Sunday, 22 March 2009

Second Life > Adult Continent > Adult Grid?

The news that Second Life have decided to move adult content to a new continent has surprised many. The term 'adult content' is yet to be fully defined, but we know already what will be in there - sex clubs, brothels, escort agencies, various rp sims where sexual content and violence play a central role, will all be in. The grey areas include non-sexual nudity, skin shops displaying images of naked avatars for the purposes of advertising their products, etc. Sexuality of a private nature, taking place within your own home, will not be included.

The new continent will not be open to all. Those who have have not been age-verified or who do not have credit card details on file will not be able to teleport there. At present, none of these rules will apply to private island owners.

Profile picks containing sexual images and adverts for adult areas are currently against the TOS, but will be more heavily policed.

However, what is the point of all this?

Is this the first step of a two-step process that will eventually see the hiving off of adult content from SL, with a separate Adult Grid being the ultimate aim, with separate log-in to the main grid, in effect swapping places with the Teen Grid? This would lead to a more 'sanitized' version of SL, which would be much more family-friendly, and more attractive to the corporates.

I am not so sure if this strategy will be very sucessful. The image that SL has through various salacious stories in the tabloid press will be mud that will be very difficult, if not impossible, to completely clean away.

Time will tell.