Posts tagged Second Life

Second Life bans banking services

I was pretty shocked when I first heard the news. After banning gambling, Second Life is now banning banking services wef 22 Jan 2008. Banking services? Although I don’t agree with the gambling bans on Second Life, I do understand why Linden Lab decide to ban it. But banking is a legal activity. Every country in the real world has banking service (correct me if I’m wrong). So why is banking services being banned on second life?

The reason behind the ban, according to Ken Linden, is that most in-world banks offer unsustainably high interest rates of up to 60% per annual. Ginko Financial was the best known failure, owing 200 million Linden ($750,000) when it closed down.

So to prevent Banking Institutes from closing down together with resident’s money, Linden Labs decide close them down at one go. (I don’t know why, but some of my friends find this statement funny)

Going forward, only banks with proof of an applicable government registration statement or financial institution charter are allowed to operate in Second Life.

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Techcrunch reported this new and questioned if First Meta will be affected. First Meta is a Singapore based company that offers banking and credit card services in Second Life. First Meta’s saving account will surely be affected by this new ruling. But their MetaCard, a credit card in Second Life, is on the grey area.

Douglas Abrams, CEO First Meta, replied on the Techcrunch comment:

First Meta fully supports regulation of financial services activity in the virtual economy. As First Meta’s business is not dependent on savings accounts or other investment instruments which are addressed by the new policy, we believe that the new policy will not have any adverse effects on our company. Insofar as the new policy strengthens the virtual economy, we believe this will actually benefit First Meta and our customers. You can read more about our view of this new policy at: http://www.firstmeta.com/main/policy

To certain extend, First Meta might be able to pull thru this. First Meta is a registered company in Singapore and has funding from real life investors. But the question is, does Linden Labs recognize these proofs? Will they be given the green light to continue to operate in Second Life?

If Linden Labs gives the green light, it would be a great victory for them. Not only will that boast confidence among the residents of Second Life, they will also be in a good position to capture the market share that was previously taken by other banking services.

But if Linden Labs feels that First Meta is not safe, then I’m afraid First Meta might have to close down soon unless they can find another virtual world to operate in.

Looks like a battle for life and death.

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The way Linden Lab is handling the whole issue is rather alarming. Yes, there are indeed some banks in Second Life that are operating like a ponzi schemes. But instead of shutting down those “fake bank”, they decided to shut down all banking services, including those bon fide banks.

What about those banks which has a proper business model but doesn’t have a financial institution charter or government registration? Are they considered unsafe too? Imagine having invested lots of money in buying land, hiring programmers and marketing and having them gone to waste overnight when this ban is implemented.

All the residents would surely rush to withdraw their money with these banks. How do they return money to residents? A proper banking business model would reinvest the money they got from savings account. Are the banks able to get back all the money from their investments within such short notice without making a huge lost?

This is not the first time something is being banned on Second Life within such a short notice. If you are an entrepreneur, would you have the confidence to start your business in Second Life? We are talking about a very big risk here where you might just lose everything you invested overnight due to policy change. Even if you are doing something that is legal.

It is like running a business in a developing country ruled by a dictator. The dictator can cease your property and throw you into exile anytime he likes. And you have no legal means to fight back.

Would you set up your business in a developing country like this?

Too Long For Twitter, Too Short For Blog #7

Argh… I need to do this more frequently.

Decayonnet at sgblogs rank 15
I don’t really know how sgblogs.com does its ranking. But I’m surprised that I managed to get into rank 15.

But the ranking is quite competitive and changes almost every day. Doubt I’ll remain there for long. Oh well, at least its nice to know that I managed to hit rank 15 once. :)

Humping Dog
Not sure if I should classify this as NSFW. Anyway, its funny, but really serve no purpose. And very noisy too.

Interviewed by How to blog for money
Paddy email me recently to do an interview for his blog. Here are the things that I said.

When I read back what I wrote, I found that I was rather boring when answering the question. Which is not my usual self. Wondering why…. Must be tired cause of the assignment.

Someone stole my Dilbert Calendar
Someone in my office stole my Dilbert Calendar. Not the whole Calendar, but just one piece. But strangely, that day’s comic wasn’t exceptionally funny. Why would anyone want to steal it? Sad…. I always keep the paper after tearing them. Now I’m short of one day in my collection.

Building the Merlion in Second Life
Got a group message from Lion City in Second Life. They are giving Lion City a facelift and need help with building a Merlion. If you think you are able to do it, feel free to contact MInky MOusehold.

I went into Lion City yesterday. It was empty. They even removed the Suntec City! :(
I love the Suntec City. Wish that they will put it back soon.

6 5 more pownce invites to give away
The pownce invites are still up for grabs. Hurry before it runs out.

OK, I think it won’t run out. Maybe pownce has given out too many invites and those who wanted pownce would have already gotten it already. Anyway, if you want, feel free to drop me a comment.

SL Singapore Meetup 24 Jun 07

Just got a message from Second Life Singapore saying that there will be meetup on 24 Jun 07, 8pm. Venue will be at Second life, Lion City.

Sounds interesting. Maybe I should try attending.

Second Life Singapore has 406 members already. COOL!

Child sex in Second Life

Linden Lab recently banned 2 users from Second Life because they were “engaging in child sex” in the SL world.

On Thursday May 3, we were contacted by German television network, ARD, which had captured images of two avatars, one that resembled an adult male and another that resembled a child, engaged in depicted sexual conduct. Our investigations revealed the users behind these avatars to be a 54-year-old man and a 27-year-old woman. Both were immediately banned from Second Life.

I am against child sex. In the first place, I cannot understand why would someone be so pervertic to be interested in having sex with a little child.

But this happened in Second Life. The 2 person behind it are adults, and merely roleplaying child sex. Is there anything wrong about it? Why the ban? What role playing is allowed in Second Life, and what is not allowed? And since children aren’t allowed to sign up for Second Life, then why in the first place allow a child avatar?

Will someone be banned for having sex with another person using an animal avatar? I wonder.

Anyway, I also don’t understand why do people engage in sexual activities in Second Life. Where is the fun of having “sex” in second life? What the fun? Like that shiok meh? OK, perhaps I don’t understand because I haven’t tried it before.

Darryl Kappler is still a virgin in Second Life.

No more dancing paradise

I think Estee danced too much at the previous location until they closed down the whole place.

Damn…. I was enjoying myself there. Earning 2 linden every 10 minutes. It’s cheap labour, but where else do you get paid for dancing? And just yesterday, there are 2 chio bu dancing with me. Second Life is good.

Long time never dance already. Hope my dance move managed to impress them. I don’t think they are real chio bu in First Life. The thing about looks in Second Life is that, if you are good looking in Second Life, then most likely you are not in First Life. Which explains why I’m so good looking in Second Life. :D

Anyway, Uzyn introduce to us another place to earn linden. This time, its 1 linden every 4 minutes. And the job is easier, just sit there do nothing.

But still, 2 linden every 8 minute is still cheap labour. I heard that the exchange rate is around 270 linden to 1 USD. Wah. We are earning less than those aunty at McDonalds!

I thought if I can’t be a millionaire in First Life, maybe I can try be a millionaire in Second Life. Looks like it’s even harder to become rich in Second Life.

That’s a picture of me sitting at the top of the Suntec Fountain of Wealth in Second Life, looking at the sunset….. wondering…..
How long will it take for me to become a rich in Second Life?