Response to Arabella’s notecard

I suppose I should defend myself against Arabella’s accusations. To which, I will quote this “- The primary issue that resulted in the demise of Emerald was the attempted and failed takeover of the project, far in advance of any requirements deadline set by Lindenlab. This hostile takeover was initiated by Jessica Lyon. ”

As you can see by my post below, outlining that in no capacity would LL allow emerald to continue with Skills, Phox (lonely bluebird), and Discrete. And with Lonely’s refusal to step down, the only option in my mind, was to find a way to forcibly remove him from the team in order for emerald to comply with LL’s requirements. Now if you want to call that a “take over”, your free to do so. I see it as doing the last possible thing I could to keep the project alive. I even offered to step down and resign myself, if phox would step down so the project could survive.

I’m quite sure that Phox is preparing a final emerald release which will circumvent LL’s ability to block it. Also keep in mind that this build will be done entirely by him with no one else verifying any code. Use it at your own risk.

That said, a bit of dev chat…

[12:55:32 PM] Jessica Trinity: phox, if you stay, they will block emerald
[12:58:24 PM] Jessica Trinity: none of us want emerald to die except you right now
[12:59:10 PM] Jessica Trinity: and as far as I can tell, none of us are willing to risk emerald except you.
[1:00:14 PM] Phox: I believe emerald has a great chance of dying without me.
[1:00:26 PM] Jessica Trinity: emerald has a better chance of continuing without you than with you
[1:00:33 PM] Phox: I feel differently.
[1:00:44 PM] Jessica Trinity: We have a good list of very experienced dev’s wanting on the team
[1:01:09 PM] Phox: I’m sure you do o.o
[1:01:16 PM] Jessica Trinity: Essentially, staying means your willing to kill emerald
[1:01:23 PM] Jessica Trinity: this makes me sad
[1:01:23 PM] Phox: If that’s how you see it, sure.
[1:01:35 PM] Jessica Trinity: how can you be that selfish?
[1:01:41 PM] Phox: I don’t know.
[1:02:01 PM] Jessica Trinity: users aside, everyone here is here because we want to see emerald succeed
[1:02:09 PM] Jessica Trinity: and we’re still here because we believe it can
[1:02:34 PM] Jessica Trinity: leaving for the sake of the project would be the only honorable thing to do hon
[1:02:55 PM] Phox: I guess I’m not honorable then.
[1:03:04 PM] Jessica Trinity: so your willing to be the reason emerald dies?
[1:03:25 PM] Phox: No, Linden Lab will be the reason Emerald dies, regardless of what I do.
[1:03:35 PM] Phox: If my staying results in that outcome, well you can say I told you so.
[1:03:40 PM] Jessica Trinity: phox, I know we can keep emerald alive
[1:04:46 PM] Jessica Trinity: I can’t believe you’re willing to kill this project just because of.. well, I don’t know why?
[1:04:58 PM] Phox: Well when you figure it out, let me know
[1:05:01 PM] Jessica Trinity: Why are you willing to kill this project by staying?
[1:05:37 PM] Jessica Trinity: do you not care about the project?
[1:05:51 PM] Phox: Obviously, I don’t care at all
[1:05:54 PM] Phox: I’m here for the money, you know that
[1:05:57 PM] Jessica Trinity: after all the time and work you put into it, your willing to just let LL kill it?
[1:06:09 PM] Jessica Trinity: there will be no money in it when it’s dead
[1:06:16 PM] Phox: …
[1:06:20 PM] Jessica Trinity: believe me, LL is 100% prepared and willing to kill this project.
[1:06:23 PM] Phox: There is no money in it now, that’s the point.
[1:06:30 PM] Jessica Trinity: Then why stay?
[1:06:35 PM] Jessica Trinity: why kill it
[1:06:38 PM] Phox: Like I said, you figure it out.
[1:06:46 PM] Phox: I’m not going to sit here and argue with you about this
[1:06:47 PM] Jessica Trinity: I can’t figure it out phox, because it makes no sense.
[1:07:14 PM] Jessica Trinity: If i was told to leave, and i had to leave to keep this project going i wouldn’t think twice about it. I would be sad, but i would also be proud that i made the sacrifice to keep it alive
[1:07:48 PM] Phox: Well when I’m told to do something I don’t immediately bend over and let linden lab fuck me.
[1:08:00 PM] Jessica Trinity: phox, they are going to kill the project
[1:08:04 PM] Jessica Trinity: are you living in denial?
[1:08:05 PM] Phox: Let them

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What were the requirements exactly?

Emerald Project Team:

We have removed the Emerald viewer from our Third-Party Viewer Directory because of its multiple violations of our Policy on Third-Party Viewers.

Our Policy prohibits the intentional targeting of third-party sites as was done recently by the Emerald viewer’s login page.  Specifically, the Policy prohibits the distribution of harmful functionality like denial of service attacks or griefing attacks.  (TPVP section 2.d.iii)

Our Policy also requires a published privacy policy that specifically describes what user data the third-party viewer collects, stores, or uses, and how it uses, displays, or shares that data.  (TPVP section 4.b.i).

The published privacy policy for the Emerald viewer does not disclose what user information the viewer collects.  When it came to our attention that the Emerald viewer was collecting the installation path without stripping any user account names present in the path, and storing it in textures produced by the viewer’s graphics library wrapper, we asked that this code be altered to omit full directory paths.  After assurances from Emerald developers (Lonely Bluebird) that the code would be altered, we were disappointed to learn that instead of stopping the practice of adding data to textures, the Emerald viewer code encrypted the data in order to obfuscate the data collection practices.

In addition to violating our Policy on Third-Party Viewers, these actions are significant breaches of the trust of the Second Life community.  Please remedy these breaches immediately by taking the steps outlined below.  Taking these steps is critical to providing transparency around Emerald’s viewer functionality and collection of user data, and to ensuring that the viewer complies with Linden Lab policies and the law.  The steps alone do not, however, guarantee that the Emerald viewer will be readmitted to the Third-Party Viewer Directory.

  1. Provide transparency in your development efforts to both the Second Life community and Linden Lab, including:
    • Use open mailing lists or forums for your developer communications.
    • Provide a publicly viewable source code repository.
    • Provide public code commit notices.
  2. Demand accountability from each and every Emerald developer, including:
    • Require each committer to provide real-world identity information to Linden Lab as a signatory to the certification of compliance with the Third Party Viewer Policy.
    • End the participation of any developer who has deliberately violated Linden Lab policy or the law.
  3. The Emerald viewer’s closed source emkdu library is not in compliance with the GPL.  Bring all current and future versions of the Emerald viewer into compliance with the GPL by omitting emkdu.  Use OpenJPEG or other GPL-compatible code.
  4. Update your posted Privacy Policy for the Emerald viewer to specifically describe what user data has been collected or stored by any version of the Emerald viewer that may be used to log into Second Life.  For all user data collected or stored, specifically describe in the policy how that user data has been used, displayed, or shared.  If you wish to disable login of any versions of the Emerald viewer that may be collecting user data, please advise us immediately of the specific viewer versions.
  5. Do not distribute any functionality that conceals information in Second Life assets, including through encryption or steganographic techniques, with the sole exception of information that LSL scripts produce or consume.  We will be updating the Third-Party Viewer Policy shortly to clarify this requirement.  Be sure to bring all current and future versions of the Emerald viewer into compliance with the requirement.

Please respond to this notice no later than this Friday, August 27 and confirm the date by which you will have completed the above steps.  Failure to comply with the steps may result in further action by Linden Lab, beyond removal from the Third-Party Viewer Directory.  We look forward to your prompt response.

Sincerely,

Oz Linden

And our second response from LL was.

Your responses are acceptable, with the following exceptions and clarifications:

  • We have considered your request to retain Phox, Skills, and Discrete on the team in some advisory capacity, and have made a final decision:  No association with the project in any capacity is acceptable.  All connections between those individuals and Emerald Viewer project must be terminated, and that fact made public by the team.
  • The time frame for a release that does not include the emkdu.dll is not acceptable.  A release must be made available that will not use an emkdu.dll or an llkdu.dll even if they are on the users system must be made available.

Each of the above issues must be addressed no later than Friday September 3rd or Linden Lab will begin taking steps that will culminate in blocking all access by the Emerald Viewer.

With respect to the identification of contributors: the use of age or payment verification will not be sufficient.  We will provide more details on the new requirements as part of updates to the Third Party Viewer Directory policies; these will apply to all new applications, not just yours.  Specifics are still being worked on, and I’ll share them publicly as soon as possible, but the essence of the change is that each person with commit access to the viewer code or any project web assets served through the viewer will need to individually execute a certification of compliance with the Third Party Viewer Policy, including real identification and addressing information.  Those identities will be confidential.

With respect to the public code repository – the googlecode repository is acceptable, but a link to it should be added to the set of links in your project web site footer, not only on the FAQ page.

It’s pretty clear, there was no choice but to have those three people off the team in order for emerald to continue.

Posted in Uncategorized | 36 Comments

My Resignation from Emerald

Dated: Sept 1st, 2010 1:15 EST.

It is with great sadness and disappointment that I write this entry.

As of some time this morning, all access to the servers have been severed to all but Arabella Steadham and Lonely Bluebird. Neither me, nor any of the other Emerald Developers have the ability to put out releases at this time. Beyond the recent beta 2587, we also cannot certify the safety or validity of any future releases.

Now, I made a promise to everyone to disclose the remaining requirements from LL. Those final two requirements that were given to us by LL, was to have a release out by Friday September the 3rd that would not support emkdu or llkdu even if one of the files was present, and that Lonely Bluebird, Skills Hak and Discrete Dreamscape be removed from the project. The alternative was that LL would block the viewer from access to the SecondLife Grid. While Discrete and Skills gracefully stepped down, Lonely refused. A long argument ensued in dev chat and, I created a new dev chat, where most of us discussed how we could remove Lonely from the project, however it failed. Ultimately Lonely has removed access to the servers and has also stated that he is applying for trademark on the Emerald Viewer name. Preventing us from continuing on the project without him. < Correction, I’m informed it wasn’t Lonely but rather Fractured who applied for the trademark. >

Unless circumstances change, in my opinion, the Emerald Viewer Project is dead. We simply cannot achieve a release by the deadline given to us under the current circumstances.

Without access to the server and website, I am forced to make a very difficult decision as I will not allow myself to be held accountable to anything that happens from this day on in regards to Emerald.

With that said, I here by officially resign from the Emerald Viewer Project.

I no longer have access to post on the modular systems blog, so I have created a temporary personal blog here https://jessicalyons.wordpress.com . It will be on this blog where I will post future developments with myself and possibly the remaining Emerald Developers. We are considering, (only considering) the possibility of creating a new viewer, to be on the TPVD, picking up where Emerald left off. IF we do, you will have the same features as Emerald Viewer. The motivation for this would be purely to give the existing loyal Emerald users a TPVP compliant alternative with a fresh future.

I would like to thank, all of our dedicated and loyal users for your support through these difficult and confusing times. I would also like to thank our support team, for all of their hard work and relentless dedication to the emerald viewer project and to helping our users. Also to thank our beta testers who helped Emerald viewer be a quality product.

Sincerely,
Jessica Lyon.

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