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Mesh body requirements on RP Sim: Is It Racist, Body Shaming, Elitist, Prejudice? What Do We Call It?


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3 hours ago, Arduenn Schwartzman said:

I guess there's a line between banning people for their skin color, religion, sexual orientation and similar discriminatory traits defined by law on the one hand and different kinds of traits related to socio-economic status , such as being able to afford a mesh body, on the other.

This is confusing public civil rights with owner’s rights in private holdings.

In the US, private clubs and membership societies that aren’t open to serve the general public, aren’t open publicly for business/trade and don’t file for tax exemption status, do NOT have to follow any anti-discrimination laws, so yes they can still (by law) admit or deny whomever they want, for any or no stated reason at all and many do still have very exclusionary policies. Many California country clubs, social clubs and golf/sport clubs are great examples of exclusion based on surprising criteria. All perfectly legal, their private facility, their rules. There’s a lot of blablabla written about it and not a lot done about it. It’s still also fairly common to only let ‘pretty people’ past the rope and into some private nightclubs.

Businesses that are open to serve the general public are required to follow anti-discrimination laws. That’s a big difference, your civil rights here do not extend to any “rights” to admission to or inclusion in other people’s privately owned holdings. Many other places are just very hard and/or expensive to get into unless you ‘know someone‘, example Club 33 at Disney. Another perfectly legal exclusion practice that’s alive and well and purposely serving a very limited clientele. Very common. 

Am I saying any of it is good, right, fair, nice, etc? No. Because it’s not. (IMNSHO) But it’s the legal reality of how things are. 

In SL, there is a decent variety of freebie and very low cost mesh heads and bodies so the $$ barrier is moot. The usual complaint on those is that little in the way of clothing fits them...but I don’t really see that as a major problem in this case given the theme of the sim. 😉

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  • 2 weeks later...

I would not call it racist but a silly requirement.  All I can say is sad for them that they will be missing out on some folks that likely are amazing RPR's.  I know many the RPR that hung on the system body because it gave them the ability to use lots of  thinks before the BOM has come along.   That being said people are still figuring out BOM and I would hate to lose a star RPR because of that.   

I guess it all depends on the type of sim.  Some sims have requirements to make sure you do not break the immersion factor and I understand that.    Part of SL is using your brain and being a bit creative. 

If it is a nude beach like one of the other people pointed out..then well they are likely looking for the naughty bits and bobs and those aesthetics for other reasons and not Role Play for the sake of Role Play.

I wish the best of luck.   

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Roleplay is performance art, and its very hard to regulate Art and Artists.

That covers both the performers (the players) and those who provide their stage (sim designers, content creator, vision-providers).

Piss Christ was inflammatory and  hurt many feelings; but it was displayed as Art.

When people pay to set up a themed/period/vision-centric roleplay sim that requires a certain appearance to be “in theme”, they’re free to do that - with the caveat that others are free to react as many of the religious did when Piss Christ went on display.

Racist: probably not unless someone can prove factually that the Creators were racist and acting on their documented prior behavior.

But it is controversial - and a good debate is always healthy because someone usually learns something new in the process.

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2 hours ago, AmandaKeen said:

When people pay to set up a themed/period/vision-centric roleplay sim that requires a certain appearance to be “in theme”, they’re free to do that - with the caveat that others are free to react as many of the religious did when Piss Christ went on display.

That's just it. Of course they're free to set their own rules for their own sim, and anyone else is free to form an opinion about the requirement. And both sides are free to say what they think.

I'm still waiting for someone to tell me what the reaction would be to a well-crafted mesh avatar with a visible disability or deformity.

Edited by Amina Sopwith
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8 minutes ago, Amina Sopwith said:

That's just it. Of course they're free to set their own rules for their own sim, and anyone else is free to form an opinion about the requirement. And both sides are free to say what they think.

I'm still waiting for someone to tell me what the reaction would be to a well-crafted avatar with a visible disability or deformity.

In a way, I think I’ve seen that. At several clubs or venues, I occasionally run into people with avatars that were built so as to look extremely obese.

I didn’t ask any rude questions, but I was wondering if this might be some kind of body-shaming activism.

I’ve seen avatars with disabilities and deformities in Roleplay sims, but that was part of the character they were playing and not something that evolved “out in the wild”.

Personally, in RL I *do* have something of a disability. I revel in the chance to “not get a second glance” here as I move around the grid.

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On 2/23/2020 at 12:23 PM, Pussycat Catnap said:

Mesh has not been around for almost a decade.

Mesh bodies for maybe 3/4ths of that time.

Anyone not yet on mesh has basically taken an emotionally invested stance against it... So reactions get out of proportion with the nature of the issue.

 

That should have said:

"Mesh has been around for almost a decade."

- but can't be edited anymore... since people are apparently still reacting to that old post... 😉

This far into things, the reasons for not being on mesh are only non-rational emotional ones.

I don't know how few the people still living 10-years in the past are, but they've got to be an extreme minority at this point; outside of claimants on the forums I encounter them less often than 1 a month.

This topic is almost as moot a point as a ban on riding live horses on the I-280 freeway would be... 😛

 

Edited by Pussycat Catnap
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2 hours ago, Pussycat Catnap said:

 

This far into things, the reasons for not being on mesh are only non-rational emotional ones.

 

I've not been able to find a mesh head I like, and I'm told that when I do, I'll still have a neck seam to worry about, and skins probably won't work on both head and body. And apparently still won't be seen properly by people with different viewers.

It's just too much hassle now to be any fun. I'll work properly on it if I ever go back to doing intimate RP but in the meantime it's like trying to put on a Victorian corset and bustle dress left handed with no help. 

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3 hours ago, Pussycat Catnap said:

That should have said:

"Mesh has been around for almost a decade."

- but can't be edited anymore... since people are apparently still reacting to that old post... 😉

This far into things, the reasons for not being on mesh are only non-rational emotional ones.

I don't know how few the people still living 10-years in the past are, but they've got to be an extreme minority at this point; outside of claimants on the forums I encounter them less often than 1 a month.

This topic is almost as moot a point as a ban on riding live horses on the I-280 freeway would be... 😛

 

I'd say in some cases the concerns are rational, at least in the case of mesh heads.  Some of us are heavily invested in our avatar's face (I can think of two people offhand who are that I know), and have yet to find a mesh head that will adequately replace the system features that have become associated with their avatars.  For some people, that matters.

I was very interested in mesh, and did end up moving to a mesh head... but not until I found one that I felt could adequately mimic (or at least bear a passing likeness to) the features I have on my system head that resemble RL me.  To me, that's rational; others' mileage will vary, of course.

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22 hours ago, Pussycat Catnap said:

- but can't be edited anymore... since people are apparently still reacting to that old post... 😉

This far into things, the reasons for not being on mesh are only non-rational emotional ones.

I don't know how few the people still living 10-years in the past are, but they've got to be an extreme minority at this point; outside of claimants on the forums I encounter them less often than 1 a month.

This topic is almost as moot a point as a ban on riding live horses on the I-280 freeway would be... 😛

I reacted yesterday but didn't post in response because it was old, the discussion had moved on and I'm well aware that most wouldn't care, but since you brought it up again....

The reasons my main isn't "on mesh" aren't non-rational or emotional. They're aesthetic and physical. I haven't found a mesh body or head I like well enough to bother with. It seems to be changing somewhat recently, but the majority of clothing I encounter hasn't been to my taste enough to spur me to want to get a fancy body to wear it with. And I don't see the point of carting around all the extra geometry for something I don't particularly care about. My building alt has a mesh body because I needed to get bento hands onto the beta grid but for my uses it's no better than my main's system.

The physical side is real life illness and disability. Every single minute I've wasted on trying to join the mesh body thing has been less energy and time I have for friends and activities which matter to me more. At some point, it became a clear, rational decision to just stop worrying about trying to meet the expectations of strangers.

When emotions come into it for me, it's in response to the generalising, patronising, derogatory crap people come out with about those of us who still use system avs. A couple of years ago it played into real life stuff I was dealing with about my declining body, though that was really more about grieving my declining cognitive abilities. Now, it's just frustration and, if I can muster the energy for it, anger.

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2 hours ago, Bitsy Buccaneer said:

in response to the generalising, patronising, derogatory crap people come out with

 

2 hours ago, Bitsy Buccaneer said:

a clear, rational decision to just stop worrying about trying to meet the expectations of strangers.

 

Nailed it.

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On 3/10/2020 at 12:08 PM, Amina Sopwith said:

I'm still waiting for someone to tell me what the reaction would be to a well-crafted mesh avatar with a visible disability or deformity.

I could test that, but I have no particular inclination to visit an adult RP sim and deal with the consequences of doing so.

200205_001.thumb.png.3a0b1376a1cab0659537a20a925d1c6e.png

  

On 3/10/2020 at 12:21 PM, AmandaKeen said:

Personally, in RL I *do* have something of a disability. I revel in the chance to “not get a second glance” here as I move around the grid.

I've lived with mine for so long in that it felt "wrong" in SL to have two arms. It wasn't possible to replicate it until mesh bodies became a thing (though I tried many other methods, all of them unsuccessful). 

Edited by Matty Luminos
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48 minutes ago, Matty Luminos said:

I could test that, but I have no particular inclination to visit an adult RP sim and deal with the consequences of doing so.

200205_001.thumb.png.3a0b1376a1cab0659537a20a925d1c6e.png

  

I've lived with mine for so long in that it felt "wrong" in SL to have two arms. It wasn't possible to replicate it until mesh bodies became a thing (though I tried many other methods, all of them unsuccessful). 

If she really want to find out, she can make an avatar and try. No need to "wait". If she don't want to go there, never wanted anything to do with that adult place, it is none of her business what's accepted in or not.

1 minute ago, Amina Sopwith said:

I don't blame you. I love your av, though.

Are you so interested in what private adult venues in Real Life do also?

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1 hour ago, Marianne Little said:

If she really want to find out, she can make an avatar and try. No need to "wait". 

I could, good point. I haven't really got the time or know-how to craft even my avatar right now so it would take a while. Several people have said they support these restrictions because it makes for more attractive and contemporary avs. The obvious next question, to me, is, "So what about avs that are compliant with the rules but don't fit conventional standards?"

I could go into a sim undercover and perhaps at some future date I will, but in the meantime, if we have a group of people already discussing it, seems reasonable to ask the question. They might be more honest than someone in a sim who hasn't indicated they're up for talking about it. 

1 hour ago, Marianne Little said:

Are you so interested in what private adult venues in Real Life do also?

I was, though I haven't been to them in quite a while and don't intend to go again until my son is older, if at all. They were very different to SL clubs for numerous reasons. I won't derail the thread with my experiences and observations (if anyone is interested, feel free to message me). But they were definitely different.

If I were interested in them and hadn't been to any, though, then yes, I probably would ask people who had experience and opinions of them. Not sure why it's relevant to this discussion?

 

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In answer to the OP, it already has a name, that goes back at least a decade:  Pixel Snobbery.  It's a term that predates mesh, when a game that previously had a user base interested and complimentary in everyone's creativity started creeping towards a Star-Belly Sneetches attitude ("Star-Bellied avis are the best avis on the beaches" lol).  It was first experienced in various social clubs and dancehalls, where folks with pretty avatars (NOT the parcel owners) would get rude with those they deemed unworthy of being on the parcel.  Sometimes the parcel owners would get involved, and kick the rude people out instead.  But eventually, judging people by the avatar they chose became the norm in this game.  Like it's not unreasonable and obnoxious enough to judge people by their appearance it real life, you gotta do it in a video game?  Mesh has merely exacerbated this problem.  It's sad, as I've met plenty of very interesting people that others have missed out on enjoying their company, simply because of the not-top-of-the-notch avi they'd chosen.

One fun thing my friends and I used to do WAY back in the day was to deliberately make our avis as "fugly" as possible via the body and clothes sliders.  My favorite, still have it somewhere, was called the Mean Ol' Fat Lady.  Most of the time I got a lot of laughs from the Kens and Barbies when I'd show up and roleplay, hitting on all the guys and asking them to buy me my favorite drink, Jack Daniels and Nyquil lol  Unfortunately, we began running into people who were becoming increasingly hostile, and increasingly more frequent.  So we stopped.

About five years ago I met a newbie who was so proud of making her very first object, a giant pencil, that she decided to wear it on her head.  She was so proud of figuring out the build interface, and wanted to show off what she could do.  So I took her to a favorite dance club.  with no discussion, less then ten seconds there, she was booted, banned, and muted/blocked -- she couldn't even ask them why.  She almost quit SL right then and there.  I tried to smooth things out with the club, wondering what was going on, but they wouldn't listen and got rather snotty.  I gave them an earful, and have never been back.  Sad that they've risen in popularity.  The snobby attitude is rather infectious, whether in real life or in something that when you get down to it is just pixels on a computer screen.

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1 hour ago, Rabid Cheetah said:

Unfortunately, we began running into people who were becoming increasingly hostile, and increasingly more frequent. 

I was in SL in its heyday and came back just over a year ago after a long hiatus. I'm inworld very rarely and sporadically but I do my best to explore it when I can and get the lie of the new land.

I expected the graphics to have got better during my absence and they have. But along with this seems to have come a broad cultural shift in which there is far more focus on aesthetics than before, and with it, judgement and even hostility towards avis deemed to be lesser. Once again, obviously people can impose any rules they like on their land, but others are equally free to be critical of those rules. That's the deal.

I don't have an issue per se with a mesh requirement in a sim. It just unsettles me a bit because it's yet another indication of an overwhelming focus on looks to the detriment of the things that drew me, personally, to SL. If we could have had the improvement in graphics without that shift, I'd be delighted, but it looks like the nicer pixels have come at a cost, and it's not one I would personally have paid if it had all been up to me. Of course it's not up to me, and it shouldn't be up to me, but I'm just saying I don't like the cultural shift that seems to have come with this and I don't think it was worth it. It seems odder still because mesh is so damn complex that you'd think people would be a bit more forgiving. I thought initially it looked simple; wear the alpha, add the body and the rest is the same, right? Yes, I was a sweet summer child.

I do remember being annoyed with lazy, nooby Lego men back in the day trying to cop off with the most beautiful female avs, so maybe I'm being hypocritical. But it wasn't that they didn't have the greatest avs on the grid; those guys had honestly made absolutely no effort at all, and their roleplay was the same. I also didn't notice such a hostility about it on a cultural level with accompanying dictation and stipulations; we generally just didn't get intimate with them and it self regulated to an extent. 

So yeah, that's why I'm generally a bit more sympathetic towards System Stacey in these debates. I don't think it's a moral issue either way in and of itself. I just think it's an indication of a change in approach that I don't personally care for.

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3 hours ago, Rabid Cheetah said:

About five years ago I met a newbie who was so proud of making her very first object, a giant pencil, that she decided to wear it on her head.  She was so proud of figuring out the build interface, and wanted to show off what she could do.  So I took her to a favorite dance club.  with no discussion, less then ten seconds there, she was booted, banned, and muted/blocked -- she couldn't even ask them why.  She almost quit SL right then and there.  I tried to smooth things out with the club, wondering what was going on, but they wouldn't listen and got rather snotty.  I gave them an earful, and have never been back.  Sad that they've risen in popularity.  The snobby attitude is rather infectious, whether in real life or in something that when you get down to it is just pixels on a computer screen.

 

1 hour ago, Amina Sopwith said:

yet another indication of an overwhelming focus on looks to the detriment of the things that drew me, personally, to SL. If we could have had the improvement in graphics without that shift, I'd be delighted, but it looks like the nicer pixels have come at a cost, and it's not one I would personally have paid if it had all been up to me. Of course it's not up to me, and it shouldn't be up to me, but I'm just saying I don't like the cultural shift that seems to have come with this and I don't think it was worth it.

We've lost something very precious indeed. I'm not sure if those who weren't here for it can really understand how wonderfully varied and creative our world was. It was like this playground full of kids with crayons and cardboard boxes making whatever we wanted for the joy it. There were donkey butts, because there will always be donkey butts, but there was so much more sharing and appreciation of each other. And laughter, because a giant pencil dancing away was part of the fun.

"Hey, that's really cool what you're making." "Thanks, do you build?" "I don't know how." "Let's get you started then." And away you go. "Your world, your imagination" was bigger in scope than it is now. It was brilliantly empowering. It still happens, but only in pockets. It used to to be everywhere.

Can anyone in this thread make the argument that this idealised fantasy of shopping, supermodels and magazine-spread houses is better for our mental health and well-being than that? Especially when it's constantly reinforcing advertising's message that our real bodies and our real homes aren't good enough. This "perfection" comes at a very real cost.

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On 2/20/2020 at 12:53 PM, cheesecurd said:

Dumb for sure, but it’s just their requirement.

No TOS rules are being violated by requiring a mesh avatar to partake in the roleplay. They can have criteria and standards for their roleplay based on aesthetic quality and roleplay accuracy.

You wouldn’t let the winglessemoto F2p furry play in your stepford wives roleplay, it just doesn’t fit 

as long as there’s nothing discriminating against race, religion, gender or sexuality, really anything you couldn’t do irl, it’s up to them 

If anything, they would only have themselves to blame for lag if it's a human centric rp sim, cause the majority of popular human mesh bodies are some of the worst optimized avatars that exist in SL

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On 3/13/2020 at 4:09 AM, Rabid Cheetah said:

In answer to the OP, it already has a name, that goes back at least a decade:  Pixel Snobbery.  It's a term that predates mesh, when a game that previously had a user base interested and complimentary in everyone's creativity started creeping towards a Star-Belly Sneetches attitude ("Star-Bellied avis are the best avis on the beaches" lol).  It was first experienced in various social clubs and dancehalls, where folks with pretty avatars (NOT the parcel owners) would get rude with those they deemed unworthy of being on the parcel.  Sometimes the parcel owners would get involved, and kick the rude people out instead.  But eventually, judging people by the avatar they chose became the norm in this game.  Like it's not unreasonable and obnoxious enough to judge people by their appearance it real life, you gotta do it in a video game?  Mesh has merely exacerbated this problem.  It's sad, as I've met plenty of very interesting people that others have missed out on enjoying their company, simply because of the not-top-of-the-notch avi they'd chosen.

One fun thing my friends and I used to do WAY back in the day was to deliberately make our avis as "fugly" as possible via the body and clothes sliders.  My favorite, still have it somewhere, was called the Mean Ol' Fat Lady.  Most of the time I got a lot of laughs from the Kens and Barbies when I'd show up and roleplay, hitting on all the guys and asking them to buy me my favorite drink, Jack Daniels and Nyquil lol  Unfortunately, we began running into people who were becoming increasingly hostile, and increasingly more frequent.  So we stopped.

About five years ago I met a newbie who was so proud of making her very first object, a giant pencil, that she decided to wear it on her head.  She was so proud of figuring out the build interface, and wanted to show off what she could do.  So I took her to a favorite dance club.  with no discussion, less then ten seconds there, she was booted, banned, and muted/blocked -- she couldn't even ask them why.  She almost quit SL right then and there.  I tried to smooth things out with the club, wondering what was going on, but they wouldn't listen and got rather snotty.  I gave them an earful, and have never been back.  Sad that they've risen in popularity.  The snobby attitude is rather infectious, whether in real life or in something that when you get down to it is just pixels on a computer screen.

People wonder why I won't go to clubs any more. Well DUH!  I do have a mesh body and head but that bs? That gets you* on my sheetlist. Permanently.

 

*you general not, you Rabid.

Edited by Selene Gregoire
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  • 4 weeks later...
2 hours ago, ballparkdogg said:

Its a requirement now it seems for that sim.   Is a shame.  Not everyone can buy mesh

Why can't they? There are several ways of getting L$ that doesn't involve a credit or debit card. I've never had payment info and I'm full mesh

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