Opinion

It’s no secret that, for what amounts to centuries in SL, the Maitreya Lara mesh body has maintained a competitive edge over the Slink Physique, because its proportions accommodate a wider variety of avatar shapes and because it’s a lot more convenient and cost-effective than the Physique. The HUD has always been easier to navigate, you only need to purchase one applier HUD for body, hands and feet, and, finally, the autohide/autoshow kit really makes a customer’s life easier and adds value to both the garment and the mesh body itself.

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Am I the only one who’s annoyed by half-assed offerings by SL fashion designers? Click on the image to go to its full-size version on Flickr.

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When I first joined Second Life, way back in 2006, I was one of the many people who earned their Lindens in SL’s then-flourishing sex trade – this is something I freely and readily admit. In the era of system layer clothing, prim shoes, and prim hair, many people who later went on to become major or minor SL fashionistas frequented establishments like the ones I was working at and inquired about our garments and accessories, from shoes to collars and from hair to clothing.

As always, click on the image for the full-size version (opens in new tab).

Then came the era of sculpties, with Stiletto Moody and N-Core ruling the roost w.r.t. heels, and then came rigged mesh. Although I had all but lost interest in SL’s sex trade, I still had friends in the scene and sometimes visited them at work. Problem is, I had already pretty much abandoned system layer clothing and switched to mesh. And many of those establishments had a guideline for escorts and patrons to not wear mesh garments, because some people “couldn’t see mesh” or were seriously lagged down by it. While the latter was true in crowded areas, the former I found ridiculous. Since you’re supposed to be running a current viewer that supports mesh, why are you telling me you “can’t see mesh”?

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I guess one could say we girls are spoilt for choice when it comes to clothing, shoes, hairstyles, jewellery, and all sorts of accessories and trinkets in Second Life. Well, compared to what the guys have to make do with, I guess it’s true. There’s a wild variety of styles, mostly derived from Real Life (RL) fashion, available for us, and about three months’ worth of average Jane salaries is more than enough to stock a female avatar’s inventory to the hilt with hairstyles, clothes, shoes, lingerie, and so on.

However, it’s when you start looking at what is actually available that the wares on offer by SL vendors and content creators that you realise your options aren’t as many as you’d have liked. Today, I’ll talk about jewellery, and ankle and foot jewellery in particular.

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NOTICE: The article below deals with adult and fetish-related topics and fantasies and contains NSFW imagery. If you are offended by such topics or are not a legal adult, I suggest you leave this instant.

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Way back in March, I read an interesting post by Antony Fairport, which largely echoes my views on RLV restrictions. There’s a tendency among designers of RLV gear (collars, gags, blindfolds, etc.) to include as many different restriction types in their attachments as possible; even functions that their RL equivalents could not possibly provide.

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I’ll be blunt: The majority of the media coverage of Second Life has been sub-par for far too long. It’s been a combination of an overhyping and dismissal as a “failed project” rollercoaster, and gossipy sensationalism focusing on the virtual world’s sexual aspect in a scandal-mongering manner. Another problem with much of the coverage SL has seen in its eleven years of existence is the attitude of many journalists / pundits: they don’t let facts get in the way of their story.

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Marlon McDonald, prolific contributor for Moviepilot.com, wrote yet another scandal-mongering article on sex in Second Life.

One would probably expect something better after all these years. But, sadly, cut-throat clickbait competition for notoriety and / or ad-generated revenue makes the gossipy, sensationalist, scandal-mongering, stereotype-milking approach every bit as attractive for web-based outlets and columnists as it’s ever been for their “old media” counterparts. So, I’m not surprised to see the same old stories get regurgitated ad nauseam by pundits new and “established”. A recent example of such a pundit is Mr. Marlon McDonald, prolific contributor to Moviepilot.com. In his quest for page views and notoriety which will get him featured on the website’s homepage in his chosen category, he wrote yet another article in which he presented Second Life as little more than a cesspool of debauchery, pornography, virtual prostitution etc. Inara Pey proceeded to write a very nice rebuttal to Mr. McDonald’s article, and I highly recommend that you share it with others. She also blogged about her rebuttal here.

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