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Colby Firehawk

ToS Question - Is this a violation?

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In respect of this Tos Section (http://www.lindenlab.com/tos#tos6):
6.1.(iv)  Post, display, or transmit Content that is harmful, threatening or harassing, defamatory, libelous, false, inaccurate, misleading, or invades another person's privacy;
6.2.(iii) Engage in malicious or disruptive conduct that impedes or interferes with other users' normal use of or enjoyment of the Service;

If I wanted to post that someone, maybe even you, was a griefer, cheater, bot, or doing something nefarious based on hearsay and send that information to a list of land owners and people, labeling that person as a griefer, cheater, bot, or nefarious, would that be permissible? Of course not. Posting anything derogatory about someone is not allowed especially if it's defamatory, false, inaccurate, or misleading.

It is absolutely the land owners prerogative to ban someone, justly or not. But if I took measures to get someone banned in places all across SL in places I don't own, deciding where they could or couldn't go, would that be allowed? Seems that might impede or interfere with other users' normal use of or enjoyment of the Service.

So why is doing this with a script instead of with an IM or on the forum not a breach of the Terms of Service???

There is a "security company" here in SL that is doing just that. It uses information reportedly from various sources including "field officers" that decided if you should be banned or not, then sends that information to land owners all over the grid via script which automatically bans you at other locations. They do [admittedly] make mistakes and ban people erroneously. This defamatory, false, inaccurate, and misleading information gets sent to various land owners and erroneously labels people. What's more they are automatically banned at multiple locations erroneously (see impedes or interferes with other users' normal use of or enjoyment).

Why dose this not violate the 6.1 and 6.2 sections of the ToS and why are they not responsible for it???

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this remember me of the JLU, and RedZone, they give the service of an internal net between various land owners, if a griefer was identified in one land, the other landowners will be protected from such griefer, it sounds like a good system to preserve the places in good conditions for visitors to arrive, it seems a good solution.

while the intention of the security system is not to treat a non-griefer like one, mistakes can be made, and technically yes, that would be unintentionally a violation, we have to consider that mistakes happen in sl, we may identify someone as someone else and say that is another person, if someone who do that would get banned from Second Life, we wouldn't have much residents, we all make mistakes.

about the effect that that cause on the user, limiting its exploring abilities, i wouldn't say that it is maliciously disrupting the enyoment of the service, if it were so, every land that doesn't allow everyone to go in, would be in violation of 6.2, because it would impede the user from standing foot on all the land in Second Life.

now, the reason you are mention it its because of its cons, since a land owner can ban anyone for whatever reason, for example, for wearing a green shirt, they are used to not care of the luck of the banned user, and for no reason add the user in the banning of all lands as a griefer, since they are not hold accountable for their resons for banning, someone can add to that system all users that start with the letter a, that makes this system a way for landowners to violate 6.1 unknowingly, and if its done maliciously, just to have fun adding random people to the system, it would be violating 6.2.

this security system can be abused, is not in its nature to violate the TOS, so i could say that the system is not violating the TOS, some of its users do, and those users who maliciously transmit defamatory, libelous, false, innacurate, misleading information of others thru the system, should be Abuse Reported to Linden Lab.

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I'm pretty sure a landowner has to subscribe to this service, and the service sends out the report to only the subscribers, not everyone.  The reports are private and not posted someplace in public.

The company doesn't go around investigating people.  They receive reports from subscribers that a person was banned and the reason they were banned and the relay the report to other subscribers.

A landowner who gets a report can believe it or not and also determine if the offense was a proper cause for banning.

A landowner can ban the person or not. they don't need a reason.

While mistakes can be made it is probably safe to say that a large majority of the reports are true, and if they are not , to be a TOS violation you'd have to prove an erroneous report was done with malicious intent or that the company knew it was a false report but sent it out anyway.

In SL and also in RL is not uncommon for businesses to share information about troublemakers informally or through a network.  RL Police will share information about troublemakers to alert business owners..  It isn't illegal to do that, nor a TOS violation.

As far as the person being banned, the security company is not responsible for impeding or interfering with  the persons enjoyment of SL.  It is the person themselves that is responsible due to bad behavior.

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Colby Firehawk wrote:

In respect of this Tos Section (

6.1.(iv)  Post, display, or transmit Content that is . . . false, inaccurate, misleading . . .

 

 

This effectively makes the whole of SL contrary to its own ToS.

Alec - using a name that is false, inaccurate, misleading . . .

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Looking at it another way, there's nothing in the ToS (nor anywhere else) to indemnify anybody from liability for spreading defamatory information. Practically, there are very few participants in the SL economy with enough at stake to spend tens of thousands of US$s on a RL civil suit against the sources of misinformation and the people responsible for disseminating it.

It would be fun to see how much liability insurance is carried by the Gemini CDS vendor, for example. (I'm guessing none at all... which is about the probability of anybody actually bringing suit.)

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It would be very difficult to prove defamation of an entirely fictitious personality.

Alec - the complications that fantasy causes; Free Hannibal Lector!

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Except that it's not all fictitious. One virtual cobbler made a small fortune as a Linden pet, back when the average SL female foot was shod in hundreds of prims (each prim with its own script). As I recall, "she" went to great lengths to protect the reputation of a fictitious SL identity because it represented a substantial real income stream.

[ETA: Come to think of it, "she" may have been trademarked. That could be a smart move in some possible future virtual world where real money is at stake in quantities worth the trouble.]

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A thank you to those of you that responded. And BTW, it's not dismissed; it's still going on.

As you might have guessed, I'm prompted by personal experience. MY crime? Someone, somewhere, at sometime, thought I LOOKED like a bot.

I've never been a bot, I don't know how to be a bot. I've never griefed anyone or cheated at games. Maybe I was Googleing something, maybe I took a phone call, or maybe I crashed, but it wasn't for a legitimate reason that I was added to the ban list or because I really was a bot. It was because someone said so: Maybe because I dressed the wrong way, didn't reply to them in chat, or danced with their girlfriend.

I followed the instructions to be cleared by the "security service", but I'm still on the banned list of some sims because the "security service" labeled me, as one land owner put it, "causing issues at another club." This is a direct result of being falsely and inaccurately defamed by the security service. That in turn impedes or interferes with my normal use of or enjoyment. The "security service will not say when, where, or by whom this was reported.

My personal experiences aside, this thread is a more general question, not directed at one service, but the practice of allowing individuals to side step due process and act as judge, jury, and executioner. It's not about intent. It's about the detail of what the ToS says is or isn't.

Question 1: To me, it doesn't say "for a good reason" behind the sited sections above, but I'm obviously biased. So the question is a more matter of factually does using a script to communicate this information and acting on it in this manner, for any reason good or not, violate the Tos?

Question 2:  Addressing the intent of the service, if I said something in group chat that was inaccurate, false, and defamatory about another resident based on something someone told me for the good of those in the group, and then ask the resident to go to a location to prove himself or herself to others, would that still violate the Tos sited above? That's exactly what has happened and still happens via script. Why is it the resident that has to take measures to clear his or her name because someone else made an accusation and how is that allowed because of the intent?

I really would like an answer. If the answer is no, please explain how the ToS allows for this. I'm not trying to be sarcastic, but I really am trying to understand why this practice is acceptable.

Thanks in advance for your replies.

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a communication system per se dont violate the rights that the user have, what is transmitted thru it does, if its against the TOS, like transmitting false information, so the person transmitting should be Abuse Reported.

now, if the administrator of the system support the abuse, and is aware of the abuse, by interacting with you and confirm that you are a not a bot, then he is maliciously interfiring with a user enjoyment of the service, and therefore, violating TOS 6.2.

if the administrator of the system don't clear the situation, you can Abuse Report him/her for violating the TOS, and let Linden Lab handle the situation.

in the Abuse Report be sure to mention the sections of the TOS violated at first, and explain the situation as you go on.

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It's always funny when Kinggoon teenagers come to the SL forums to rage about some ban device. Being lazy and stupid they never do any homework, so each one behaves as if he's the first.

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Colby Firehawk wrote:

 

 this thread is a more general question, not directed at one service, but the practice of allowing individuals to side step due process and act as judge, jury, and executioner. It's not about intent. It's about the detail of what the ToS says is or isn't..

the ToS says that the parcel owner can act as judge, jury and executioner on who can and cannot enter their parcel. Thats the detail

+

should a single parcel owner, or every parcel owner in the whole world even, put me on their banlist then they are ok by the ToS to do this. They do not have to have a reason. They do not have to give me a reason, They can even give me a total fake reason, that they and me know is a total fake, if they want

SL parcel is same as a RL private house.Houseowner dont need to give you any reason at all to kick you off their property. Same RL same SL

we can go on public land (LL-owned) and we can go on own parcel. Thats the only parcel access we cant be denied without a reason

+

is just not a violation to say that you are being harrassed bc you are on a parcel access banlist, or a estate banlist, or on the Every Private Owned Parcel In The Whole World Even Banlist

 

 

 

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Just curious as to what type of places you feel you are being banned from - clubs with contests? stores? gaming regions? 

I wouldn't think that ALL owners of a specific type of venue would be using the same security service.  Perhaps you need to find some different venues that do not use it? 

I would imagine that the parcel owners probably pay for the service? So they must feel that even with some 'lost' business due to false positives, they are still coming out ahead and acheiving the results they were hoping for by using the service.  

Also, if I was in your situation and talked with an owner that was banning me due to the security service having incorrect information, and the owner believed the security service over my explanation, I would probably not want to spend my time or money at that venue. 

If it is all being handled by scripts, that might be how they are not running afoul of the TOS - they are not publicly and visibly sharing the information about which accounts they have classified as bots or trouble makers. 

I also think it's easy to forget (as noted above in one of the other replies) that the only land we have unrestricted access to is LL public land and any land we personally own (or rent). 

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No its not against Terms of Service. In the context that you may have upset a club/store/land owner, and if they have a mini-store, or association of some kind, on other sims, they can and will exercise their right to dislike you there also. Mostly I am a "Miss Goody-Two-Shoes", but I had a run-in with a store owner once upon a time and she threatened to have me banned from 120 sims. I discovered five that I was banned from, and all of them had a little store outlet belonging to her. If I was banned from, say, Leeds Branch of W H Smith because I had a run in with the manager there, I would fully expect to be banned from all W H Smith branches in the country. Luckily, being banned from 120 sims in a virtual reality world that has several thousands more is no hardship. I might lose a little more sleep if I couldn't pick up my daily newspaper from my favourite shop in real life, just because I could not desist from calling the loser manager in my branch a see you next Tuesday. * * NOT based on a true story. The answer to you question is, no, it is not a ToS violation.

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Thank everyone for the replies, but they are mostly off subject (not meaning that in a bad way). I'm only asking about the ToS.

I did say in the initial post that it's absolutely the land owners prerogative to ban someone, justly or not. That's not in dispute. What is is someone's opinions of a resident being communicated to multiple land owners, the impact that has, and what is allowed by the ToS.

Let me rephrase by making these assertions:

A - Defaming someone by labeling them a griefer, cheat, bot, or doing something nefarious is a violation of the ToS. It is not one residence' privilege to determine guilt or innocence. The ToS does not make exceptions for defaming based on intent, good reasons, opinion, or the perception of guilt by ANY resident.

B - The ToS is further violated if the content is libelous, false, inaccurate, misleading, or invades another person's privacy.

C - Defaming someone on a sign, in this forum, in chat, in group chat, or by using a script is still defaming someone. The ToS makes no distinction between public or private defamation. It only says "Post, display, or transmit Content." Scripts transmit content.

D - When these actions result in other residents making decisions based on them such as banning them from venues (one example), that "impedes or interferes with other users' normal use of or enjoyment." Yes the land owner has the right to ban anyone, but it's the script that is ejecting people and putting them on the ban list, not the land owner, and that predicated on the direct actions of the people operating the script and knowing the impact it has, ergo, the people operating the script are the ones accountable for its results.

If I am wrong about theses assertions, please explain how referencing what allowances are made by the terms of service. I've read it. I think I understand it. I don't understand how these practices are acceptable under the ToS and I really would like to know. I'm not asking about my particular case, not about intent of the people making the accusations, but in specifics of the ToS allowing these "services".

Thanks for reading.

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There was a network on SL for a few years, that sims could subscribe to and list cheaters that were banned. Other sims would have terminals that the avatar would stand on and a scan would show if this individual was listed. If so, they would (could) be denied entry into the sim to RP.

It was all based on "good faith" that the avatar did in fact violate a sim rule (cheating). The list was a guide. Any sim owner could ignore it and admit said avatar.

One problem though was getting off of this list. It almost took an act of Congress to get all involved together to sort out why this person was banned and listed.

Another problem was abuse. One RP'er I know was banned/listed because she refused to become a slave to the owner, nevermind the sim had nothing to do with slaves. Another had one banned/listed because they asked for an OOC release. Most sims would be ok with that. After all, not all sims are what they appear and the RP'er didn't want to cheat out. They requested the OOC release and was denied. After a few go arounds, the owners OOC'ed the release and banned/listed this person.

I don't see a violation of ToS here. I would suggest just chalking it up to experience (and a great story later) and move on. Find another place to hang.

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Colby Firehawk wrote:

A -
Defaming someone by labeling them a griefer, cheat, bot, or doing something nefarious is a violation of the ToS
REGARDLESS
of whether it is true or not.
It is not one residence' privilege to determine guilt or innocence. The ToS does not make exceptions for defaming based on intent, good reasons, opinion, or the perception of guilt by
ANY
resident.

 

 

Legally, "defamation" is only a false statement. If you say something about someone else that's true, no matter how horrible and insulting it may be, it can't be considered defamation, slander or libel. Also, the burden of proof is on the one who claims to have been defamed.

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If you feel that the behavior of the scripted content used by the service is in violation of the TOS, then file an AR on the owner of the service.  

I think you would have an easier time of proving slander, libel or harrassment in a situation where you could show that a specific avatar (or group of avatars) was following you around and then getting you banned from the sims you visited.

As an aside, I believe that LL has also stated that they don't get involved in resident to resident disputes, and it's not clear to me at what point actions from a resident to resident dispute become a matter of slander, libel or harrassment.  Another interesting situation to ponder.

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@ I don't see a violation of ToS here. I would suggest just chalking it up to experience (and a great story later) and move on. Find another place to hang.

Thanks Jessi,

I'm not really concerned about any one place or myself being banned. I take exception to those who bully people and impact others based on their own perceptions or opinions. I don't believe any resident should be in judgement of another except in respect of what goes on on their own land.

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@ Legally, "defamation" is only a false statement. If you say something about someone else that's true, no matter how horrible and insulting it may be, it can't be considered defamation, slander or libel. Also, the burden of proof is on the one who claims to have been defamed.

 

Hi Theresa,

Thanks for the reply.

There seems to be some different definitions of defame, but after looking at them, I do a agree that the accusation has to be false to be defamatory. I'll amend assertion A above.

Following that logic, which residents get to decide what constitutes guilty? If I for instance posted that someone was a griefer here on the forum because I thought so, or because someone in my group thought so; it's true to me or my group member, is it defamatory?

How does that person prove he or she is not a griefer since the burden of proof is on them? It's almost impossible to prove that because it's subjective. Even more so when I won't divulge when, where, or by whom the accusation was made.

So, I could make dozens of accusations and post them here and I'm practically immune to any recourse... that is what you're saying? I'm sure that wouldn't be allowed by the forum moderator, but that's what's going on in world.

Again, I'm just trying to better understand why this practice is allowed to continue. Your help is appreciated.

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Colby Firehawk wrote:

I take exception to those who . . .  impact others based on their own perceptions or opinions. I don't believe any resident should be in judgement of another


I think that you might like to try a different virtual world, one called Cloud Cuckoo Land, because that is obviously where you belong.

N

gaging

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True dat.

It's LL world, we just play in their sandbox, Love the "if, when, and how" as yep its all up to LL not any user or group of users.

 

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@ LL decides if, when and how to enforce their rules... You have no recourse.

I can talk like that too!

This thread was start to finish about what the rules mean, not about enforcing them. It's pretty obvious it's up to SL to decide what to enforce. So far I haven't ask they enforce anything at all, so duh, they haven't done anything.

I think I have the answers I wanted at this point. It is time to move on. Thanks to those that answered in earnest!

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