The recent ToS change left some questions as to whether third parties could continue trading Lindens. A subsequent post on the SL Blog seems to equate “unauthorized” with Not Permitted.
As described on the Second Life blog, updated Second Life Terms of Service disallow trading of Linden dollars (L $) on exchanges other than the LindeX.
As operator of a third party to exchange, You Should cease Facilitating L$ trades on your exchange immediately to comply with the Terms of Service. Any virtual ‘ATMs’ or scripted objects in Second Life that are connected to your exchange should therefore be removed immediately.
Please be sure to read the complete updated Second Life Terms of Service and take the steps Necessary to comply and keep your Second Life account (s) in good standing.
Thank you in advance for your cooperation.
That may not be a perfect translation. But, it seems to make it clear, Linden Lab will be the only currency exchange in Second Life.
On the Virwox site this is posted:
2013-05-08: IMPORTANT changes in Linden Lab’s TOS
Linden Lab has recently changed their Terms of Service. Section 5.3 states that transactions on Linden Dollar exchanges other than the LindeX are “unauthorized” and “Buying or Selling Linden dollars anywhere other than the LindeX is done so solely at your own risk.”. This is not much different that what is was before.
However, in a recent blog post Linden Lab interprets “unauthorized” as “not permitted”. This would mean that we can no longer offer our service to Second Life residents.
We have asked Linden Lab for clarification. Until we know what this all means, we have disabled deposits of Linden Dollars (the terminals will send them back), disabled the “Currency Shop” for Linden Dollar purchases, and disabled the withdrawal of Linden Dollars to Second Life. Other virtual currencies are not affected.
We will post updates here when we know more. Please refrain from sending us support questions about this issue, at the moment we will not be able to give you more information.
From reading the ToS I assumed the Lab was limiting their liability and reducing their FinCEN reporting requirements. What is said in the SL Blog post colors that a bit. But, the emails seem to confirm the most drastic interpretation of the ToS is the correct one.
Since the FinCEN regulations and implementation are being interpreted by the Lab’s attorneys, who are likely talking with the government administrative types, there is not going to be any appeal. The Lab has its marching orders and staff is implementing them.
This looks like bye-bye to the exchanges.
So, the only thing that can be done is try to get the Lab to provide a reasonable service. As it is now, it takes several working days for L$ to convert and arrive in PayPal. That is a problem for some people. In numerous foreign countries there will be no good exchange service.
With your PayPal account, you can only receive payments in:
- Canadian Dollars
- British Pounds
- U.S. Dollars
- Japanese Yen
- Australian Dollars
- New Zealand Dollars
- Swiss Francs
- Hong Kong Dollars
- Singapore Dollars
- Swedish Kronor
- Danish Kroner
- Polish Zlotys
- Norwegian Kroner
- Hungarian Forints
- Czech Koruny
- Israeli New Shekels
- Mexican Pesos
- Brazilian Real (only for Brazilian members)
- Malaysian Ringgits (only for Malaysian members)
- Philippine Pesos
- New Taiwan Dollars
- Thai Baht
- TRY for Turkish Liras (only for Turkish members)
This could force a number of people out of Second Life. I would also think it could force some SL businesses to close. I doubt this is something Linden Lab wants to happen. But, the problem here is the US government just doesn’t care. It is big and growing. Large organizations are known for their inefficiency and stupidity. So, things won’t be getting better for the L$.