Copybot and recourse

I was IM’d on my grid about the copybot thing being talked about. A **lot** of innocent people in SL have had their reps ruined over false claims so I hesitate to jump into the fray. Particularly since I think I would be helping right-wing anti-FOSS ideologues (I know who you are) by getting involved.

But IP theft hurts Free, Libre software since it removes the element of choice (of how your creations are used). Creative commons items that are used against their license are victims too.

Free Software requires the rule of law to be enforced -copybot is an attack on that so it’s an attack on Free Software, too.

I’m not going to address the apathy about the subject I’ve experienced in the community -other than this one sentence written to acknowledge its’ existence.

The way to get copybotted stuff removed is by getting the creators involved.

There is no other way -none. Nor should their be; if you didn’t make it, you don’t know if it was given with permission, if it’s licensed or what.

“I saw it in SL, so it must be copybotted” just doesn’t fucking cut it.

In the late 00’s there was at least one fashion blog that made their bones by posting and encouraging false accusations of copybot.

A lot innocent people were hurt and driven out by that witch hunt.

The difference between opensim and SL however is that they could **afford** to lose those people. The free meta is on life support (the release of opensim came out when?) as it is. Moral issues aside (persecuting innocent ppl is bad, ok?) we can’t afford to lose mind-share because of a hysterical witch hunt.

We can’t abide brazen theft, at the same time we can’t allow anti-free-software ideologues to whip up a witch hunt that drives off folks whose only crime is not keeping track of their sources.

Our community will certainly come to a Bad End if we allow ourselves to dance to the tune of the pipers wanting to eradicate free content so that there the only content available is the content which they sell. If we allow that witch hunt to play out, those profits will come at the cost of undeservedly ruined reputations.


There is brazen theft out here, yes. When you see something brazenly stolen, look up the creators in SL: search and send out notecards (that means **log in** to SL; create an account if you need to) with the information they need -include the grids’ contact info.

The rest is up to the creators. After they’re told, apart from offering information or clarification, it’s not your fight -it’s theirs.

If YOU are an opensim creator being copybotted -open a blog, and document, document, document. With screenshots. Show each notice you send, show each response you get (document it if time -a month, etc passes without a response, too). Most grids will take down stolen content if the *creator* tells them about it.

Name and shame those grids who don’t (with PROOF).

There are constructive, concrete actions that can be taken -though at the end of the day copybot will be with us always; just as it is in SL. But joining an angry, thoughtless mob does nothing but hurt our community by hurting the innocent -so have a care, double and triple check before calling people out.

But once you’re sure, and have proof; name and shame.

Published by: hanheld

I'm a virtual world resident; I build, blog and play with server software (these days, largely opensim).