Step UP!

Make your voice heard about Content Theft

The start of Step UP!

Step Up!

Step Up!

In the wake of the wholesale theft of sims and content over the weekend, like many people we wanted to do something about it – and also about all the other content theft that we have been fighting for so long – in the Content Creators Association and in magazines and on TV shows.

Since then we’ve talked – and have come up with the idea of the Step UP! campaign, a campaign centred on a special day of action that everyone can become involved with, and that can empower and inform people.

We are aiming for a day that draws together action, education and celebration. We want a focus that empowers people – and rather than dictates to people, allows them to express their own creatvity in a variety of ways. It also draws attention to the strength of feeling that there is here on the grid.

2) We need to make people feel empowered by what they do. And, because we are hardly the most time-free people on the grid – we need something that they can largely organise themselves!

So these are our thoughts:

We are nominating a day as Step UP! Day – which will be November 5th – Guy Fawkes Day or Bonfire Night in the UK.

a) On this day – no-one uploads textures to the grid. This should show the economic power of people acting together, without harming content creators. We want Linden Lab to see the power of the feeling about the problem of content theft – and to discuss urgently strategies for tackling it.

b) As many people as possible wear an orange ribbon as a sign of support for creators. And creators can design these – they can be lapel ribbons, they can be arm bands, they can be tee-shirts … the idea is to make the orange ribbon the theme of the day. And everyone who gets a free orange ribbon gets an information sheet – explaining what content theft is, what they can do about it etc. And they also get an information pack that they can give to their friends (which also contains an orange ribbon for their friends).

Why orange? It’s been used before, but has no overwhelming association (unlike pink or red ribbons). It’s a bright, noticeable colour. It suggests explosions and colour …

And it’s an opportunity for stores and content creators to become involved too.

The day ends with parties. Bonfire parties. That means that all around the grid, people have parties.

We’re not going to be trying to stage Big Events that maybe only 60 or 70 people can cram into. Instead we encourage every club to hold a Step Up! party. We encourage every musician to play Step UP! events. Everyone on the grid has a part to play. Everyone can take part.

This is going to come in several forms.

1) Info pack
These will be given out with orange ribbons in stores and at parties.

2) Media
Audio and Visual service ads. The Press. The Blogsphere – everyone can play there part in getting out the message that we have had enoufgh, and we have chosen to Step UP! against content theft.

3) Video
Short informational films – tutorials about content theft.

On the Designing Worlds shows we’ve talked again and again about the need for a social shift – so that people see content theft as socially and morally unacceptable. So … let’s go for it!

Watch this space for more details on how you can become involved, and how you can share with us your plans for Step UP! Day.

The concept originates with a small group – Angie Mornington, Gabrielle Riel, Gwen Carillon and Saffia Widdershins. But more and more people are now becoming involved. And you can too.


September 23, 2009 - Posted by | Step Up! Campaign, Step Up! Day


  1. What a great idea! Count Trubble in for anything I can do to help 🙂 It’s about time everyone pulls together and shows thieves they are not welcome.

    Comment by trubbleinsl | September 23, 2009 | Reply

  2. GREAT idea! Count me in aswell!

    Comment by SySy Chapman | September 23, 2009 | Reply

  3. Great idea, but on the “no texture uploads”, will that also mean photos? (Thinking of all the photographers with jobs to do)

    Comment by HoneyBear | September 23, 2009 | Reply

    • Yes, but it’s one day. People will be able to upload on the 4th and 6th.

      It’s about making a point, not about causing long-term disruption.

      And it’s to re-enforce the education and information dissemination.

      Comment by primperfect | September 23, 2009 | Reply

    • I’m a photographer, and the cause is worth the inconvenience of abstaining from uploads for a day.

      I also love the idea of using Guy Fawkes Day. How many griefers have you seen wearing “V for Vendetta” masks? It’s time we took that symbol back.

      Comment by Lalo Telling | September 24, 2009 | Reply

  4. thats a great idea, i’d love to be involved

    Comment by aems | September 23, 2009 | Reply

  5. Although Dragon Charm Designs isn’t big enough for a store I would like to help where ever i can

    Comment by Ephedra Loon | September 23, 2009 | Reply

  6. This is a great idea. If theres any way I can be involved let me know.

    Comment by Stuart Warf | September 23, 2009 | Reply

  7. I like the idea. Maybe an SL group could help too.

    Comment by Maximilian Legend | September 23, 2009 | Reply

  8. Count me in. GFD is my rezday, and I’m thinking of hiring musicians to just stream silence for hourlong empty sets to prove a point.


    Comment by Crap Mariner | September 23, 2009 | Reply

    • FOLLOW-UP: What about 256x256x1 megaprims with the ribbons for sim owners to place in the sky before 11/5 so the map will have plenty of unavoidable symbols of protest?


      Comment by Crap Mariner | September 23, 2009 | Reply

      • I love this idea.

        Comment by primperfect | September 24, 2009

    • Love it!!!!!!! I will talk to my sim owner about it, if she doesn’t already know.

      Comment by Whimsy Winx | September 25, 2009 | Reply

    • Crap, I like your thinking – it could be “the day the sky turned orange”

      Comment by Christine Svenska | September 25, 2009 | Reply

  9. Count me in, along with Wellness Island. This is an issue that impacts creators of intellectual property like educational materials in SL, etc.

    Comment by Avalon Birke | September 23, 2009 | Reply

  10. Great idea..any help you need, holler. I’m in.

    Comment by Shelly Toonie | September 23, 2009 | Reply

  11. Not making uploads doesn’t make any “economic statement.

    To really make an economic statement organise a day of no buying of Lindens or cashing out.

    Sorry, but this is symbolic at best and LL will simply laugh.

    Comment by Lucifer | September 23, 2009 | Reply

    • This isn’t just symbolic – it’s about education.

      The boycott is a gesture, yes. But it’s a gesture that will cause a blip on the radar, without hurting content creators.

      But the idea of not cashing out, and/or not buying Lindens could be be put on the table.

      Comment by primperfect | September 23, 2009 | Reply

      • LL won’t even notice, seriously.

        The only way to get their attention is in the pocket.

        And even at that, their heads are so far up their arses you’d need the entire grid on board, before they’d notice.

        The world is simply too big now to co ordinate an effort like this.

        I don’t mean to rain on your parade, but these are the harsh realities.

        The one day strike by shops in SL over the original copybot was a monumental failure too, if you think back.

        Comment by Lucifer | September 23, 2009

      • And forwhat it’s worth, I won’t be uploading textures, buying lindens, or cashing out on the 5th, as I’ve all but left SL

        Comment by Lucifer | September 23, 2009

  12. This is a wonderful idea! My only request to store owners is if I take the time to note card that I’ve been approached in your store…in private IM…to buy what is likely stolen content…please at least acknowledge that you got the card and care.

    I stepped up and did this…with times, names and details…saw the store owner accept my note card and then never heard back from them. Kinda made me think two things…did it even matter that someone stepped up…and did they even care?

    Just my two cents…won’t put me off from stepping up again…but it would be nice to know it is valued.

    Comment by XiuLan Quan | September 23, 2009 | Reply

    • XiuLan,

      I hope you will not let your experience with one store sour you on doing your part on letting store and mall owners know about shady activity’s you see. Most of us are very passionate about about this issue and personally I take the time to thank everyone that bring these things to my attention.

      Comment by Roblem Hogarth | September 24, 2009 | Reply

  13. Awesome idea and concept!! Count me and BotBabes Robotics & AI Mall in as well. Would love to have a vendor at my mall that can give out the ribbons too! Please pass me one in-world! MUWAH!!!

    Comment by Starfire Silverstar | September 23, 2009 | Reply

  14. Sn@tch, !ReToX!, Pulse and Snatch City are in for sure. Our voice needs to be heard and the creative and financial impact we make on the grid needs to be shown to LL. It’s time to demonstrate our solidarity and what effect we make on this world and their business with OUR businesses. We won’t stand for inaction and complacency any more.

    Ivey Deschanel

    Comment by Ivey | September 23, 2009 | Reply

  15. LOVE IT! Linden Lab does listen, because the vast majority of LL is made up of residents. Residents that are also Content Creators. Guy Fawkes Day is perfect! I’ll do my bit.

    Comment by Stroker Serpentine | September 23, 2009 | Reply

  16. I think this is a great idea and I’m happy to take part in it. I know many may not like this suggestion but I’d even be willing to go a day without any sales as well.

    Comment by Roslin Petion | September 23, 2009 | Reply

    • I agree, no sales, as well as no buying lindens, no transactions at all.

      Comment by Whimsy Winx | September 25, 2009 | Reply

  17. Count me in! Great idea! 😀

    Comment by Faery Sola | September 23, 2009 | Reply

  18. Good one… I’m in… 😀

    Comment by Kallisti Burns | September 23, 2009 | Reply

  19. Excellent idea(s)! I’m all for it. Happy to participate and get the word out!

    Comment by Nabila Nadir | September 23, 2009 | Reply

  20. […] just like any other grassroots concern (virtual or otherwise)? Looks like it's been done: Step Up! Hat tip to @SecondLie __________________ Telling: Like it […]

    Pingback by The countdown starts now - Page 21 - SLUniverse Forums | September 24, 2009 | Reply

  21. […] intellectual property rights awareness. There’s a proposal on the table for  November 5th as Step Up! Day. A day for no uploading of textures and wearing ribbons show support for content creators. And of […]

    Pingback by Content theft, a lock, and a butter knife « Herding Cats | September 24, 2009 | Reply

  22. As my partner Ivey said we are 100% behind this, lets see where we can take it. So where is the official poster???

    Comment by Roblem Hogarth | September 24, 2009 | Reply

  23. Count me in as well. And could I request an easy to understand and short notecard that I can distribute to newcomers to SL explaining how to avoid stolen content. If we learn ’em right when they are young we may make some inroads!
    I will happily put up a display if someone has time to make one that will assist our newest residents in making good choices.

    Comment by Fogwoman Gray | September 24, 2009 | Reply

  24. What an awesome effort! However “Why orange? It’s been used before, but has no overwhelming association (unlike pink or red ribbons). It’s a bright, noticeable colour. It suggests explosions and colour …”
    having a mom who just finished chemotherapy, I just want to point out that you might wanna be conscious that the orange ribbon stands for leukemia awareness as well. I’m sure this is “overwhelming” for the families and friends effected by this terrible disease. I do love orange and think it is a great representation of the fantastic, fiery content creators on SL, but there is definitely an important association there that you should be aware of.

    Sorry to be a party-pooper, it’s just important to me LOL! NONETHELESS you totally still have this content creator’s support, yadda yadda :-]

    Comment by parabolicfrequency | September 24, 2009 | Reply

  25. Thank you for being thoughtful enough to start this grassroots effort that is sorely needed. I have been reading many blogs on this issue mostly filled with doomsayers that offer no solutions.

    Step Up Day will at least give sellers and content creators alike something positive and proactive to do during this crisis.

    Comment by Ashasekayi Ra | September 24, 2009 | Reply

  26. Where to start with such BS. For one the orange ribbon represents a TON of things varying on your country.

    Why not DO something? Promote awareness, it’s like saying everyone wear this ribbon and do a jig. At least Guy Fawkes tried to accomplish something, even if he stood alone in his actions. Why not organize something with more meaning? A petition? Ways to actually go protect LL not doing almost anything to protect creators? How about something with meaning!

    Yes, let’s throw parties and certain creators may not upload for one day. But they will tomorrow and continue on, or may not just tell you and just upload on that day anyway. This is an utter joke and I think it’s a disgrace. If you wanna organize something – then do something besides hiding behind a screen and waving a lil ribbon that means a ton of things all around the world.

    Comment by BSRibbon | September 25, 2009 | Reply

  27. The Orange ribbon has different meanings around the world – as the Wikipedia article indicates. However, unlike the red AIDS ribbon or the pink Breast Cancer ribbon, it doesn’t seem to have taken on a universal meaning – although it may well come to do so.

    The ribbon is only one part of this campaign. A vital part IS to raise awareness of what is happening; many people don’t understand what content theft is or the effect it has. Some of us have been trying to change that – and to effect a social shift that makes the average person recognise and reject content theft. Step UP! is a way of doing that.

    I’m not clear why you think a petition would have more meaning than an awareness campaign – the aims are perhaps different, but both have meaning.

    But if you have a clear idea of what a petition should say, why not share it with us? Perhaps we could develop a petition together – we’re not excluding ideas here for making this campaign as effective as possible.

    Comment by primperfect | September 25, 2009 | Reply

  28. I think that this is a great thing not only does it show them with one days transactions what it would be like if no one was spending. But to also to gain awareness. Count me in 😀

    May all your dreams come true,
    Sanura Snowpaw of *Dreams*

    Comment by Sanura Snowpaw | September 25, 2009 | Reply

  29. and its now also blogged in Swedish on at least 2 blogs 🙂

    Comment by ZigadenaGabardini/ZE design sl | September 25, 2009 | Reply

  30. Count me in! If there is anything I can do to help – use me – use my island – I would happily sponsor a bonfire in the park! Awareness is a great preventative tool. To all you who say this is a joke – well you are entitled to your opinion – are we to sit back and say nothing? do nothing? It might be a baby step but it IS a step in the right direction. Unite and fight! CS Fandango is at your service!
    Christine Svenska

    Comment by Christine Svenska | September 25, 2009 | Reply

  31. […] founding article (republished in PrimPerfect) proposes two actions, both it appears to take place on this coming […]

    Pingback by New Blog Urges Action on SL Content Theft « Around the Grid | September 25, 2009 | Reply

  32. I love the idea, and would even take it a step further down the financial road. How about canceling classified ads for one week? If everyone was on the same page with this, the financial impact to LL would be VERY noticeable.

    Comment by GM & Barb | September 27, 2009 | Reply

  33. […] Here is where Step UP! Comes into this post… The Start of Step UP! – first post on the website which you can find here here […]

    Pingback by DM Designs » Lets Get Together and Step UP! | October 3, 2009 | Reply

  34. I have a better idea — why not on Nov 5 no one logs into sl, blogs about sl, visits any website associated with sl (official or unofficial).

    Put this everywhere – notices everywhere that because Linden Labs refuses to protect content creators then we will demonstrate what Second Life would be like without content creators or consumers.

    I think that’s a bigger statement than bonfires, not uploading textures, and ribbons.

    Comment by Beatrix Noel | October 10, 2009 | Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: