OpenSim – Our World

By Tari Tari

This Great Big Planet…
Opensim is a wonderful place to explore, be creative, and be social, but it has slowly become a breeding ground for the drama, competition, and evils many left SL because of. In Opensim, you can meet all kinds of characters, and be the best, or worst you can be.

I have found over the years, many flock to this alternate universe to get away from the things and situations that have affected their well being, social harmony, and peace of mind. Opensim became a place where you could get free land, rent regions, and even entire grids for little or no cost. I started my first journey in opensim in osgrid and was so impressed of how fruitful free land was and soon met many truly talented builders, scripters, creators and more.

Most just wanted a peaceful, drama free place where they could be creative, make a few friends with common interests, and socialize. Osgrid was not the only grid out there, but was the first one I decided to join. After that I noticed several new grids opening up all over the place, but they were private grids.

I tried a few different grids and enjoyed my stay for the time I was there. I’ve had my ups and downs, but overall it has been a fun experience and I have learned many things in addition to meeting several cool and talented people. When hypergridding was introduced, I thought that was so clever as it opened up new and exciting doors. Traveling to other grids was so cool as this opened a whole new world for me and I began my journey checking out so many great places to visit in HG.

Opensim to me is like a big planet with several countries. The Big Planet is Opensim, the countries are other grids, the states are continents, or grids within a grid, and the cities and towns are the Regions. When people become residents of these grids, this creates population as we all know. With population comes commerce, unless it is a totally free grid, socialization, and of course interaction with more people. More may not always be what it seems. A grid can have 1000’s of members but how many of them are actively in the grid? Now as the grid populates with active members the numbers normally show on the splash page (website) for the grid. As the number of inworld residents rise, so do the opportunities.
The need for entertainment, fashion, living, and more arises. This is great for a grid with commerce. Creators, Designers, Builders, Entertainers, and more have the advantage of selling their wares and talents to the community.

I find that some feel Opensim is free and should remain free and ungoverned. But for the realist, once the population begins to grow, you will be dealing with many character types both good and bad, happy and sad.
It takes money to run a successful grid with staying power. Keeping servers up and running, Keeping the community happy, fulfilled and problem free is a huge task.
In addition to having the proper equipment, you also need a team working daily to keep that grid at peak performance, not to mention supporting the residents who purchased land. Running a grid is not an easy task and is one thing I would never like to take on. I applaud all Grid Owners who take on that task!!!.

With population increasing in a grid, I personally feel there has to be some rules and guidelines. Many may not agree with my theory, but it works well for me. I can recall the old days is SL when people freely griefed, harassed, and even caused others stress in their virtual and personal lives. This can happen at any grid and to anyone.
Guidelines, rules, and regulations soon came into play, which did make people responsible for their actions if they were caught. I am not saying that grids should be policed. But there should be some guidelines and rules set for every grid and I am pretty sure most grids do have rules of some type in place. There are some grids out there with the “Anything Goes Method” and I try to avoid those places. Again, whatever the grid owner decides it totally up to them. We have the ability to pick and choose where we would like to go, which rules we like, and which rules we don’t.

Whatever a user’s reason to join a grid, If a grid is designed to be all about chaos, and you don’t like chaos then don’t go there, but also do not condemn the grid as that is their desired gameplay. Who are we to judge that? We can simply not go or participate.
There is something out there for everyone. It’s pretty much up to the grid seekers on what they want and where they choose to be.

Poaching has also become a big problem in all virtual worlds. There are enough people in virtual worlds to go around. The time people spend poaching new residents could be used on improving their own grid such as entertainment, the ease of access, reliable and fast servers, tending to their users needs, and of course promoting their grid in a positive manner. Grid bashing is not the way to get loyal members. Instead, grids should make me want to log in everyday and give me something to look forward to.

Should opensim stay free? I feel it is totally up to the grid owner whether he or she can handle the costs if any. I have seen many grids try that method and they were here today and gone tomorrow. So sometimes it is better to Pay & Stay, But that is my opinion and whatever works for you may not work for all.

Lately, and this is my opinion, Opensim and all Virtual worlds have become a breeding ground for drama, competition, and more. This is nothing new, but I have not focused on this area. When I climbed from under my building block, I found that opensim seems to be evolving into the dreaded characteristic of a world and virtual lifestyle many moved away from. I, like many others, came here for peace, freedom, creativity, and other reasons. No, I did not leave SL, OpenSim is my space away from there.

Just like real life, you will always find one or more bad apples that could destroy your fun. I chose to be a creator, and the majority of my time I stayed under a prim building, but I did find some time to socialize. I have always tried to avoid the drama and have always tried to maintain a cheerful, happy go, lucky attitude. Don’t get me wrong, I did encounter a few issues, but was able to quickly resolve and dismiss them from my train of thought. Moving right along to why I came to opensim, I came to create, socialize and be happy.

Behind every avatar is a real person, and I have found most bring their true character from rl into virtual worlds. Sad to say if you are a troublemaker in real life, you will most likely be one in your new virtual life. If you are a jokester, a gossiper, a good friend, a bad friend, a thinker, a doer, a procrastinator, a leader, and let’s not forget, a follower, you will most likely bring that nature inworld.
Some come here to be or do things that they could not in real life. So it is best to bring your best traits and personalities, and leave the dysfunctions in rl. We all have some dysfunctions and no one is perfect. So if you know what they are, it is best to work on those and try to make your virtual life a model for what you would like your real life to be. Its like molding and creating a new you and in virtual worlds, you do get many chances to practice.
Often, there are far more people on your friends list here than in rl, so there would be plenty of chances to practice meeting, and experiencing different characters and mindsets.
It’s sort of like some built in therapy.

Love & Happiness….
Not all will be happy. Everyone is not going to always feel things are fair.
The grid owners and their staff have the most important job of keeping the residents happy. This job is a feat that many cannot accomplish. The grid owner has the hard job of trying to keep everyone happy. It’s hard when it comes to decision making and issues among residents, as he or she is often put into a position where they sometimes have to pick and choose. Some feel that money talks and when they have contributed lots of income to a grid, that they rule. They might have some residents who feel they make the rules because of their impact of financial gain to the grid. So many times grid owners are forced to make decisions abruptly to please the power dollars and therefore loose less troublesome, loyal, and stable residents to the power hungry, narcissistic sociopaths, who would most likely leave anyway.
It is not always how much you pay into a grid, it is the good that you do for the grid and the community. This can be in terms of new, good members, idealism & creativity, and being active in the grid in a positive way.

There are some grids that are full of drama and fuel drama. it seems to be a way of life on those grids, I wish them well.
We are all here to have fun. If you don’t like the way a grid is designed, operated, or for any other reason, then don’t go there. I don’t think anyone is forcing anyone to go anywhere. I think, if you are not a member or actively participating on a regular basis, you should keep your opinion of the grid to yourself. Gossip often turns to lies, and lies then turn to nightmares. We are all here to have fun.

Follow the leader is a child’s game which many love to play. Just because someone doesn’t like someone else, does not mean that I have to follow. We all have our own minds and are able to control them in a positive and compassionate nature. I know people are tired of hearing; “do unto others as you will have them do unto you”, but that is a good rule to follow. Not one person is perfect, I think we are all far from that.
I look at each individual as unique. Once I get to know you, what you represent, who you are, and how you treat me, this will determine my relationship you moving forward. I have always considered myself a fair and compassionate person.

We all have other lives with, and without problems. So my thought on this is; before you go by hearsay about a person, find out for yourself. Never let anyone stop you from being with, talking to, or being a friend to anyone, who they may have unfortunately had issues with, then you can decide to use your own brain to determine whether that person has a positive impact in your life or not. It is impossible for all relationships to be perfect like that, but we can start a new year having a bit more compassion for others, and remember; There are real people behind all of those lovely Avatars.

Please be kind, and HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Tari Tari