SLCC Community Standards – Agreement (no, it's a contract)

SLCC Community Standards – Agreement:

(this is a contract) -jh ianal

The Future United, which presents the Second Life Community Convention (SLCC), is dedicated to running a successful event which fosters discussion and camaraderie celebrating the diversity of Second Life residents. As a non-profit organization, The Future United seeks to protect all SLCC attendees. The SLCC Community Standards are a set of guidelines that we expect attendees to follow for everyone’s benefit. Through your attendance you are agreeing to follow the below Community Standards.

(see, they get to agree or assent) -jh (basic theory of contracts)

If you have already registered and do not want to follow the community standards we will cancel your registration, and return your money provided you contact us before July 13, 2007.

(this is necessary or they would have had a void contract)-jh

2. If you are a member of the press, please be respectful to those you are interviewing and all attendees.

(respectful is not defined, nor is it commonly defined, what counts as respect in nyc is very different from LA or London) -jh

3. Always get permission before taking a photograph or video. Many people go to great lengths to keep themselves off of the World Wide Web. If someone asks you not to take their picture, or if you have taken one and they ask you to delete it, please oblige.

(3 is unenforceable and really unnecessary, well i guess they could throw you out, but they can’t touch your property….) -jh

4. Any property damage caused by an individual (including, but not limited to, hotel rooms, displays, the convention space or other space on the Hilton grounds) will be that individual’s responsibility.
5. With the exception of Phreak Media and its subsidiaries, recording of video or audio of any sessions or live performances is strictly prohibited and subject to legal action. We are bound by both union rules and contractual obligations. This does not apply to news coverage and interviews or incidental documentary footage, B-Roll and background images. It is not permissible to rebroadcast any performance, panel or track.

(note… they do not assign intellectual property here, they just claim real property is phreak media’s, so they are asking you to do what in terms of your Ip if you present?)

6. During question and answer periods, time at the microphone will be limited to 1-2 minutes for a question, strictly adhered to and enforced by moderators and organizers. Please, no speeches or diatribes.
7. The Future United reserves the right to remove any attendee at any time for non-adherence of the community standards. Such decisions will not be made lightly and will be final. SLCC attendees also agree to release The Future United from all legal responsibilities, indemnifying and holding harmless all members of The Future United and all other attendees.

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so the key bits are:

it’s a contract, parts are unenforceable, parts make claims that are questionable. the recording and indemnification bits should be fine. however, i wonder very much about the recording bit.

The photography bit is what i find problematic. Some people use photography in ways that are very central to their mental states and their capacity to interact with groups of people who are unfamiliar. Camera’s provide barriers and access points, camera’s bridge between people. they are deeply psychological and I suspect they aid many ‘geeks’ in being able to cope with social situations. the capacity to take photographs, I then argue, is the capacity for some people to ‘break the ice’, and ‘breaking the ice’ as this requests those photographers to do, is precisely what some photographers feel deeply uncomfortable doing. it is the difference between taking a picture and then talking, versus having to ask to take a picture. It is the nature of the lense… it is a barrier and portal, it keeps people out and lets you in… and this document doesn’t recognize the population that uses the lense differently than it provides for. the camera is for many people a device that mediates and thus reconstructs the conventions of social interaction, this makes them act differently when they can take pictures than when they cannot, and for some of those people the camera allows access, and i think this rule cuts those people hard.

this sort of makes me not want to attend, does anyone else get that feeling from this?

I also think that this sets a very bad tone in terms of expected behavior and that it aims are arbitrary and undefined expectations in ways that seem to cover for the places where it is explicit.

i really dislike ‘after the fact’ contracts like this, maybe that’s just me.

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0 comments on “SLCC Community Standards – Agreement (no, it's a contract)

  1. Rochelle says:

    I think I get where they’re coming from, and I don’t much like people taking pictures of me to post online either, but generally speaking if I think people at a certain event are likely to take my picture and put it online, along with unsavory commentary, I simply don’t attend the event. Going to something like this is pretty much putting your physical person up against your digital person, it’s a public acknowledgement of which real-world body fits with which avatar. Can’t really have it both ways and attend a thing, introduce yourself as your digital self, but have no evidence of it remaining. When your digital self is deeply involved in a community it’s very tempting to jump in and meet everyone in person, but you can’t really protect your real-world identity at the same time. That’s one of the most either/or situations I can think of.

    The part that weirds me out a bit is the strict wording around recording. I generally record all presentations I do (unless I forget my italk, as I did for my last two presentations, and I’m still smarting about those last two because one of them was really great and the second one was at least really interesting with lots of cool questions and commentary). I always begin a presentation by noting that it’s being recorded, that the recording will end up on my blog, and that anyone with questions who doesn’t feel comfortable being recorded can speak to me afterwards. No conference organizational committee has ever told me I couldn’t record my own presentation. You alluded to this already: are they sneakily claiming intellectual property rights there by saying, in no uncertain terms, that no one can record a session or panel?

    Bit weird that they introduced this so late in the game, isn’t it. I don’t think I can go anyway, and since the person most likely to encourage me to go is now unlikely to keep on encouraging me in the face of this “argreement”, chances are I’ll just keep to my appointments here. Difficult time of year to start with, for me.