Sunday, November 30, 2014

Cartoon of the Day

Taken at a combat sim (not New Bastogne). Nydia Tungsten was doing a video shoot at the 1940's Europe style streets when a couple wise guys started taking pok shots at us with their bomber. Unfortunetly for them, they got a little close to the ground, and ended up stalling and making a hard landing right onto the streets. As you can see, taking off again from the position was impossible, so they just left the plane.

Bixyl Shuftan

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Tales From Podex: When Feathers Fly

 The workers at the Podex Exchange were going about this day in late November. They talked some about the Veterans Day activities earlier that month. They talked a little about upcoming Winter activities that would soon arrive across the Grid. But more immediate were Thanksgiving activities. Some of the tellers expressed they seemed hard to find, although there was a replica of the Mayflower that had been built.

During the talk, a figure approached the bank entrance. A teller glanced his way before turning to the others, “Looks like someone from a Thanksgiving party is stopping by for a little business.” They took care of some paperwork as the resident entered, then one turned his way, “Hello, how can we hel-” his words were cut short when he recognized the visitor.

The resident was wearing an American Indian costume. Not an authentic one, but one that looked like it was made for a low-budget movie. the most prominent feature were the feathers worn in places around the arms and legs, as well as a single feather on a headband, with the largest piece being a bow and quiver. The guy wearing it was instantly recognizable, “Clumsy Cooper,” the petty thief whom kept trying to rob the Podex exchange. But his attempts had never succeeded, sometimes failing epically.

“I bring greetings from Procyon Tribe,” Clumsy bluffed, talking like a movie character, “Here for terms of Treaty. Your Chief Shuftan get Coda land in exchange for fifty thousand Lindens every autumn at the time of the turkey. Will take now.”

The tellers looked at him, then chuckled. One joked, “Procyon Tribe had weak claim on land. Deal to trade for Lindens never made. Deal made to trade for two skins.” He then reached under his table, and tossed a couple moth-eaten rabbit pelts in Clumsy’s direction.

It was then Clumsy dropped his fake Indian act, “Okay, this is a stick-up!" He then drew his bow and arrow, "Hand over your Lindens!”

The tellers stared back, and one retorted, “Oh pul-lease. I’ve seen real Indians, or rather Native Americans, and I’ve seen real bows and arrows. That thing’s a cheap imitation from a freebie store that couldn’t scratch a target.”

“Oh yeah?!” Clumsy then pulled back on the string, aiming at a piece of equipment. But the result was a “crick” sound, followed by the bow breaking in two. Surprised, Clumsy let it drop to the ground. For a moment, no one spoke a word. Then one teller yelled, “Get ‘im!”

Clumsy's response was to turn tail and run out of the bank, and keep running. He looked around for a place to hide. He saw a huge dark building nearby and ran to that. Getting close, he was wondering if he'd have to swim across a moat, but a metal gangplank extended out to an outcrop of black iron on the other side. Clumsy ran up, crossed in, and ran inside, thinking only that this would be a place to hide.

Once in, Clumsy found himself in some kind of dark iron structure, the smell of Industrial grease and fuels around. He was still getting his bearings when the door shut behind him, leaving only minimal light.

"Identify yourself, visitor," a voice boomed out from the loudspeaker.

"Um," Clumsy began to regret his choice of a hiding place, "just a passerby going through."

"I think not. You were seen running from the Podex Exchange. Are you not this 'Clumsy Cooper' whom has been attempting to rob the place?"

"Wh-what makes you think that?" Clumsy was getting nervous.

The response was an evil chuckle that made the burglar's blood chill, "I would say it's plainly obvious. But do not worry. There will be no call to the police. I have use for a 'liberator of assets' as yourself."

"Um, wh-what would you have me do?"

A door leading to deeper inside slowly open, "Come and more will be explained. Succeed, and perhaps you will have learned enough to successfully burgle your adversary.  Fail, and you will live only just long enough to wish you had fallen into the hands of the authorities."

Clumsy gulped, then hesitated, feeling he'd gotten way over his head. But with the door to the outside locked, there was nothing else to do but follow the lead of his mysterious host. So he nervously walked forward, wondering how he was going to get out of this one.

Back at the Podex Exchange, the Second Life Police Department was called, and they did an investigation. Not finding Clumsy Cooper, they issued a warrant for his arrest for attempted griefing.

But even if Cooper's scheme had worked, there was no way he could have gotten away with any ill-gotten gains. “All our exchanges are done through electronic transfer,” a teller later explained to the SLPD, “He wouldn’t have walked away with a single Linden.”

The Podex Exchange has a record of being one of the safest Linden exchange services in Second Life, the data processing done outside the exchange, and has a record of thousands of satisfied customers. Transactions can be done at their website, or their location inworld at the Coda sim at (45, 218, 61).

Note: The preceding is a fictional story, written for the dual purpose of advertisement and entertainment.

By Bixyl Shuftan

SL Video: "Project SciFi 2013 RE:VIVE by Vilvi"

(Click here if the video doesn't play)

From "turrivideot", "RE:VIVE - A machinima short film filmed in Second Life by Vilvi." A team braves the hazards of a wasteland and it's robot guardians on a quest. What is it and will they succeed?

Friday, November 28, 2014

Commentary: Seven Years of Virtual Journalism

"Every resident in Second Life has a story." That's what I've remarked about the residents here. But some stories have a bit of a false start and the real tale begins a little later. That was the case with me, and it was seven years ago this month that the first part of my virtual journey ended as I became the man, or fox, most everyone in Second Life knows me to be.

Read more in People.

Virtual Ability: Accessibility For the Disabled

Wesley Regenbogen recently took a look at Virtual Ability Island. Having recently celebrated it's seventh anniversary, it's stood the test of time. So what's special about it? Wesley had a few answers.

Read more in Extra.

Press Release: Bay City Annual Tree Lighting, Concert, and Fundraiser

BAY CITY, SL  - The Bay City Alliance will host its annual Tree Lighting event on Saturday, 6th December 2013 from 1-4 pm SL. The event will be held at the Bay City Fairgrounds, in North Channel ( ) and will feature DJ GoSpeed Racer and live performer Christov Kohnke. There will be ice-skating, dancing, refreshments and lots of fun to be had!

As part of the event, a silent auctionsupporting Child's Play Charity ( will be held. We are asking Second Life™ designers and artists to participate by providing fun, interesting, unique, or other transferrable items (or a no-copy object that the auction winner can give to you to redeem their prize, if the item(s) have to be no transfer). Please contact Marianne McCann to participate.

Auction will end at the conclusion of the event. All proceeds from the silent auction and from donation bins at the venue will go to Child's Play Charity. Child's Play is a 501c3 non profit organization offers online communities such as ours an opportunity to help seriously ill children around the globe during their hospital stays with the purchase of games and gaming equipment.

Bay City is a mainland community, developed by Linden Lab® and home to the Bay City Alliance. The Bay City Alliance was founded in 2008 to promote the Bay City regions of Second Life and provide a venue for Bay City Residents and other interested parties to socialize and network. It is now the largest group for Residents of Bay City.

For more information, or to participate in the event, please contact Marianne McCann.

Do You Have a Story?

While we at Second Life Newser work hard to find you the news, one source of stories is you the readers.

Have you seen a particularly well-detailed sim? Went to a great event? Found yourself in a hilarious "only in SL" predicament? We're very interested in what you the readers have to say. Send us a story or funny picture, and if we like it, we'll post it as a Reader Submitted. For pictures, jpg format is preferred.

Mail submissions to bixylshuftan(at)

PLEASE include your SL user name and tell us if you wish it to appear with your story.

SL-newser reserves the right to post in the appropriate section and to investigate any names used in submitted stories (please ask permission before using anyones name or picture or use an alias for them).

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Happy Thanksgiving From Second Life Newser

 Thanksgiving may be a holiday in which many of us are busy in the kitchen (or watching football), but some took a little time to drop by Second Life to be with friends and neighbors. Gemma took this picture at her home area in Thorstar, "Thanksgiving at the fishing contest."

Ancient Rome was a bit before Thanksgiving. Still, they bent the rules a little for the sake of people having fun and socializing.

Thanksgiving Day is a national holiday celebrated primarily in the United States and Canada as a day of giving thanks for the blessing of the harvest and of the preceding year. Several other places around the world observe similar celebrations. ROMA SPQR  celebrates it today at 1 PM in the mansio in Subura. Come as you are and party!

And yours truly dropped by for quite a feast, at least for the eyes.

Happy Thanksgiving everyone from Second Life Newser.

Mayflower and Plymouth Colony Exhibit

By Bixyl Shuftan

In the Zundra sim, there is an exhibit appropriate for the Thanksgiving holiday. There, a replica of the "Mayflower," the ship that brought the Pilgrims to America, lies next to the shore.

The Mayflower, a privately commissioned vessel captained by Christopher Jones, transported the Pilgrims from Plymouth, England to the New World in 1620. There, they hoped to found a new colony and worship God as Scripture taught, free of the dictates of the Church of England.

On September 6, the vessel headed out to sea. After a grueling sixty-six day journey marked by disease and violent storms, the
Mayflower sighted Cape Cod and turned south, seeking to land in the Hudson River region, north of the Jamestown Settlement. However, rough seas as winter approached forced a return to Cape Cod (Provincetown Harbor), where the ship dropped anchor on November 11.

On March 21, 1621, all surviving passengers having remained aboard ship during the harsh winter, moved ashore to found the Plymouth Colony. On April 5, the
Mayflower herself returned to England, and resumed her career as a trade vessel.

Neither the ship nor captain long survived the journey. Jones would die in 1622. The ship would lie in berth not far from where he was buried for two years, then was declared unseaworthy and broken up for it's wood.

Not far away are a couple buildings, a family house with a garden, and the two-story building that was used as a combination meeting house, storehouse,  and fort. There was also a baking oven and cookpot. Around the builds were a number of deer, squirrels, chickens, and other animals. On occasion, a rooster would crow.

And of course there was a table with a Thanksgiving dinner, representing the famous one in November 22, 1621.

With the help of Squanto and other Indian friends, hunters brought back four large turkeys, deer, and wild ducks. The kitchens grew busy as a great feast was prepared. Stew simmered in a great cookpot. Children dug clams at a nearby beach. The scent of baking break, pies, and little sweetcakes filled the cool air.

The next sunrise brought a beautiful Thursday morning. Once their Indian guests had arrived, the Pilgrims prayed in thanks to God. All began to eat, partaking of turkey, venison, clam broth, turnips, corn, and many other foods, including a delicacy the Indians introduced to the settlement that morning - popcorn!

The builds were put up by Lora Chadbourne, whom wished visitors, "Happy Thanksgiving!  Lora Chadbourne has created the authentic Mayflower and Plymouth village for you to enjoy!"

Zundra (230, 69, 21)

Bixyl Shuftan

New Sponsor, and an Auxillary Office

The Newser has a new sponsor, the Nisa Manelands Roleplaying sims. Owned by Lacy Musketeer, she added this to the deal, an auxiliary office location in Exmoor, just north of where the sim borders Trotsdale to the south. In contrast to the cartoon-like builds in Trotsdale, the Nisa sims are mostly wilderness area.

Grease Coakes wrote about Nisa earlier this year in August. Since then, the area has grown. Lacy's attracted a number of friends to her roleplay, but there's still room for more.

Press Release: Ten Years of Snail Racing

It is a happy TENcenial of Giant Snail Racing, and we have the party hats to pass out, the candles to light and the cake TO BLOW AWAY THE SIM! We have been doing the Giant Snail races for 10 whole years now and Were having a party after the race this week And your all invited come see how far the races have advanced in ten years and then party with our own DjXanadu and a special guest Singer too.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Cartoon of the Day

Taken at the Luskwood Eleventh Birthday celebrations last month. Keeba Tammas did her singing act in what could be called a "Hannibal Lecter" getup, straighjacketed and muzzled. So one wonders, why did they confine her like that? ;-)

By Bixyl Shuftan

Rocca Sorrentina: Reliving the 18th Century

Fritter Enzyme recently stopped at Rocca Sorrentina. A "light" roleplay area, you're invited to dress as people did in the 18th century. There's also much to see and explore around here.

Read Fritter's article in Places.

Press Release: BURN2 2014 Santalarity

Once again, we bring our unique style of winter hilarity to the playa, with snow and ice covering the dusty ground and Burners’ visions of the season scattered around. Santalarity is BURN2’s decommodification event, the antithesis of the typical rushed holiday season focused on profits and buying, on unrealistic expectations and joy found in aisle three.

Instead we ask, “What’s in the Box?” What do we want to give? We invite you to come to the playa, to observe artists’ interpretations of these questions, to ice skate, dance, drum and be present when we Burn the Box. Before the Box is burned messages left by visitors to the playa will be read, which shall express what they would like to give. To give without expectation of return. To give for the pure joy of giving.

Santalarity will be a 24-hour event, opening on Saturday, 13th December at 10:00 AM SLT/PST. The Lamplighters will kick off  the event with an initial drumming. The Box will Burn on the 13th at 12:00 PM SLT/PST and again at 8:00 PM SLT/PST.

Artists and builders are invited to apply to build on plots to the theme, by submitting an application at - plots are free.

DJs and live performers interested in participating during the event can sign up using the form at and if there are questions about performance scheduling, contact BURN2 Performance Lead Larree Quixote inworld.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Events This Week at The Sunweaver Clubs

It's Thanksgiving week, and the Sunweaver clubs are offering a chance to exercise off that turkey dinner.

See the list in Events this Week.

Press Release: RFL Fundraiser / Thanksgiving Party Today

Let's break in the new Party Loft before we're too stuffed to dance! It's come as you are, so get comfy or slip into your holiday finest! We've got L$500 on the board and 100% of tips go to Relay For Life of Second Life and the American Cancer Society!  All welcome, please no nudity!

Today -  3-5PM

SL Video: "The Drax Files - World Makers [Episode 24: MadameThespian Underhill] "

(Click here if the video fails to play)

" 'Second Life levels the playing field when we interact with each other,' says actress MadameThespian Underhill who directs the virtual reality theatre troupe Artist Repertory Theatre in SL. A.R.T has been performing live theatre in the virtual world since 2008 with a cast that spans all generations and [physical] location. Professional TV and stage actors mingle with dedicated hobbyists and community theatre buffs to dress up their colorful avatars in homemade sets to produce drama, comedy, musical and improvisational theatre for a global avatar audience.

"In addition to the creative possibilities that a digital universe such as Second Life holds, MadameThespian is enthusiastic about its social aspects as well: 'The value for older people' she says, 'is wonderful because of the ability to interact with other people from all over the world of other ages. You are being judged by what you say - the pure essence of who you are!' And so you can often see the likes of Thinkerer Melville, 85, well-known benefactor of the arts in Second Life enjoying inter-generational dialogue with Madame and Mike Denneny, who at 22 years old is already a veteran in the virtual realm, having started as an entrepreneur on the Teen Grid in 2005. The theatre a place to express a deeper kind of truth about the human condition? Certainly a tradition in physical 'reality' but increasingly one that has impacted virtual reality just as much!"


"Special thanks to Marianne McCann for a fabulous set building to frame this story. All other sets shown made by members and contractors from A.R.T.

"Thanks to Mike Denneny and Thinkerer Melville and all the fabulous extras: KennyLuck Luckless, Remi Maggs, Jenkel, Vick Forcella, Dove, Pygar Bu, Kris Spade, Not, Molly Montale, Avariel Falcon, SCarlett Luv, Drew, Adasyd Nino, Sven Homewood, Cayenne Republic, Fenn McMoragh, GoSpeed, ZevLuv, Wolfrum Windstorm, BeCreative Wildeheart, Wizardoz

"The A.R.T. ensemble consists of MadameThespian Underhill, Caledonia Skytower, Ada Radius, Corwyn Allen, Joff Fassnaught, Rowan Shamroy, Kayden O'Connell, AvaJean Westland, Sodovan Torok, Breyda Adored

"Montana Shakespeare production of "Romeo & Juliet" [2013] featuring MT Underhill as "nurse" was directed by Kim DeLong and filmed by Bill Otto. The excerpt from the rehearsal of "Much Ado About Nothing" [ 2014] was also directed by Kim DeLong."

Monday, November 24, 2014

Radegast Text-Based Viewer Opens SL to a New Community

Second Life has opened a virtual world of possibilities to the public. But what about those whom are visually impaired or blind? Celene Highwater (Mermaid Celene) writes about Ragegast, a text-based viewer designed by Latif Khalifa. For those with problems with sight, the viewer can make all the difference in accessing the Grid.

Read Celene's article in Design.

Addition: Earlier the link was broken, it's fixed now.

The Quest Qlub

Wesley Regenbogen has been on the club scene again. This time he checks out the Quest Qlub. The place in particular draws residents from Holland and Belgium, such as Wesley, but all are invited over.

Read Wesley's article in Places.

Commentary: Should SL 2.0 Allow Adult Content, or Not?

By Bixyl Shuftan

When Linden Lab created Second Life, when they imagined what people could build, they were thinking landscapes and buildings. When imagining what people would do, they were thinking clean fun and educational places like the Sci-lands. If it came as anything but a complete surprise that people were making animations to simulate sexual intercourse, skins with nipples, and genitalia, the Lab wasn't talking. The Lindens have made efforts concerning sexual content before, such as the creation of the "Adult" rating and the Adult continent Zindra. For a time, residents were required to provide an ID number of some kind, such as a drivers license, in order to travel to adult rated places. But many residents reacted in alarm to the later and suspicions of the former, accusing the Lab of plotting to enact censorship. Soon the requirements for "adult verified" were relaxed.

In a sense, Linden Lab's upcoming next-generation virtual world that has yet to be officially named, which we'll call SL 2.0 for simplicity, allows the company a fresh start. It allows the company to take it's experiences from running Second Life, and using them as a guide in building and setting the rules for it's sequel. Some issues however, not everyone agrees on. Adult-rated content is among these issues.

Hamlet Au did a recent commentary on the matter, expressing the opinion that despite that a number of graphically violent games are in the works to be compatible with Oculus Rift and other VR technologies, Linden Lab should take the opportunity for a new beginning with SL 2.0 and bar adult content of a sexual nature. In his opinion, allowing it would keep the new virtual world from acceptance and use by the mainstream American public. He brought up a recent article branding Second Life as a sexual deviants' playground. As it turned out, the locations and incidents the writer referenced were from years ago. But in Hamlet's opinion, that doesn't matter, "Once that kind of content is out there in the social media ecosystem, it's impossible to retract, and thus becomes indelibly associated with the brand, with no way to disentangle it."

Responding to people who say the problem is just with a few socially conservative fuddy-duddies. "While conservatives do tend to be uncomfortable or offended by depictions of virtual sex for moral reasons, liberals also tend to find virtual sex offensive (especially that which seems misogynist and/or violent), or failing that, ridiculous and worthy of mockery. (During the Second Life media backlash, much of the negative publicity over sex in SL came from left-leaning media outlets like Gawker.) So it's a perfect storm of no-win bad publicity."

Hamlet felt SL 2.0, and other new platforms, were better off staying clear of sexual content until the American public can "first understand the full range of what's possible in a VR-powered world." An effort he admitted would take "many years."

There are a number of counterpoints to this opinion. One is the Libertarian persoective: the fewer rules the better (with the possible exception on dealing with griefers). Others feel censoring sexual content from all of SL 2.0 would end up discouraging creativity even in other fields. It's also been brought up that juvelile personalities will find ways around such restrictions, such as creating nude "mods," and even animations, for characters on popular games and posting them on youtube. For instance, it didn't take long for the writer of this article to find youtubes of mods allowing nudity and sex on Skyrim games. Plus, companies were investing in Second Life despite the stories early on about sexual content.

Another counterpoint is how would such restrictions be enforced? The adage "nothing sells like sex" has some truth to it, as evidenced by the ammount of sexual-related goods out in the market. Restrictions against it could simply mean only the quality of such content takes a hit. Plus creators of such content could use alts to get around any ban from the Lab. Of course Linden Lab could solve the problem by restricting content creation to a select licensed few that they could carefully watch. But such limitations on content creation in the new virtual world would have a much more chilling effect on SL 2.0 than any ammount of giggles and mockery from the less mature of the public ever would.

Ultimately the decision is up to Linden Lab. But what do you the readers think? Please share your thoughts below.

Bixyl Shuftan

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Cartoon of the Day

DJ Madonna's known for her rubber dresses. Here she is at a Relay event sitting next to someone with a rather wistful expression. So why would he be looking like that? ;-)

Bixyl Shuftan

Video: Spectral Shadows

(Click Here if the video doesn't play)

A video by Niko Linni for Perri Prinz's "Spectral Shadows" online science-fiction serial, in which a number of her SL friends have characters based on them.

Saturday, November 22, 2014

SL Video: "Farewell, Campus Hamburg in SL"

(Click here if the video doesn't play)

From Ole Etzel, "Saying good night to Campus Hamburg in SL. I will miss you my friend... but promise to always keep the good times in mind. May we meet again in a better future (with better bandwith and other fancy stuffs! Of course, ARR!!"

Among the comments, "Ole, thank you so much for this wonderful film, a true piece of art, right from the heart (don’t tell me a skeleton doesn’t have a heart, you do …). I was hesitant to take this step and take down the Campus Hamburg 3D simulator in Second Life for more than three years (and something like 10,000 US$ paid for the server), long after the intense and interactive days of 2007–2011. Ole, you know how painful it was to finally let go ... I’ll publish about our analysis of the development in Virtual World technology soon. At present, I'm gathering a list to say 'Thank you' to all those who followed us to the virtual edges of known reality, went beyond their traditional environments (and media) for learning and teaching — and to all who’ve helped to make the mind-blowing experience in this creative sandbox of an immersive, 3D Internet come true."

Friday, November 21, 2014

"The Chaos" at LEA21

Gemma Cleanslate recently attended the opening of a new art exhibit in the Linden Endowment of the Arts sims, "The Chaos." Designed by Giovanna Cerise, the large exhibit allows one different perspectives by teleporting to different spots on it. Much like it's namesake, Chaos isn't easily defined.

Read Gemma's article in Design.

World of Warcraft Numbers Soar to Over Ten Million

Over time, "World of Warcraft," the world's most popular Multiplayer Online Game, has declined in numbers since it's peak of twelve million in 2010. It's numbers would briefly climb after an expansion, then fall again. While still the envy of other game companies, by June 2014 numbers had fallen to 6.8 million, about half of it's peak.

It was known that the latest expansion "Warlords of Draenor" was providing some boost, as 600,000 gamers signed up ahead of time. As it turns out, far more did. On November 19, Blizzard announced that the number of people subscribing to their game had passed ten million. "Blizzard Entertainment today announced that as of the first 24 hours of the expansion’s availability, more than 3.3 million copies had sold-through and the game’s global subscriber base had passed 10 million, with growth across all major regions." Blizzard had not seen these numbers since early 2012.

Mike Fulter of Game Informer commented, "I strongly suspected WoW would rebound, but not by this much. Whether Blizzard can hold onto these returned players in the long-term remains to be seen. Even if numbers start to trail off once more, it shows that there is still great interest in new content for the decade-old MMO." The magazine also mentioned that day that Activision, which is part of the same corporation as Blizzard but exists as a separate entity, settled a lawsuit concerning a buyout a year ago.

The opening day of the fifth expansion of the game was plagued with technical problems, blamed in part due to a Denial of Service attack traced to China. The size of the numbers of people signing up suggests that the problems were at least somewhat less due to hackers, and somewhat more about the expansion being a bigger success than Blizzard expected.

Sources: PC Gamer, Game Informer, Blizzard 

Bixyl Shuftan

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Skye Silverweb Talks About Burn2

The Burn2 art and music festival was about a month ago, a busy time in Second Life in which there were a number of other events happening about the same time. During this time, Second Life Newser talked to Burn2 volunteer iSkye Silverweb about the event and some of the builds there. There was quite a bit to discuss.

Read more in People.

Scenes From the Toys 4 Tots Drive

The Toys 4 Tots Breedables Expo, mentioned ahead of time last week, is currently going on. This is the sixth year in a row the children's charity has run an event in Second Life.

The Christmas-themed event had a number of exhibits. The event started on November 15, and will be going on until November 30.

Toys For Tots mentioned they raised a total of 1,600,000 Lindens last year, and already they have exceeded that. As of the writing of this article, their total is about 1,732,000, or about $7,000 US dollars.

Check out the event for yourself at Ponie Wonderland I (128/218/21).

For more information, check the SL Toys For Tots blog: .

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Cartoon of the Day

Coeles Tentigo dances for the ladies, whom are probably thinking a lot more than they're saying.

By Bixyl Shuftan

Pocket Metaverse

Communicating with your Second Life friends inworld is easy enough when you are at your computer or laptop. But what about when you're not logged in Second Life and not at your computer/laptop, and you want to send an IM to a friend who is in-world? 

Don't worry, if you have an iPhone, there's an app for that.

Read Wesley's article in Design

Pictures of the Fall Fishing Festival

Last weekend was the twice a year fishing festival by the makers of the popular 7Seas fishing game. The event was fairly straightforward, fish, fish, and fish some more. But there was no shortage of builds. So Gemma, along with Bixyl Shuftan, took a number of pictures.

See Gemma's pictures in Events.

Blizzard Apologizes For "Warlords of Draenor" Launch Problems, Gives Free Time to Subscribers

By Bixyl Shuftan

When Blizzard released "World of Warcraft: Warlords of Draenor,"the latest expansion for the worlds most popular Multiplayer Online RolePlaying game, about a week ago on Thursday November 13, they ran into trouble. Besides so many players trying to get on at once, they were hit with a huge Denial of Service attack. The result was players often having to wait in long queues to play.

It was yesterday November 18 in which Executive Producer Allen Brack offered an official statement about the troubles.

I know how much everyone was looking forward to this expansion ... all the comments I've seen indicate that this is one of our best yet. But the quality of the content does not excuse the subpar launch experience we delivered, and I apologize for that. The first two days of the expansion were not a great experience, with many of you facing high queues or significant gameplay problems. We worked around the clock to tackle the demand issues and technical challenges, and fortunately things started looking better on Saturday. While millions of you were able to get in and play over the weekend ... others still ran into very lengthy queues, particularly on the highest-population realms.

Brack stated Blizzard was expanding server capacity, "which should greatly reduce queue times for most realms if not eliminate queues altogether." They were also giving it's players some additional time free of charge.

In recognition of the difficulties so many of you ran into when trying to play over the first few days, we're adding five days’ worth of extra time to every subscription in the Americas, Oceania, and Europe that was active as of Friday, November 14.

Brack also offered his thanks to the devoted core of Warcraft fans whom have stuck with the game.

I also hope you'll accept my apology and keep your faith in us. The support voiced by many of you as we worked through the challenges was immensely appreciated. We're extremely grateful to be part of such a passionate community. We love World of Warcraft, and we're very proud of this expansion, so stumbling out of the gates like this was very disappointing for all of us.

Over fifty pages of replies followed the announcement in the thread, the peaks at a random few showing some players not having received their free time yet, but mostly people saying "Thank you."

Sources:, PC Gamer 

Bixyl Shuftan

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Events This Week at the Sunweaver Estates

The Sunweaver clubs have a new week of events.

See the list in Events this Week.

Iron Maiden Tribute Concert at Primal Passions

Sunday November 16 had an Iron Maiden tribute concert in Second Life. The event took place just outside the Primal Passions club at 12 Noon SL time in the Zoxen sim. The performance was done by Rockshoppe Concerts.

For those that Like Iron Maiden there is a live tribute band about to start ... "Primal Passions is proud to present Rockshop Productions as they will be performing a live Iron Maiden tribute concert playing live at 12 Noon SLT and you are invited to join us live as it happens. But there's so much more waiting for you once the concert's over. Afterwards, join us in the club for a little downtime and indulge in pleasures that you have yet to experience..." The question is, do you accept?

Jimbo Neximus, Jamie Geraln, Black Nefarious, Dagger1 Dagger, and Dawn Lectar performed for the crowd as they danced to the tunes. There was quite a mix of avatars over, from furs to nekos, to normal human, and being a heavy metal concert a few avatars that looked a bit more sinister. A few joked that hopefully the latter were in a good mood or someone might end up lunch.

Thanks to the band's performance, they were, and no one did. It was a fun event for all.

Bixyl Shuftan

Meeting of the Minds Tonight

Please join us on Tues Nov. 18th at 6:30 pm SLT for a talk on the pathogens that have plagued human kind over the ages.  Everyone is invited, although you will need to access the Meeting of the Minds group (you will get an invite when you TP to the sim). 

Robust discussions will follow!

For more information, please contact Blue Myanamotu. 

Meeting of the Minds - The Welcome Center, Dreamworld Sea (10, 62, 25)

Monday, November 17, 2014

Geo Roulette: A Game of Random Explorations

Ever feel like just exploring new places? A few years ago Xymbers Slade wrote about doing so using the system of Stargates then. But suppose you have no idea where to find one? DrFran found a new way to visit locations at random and made a game out of it: Geo Roulette. In her article today, she explains the rules and a few locations she found while playing.

Read DrFran's article in Places.

Club Bed

In his latest article, Wesley writes about being in bed with a group of over a dozen .. Club Bed that is. In this unusually designed club, Wesley writes about what he saw and found. His experience was a bit different.

Read Wesley's article in Design.

Release of "Warlords of Draenor" Marred by Denial of Service Attack

For months, fans of "World of Warcraft," the most subscribed to MORPG, looked forward to it's latest expansion, "Warlords of Draenor." Due on Thursday November 13, a number who had let their subscriptions expire signed back on. In October, Blizzard announced membership of the game had climbed to 7.4 million, a 600,000 increase over it's June total of 6.8 million. So on the day of the release, people got their copies in game stores or downloaded them straight from Blizzard, and logged on ...

And for many, they found out they couldn't get in!

The most populated of the servers were locked. At times *all* of them were locked. This mean that anyone trying to get in would instead be placed in a queue and made to wait until enough players who were already in had logged off. This could sometimes take an hour or longer to the chagrin of players.

So what happened? Part of the problem was so many players trying to log on at once, as has been the case with each expansion release which has seen some troubles. But as it turned out there was another element. Blizzard's World of Warcraft servers were the target of a huge  Denial of Service attack. According to WoWInsider, the attacks were traced to China. The assault reportedly continued into the early morning the next day.

In no way is Blizzard responsible for the server outages on this scale - responsibility rests with the script kiddies and bot net controllers. It's hard to know just how big this attack is, but with the sustained issues it's causing and the severity of response from Blizzard, it's safe to assume that it's BIG. is a hardened Internet service that has withstood onslaughts like this before. For it to fail at such a critical juncture is nothing but catastrophic for the short term, and could have long term implications.

Among Blizzard's actions were lowering the maximum populations allowed on high population servers, which meant high waiting times for players there. The lower levels continued for the weekend. Saturday saw queues for a number of servers still, and Sunday saw at least one having to limit the people coming in part of the time.

There was no shortage of complaints in the thread about the launch update delays. While a few of the complaints were directed at the source of the attack, most in the first dozen pages were directed at Blizzard, many blaming not an attack by hackers but by bad planning,  "You are not prepared, Blizzard." "We're paying customers and can't even access our characters to play. We're being cheated out of our money!" "Microsoft's XBox Live service makes you look like rookies." There were a few wondering if the hacks were a made up cover story by Blizzard to excuse their problems. Some people joked about it, such as the "Hallowed Gaming" gaming satire website doing a parody article about Blizzard charging a fee to avoid the queues.

For those whom made it in, they still weren't completely in the clear. Many reported bugs and glitches, notably around the garrisons, one for the Alliance and one for the Horde, which players kept having to go to.

Blizzard has dealt with technical snafus before, notably the "plague" early in it's history in which high level players hit traveled to population centers and spread it to lower level players whom quickly succumbed in large numbers.

It's difficult to say exactly what the long-range consequences of the launch day hack attack will be. World of Warcraft has had huge numbers of devoted fans which have kept it going for the past ten years. But over time it has declined from the double digit millions it once had. While it was expected that people would drop out after a while after some time of exploring Draenor and other new content, it's possible the weekend of long server queues will stick to the minds of many who will let their game time expire earlier than planned, resulting in the number of players declining sooner and to lower numbers than it otherwise would have.

Sources:, WoW Insider, WoW Forums 

Bixyl Shuftan

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Cartoon of the Day

Taken with the help of my neighbor ShadowRene Ivanova. A real mouse in this position would be in quite a pickle. With anthro mice and naga however, well some of the latter love to tease. ;-)

By Bixyl Shuftan

Saturday, November 15, 2014

Meanwhile, Back in Azeroth (or Draenor)

And so it begins. After months of anticipation, "Warlords of Draenor," the latest expansion for the popular "World of Warcraft" Multiplayer Online Game, was finally available for sale Thursday November 13. And yours truly was among those getting it.

While there is much good to say about the game, unfortunately there was one major snag. It seems Blizzard was the subject of a major Denial Of Service attack originating from China. The result's been huge queues  for players waiting to log in, and a lot of complaints.

So stay tuned for more information while I try to get my Worgen, pictured above just moments after he stepped through the portal, about this world familiar to this WoW veteran, yet so new as well.

Bixyl Shuftan

SL Video: "Second Lives - Alayne Wartell "

(Click here if the video fails to play)

"A short documentary about Alayne Wartell (SL: Fallingwater Cellardoor). Alayne runs a successful business in the virtual world Second Life, where she also met her husband Chris Edwards."

On a sad note, Chris Edwards (Eddie Escher) passed away earlier this year, and word of his death only recently having made it's way to Second Life.

Friday, November 14, 2014

Commentary: Silver Fire - My Virtual Horse in Second Life

Wesley Regenbogen has been doing a little "horsing around" in Second Life lately. He recently came across a pet breedable horse, and had a few things to say about how he got it and what he feels about the idea.

Read Wesley's commentary in Design.

Second Life Enquirer to Move Inworld Location

The Second Life Enquirer recently announced they would be moving their building. The new location is described as being in Mont Fleuri Isle.

Second Life like the real world goes through many changes. Businesses and avatars come and go but some just relocate for better opportunities. We are proud to announce our move to the beautiful Seychelles Isle where traffic is booming and people work together to create a close knit community.

Mont Fleuri Isle is among a group of islands off the east coast of the Nautilus continent, north of the Blake Sea.

The Second Life Enquirer is owned and edited by Lanai Jarrico, and has a link exchange agreement with the Second Life Newser

Crew Meeting

 The Newser crew had it's monthly meeting last weekend on November 8. Those present were from right to left Fritter Enzyme, Gemma Cleanslate, Tiddly Winks, and Bixyl Shuftan (me). Former CNN iReporter Any1 Gynold was also there. Topics included coverage of the upcomingVeterans Day and Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays.

Fritter Enzyme showed up in a "politically incorrect" avatar that he had gotten from a gacha. So why the American Indian headdress? Maybe with cold weather coming, he was trying to keep his wig wam.

Bixyl Shuftan

Thursday, November 13, 2014

The Primal Passions Club

Second Life Newser was recently contacted by the Primal Passions Club. A new adult-oriented club with grand plans, the place is built in a castle with lots of places, and secret spots, to explore. The place is not only open to avatars of all types, but encourages a diverse audience.

Read more in Extra.