Sunday, March 30, 2008

New Lil Builder's Kit now available!


I have a third Lil Builder's Kit now available in my store "Pygar's Stuff". This one is an architecture block set with an instructional notecard giving details on rotation, copying and placement. It also has a series of pattern exercises to try out and a challenge to use the blocks to make objects using a certain number of prims!

Enjoy! :-D
Pygar Bu

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Free Presents for Boys and Girls!

I put two gift boxes in the Kick the Can store today; one is for boys, and one for girls. You'll find them in the Girls and Boys sections, near the Skins. It's a wrapped package; you can't miss it. Just Buy it for L$0.

Since it's a present, I'm not going to tell you all the things I put in the box, and ruin the surprise. But I will say that all the stuff is new, and none of it is for sale anywhere. I'll also tell you that it's clothing and goodies. :D

So, if you are a kid, or if you want to try being a kid for the weekend, come on down to Kick the Can, and get your prezzie!

See you there!

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Hilarity ensued!

Our Easter/Ostara/Springtime festival was a blast!

We had a good crowd of avatars in attendance for the gathering, held on a Sunday Afternoon in Second Life. Unlike most Sundays, SL was pretty stable, too! We decided to take some real-world activities and bring them to second life but, unlike everyone else, not do an easter egg hunt.

We started with egg coloring: Pygar and I set up a set of eggs and textures, with some basic instructions on texturing one with the other. In our new tent -- graciously recolored into bright spring tones by Robin -- we put these eggs as well as a large selection of refreshments.

Egg Coloring

Everyone had great fun coloring their eggs, going far beyond the textures we provided into tie-dye, windlight glow, shiny, and even attaching the bunny ears my brother was handing out to the crowd.

After everyone finished eating and dyeing, Pygar led folks on a nature hike of the island describing the local wildlife to the crowd. There really are a lot of birds, fishies, an other animals to be found on the island, especially with spring in full swing.

Nature Hike

The hike ended near Cheep Cheep Landing, where I'd set up our egg roll. Much like a real-world egg and spoon race, contestants had to push an oversides egg down a path and into the goal. After a couple heats, we had a winner: a young neko boy named Oahu took home the Golden Egg for 2008!

Egg Rolling Contest

Finally, to end the day, we awarded the best easter outfit. This was hard with so many pretty outfits, but a girl named Bella took the prize with her darling spring chick costume.

All in all, folks seemed to have a lot of fun doing events a bit different from the norm in Second Life. Look for moe fun stuff in the future!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Livingtree Spring Festival

Sorry for the lateness of this note! It's been a heck of a week here!

Spring Festival

Come to the Livingtree Spring Festival tomorrow, Sunday the 23rd, starting at 3:00 p.m. SLT!. We'll have a nature walk, an egg roll with prizes (including the Golden Egg Trophy!), refreshments, an lots of other stuff to do.

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Calling all Lil Builders!

I put the second Lil Builder's Kit out in my store. This one teaches beginner builders how to make a rag doll like my Noodles Doll. It includes a very descriptive and illustrated notecard with the instructions for manipulating the pre-made prims, and I hope you new builders enjoy it!

Friday, March 14, 2008

New Wedding Gift Box

Another week has gone by, and I have another gift box for sale. This time, it's for use at Weddings, Bridal Showers, and so on.

Image of the Gift, both closed and open, with swatches of the 11 paper designs. Blurb says 'Scripted Gift Box! Mod/Transfer, 11 paper designs, 11 Bow Colors, Sound & Particles, Menu System for Setup.'

It uses the same scripts as the Gold Star Gift Box, although it's a different box, so it's a different size, and the top comes off differently. (The size is perfect for holding a toaster. :D )

There are 11 different wedding paper designs, all specially made for this box, ranging from lace, roses, and wedding bells to classic scrolls and yin-yan symbols. The bow can be very colorful, or it can reflect the silver-white, gold, or ivory of the box. (You have 11 choices from the menus, or you can tint the ribbons any color you like, since the whole box is mod.)

When this box opens, it plays a few bars of Mendelssohn's Wedding March, and white roses from a vintage postcard explode from it. Very romantic. :D

Available now from the Home and Garden Gadgets store, attached to the back of the AV Store (where the skins and clothing are.) L$100, Mod/Transfer. (Although you don't have to give it away to present your presents. You can keep it, and use it again later!)

On a slightly different note, spring has definitely come to Livingtree. The cherry and plum trees are in full bloom all over the place, the ducklings and cygnets have hatched and are swimming around with their parents, and there are bluebells blooming here and there. If you haven't visited lately, you might want to stop by. I think you'll enjoy it!

See you there!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Media mush


Allow me to go off on a bit of a rant.

As most know, Livingtree is a welcoming place for child avatars. Two of us who are heavily involved in Livingtree are usually kids inworld, and a large part of the stores on the island are for virtual kids. THe island's many recreations, too, are designed with an understanding that they'll be fun for both adults and kids. We take a somewhat protective stance towards SL's "inner kids," and, quite frankly, I get pretty hot when I see people being unfair.

The majority of those who play kids in Second Life are doing it for innocent reasons. They might just find it fun to get out there as a kid an do kid stuff, or they might be healing old wrongs and losses in their lives through some harmless role playing. Without tooting my own horn too much, I've met a lot of virtual kids in Second Life, and have at least some idea when I say that most are not doing anything sexual with their avatars

But yet again, the news media is going after sexual ageplay in Second Life, and branding it as "pedophilia."

Jason Farrell — a reporter for Sky Five in the UK who had previously uncovered one location that included sexual ageplay — was back, playing a female child avatar and trying to entrap people who wanted to perform sexual activities with him. All this for a piece touting the supposed rampant issue of pedophilia in Second Life, and Sky News' opinion that Linden Lab is doing enough to curb it.

On the heels of this report, Sky Five also presented an discussion inworld to supposedly debate the issue of applying real-world laws to the Second Life Grid. The talk — plagued by audio issues and with an audience largely comprised of child avatars — was more a cherry picked panel presenting their opinions on sexual ageplay, largely glossing over the supposed planned topic, and curbing dissent. Of course, the program this typically airs on, Five News with Natasha Kaplinsky, appears to thrive on "zOMG, teh inter-tubes is so skery!" stories.

This was not journalism, and their "debate" was no debate. This was media hackery, and a transparent attempt to gain viewers — and visitors to their Second Life location. Meanwhile, the issues of sexual ageplay and child pornography are being exploited to make Sky a buck.

Sky's report on the debate was rife with errors and spin. The audience, which they claim was an invited group of "deviants" like those they highlighted in the piece. Nonsense: the debate was one I heard about on the website and promoted to the Second Life Children group. These were residents tired of being tarred and feathered as pedophiles — who, in their follow-up, are essentially again presented as such. That their audience was angered — the inference that they did not want to lose the ability to have sex with kids — is a fallacy: the audience was incensed that Sky Five was implying that there wasn't oversight in place already. The report at seems a little less biased.

Does it strike anyone else as being a bit hypocritical for them to warn people about the dangers of virtual pedophilia in Second Life, then use Second Life to hold your meeting about how bad Second Life is?

The thing is, it's just not the issue these "news" agencies make it to be. For one, much as I might personally find sexual ageplay distasteful in a Second Life context, it's not real pedophilia. This is a layered issue, full of nuance. While most child avatars — including, seemingly, all who attended the Sky discussion — do not include adult activities with their kid persona, those that do are adults IRL and also claim little connection to real-world pedophiles: from those I've spoken to, it is more about being "infantilized" — not about sex with real children.

I'm not saying bad things don't happen here — but I am saying that they don't happen to the level these sensationalist news organizations claim. Any one can pick out a few incidents in a world of twelve million accounts, and spin it into something that seems much larger.

Indeed, it might seem the bigger issue with sexual predators might be found outside of Second Life. MySpace, Facebook, or other social networking sites have been such a target, and there may be some cases to be had there. Meanwhile, most cases of child molestation still come from friends and family members, not faceless strangers from the computer. Heck, one of Sky News' own "experts" noted that "potentially deviant fantasy role-playing that can take place in virtual worlds may be transferrable to the real world, but that it is not at present provable, or known which individuals might be susceptable to this." Possible. May. Not at present provable.

Linden Lab has made it clear that they have no tolerance for sexual ageplay. They have been largely active in closing down locations and groups involved with such, in spite of what must me a crusing workload of reports of illegal casinos, crooked ATMs, ad farms, and newbies wandering naked through the welcome areas. I do know that the place in question within this Sky News report showed up a few times on the SL police blotter in the weeks before.

I should add that, during inworld Governance team office hours recently, the team notes that Sky — contrary to their claims — do not contact Linden Lab for a response. They also let me know that the reporter's own actions may well be actionable under the current anti-sexual ageplay rules.

For what it's worth, Sky Five is participating in the same sort of "fear of the unknown" script that gets played out over and over. It's like the burly blackfaced character of Gus in D.W. Griffith's Birth of a Nation attacking the helpless young white female to build sympathy for the KKK. It's like Reefer Madness and any number such "educational" films that sold movie tickets while scaring the public without rubber-masked monsters. It's like Dr. Fredric Wertham's Seduction of the Innocent that led to the dragonian Comic Code. It's like the Tipper Gore-led PMRC fighting against backmasking and 2 Live Crew. It's like the Briggs Amendent from California in the late 1970s, to presumably protect 'the children' from having a gay or lesbian — or even gay and lesbian sympathetic — teacher.

Now it's "them inter-tubes" under attack for corrupting our youth and, by extension, Second Life.

That's what it boils down to. A media report trafficing in unknowns and spin in some attempt to "scare" their viewers into watching their report, with no real, tangible proof that there truly is a real issue.

I personally do not care for sexual ageplay — but I think I care less for these slimy "news" outlets attempting to use sexual ageplay to boost their own ratings and draw people to their otherwise empty region. This reporter may well have run afoul of SLs own rules on sexual ageplay in order to concoct his story — and he expects us to trust him?

This report will not change any of Linden Lab's policies towards SL kids, this they have assured me. In the court of public opinion, inworld this has been a blip on the radar, and few have reported any substantive fallout. I suspect some might speak of it in the real world — but it seems clear that the report is tainted as much as any other Sky Five report, and will likely be viewed with extreme suspicion by all but those most likely to fall prey to their shenanigans.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Want to learn how to make stuff?

Building in second Life is easy and fun! :-D
I just put out my first "Lil Builder's Kit" in my store. This one's for jewelry-making, and teaches basic prim manipulation for placement and linking. It comes with copyable beads and a band for your wrist, as well as detailed instructions for what to do with it all.
Enjoy! :-D

Saturday, March 8, 2008

New Scripted Gift Boxes!

Are you tired of giving gifts in prims that have to be taken back into Inventory before you can really give them? Or set to sale for L$0, with the risk that someone else will buy them before the person you are giving the gift to?

This gift box will change all that, and it's really fun, too!

Image of the Gift, both closed and open, with swatches of the 11 paper designs. Blurb says 'Scripted Gift Box! Mod/Transfer, 11 paper colors, 11 Box Colors, Sound & Particles, Menu System for Setup. Tons of fun!'

Now, you can set the Gift to be given only to the specific person you name, on the date you say they can have it. Their name, a message, and the date are all displayed in Floating Text above the box, in one of 11 colors you can choose (or you can choose not to show it, if you're not fond of Floating Text.)

When the person named touches the box, on or after the date you've specified, they get a menu letting them open it, or wait a bit.

If they choose to open it, it really opens! The top slides off, the ribbons fall away, the gift tag lands next to the box, and at the same time a trumpet fanfare sounds, and gold stars explode from inside the box, while it says whatever message you've given it to say, in Open Chat.

While all this is going on, the box also offers all its contents to that person (except the scripts, sound and particle texture that make it work.) Even things that are no-copy!

Then the box closes itself again, and you can pick it up, and use it for the next occasion.

As if that wasn't enough, the menus also allow you to choose from 11 preset paper designs, to mix and match with 11 different ribbon colors.

If none of them suit you, you can just use your own textures for the paper. The box is Modifiable, so you can retexture or resize it, or tint the ribbon any color you like. (You can also put something inside the box, and link it, so that the box doesn't look empty when it opens.)

There's a tag on the box that you can personalize, too. Or you could just remove it (or make it transparent) if you don't like it.

At the moment, there's just one design; Gold Star paper, in eleven colors, with a brilliant bow on the top. But I have lots more planned, now that I've gotten the scripts hammered out!

If you are a Resident of SL, you can see it in the Party Tent behind Kick the Can, or at the AV Store, in the Home and Garden section. Both are on Livingtree Island. See my picks (Robin Sojourner) for a Teleport.

(Thanks to Eladon Galsworthy, who wrote the base script that makes the box open, and to Liandra Ceawlin, who gave me the script that lets it check the time, so it would open not just on the date set, but any time after that date, as well!)

See you there!

Friday, March 7, 2008

New balloon hat available at Pygar's Stuff!

Springtime on Livingtree has brought flowers, including one for your head! :-D
My balloon hats are all modify/transfer, and attach at your avatar's mouth.
Enjoy! :-D

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Spring Striped Sets for Ladies and Girls!

I just got some striped sets done for Second Life Women and Girls, in new Spring colors.

Girl with striped tights and top in two shades of green.

This is what it looks like on a kid (because the kids are cuter.) If you'd like to see it on an adult, I have that too.

There are eight colors combinations in the new set. If none of them suit you, you can also IM me in world, and I'll be happy to make whatever two color combination you want for L$200.

On a related note; the new computer lets me take the Vendor Shots much more easily, with tons less frustration. Since it was the necessity of taking them that's been holding me back, look for more clothing production now that's no longer an issue. :D

And there was much rejoicing.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Yay! Freebies!

Just for the fun of it, I've put out a trio of free T-shirts in my You Know, For Kids store, as well as a free compass HUD and hand-held compass. I should mention too, that even though these are in my kid store, they will fit both child and adult avatars.

free stuff!

Enjoy, and while you're in Livingtree, why not take a look around the store and the rest of the island?