We don’t hear much about Zindra, at least I don’t. Zindra is the adult continent of Second Life, sort of a red-light or Amsterdam area. It is actually far more than that. Since June of 2009, when founded, to now it has more than doubled in size growing to 343 regions. Comparing Zindra’s growth with the overall growth of Second Life regions (see: Second Life and OpenSim Stats), which is slowly shrinking, it is rather impressive growth. But, what is going on in Zindra? No… no… other than that.
Once upon a time there was a Zindra Residents’ Group and an Adult Content Group. Only the Adult Content group has an office hour meeting. The Zindra interests are folded into that meeting. Changing the meeting to perhaps two groups/meetings or reorganizing how it is handled is under consideration.
I suppose ZEXPO is a short word play on sex and Zindra Exposition. You can read the May announcement regarding ZEXPO in the SL Community Forum. See: ZEXPO 2011 runs AUG 26 thru SEP 4: Celebrating the Adult Side of Second Life: Zindra and Beyond
Whatever other impressions one takes away from the announcement the idea is in there that the exposition’s focus is broad. It is oriented in an inclusive way. Rather than being focused just on Zindrian interests an acknowledgement of a mutual dependence between SL’s mainland and Zindra shows. Each area’s health is tied to the health of the other. So, if you have products to sell, not just adult products, consider the ZEXPO.
I’m still figuring out what the Adult Content User Group and the ZEXPO’s vision is for Zindra. The article describes it as, “This year’s show features an emphasis on Creative and Active Investment, Adult Sophistication and a fun ‘Forbidden Carnival’ theme.” At first look it seems business is looking for adult entertainment beyond just the sex trade.
The ZEXPO’s producer is Ginette Pinazzo. You can find the ZEXPO’s web site at: ZEXPO, a Google site. The site reveals that there are currently 80 exhibitors.
During the second week of August the ZEXPO Guide will come out and we’ll start to see it splashed around Second Life. The ZEXPO opens August 26th.
In an effort to make the ZEXPO more immersive a hotel reservations system has been created. So, if you have wondered about the wild hotel parties at conventions, the exclusive VIP business connections and gifts vendors provide, or just the perks available to those staying in the convention city then I suppose this is your chance. While the DLK Hotel offers a more… respectable… experience, the Quickie Motel is an obvious counter balancing of respectability with sleaze. The Acerta VIP is said to offer and ‘incredible state-of-the-art’ hotel experience. I have no idea what that may mean… Viagra and an Internet connection?
In the Adult Content Group there has been conversation about the ZEXPO. Ginette is striving to create an environment for the promotion of businesses and business connections. Also RL and SL comedians are participating in the organization of and the event ZEXPO. Lots of laughs are planned.
Zindra is the name of the continent. However, sometime in the last couple of years a region named Zindra was added to the continent. I remember my first try at finding the adult continent. Search does not contain continent names. It was nearly impossible to find Zindra. There was just no direct way to find the continent. With the Zindra region finding the continent is much easier. One can open the World Map or Search and search on the name Zindra. That is a big improvement.
But, the problems with promoting the continent didn’t end there. It seems some people think this single region is all there is to Zindra. The Zindra region is one region and the Zindra continent is now about 343 regions.
There is much controversy and drama swirling around the Zindra Region’s name and how it is to be used. Even whether the name should remain or go away is at issue. See: Zindra Sim Name Change. I gather that most of problem with the Zindra Region is it does not fairly represent what Zindra Continent is nor does it clearly convey the region is only an entry point to a much larger continent. So, eventually something will change. We know that any change will only be after ZEXPO 2011 is over at the end of August.
If you use the World Map to get to Zindra, you’ll find you do NOT land at the planned landing point. You need to travel north 50 meters or so to find it.
Linden Lab Involvement
There is considerable confusion around what the Lab’s involvement is in Second Life communities. Whether it be mainland, Zindra, Burning Man, SL Birthdays, or whatever the Lindens do NOT want to be involved in the day-to-day management. Viale Linden put the goals and motives in words for the Adult Content Group, quoting:
Community goal: Leverage our passionate community to help us convert new users and retain existing users.
- Facilitate sustainable, productive communities by partnering with key groups and residents. (different from executing on a community wish list).
- Bring the value forward – Use Social Media (Facebook, Twitter, & YouTube), Message Of The Day, Blogs, Destination Guide, Welcome Feeds, and in-viewer SL social efforts to showcase Second Life UGC.
- Focus on sustainable movements, not discrete campaigns. Source the community for naturally sustaining, organic initiatives that scale and utilize trusted community resources while still aligning with corporate goals. Move away from LL-driven events and start spotting movements with natural momentum.
- Embrace community content as an untapped, invaluable resource.
The thing about wording things as the Lab has is they are open to multiple interpretations and require ongoing explanation which breeds ongoing drama. But, I doubt any concise wording is possible that would avoid the problems.
Since the Lab staff is not going to run Zindra, or most community’s, events many consider the Lab is abandoning Zindra or fill in your given group. By offering to support communities, including Zindra, it requires the community to form some type of cooperative group. Once the group comes to some kind of consensus that supports the Lab’s corporate goals the Lab can help out. As long as the community remains divided and courses of action remain disputed, the Lab won’t do much, which can look like abandonment. Basically this means work together or be ignored and feel abandoned.
You can find a discussion of Viale’s points in the Adult Content Groups minutes. See: 06/27/2011 Minutes. While the discussion is focused on the Adult Content Group the ideas are tenants of Lab policy now. That explains several things we have seen happening in SL with various events.
If you are hearing someone say the Lab has abandoned whatever group, consider what you’re reading here. It is more likely an issue within the group than the Lab.
The SLURL is here. The Vortex is a combination sandbox and help center with mentors. Because the sandbox is in an adult region it is possible to test things not permitted in other sandboxes. Unfortunately it is not in a Release Channel. So, testing against the latest SL features is not possible.
The sandbox clears every two hours. If you have hover tips for land turned on you should see the notice. There are signs about that seem to indicate a scheduled clearing time rather than an object aging timer is in use. As you probably know, object aging is the usual process for clearing sandboxes.
Zindra is more than just a place to get lucky. The sex industry is a major income earner in Second Life just as it is in RL. Some factions of the community are well organized and moving ahead. It seems the Zindra continent is growing and prospering.
If you are still thinking it is just a place to get lucky or limited to escort businesses then your missing the actual nature of Zindra. An effort is underway to improve the sophistication of Zindra and to add fun activities beyond sex. It will be interesting to see if the community can shift the world’s ideas of what Zindra and SL are.