Archive - Oct 30, 2007

A Cease and Desist Letter about Trademarks in Second Life

Back in 2005, Tony Walsh wrote about SL vs. RL IP noting that It's no secret that Second Life is rampant with intellectual-property infringements--it's just ignored. In May, 2007, Benjamin Duranske wrote Rampant Trademark Infringment in Second Life Costs Millions, Undermines Future Enforcement, noting

The dirtiest little legal secret in Second Life isn’t virtual escorts, illegal gambling, ponzi schemes, or even money laundering — the secret is this: misappropriation of major corporations’ trademarks in Second Life is so ubiquitous, so safe, and so immensely profitable, that it has become a wholly transparent part of Second Life’s bustling commercial landscape.

Yesterday, I heard that a friend who runs a successful business in Second Life received a cease and desist letter from a trademark lawyer representing a firm with a similar name and similar business taking place outside of Second Life.

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NaNoWriMo Prep

Thursday, All Saints Day, I will begin my first attempt at writing a novel. Last year, my daughter Miranda wrote her first novel, Subtle Differences. She has been giving me suggestions in how to approach my novel.

I’ve set up my account on the NaNoWriMo website. I’ve been getting several emails from that group about events coming up. One email pointed me to Typing Test. According to them, I type around 50 to 60 words per minute on my laptop. At that rate, it will take me around 15 hours of typing to write my novel. When you add in ‘think’ time, based on how long it takes me to write a typical blog post, I’m going to guess it will take me 120 hours altogether. I’m not sure where I’ll find the time, but, I’ll work on it. The same email that pointed to the typing test also pointed, here for an activity log to help optimize time.

I was recently in a discussion about optimizing time spent networking, and some people chafed under the discussion. Whether we are socializing, writing, or doing both, we need to have fun doing it. It is in this vein that I’ve been participating in the NaNoWriMo 2007 Group on BlogCatalog.

Word Strumpet runs the group and put up a great discussion starter asking how people are preparing for NaNoWriMo.

I started my comment with

I'm drinking heavily. I figure that in a drunken haze, the story and the characters will reveal themselves to me. Then, I pass out and get lots of sleep. This will leave me well rested for thirty days of coffee and cigarettes as I stare at the half blank screen.

I haven’t spoken about my story yet, but it is going to involve Second Life, and probably the mob, terrorists, Federal agents, and so on. Not the type of novel I ever would have expected to be my first attempt. So, if I wanted to continue on in my Hunteresque style I would say that I’m balancing out my drinking prep work with hanging out in Second Life as well as with as many mobsters, terrorists and Federal agents as I can find.

So, I have a large task ahead. I’m hoping to have a lot of fun writing the novel and hopefully some people might even have fun reading it some day.

Themes in Memes

Yesterday, I reflected on the San Diego fires and pondered what I would take with me if I had to flee my house. Emily at been there picked up the theme adding the comment, “it's all about family connections for me too” and going on to say,

I'd take the diaries I wrote for each of my girls during her first year, my photo albums from the pre-digital era, and the painting of my grandmother that my mother gave me recently.

There are some great comments over on Emily’s blog. She also posted about this over on the motherhood, a wonderful site, I would encourage all of you to connect with.

Beth, at picks up the meme as well. Beth and Rod were amongst the people I was thinking about when I wrote my blog post, so I’m very grateful that she wrote about it. She talks about having moved a lot in her adult life and has some great reflections on this.

It seems as if a key theme is holding onto memories, the symbols in our lives that lift us up instead of the objects in our lives that tie use down. Another theme is the use of digital archives to save these memories, blogs, photo archives, and video archives.

God willing, we will never face fires or holocausts. However, we all face life changing events, whether it is changes in our work, our health, our relationships or other important aspects of our lives, and thinking about what we take with us is important.

But now old friends are acting strange,
they shake their heads, they say I've changed.
Something's lost but something's gained
in living every day.

- Joni Mitchell Both Sides Now

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