Some proposals for making the new permission system work

Wow, this is really a “bomb” that LL has planted among the community… it’s going haywire right now, but the cool thing is, we have a very long fuse, and lots of time to disarm it. Thanks to Cory for warning us in advance! 🙂

I have very mixed feelings about the current proposal, and that’s why I don’t want to discuss the ideas yet on the “official place” – Cory’s own blog. Unlike many people (and I’m proud of saying that in public), I like to analyse things from several perspectives, both emotionally and logically, and have changed my mind often about “things written on stone tablets”. So I’m quite prepared to revert my position in about 6 months or so 🙂

First, I think that we should not view Cory’s proposal as Linden Lab’s “final word” on it. It’s just that – a proposal. A way to let people think about it, discuss it, argue it over, and come up with good ideas that can actually be implemented. That is what I feel right now.

Both the forums, blogs, and several informal meetings that happened inworld since the “announcement” reached the same preliminary conclusions: creators are not happy with weak copyrights, period. Consumers can’t care less. They currently make their choices based on what they want and what they’re willing to pay. There is a large variety of choices here. I can buy fantastic clothes from Torrid and I know the quality I’ll get – but they won’t be unique items. I can order custom-made dresses from Von, and pay premium for that, because I don’t want anybody else to have the same “unique” dress (and I establish a trust relationship with those merchants “informally” – I know that Torrid won’t sell me a below-quality product, or that Von will charge me premium for one “unique” item but sell 100 copies afterwards…). In some cases, for new merchants that I haven’t worked with, I can appeal to resident-created trade assotiations to protect my rights as a consumer – like RATE, for instance. And finally, for everyday use, well, as everybody else, I have hundreds of freebie articles (sometimes from Torrid or Mistress Midnigt!) and change them to fit me. All this mirrors somewhat what goes on in the real world. All this happens with the current permission system very well.

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