Thursday, August 11, 2022

New Forum Guidelines Announced By Linden Lab

The Second Life Forums can be an informitive and interesting place. You can find information on recent changes, find advice on what mesh head to use, get feedback on a common technical glitch, and more. But there are also topics that while possibly mildly entertaining have nothing to do with Second Life. Taking a look at the General Discussion Forum, there were some such as "What do you think of Mark Zuckerberg?", "Dummest Ads In The World", "What are you watching today?" and others.

It seems there will be no more of these as several days ago, Linden Lab announced there would be some new "Forum Guidelines and Restructuring." In short, they want the residents to limit conversations to those more relevant to Second Life and what's in it. Tommy Linden would post the following:

... Over the years our forums have gone through many changes, and today we have some more to share with you. We’ve been taking a good, long look at our forums structure, guidelines and how our Residents use this space, and have come up with a few changes that we will be putting in place today.

We’ve added some clarity to the sections, and developed guidelines which should enhance everyone's participation. We hope these new guidelines will help provide a more structured forum environment where conversations about Second Life can continue to flourish, and where members old and new alike will feel comfortable and safe in participating.

We’ve also made changes to the forum structure and cleaned up some areas that have gotten a little dusty.  Reorganizing the Land forum will make it easier to find and post about that awesome parcel/region you are selling/buying.  A brand new Roleplay category is now available to post Roleplay groups or regions that are free to join.  

We also wanted to try and help Residents understand what type of topics belong in each category of the forum. You will now find that in the pinned section of each category is a brief post with some basic guidelines for what is, and is not allowed in that section.

We love seeing the discussions about Second Life that take place here on our forum, and we hope that everyone continues to enjoy them as much as we do.

So what kind of changes? In the more active "General Discussion Forum," Tommy Linden would say this:

... In order to ensure that you have an enriching and productive experience interacting with other Residents on the Forums, we want to define what generally belongs here in the General Discussion Forum and what does not.

If you are not familiar with the Community Standards, Community Participation Guidelines and Forum Participation Guidelines in general, please familiarize yourself before posting!

We encourage you to participate by posting anything related to Second Life discussions that don’t quite fit in our other sub-forums. These are just guidelines, so please use your best judgment when posting if it is not explicitly stated here!

Not Allowed:
In addition to adhering to the Community Standards, please refrain from posting content discussing inflammatory content (Politics, Social Justice issues and Interpersonal disputes), Anything that doesn’t relate directly to Second Life/Linden Lab, Generic posts (like “Post a random animal picture!” versus an acceptable “Post your Second Life pets!”), etc. These are just guidelines, so please use your best judgment when posting if it is not explicitly stated here!  

For Educations and Nonprofits, the following was allowed:

...  any discussions among Educational and Non-profit organizations with a presence in Second Life, as well as anything related to discussions about educational and non-profit organizations with a presence in Second Life or how to bring educational and non-profit work into Second Life.

And the following was stated as not allowed:

In addition to adhering to the Community Standards, please refrain from posting content containing School Roleplay, Volunteerism Roleplay, advertisements for organizations outside of Second Life, or advertisements for education/non-profit groups and/or events in Second Life.

Naturally, a thread about these changes soon came about in the forums. There were some who welcomed the changes, "the forum was a uncontrollable sh**Show were people tend to get in fights even over the most minor things or old forum users not answering questions instead they just gave 'helpful' answers like 'you posted this in the wrong section'." But not everyone was in favor, "I simply can't live with such strict rules for general discussion. This is not the way to treat adult members and even call these pages a community. Even in a classroom kids are allowed to go of topic every once in a while." There were also people commenting perhaps people will start posting more on other forums such as Virtualverse.

So will the changes bring a little order to the chaos, or was the chaos a necessary element for all of the active speech. Time will tell.
Hat tip: Daniel Voyager

Bixyl Shuftan

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