Written 22 June, 2010
Controversy at SLB7
When I was eight years old I was fortunate enough to be taken by my parents to the Louvre, where I was mightily impressed by the paintings and statuary.
I returned to the Louvre when I was in my 30s and took the photo of the Venus de Milo, above.
One might notice she is, erm, undraped.
When, several years later, we saw Michaelangelo's David in Florence, it was even more unclothed-- but even my conservative parents in those conservative times thought nothing of the penises and nipples of Europe museums and gardens. Why? Because it was art, dammit.
Art depicting wholly or completely unclothed men and women has for centuries been displayed in public spaces on Earth-- and on PG sims in Second Life without causing controversy or exciting censorship.
So, why, then, have the notorious Linden nipple police been active at the Second Life 7th Birthday sims? It seems the abstract art of resident Rose Borchovski, whose Susa Bubble display contained an abstract nippple or two, got flagged and removed from the SLB7 sims.
This echoes at least one earlier Linden-sponsored celebration. Three years ago at Burning Life 20007 Lindens covered offending nipples with virtual fig leaves.
Outrage was widespread back in '07, and it's even stronger today. I just love Chestnut Rau's rant on the subject. You go girl!
I agree entirely with Chestnut and only wish I had said it myself!
It's clear the Lindens get nervous at any event which might get attention from the media-- and clearly at least some of the staff go into unreasoning censorship mode.
Yeah, Second Life is considered by some people to be a huge sexual playground-- and for some people it is just that-- but the way to convince people this world is about more than sex is not to remove content that only a fevered imagination might consider prurient.
There's a simple fix for this. Linden Lab needs to create both mature and PG areas for its celebrations. I've no idea why they've not done so.
Hopefully by the time Burning Life rolls around, the idea will have percolated around.
Of course, by then I'll be CEO and can make sure it happens.