Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Hitomi Tiponi

Rollout of fix to prevent viewer tagging

25 posts in this topic

I understand that this fix is planned to be rolled out to both the main grid and RCs this week.  Could I please ask that it is just rolled out to the RC channels this week so that any other systems that may be affected can be tested for a week before it hits the main grid?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Rival Destiny wrote:

I'm not famiiar with viewer tagging ... what is that?

tia

Rival

It is when your viewer tells you what viewer others are using.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

 

Thank you :)

So am I correct in my understanding that this will mean, that the viewer a user uses has now become private info unless permission by user is given?

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The way I understand it, this change is not one that needs to be "rolled out." It doesn't require a new server version, the code for it already exists on all sims. It's more like a "switch", and all they have to do to put this into effect is flip it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Rival Destiny wrote:

 

Thank you
:)

So am I correct in my understanding that this will mean, that the viewer a user uses has now become private info unless permission by user is given?

 

That is what it sounds like to me, but I actually have not read much else except for this:

2. j: You must not include any information regarding the computer system, software, or network connection of the user in any messages sent to other viewers, except when explicitly elected by the user of your viewer.

https://secondlife.com/corporate/tpv.php

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks...yes I believe network connection is synomous with ISP so makes sense that they would do this at some point.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

At the TPV Developers Meeting it was stated that the required rollout to main grid and RC versions would take place this week - it actually appears to be the switching off of the texture files that announce what viewer a user is using.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just hope that they're correct about what switching off the function will do.

There's two things they talk about. This one, stopping sending a particular data-element from the server to viewers, might not need testing, but I'd want to hear that from Oskar or Maestro.

The other is a change to LSL, about reporting online status, and that is going to need proper testing. It has to be done right, and it has to be tested for effects on scripted objects. And there's no date been announced for that.

Past experience on LSL changes suggests that they're never going to be able to stop items using the old behaviour from being sold on the Marketplace or in-world. 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I just don't think that making any change (unless it is an urgent security fix which this isn't) is wise unless people have had a chance to test it on the RC channels.  Nothing 'should' happen, but there are all sorts of weird tie-ins in SL that can get messed up by the simplest changes.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Hitomi

I'm not sure that a change like this, driven, as it seems to be, by the LL legal team can have the term "wisdom" applied to it in any way.  Now "knee-jerk" or "sledgehammer", might fit, but that just makes me sound more cynical than I already am.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

What is broke you can't fix. But you plan on breaking something that works? For why? Because a third party viewer works better then the one that you make to use on the rest of your mess? How about leaving this alone and working on fixing what doesn't work.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

(Thanks...yes I believe network connection is "synomous" with ISP so makes sense that they would do this at some point)

ISP=Internet Service Provider

Nework Connection=a connection from your data equipment to SL's servers..

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think this is more about LL still being embarrased that so many people DO NOT USE OR LIKE their official viewer.  Its clumbersome, a resource hog, laggy, and is pretty much useless to a large portion of their user base.  Thats why so many people still use Phoenix.  They are bound and determined to "fix" the problem by doing what any corporation would do.  Not really fix anything but get rid of those that are an embarrasement to them.  Typical upper management that thinks it knows best.  To bad thats not always the case.  Just look at the corporate giants that are in deep s**t because their CEO's thought they knew best and could cram anything down the customers throat.  Best example, Netflix.  The CEO there screwed up so bad by not listening to the customers or advice that it is now used as a classic example of NOT WHAT to do in college business courses.  But hey, the pinheads never learn from their or anyone else's mistakes.  Its full steam ahead and d**n the torpedoes. 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It seems the Lab changes the policies for Third Party Viewers and don't allow viewer tagging anymore. I don't know why, i never heart anyone complaning about it, but anyway, they have the right to do so.

What i don't understand is why it has to be introduced in such a hurry. It does not break Second Life Servers and as far as i know it does not allow the stealing of content or other IP problems, so why is this handled as a security update?

I would prefer an implementation on ADITI and a message to all TPV writers, so they can test their code against the new servercode and bring out updates where necessary. Maybe the changes are minimal, but it even minimal changes can crash a viewer. The next stage should be a roll to one of the RC candidates, and when no problems show up, a roll to the rest of the grid.

What concerns me even more is point k) of the new policies:

k) You must not provide any feature that alters the shared experience of the virtual world in any way
not provided by or accessible to users of the latest released Linden Lab viewer.

I am currently using an RLV enabled viewer and it certainly enhances my experience of the Second Life world. Do the new policies forbid this kind of enhancements to the user experience?

I hope LL will not discourage the TPV writers by cutting off all their abilities to implement this kind of features..

Thumbs up for all TPV writers who did such a good job for all of us.

Greeetings, Chriss Rosca.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Why the big hurry LL? I don't see how the display of which viewer someone is using would be considered a privacy issue and certainly don't understand why this is suddenly such an important matter that you're rolling out a change and bypassing the standard RC testing process.

The cynical part of me sees this as just a hamfisted way for you to hide the embarassing fact that a majority of your customers are using TPVs.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@Chriss

From the wording and the discussions posted they are talking about things that modify the shared visual appearance of the world.  For example, the old emarald attach points.  Someone using emerald would see attachments in their proper spots, someone using a different viewer would see attachments floating who knows where.  RLV is not a visual enhancement.  It does not change how different viewers see you or the world, and therefore would not be affected by this policy change.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

@Talia

Thanks for your response. I agree, things like the Emerald attachmentpoints should be forbidden, I was always annoyed by the attachments floating around an Emerald user. If this is what they want to prevent i totally agree. It would be nice if they would add some more comment to the policies, that would prevent misunderstandings.

Greetings, Chriss.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

If you look at the history of viewer development, you will see that TPVs have been at the fore of pretty much every cool feature that you now have in LLs viewer, plus one or two that haven't made it there.

In every case, the feature was a hack. They weren't pretty hacks, but they got the job done. And when second attach hit Emerald it was only after the Emerald team presented it to LL. LL rejected it. So the Emerald team went ahead with their hack and everyone using Emerald, and every TPV that dropped that code into their viewers, saw those attachments properly. The feature was a hit, even though every LL viewer user was unable to see them correctly. Eventually, LL created multi-attach, and now everyone enjoys that feature. But if Emerald binned the idea because LL rejected it, would we have multi-attach today? Maybe, maybe not. No one knows for sure.

The same kind of process occurred for other features, which were presented to LL and which LL rejected. When the TPVs deployed viewers with those features, they were huge successes, but they were still hacks because only LL has access to the servers and the server code, and only LL can make most such features work right.

Now, with the addition of 2.k to the TPV policy, any feature that would allow, say, Firestorm users, to enjoy something like Parcel Windlight, but would not be likewise rendered on an LL viewer, would be a violation of the policy. TPV developers must now present the feature to LL and develop it in their codebase (working for LL without pay?), but only after LL have reviewed the feature and decided it should be added. What if they said no?

You can read into the policy changes what you like. It's all speculation. Even the official line from LL as to the motive and goal for the changes doesn't seem to be the full truth. But then LL doesn't have to explain themselves, they're a business trying to do business, which really has little to do with its users. They are answerable to their shareholders, who may have never set foot in SL and who may have no stakes inworld, not to SL users no matter how much money LL receives from them.

So one policy change says viewers can't announce viewer tags. But LL decided to block that data anyway, so it really doesn't seem relevant whether the viewers send tags or not.

Another policy change is intended to protect user privacy by not circumventing their choice to hide their online status. Kind of pointless since you cannot hide from friends unless you opt out of that on a per-friend basis, and you can't hide from those who belong to the same groups as you even if you wanted to.

And 2.k is being seen as the bill TPV killer, but it's not when you consider how narrow the scope of "shared experience" is. LL have flat out told us they will not define "shared experience" so we can only assume that it means something that everyone sees the same way as everyone else, regardless of which viewer you use. This means RLV isn't affected since it only changes your own experience and not yours, and user interfaces and configurations aren't part of the shared experience, so they aren't affected. What would be affected are things like the mesh deformer (I don't see how, but I don't make the goofy decisions), and Parcel Windlight, which got the grandfather nod.

Some users who don't like these policy changes or the goofy decisions made to the servers to enforce one of them have made suggestions that would circumvent the viewer tag filter that LL gave us (I wonder if that's a shared experience thing, since no one using an LL viewer is affected, but everyone on a TPV is. Hmm.). They're great ideas, but they would still generate a violation. But there's nothing LL can do if you decide to identify your viewer in your display name or group tag. That is not a violation of any policy.

There are several groups that coincidentally popped into existence, one for each TPV. They're called I <3 abc, where abc is the name of a TPV. Chat is disabled, so that's not a worry. And you can wear that tag proudly and show LL just what you think about their decision to block viewer tags.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I really do question the reason for hiding what viewer you use. Privacy ? It seems to me that all this does is prevent you from detecting if someone is using a copybot capable viewer. (hmmmmmm) Before, people can see what viewer you are using. Now merchants using copybot detection systems or those who stand around watching for bad viewers will no longer be capable of detecting who is using what. IS this a wise move L L ? Maybe someone should take this one back to the board room.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Did you listen to the audio of Oz's briefing to the TPV developers about this?  If not, you should.  There's really no mystery about why they're removing the means for this feature to exist.

The reason is harassment based on viewer selection.  

In fact, this has happened to me several times.  I'm sure the harassers thought they were doing me a favor, that I'd have ever so much better an experience if only I'd switch to the viewer to which they'd sworn unyielding devotion.  

Bible-thumpers, basically.

In my case, what ensued was, uh, call it "education" about bouncing bewbies enticing unwitting botnet participants to DDoS the developer's personal enemy, among other tales of TPV treachery.

Newbies, unfortunately, are the evangelists' more common prey, and those newbies don't know the history of TPVs (thank god, else they'd never stay), and are much more apt to be confused and frustrated than helped.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

<threadjack>

I really hated "The Viewer Wars."

Why do some people insist on reliving them and/or living as though they never ended?

</threadjack>

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites


Lynna Yorcliffe wrote:

I really do question the reason for hiding what viewer you use. Privacy ? It seems to me that all this does is prevent you from detecting if someone is using a copybot capable viewer. (hmmmmmm) Before, people can see what viewer you are using. Now merchants using copybot detection systems or those who stand around watching for bad viewers will no longer be capable of detecting who is using what. IS this a wise move L L ? Maybe someone should take this one back to the board room.

The systems that attempt to identify dodgy viewers did not use the tags, because they were extremely unreliable. The identifiers they do use are still present, but those are unreliable too.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Please sign in to comment

You will be able to leave a comment after signing in



Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0