Distinguished Aesthetics

unabashed commentary & reviews by a gentleman of the grid

An Apology & Clothing Permission Commentary

[click image for larger view]

First, I would like to make a public apology to Calamity’s creator, Ariel Zuhal, for inferring severe malcontent with one of her creations in one of my recent blog posts. My intent is never to malign – if it were, I would write day and night about creators and creations that are not sympathetic to consumers, but that is seriously not my desire. I would sooner spend money on amazing outfits and share my findings with my fellow fashion-lovers.

Returning to Ms. Zuhal’s concern that my commentary would adversely affect her image or sales, I do not believe that is the case for I am not widely-read and hopefully my readers know to take much of what I say with a serious grain of salt (I point people to my Disclaimer). However, I did make an error in not being specific enough regarding my review. I took exception with the erratic permissions and script resizers used in the one ensemble of hers that I reviewed. All but two attachments were listed as no mod, and I failed to mention this fact along with my diatribe of anguish regarding no mod attachments. The other two items both bore different script resizers. While my points, in my opinion, were valid, they would lead the casual reader to believe that Ms. Zuhal had misrepresented her clothing which she did NOT. Items were exactly as she described and it was my personal problem and issue with one item in particular that did not allow for modification. I therefore apologize for unknowingly misrepresenting this fact.

I would also like to reiterate that Calamity’s ensemble reviewed by myself was also very much enjoyed (and even sparked some kind words from others as I roamed the Grid), even though I took exception to the no mod aspects and the resizer scripts employed throughout. It is always my hope that a creator will release items with permissions that make the ensembles more flexible, and that is my hope here. I will also add that Ms. Zuhal very kindly offered me a mod version of the suit, which I am quite grateful for. She is correct in that people should simply write a creator and ask for mod permissions before ranting and raving. This is true. Although after being repeatedly and firmly told “no” by most creators, I grow weary of asking. Again, I should have inquired rather than assumed. You can teach an old fox old tricks.

I will state, at this time, that I do not use this blog as a platform to portray perfection and “OMG this is so great, and this is why”. I will be honest in my reviews. I do like everything I review for some reason or another, but I will not remain silent about those aspects I find bothersome, whether it’s the construct of coat tails, texturing laziness, death by script resizers etc. If I only blogged perfection, my blog would mirror Silent Sparrow’s blog and then there would be no point for me to blog. While most other reviewers focus solely on the positives, I feel that omitting negatives is being a little less than honest. But that’s me. I am critical. But I am also passionate about fashion.

And so… speaking of things that get me hot under the collar – clothing permissions!

I’m coming up on three years in Second Life and I still waffle on my stance as to what is best with respect to apparel permissions. I respect that creators cannot make two sets (one with copy/mod/no trans and one with no copy/no mod/trans) for each ensemble – that’s ridiculous. I’ve seen this discussion come up time and time again in the forums as well and there are pros and cons to both sets of permissions. The only con to copy/mod/no trans that I have been able to understand is that the ensemble cannot be sold if it’s no transfer. I don’t know who sells or gives away their clothes, but I presume they number in a high percentage as this seems to be a sticking point. I never intend on “selling my stuff”, so I do not care about transferability – but that’s just my personal preference.

Along came script resizers to cure the need for modify (so it was thought), but we know how well that has worked and my thoughts on that subject. This is a horse that I really need to leave be as it’s in danger of rising from the dead a third time.

However, there are those who do not understand the need for copy and/or modify in clothing. For them I offer the following reasons off the top of my head:

  • You have an ensemble’s attachments that do not fit your avatar properly (usually belts, collars, cuffs, hats, etc.).
  • You have several different avatars of varying sizes and it’s a right royal pain in the backside to constantly modify attachments for each avatar.
  • Your avatar already utilizes numerous attachment points and you need to attach one item to another in order to wear both – both items will need to be modify for this to work.
  • Your avatar is a non human that needs to shorten trousers or shirts in order to portray a proper image.
  • You need to match something to another something and it would be great to add a little bit of colour tint to make the entire outfit perfect. This, I understand, is most creators’ reason for not allowing modify – they do not wish their creative image to be tampered with in any way. However, I maintain that most people would never modify the colour tint of an ensemble and for those few who do, wouldn’t a creator want a consumer advertising billboard who has that much attention to detail and who enjoys showing off their latest look?

Modify is really essential in a virtual world, for constructing your image. Copy is very helpful for those such as myself that body/avatar swap. Again, I do respect those who need transfer permissions but I will always desire modify permissions at the very least.

Unfortunately, some creators opt for no mod and the use of script resizers because they fear infringement (aka the copybot). This does not stop copying (is that horse dead for the fourth time yet?). The latest in anti-theft prevention is to render an item unusable if it is rezzed (as opposed to worn). This alerts the creator that there has been a “violation”. This has also spawned a whole new griefing activity called “spam the creator by rezzing dozens of their demos in short succession”. It is my hope that this madness will end in the near future. Why does an item need to be rezzed rather than worn? See my point above regarding linking two items together to wear both simultaneously.

Alright, enough whingeing from me. I will hopefully have some reviews forthcoming this week.

On a final note, I have learned the following: be more clear and despite the agony of “no”, and contact the creator first.

About The Author

Elric Anatine is an apothecary in Second Life with a penchant for exquisite apparel (especially canes), Victorian & Elegant Gothic (and inspired) fine fashions, and intoxicating absinthe. Within this blog will reside his reviews and thoughts regarding these very important topics.


4 Responses to “An Apology & Clothing Permission Commentary”

  1. Kulta Hannu says:

    I’m sorry if your original post upset the creator ~ I for one took it in the vein that it was intended as I understand the dilemma from the consumers point of view.

    I have an undying appreciation for those creators who give me the option to purchase a copy/mod/no transfer version of clothing because my av(s) do not fit the normal human model. Creators have the option to design their wares in a number of ways ~ and one would hope that they would do so in a manner that would make their customers come back for more.

    The fact is ~ fashion is a personal vision for the creator that stops at the door as the sold item leaves the shop with the customer. That is when it is transformed innumerable times into different visions by those who wear them. Each time complimenting the creator’s skills when items are used with such versatility.

    As an aside, there is little that frustrates me more these days, than items that won’t let me *see* what layers they are on ~ and if they are a pricy item I am all the more furious to find myself stuck with illfitting garments. I am left feeling cheated yet again as I toss the items into the back of the inventory or sometimes just pitch them altogether.

    It’s not impossible to find a happy middle ground between creators and customers ~ I have a closet full of examples that will attest to that. :)

  2. You do not owe Ariel Zuhal an apology.

    “All pieces in this ensemble are no copy/no mod. One piece contains resizer scripts that cannot be removed, another piece contains resizer scripts that can be removed and all other pieces (the two collars and the coat bottoms) contain no resizer scripts whatsoever.”

    I believe these comments are all true. Four of five items (the one with resizer scripts that can’t be removed, and the three no mod pieces with no scripts) are all fatally flawed by these very qualities. As a customer, I do not expect to have to contact the creator in order to purchase well executed items.

    Any creator that sells items with resizer scripts that cannot be removed deserves to have a bad reputation.

  3. Fogwoman Gray says:

    My primary avatar on the grid is female, although I use a male alt for various dirty jobs :)
    I very much appreciate your honest reviews, and learn much from them. I was thinking of your last one as I fought to modify a completely moddable man’s jacket tail from BlakOpal- and was chuckling and wishing you were nearby to help. The problem was with me, of course – not the creator! Had it been no mod I would have been most put out.
    Your information on the issues with resize scripts has been very valuable as well.
    I completely understood what you stated in your blog, and you were perfectly clear as I saw it. Please continue posting this informative and interesting commentary on stylish men’s fashion in SL, I send new male avs to read all the time :)

    • Thank you, Miss Gray, for your supportive words. I do know that my forthright nature can sometimes seem harsh, but it comes from an honest place.

      Ahhh yes, jacket tails can be something of a pain in the backside sometimes. BlakOpal usually makes everything mod, which is nice, but also very primmy which can sometimes be difficult to contend with depending on what one is modifying. Just hazarding a guess, remember that you can angle a jacket tail piece inwards & downwards as though towards the waist, and then slide accordingly along the horizontal axis. This lifts the jacket tail up a bit so that it falls more acceptable around the aforementioned backside.

      In future, do not hesitate to IM me in world. If I am available, I would be more than happy to assist if I can.

      Thank you again for your kind words.


Leave a Reply