After I did a commentary on the issue of the Teen Grid merger, one my my readers, Shockwave Yareach contacted me about the subject. He told me there was one thing he wanted to show me. We teleported to a particular sim that was mostly grass, near a corner which had one section of an “X” shaped structure that spanned the adjacent corners of four sims, “Anyway, this is the sim Idu. And there is the welcome center. This is one of the places teens can rez, and can play. Cool so far, yes?” Everything looked innocent so far.
Shockwave then began walking to the opposite corner, “Now follow me to the Southeast. We walked for a while across the grassy field that was most of this particular sim. We soon got to the edge of the sim, which bordered another with a few stores at the edge, though there was a space between two with a “we’ve moved” sign. Standing in front of one particular brick building, Shockwave asked, “Now, standing here in the PG sim, cam into the store.” I did, and looking around, after some moments some pictures were soon visible that were definitely *not* PG. “This is safe for kids?” Shockwave asked me, “And all those demo poseballs on the ground, anyone can watch ‘the show.’ "
This, Shockwave argued, was a clear weakness of Linden Lab’s teen grid merger, “I've tried to warn them. I begged for a PG continent. But this,” he pointed again to the adult store next to the PG sim, “this is what we got. Just wait until one of the religious nutjob Americana family groups find out. Geez! ... Oh, and the empty spot, that was a store. They closed the day the teens arrived. While I bear the teens no ill will, and I want them to be able to play, I don't want them to ruin our fun and endanger our real lives in the process. By the way, there are several stores around these four PG rated sims selling skins and the like. And the kids can cam in and buy anything they can afford, PG or not PG.”
Earlier, Shockwave had suggested a JIRA for Linden Labs, that would block teen accounts from caming and buying outside PG sims. But Linden Labs never seemed to pay any attention to it. Why hadn’t they taken this and other precautions? Shockwave thought, “They are either incompetent, or think they can clean up the mainland by using the teens as a reason and are shortsighted. Second Life can be both clean and filthy. It can be thousands of things at once. It need not be only one thing. M Linden was utterly stupid for not figuring that out. Second Life is not a cable channel. it's a cable SYSTEM filled with different channels for different tastes. And realistically, the only way to keep the grid safe from problems like these here, is three separate rated continents.”
“Back when Linden Lab didn't tell us what to do or how to behave, it wasn't an issue. With teens and the volumes of TOS, it now is. The PG continent along with Zindra was asked for when the Zindra debacle occurred. We saw the writing on the wall and begged for it. But not, this is not hard for the teens to locate. This is an example of the silliness and the danger of the teens in PG.”
Shockwave felt that Second Life residents were now at risk for being placed under arrest, “when some momma sees Little Timmy camming in here, someone is gonna have the cops at their door. Linden Lab will pass the buck, naturally, so the store owner there will get a 2AM visit from the state police some night. The law doesn’t differentiate between my snapping a naughty picture and emailing it to a teen, and them seeing naked pictures in Second Life. ... I can't point to a case where someone is in jail for pixel sex in front of a kid. But I'd like to avoid the danger. I can, however, point out that the law is so irrational that they've charged teens here in Texas with possession of child porn for having a picture of themselves. ... Wonder if a teen having a pic of their avatar in the buff constitutes child porn?”
“I have no problem with teens being in a properly set up Second Life. THIS isn't it!”
What would Shockwave say to the teens themselves, “I'm sorry LL shafted you all. But that wasn't my doing, and many of us BEGGED for a PG continent that you and us could have and be safe together. We saw what was coming and wanted to make the grid safe for all. Now it isn't safe for anyone.”
So if a resident was worried about teens, why not just change the rating on his sim to keep them off? Shockwave answered, “Trouble is, you cannot change the rating on a mainland parcel. And even if you could,” he felt it wouldn't do much good if the sim next to you remained PG.
As for Shockwave’s own kids, “I have a teen daughter. She wanted to enter Second Life. ... But with the merger, she's uninterested anymore, ‘I don't want to hang around a bunch of old people.’ "
Shockwave soon had to attend to some business, and we went out separate ways, leaving the adult store still next to the PG-rated sim.
7 hours ago