to cloud hosting. Our goal is to make almost all of it seem invisible to you; in general we won't announce that a service has been moved until it's been working in the cloud for a while. Some things already qualify, though: Your inventory data has been in the cloud for quite some time, and the maps website moved a little while ago. We have several more things that your viewer uses that are being tested internally now, so expect more updates in the next couple of months. We are very excited about the new product possibilities that cloud hosting will enable.
More to come!
There’s more in the works, too! Stay tuned for updates on when to expect the return of Last Names, availability of a new mobile app beta, changes to Premium options, improvements to Events, Search, the Destination Guide, and much more.
New Linden Home Theme: Campers!
Pictured: New camper-style Linden Homes.
We continue to innovate and expand upon our Linden Homes offerings. Recently we debuted (and quickly sold out of) new Traditional and Houseboat styles...we’ve been making more to accommodate the incredible interest these generated, and now we’ve introduced the newest theme: CAMPERS!
Clustered in central Bellisseria, the new Camper regions offer a secluded, rural environment, with more nature and parcel privacy than the previous themed locations. We’ve already seen amazing creativity in decorating and customizing these campers from our Residents.
Like all Linden Homes, these are first-come, first-served, so keep checking for availability and act fast to claim yours if you see any available!
New Growth & Community Initiatives
Linden Lab also has several new initiatives aimed at growing awareness of Second Life through a combination of new ad campaigns, original video content programming and other growth-focused community efforts.
Second Life Blogger Network
Are you a Second Life blogger looking to expand your reach to a wider audience? You’ll want to consider joining the new Second Life Blogger Network (SLBN). This new initiative will promote high-quality independent blog content to the Second Life community. More details coming soon!
Halloween & Community Events
One of the most popular holidays in the Second Life community is Halloween - and this year we’ve got a bunch of tricks and treats that are sure to delight (or is it fright?) Second Lifers. Residents can expect a mix of new events, freebies and other spooky surprises throughout October - including a special haunted edition of the Swaginator!
New Video Programming & Ad Campaigns
Eagle-eyed Residents may have noticed a flurry of activity on our official YouTube channel and other social networks, which are now filled with dozens of new community-focused videos aimed at better showcasing the diversity and creativity of the Second Life community. More than 30 episodes of our weekly “Second Life Destinations” series have already debuted this year with many more to come!
There’s also our ongoing “Made in Second Life” series, which goes deeper to discover the people behind the avatars including explorations on themes as varied as romance, gaming and education. Many episodes of “Made in Second Life” and “Second Life Destinations” are also trimmed down into 15- or 30-second ads.
In addition, we’ve started the first of several new initiatives that involve live streaming programming about Second Life. First up is the recently announced bi-weekly talk show “Lab Gab.” (Don’t miss the next episode on Wed. at 3 p.m. SLT/Pacific).
Finally, we’ve already started production on a new round of video tutorials aimed at new, intermediate and advanced Second Life Residents. Our own Strawberry Linden serves as your guide to topics such as “Getting Started,” “Shopping & Buying Linden Dollars,” and “Customizing your Avatar Shape.” Each video is also translated into multiple languages, too. Check out this playful clip to see if you can identify each language:
We are so proud of how far we’ve come and we’re excited for the road ahead. As always, we appreciate all the amazing creativity found in both the Second Life and Sansar communities. Thank you for joining us on the journey!
- The Linden Lab team
Naturally, with both role-playing and gaming experiences being popular in our virtual world, a blend of the two would find its way onto the Grid in the form of the well known ‘tabletop’ style of game play.
ChuuAkamine has taken his love for the Sorcery! Gamebook by Steve Jackson, and his favorite map cartographer (Mike Schley) as inspiration for his own projects in Second Life - functional dioramas that work with the Tabletop system from Remnant Ashbourne of /studioDire/.
These dioramas are interactive, engaging ways to allow tabletop style gameplay in the vein of Dungeons & Dragons within Second Life. ChuuAkamine has started business creating and selling these dioramas and miniatures for others to enjoy - Mini A Chuu.
This week’s “Made in SL” video is glimpse into these works. Take a look at the video below, and check out these cool creations inworld. You can also learn more about Mini A Chuu on the Life of Chuu blog.
Mini A Chuu
Mini A Chuu is a tabletop diorama exhibition and shop specialized in cartography. Tabletop dioramas are compatible with /studioDire/'s tabletop game systems.
Visit in Second Life Video production courtesy of Draxtor Despres
Logo courtesy of Marianne McCann
This week - we return with a special guest - Reed Linden - Product Manager, Second Life. Reed brings the dish on a bunch of different things related to Second Life accounts, including Marketplace, Profiles, and the recently released Bakes on Mesh project. We are excited to welcome Reed to the Lab Gab set for a chat about some of the things going on from the product team’s perspective. We’ll be taking questions from viewers towards the end of the show, and we look forward to seeing you there.
Tune in to our Official YouTube Channel to watch on Wednesday, September 11th at 3 pm PT/SLT.
This edition puts the spotlight on Chant Newall Development Group, LLC (CNDG), which has utilized the Second Life platform for interactive offerings in biology, chemistry, economics and environmental science. CNDG works closely with Florida State University and the University of Central Florida on Virtual Learning Environments (VLEs) that include experiences that range from taking students inside of a human cell, using a forensic science application to solve a murder mystery, exploring Easter Island as it would have been some 500 years ago, and much more.
William (Bill) Prensky, who is the CEO of CNDG, talks about the unique opportunities that VLEs afford students and educators alike, in the video below.
P.S. Our “Made In Second Life” series will soon shift the spotlight to the world of fashion and design in Second Life! Stay tuned for several episodes of “Fashion Made in SL” -- coming soon to this blog and our social channels.
Video produced by Draxtor Despres
Logo designed by Marianne McCann