Saturday, January 30, 2010

Security and Privacy in SL?

While exploring places in SL this morning trying to find places blog-worthy, my partner and I encountered some difficulty with stepping over someone's security orb. Keep in mind that this place is listed in the Hot Spots of the SL search. One would think that highlighted builds to visit would have a requirement of being public access.

The owner was upset because we were booted three times. Well, if I'm booted and I fly and the security orb covers the area above where I was ejected from, it will probably boot me a few times. Even as an experienced avie in SL, I have to figure out where I can go.

We flew to the other side of the build and cammed in and sat. We didn't get a warning, so we figured it was okay to be there. Wrong. The owner appeared and was not pleased.

To be fair, I have to admit that I had a private apartment in my previous castle that housed Effie's Designs. But, that also gave me insight of how to do security right.

There is no privacy in SL.

Unless you own an island and have the land set for no public access, there really is no privacy in SL. You can put up ban lines, place security orbs, and hang signs; however, there always seems to be a way to get around things like the camera's ability to go most everywhere.

Most people are good.

Because of being a veteran builder in SL, I have very good camera skills and use the cam and sit procedure (especially in laggy places). That does not mean that when I do these things I am trying to be malicious. Most people care about others feelings and will not go where they are not welcome.

Also, relax about avies showing up on your private property. What can they really do there? Sit on a pose ball? Unless you have build abilities turned on or give them your building rights, avies visiting your property cannot do much of anything except look.

I had a number of newbies show up. All they did was marvel at how beautiful my castle was. I was kind and gracious and slipped in how this was my private apartment. I tried to make the encounter not traumatic for them because I hoped that one day they would come back as customers. I happen to know that few did come back.

How security/privacy should work.

Try not to mix public access with private areas. Keeping your private areas separate gives you land controls to set security.

If you do want or need to have private areas on a public lot, here are some ideas to help it work:

1. Put up great signage. Outside the doors to my apartment, I put up signs that said "Effie's Apartment - Please respect her privacy." People react in a more positive way to signs rather than just being booted by a security system.

2. Know what your security system is covering. Read the instructions. Rez prims to measure and know exactly that is being covered by the system. If your system does not cover all areas to be off limits, know that avies may show up there.

3. Put private areas behind a locked door. If avies miss the signage, the locked door is an indicator that they are not welcome in an area. Again, people would rather encounter a locked door rather than all of a sudden being ejected from the property.

4. If avies do show up on your property, be gracious until you know that the visit has malintent.

Of course, these are all my views of security/privacy in SL. If you have other ideas, please feel free to comment.



Ray said...

Great Comments, Effie! So many people are afraid of strangers. And some can be annoying, for sure, like the one who shot me. But, I just TP'ed back and banned him. I actually think it can be fun to chat with a new person .. newbie or not.

Mortus Allen said...

Good post Effie, I do agree. My partner and I don't believe in banlines or obstructing travel over/through our private parcel. We do prefer a measure of privacy on our private property in the form personal space.

To that end we do employ an orb around the house it's self, and attempt to maintain a chat buffer of 20 meters around it. However it does not cover our entire land. Just the area around the house. Most of the land is kept freely accessible.

Sadly it seems some people can not take the hint when they are warned by the orb and encounter a locked door. Guess it's too much to ask a locked door to be universal language for "Do Not Enter".

Marking a parcel to show in search as a Hangout and restricting the parcel in any way is just foolish though. If you have it publicly displayed as a hang out, it should be publicly accessible as a hang out. Or at least if random people come snooping you have no right to be upset.

Tho said...

I totally agree, Effie. It's so annoying to be booted with little or no warning from an area you had no idea was even off limits. Courtesy works both ways.

daGorb122 said...
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催眠嗎 said...


Tzolkat said...

I definitely agree with this. When I'm walking around, a sign, locked door, or just words like 'private home' in the parcel name are good. They give me a heads up and I don't trespass. Usually I'm there by accident anyway, just walking or flying around.

But I flat out hate security orbs. Every time I've ever come across one, it's been rude and as a whole a rather traumatic event. No real warning where private land starts, just an angry message and a threat. As of today I'm tempted to start filling out ARs on anyone I catch using one.