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Archive for August, 2009

This applies to RLV and RLVa

There has been a code change, I don’t know the technical details or the reason and frankly as an end user I don’t need to. What I do need to know is what it means for me, which I’m about to share with you.

As I have posted previously, I use Sharie Criss’ fw plugin with the Amethyst collar and more recently with OpenCollar (thanks to a handy Amethyst to OpenCollar conversion script I found; something for another post). I mainly use it for my own benefit. I find it far easier to type:

/saber

hit return and have my Eclectic Randomness Saber boots attach to my feet than the tedious open inventory, click, navigate, click, navigate, click navigate wear folder ZZzzzzzz are we done yet?

Which is fine, why I have them in #RLV and not in my main inventory. I have lots of other things in #RLV and there are some I’m not happy giving strangers / others access to. Tyically these items live in the directory:

.> Utility

The `.’ is significant. That’s what hides the directory from RLV tools and this was a good thing. Let’s look back at /saber and pretend that they’re in `.> Utility’ – /saber calls up a gesture which has one chat command in it, this reads

/77shufw wear ut/saber

Now back before the code change in both viewers, that worked just fine and dandy.

Now, it doesn’t. The presence of the `.’ at the beginning of the folder name messes up the pattern matching. That is annoying, but it’s not insurmountable. Modifying the gesture, this will do the job:

/77 shufw wear .> Utility/saber

So, you can still have your hidden directories but you cannot pattern match on them. Subdirectories of the hidden directory can be pattern matched.

Now excuse me while I go edit 30 odd gestures….

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It’s probably a good job I was IM mute this morning. Someone quite correctly used the RR update and support group to inquire after the nofly command. So far so good.

Then some smarmy poseur goes, well dunno telling my girl you are not allowed to fly till further notice works for me.

Duh, way to miss the point of what RLV is for. What said smarmy poseur is talking about is submission, not bondage. They are two entirely different things. I guess I should thank her for letting us know just how clueless she is.

There is no tool in SL to assist with submission, that comes from the mind. Buy all the clothes and toys you want; they’ll do nothing for you submission wise.

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Don’t call me Miss

…Mistress, Madam or anything like that and, more importantly, don’t expect or demand to be called that.

This really is one of my bigger bugbears in the scene in general, not just SL although it does appear to be worse here.  This may sound strange to some of you but bear with me a while and while you may not agree with me at the end of this post, you may understand me.

For me there are no dominants and there are no submissives.  I’ll say that again, there are no dominants and there are no submissives.

Now that I’ve offended dominants and submissives alike, let me clarify.  If I meet you in SL, I meet you as me, Shuggi.  I’m neko.  I’ve a tail and furry ears, a sense of humour (debatable) and some kind of dress sense (so long as it involves latex and guns).  That’s about all you know about me; well you know more than that if you read my blog but really that’s pretty much it.  I know even less about you, so how can we have a relationship?

That’s the key word; relationship.  To be dominant or to be submissive occurs in a relationship.  It is not something one is, it’s something one is to another.

If the first thing you say to me is “Greetings Miss Shuggi,’’ that’s telling me that you consider me to be a dominant, not necessarily dominant to you abut a dominant.  I’m not a dominant, I’m dominant to others, friends to many, playful to some and indifferent to a great deal more.  If I were to address you as slut, slave or other less socially acceptable terms, that’s objectifying you in the same way as addressing me a Miss or Mistress objectifies me.

Some may argue that calling one Miss or whatever is just a sign of respect.   I take the opposite view, I would take much more of an interest in you if you actually expressed an interest in getting to know me for who I am rather than what I may do for you.

How about we get to know each other first, eh?  One of four things will happen:

  • We become friends but with no D/s component
  • We are indifferent to each other, obviously no D/s component
  • I become dominant to you
  • You become dominant to me

Before we get to that, though, we need to get to know each other.  I know quite a lot of people in SL, the ones I’m comfortable with addressing me as Miss I can count on two fingers of one hand; in fact I consider it an honour that they do so.

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RLV & Commuication

There are a couple of fundamental thrills with bondage, being controlled and having control taken away from you.  A very effective way of doing that is taking away or limiting the ability of the bottom to communicate.

This can, of course, be role played.  I’ve done that and it’s good but it does not compare, for me, to trying to say something to the top only to have gibberish or nothing come out.  It makes me feel controlled.  As a top that is my goal, to have the bottom under my control and RLV can do much to achieve that.

Communication in SL happens in a number of ways

  • Chat
  • Emoting
  • Private Channels
  • IM
  • Notecards
  • Pictures

And other sneakier ways (no I’m not going to tell you, that’ll do for now).  Each of the listed methods can be controlled by RLV, what gets controlled is dependent on the context.  If you don’t know what context means, look it up because I’ll be using that word a lot 😉

This is a big subject, so I’m going to break it up in to a number of posts.  This one’s going to concentrate on Chat and emoting.

Chat

Well this one’s easy, slap a gag in the bottom’s mouth.  That’s as basic as it gets, it can get much more involved, but let’s run with that for now.

Gagging is a bondage staple.  Before we had RLV, hell second life, bottoms would emote being gagged.  It was a choice made by the bottom to respect the covenant that a gag’s in place; something from the bottom might look like this:

bottom mumbles behind her gag, shaking her head violently from side to side.

I’ll be quite frank with you, I still prefer that over what we have with a gagged bottom in RLV

bottom: mmf ppf mmom pfmm

With absolutely no emoting that green spam doesn’t really do it for me on its own.  Something like this works really well though:

bottom: mmf ppf mmom pfmm
bottom’s eyes go wide as she mumbles incoherently behind her gag

Now let’s back up a moment, here.  The top’s directing the scene by gagging the bottom, the bottom is not a passive entity in this.  The bottom reacts to the restriction in an appropriate way that empowers the top.  If the top gags the bottom and the bottom just spams the screen with green gag nonsense, that’s not doing a great deal to convey the import that being gagged has on the bottom.

Tops, you can do something about this.  Let’s say you’ve gagged a bottom and all the bottom does is spam the screen with annoying gagese…let’s pick it up from there.

RR Ballgag applied to bottom

bottom: mmf ppf mom Pfmm
bottom: pff mmmfow pfffme
bottom: mmfwo ppo mmmmow

Top sighs as she shakes her head in bemusement
Top:Silly girl, can’t understand a word your saying. Now hush up, and answer me by nodding or shaking your head.

Top proceeds to play twenty questions with the bottom.  This works on a couple of levels.  Firstly it re-enforces that the top is the one pulling the strings.  The bottom has very limited options in how she can respond.  Secondly if the bottom is not skilled at emoting, it can encourage that skill and that’s never a bad thing.

Deaf

This is an edgy one, I advise against using it with strangers. Deaf does what it says on the tin, it makes the bottom deaf to all local chat.  All the bottom will see is this:



Next to the name of whoever said it.  Thrilling huh?  Well yes, it can be.  It all boils down to context.  Consider the following scenario, the bottom has been bound, gagged etc.  Another party comes along, someone who’s a participant in the scene.  In the days before RLV what would happen with skilled RPers is something like this:

Top roughly manhandles bottom, inserting ear plugs in to bottom’s ears, rendering bottom deaf.

Top leans in to Top’s Buddy, and talks quietly with him; neither Top’s voice of or Buddy’s voice are comprehensible to Bottom.

And the conversation between Top and Buddy would take place in IM.  There’s nothing wrong with that, it’s good RP.  The effect is somewhat spoiled though if this is happening in a public place and the bottom can hear all the chit chat that’s going on around non-participants.  That’s where RLV comes in.

Mute

It’s arguable I should have covered this under the section all about gags, however if you’ve ever tried to totally silence someone (or yourself, you pervert) then you’ll know that it’s next to impossible to silence someone completely.

What would work is locking someone in a soundproof helmet, such helmets exist in SL.  Speech and hearing are facilitated by microphones and speakers; that’s one of the few occasions I’d mute a bottom’s chat.

Emotes

Emotes cannot be completely curtailed with RLV, they can be truncated to 15 characters.  The question is why would I as a top want to limit a bottom’s emotes?

For me the circumstances that this may happen are possibly amongst the most contextual of any RLV restriction.  It goes against what I generally want from a bottom; good feedback through RP.

Off the top of my head, here’s an example where it may be appropriate to truncate emotes.  Let’s say I’ve transformed someone in to a statue.  Well there’s a reason to mute and deaf someone perhaps, maybe just mute.  Deaf/mute would be incredibly boring.  Consider if the bottom is a  wordy emoter, you might have something like this:

Bottom struggles to move but finnds that her body is rigid with no movement possible.  She panics, wondering what is to become of her, only able to hear the voices around her but unable to even moan.

Now as a bit of narrative prose, that’s not too bad but in the context of the scene, is it appropriate?  When’s the last time you walked past a statue and managed to discern that sort of information from it?  No, me neither.  Now ideally my bottom knows to keep quiet and to not emote, but it may pay to truncate emotes just to re-enforce the point.

All that said I have a general dislike for truncating emotes, I don’t allow it on myself and would need a very good reason to do it to a bottom.

Special case: Chat redirection (renaming)

Gagging works by redirecting local chat and garbling it, chat redirection.  It does have another use, though, particularly useful in de-personalisation scenarios.

Some devices such as the Krystal Klaarrs Iso-Helmet, the Mo Renamer and the DD remnamer, allow for either the top or the bottom to change the name associated with chat.  Imagine 3 avs all dressed identically and all speaking with one voice, a true hive mind.  It can be quite disconcerting 🙂

 

Next up: RLV and indirect communication.

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Without a wearable attachment, be that on the HUD or on the avatar, running RLV does not change the user experience of SL. You can run around skip through fields of daisies, cavort around the most notorious RLV sims of SL and you will be utterly and, some would say, boringly safe.

For the RLV viewer to be of any use to the bottom (and by extension the top), you need to wear something that allows RLV commands to be passed to the viewer. These come in two flavors.

The first is something that the top interacts with directly, be that a collar, a set of cuffs, a doll key; there are many variations on this theme but they have one thing in common; there is nothing required of the top other than an understanding of how the particular attachment works and access, which is controlled by some sort of authentication mechanism be that an `owners’ list, keys or even open access.

The second is an RLV relay. An RLV relay accepts RLV commands from objects and avatars and passes them to the wearer of the relay. This is a little more complicated as it requires something of the top, be that an RLV controller such as Susan’s or an object such as a cage, force sitter or what have you.

Authentication for RLV relays is a little more complicated as well. Firstly there’s the three modes of operation: off, ask and on (the terminology differs from relay to relay, so check the documentation that came with it). Off is fairly obvious, you may as well not be wearing it however some implementations default to no-detach even if the relay is off (which in my opinon is rather dumb but heh, I’m opinionated). Ask means that on receiving an RLV command, the wearer of the relay has to consent to the viewer being controlled by the external object trying to use the relay. The last option, on, does not ask permission of the wearer, it just does it.

Secondly, and this differs greatly from relay to relay, there’s object security checking. If the object is owned by a group which differs from the group of the sim you’re currently in, object security checking will flag a warning, regardless of whether the viewrer is set to ask or independent. This behavior in some relays can be disabled.

A special word about relays: as a top I love a fully permissive and open relay, for reasons that’ll become clear in a later post. It gives me a lot of power and I believe I use that power wisely. Thus far I haven’t had any complaints and every person I’ve played with in such a manner has offered me friendship (gladly taken, can never have too many friends)… yes I play with strangers. It’s a thrill I love but I digress.

As a bottom I love it when a fully permissive and open relay is used well on me, however sadly that experience can be spoiled by two things.

1) Utter prats who use RLV controllers such as Susan’s as griefing tools. Maybe it’s because they don’t know any better but standing around only to find that for no reason I can discern I’ve been stripped of all my clothes, my TAIL and my EARS, just about every RLV restriction known to man is in place because some idiot’s going “har har yeuck yeuck, I’m dominating you ’cause I’ve got control of your relay!”

No, she hasn’t. She’s utterly pissed me off and I’ll be taking a cluebat to her skull; except can’t do that in SL more’s the pity at times, so I’ll just settle for scathing comments in open chat (remember the bit about (( ))? ). Fools like this need to be brought in to line.

2) Utterly stupid RLV traps that automatically strip, restrict etc etc. That’s really good fun when you stumble across one in an empty sim. A certain force stripper at the entrance point to a certain island springs to mind, that particular one ignored the ask setting of the RLV relay as well which really annoyed me.

Now you’ve read that and you’re probably thinking, no way am I going around with a fully open relay like that! Well, I wouldn’t blame you for feeling that way, however as a bottom I’ve had some great experiences with a fully open relay, experiences that just wouldn’t be the same if I had a warning of what was going to happen in the form of a blue box popping down in the upper right asking me if it was okay for something to control my viewer. I like the illusion of non-consent (we all consent by running RLV in the first place) so for me it is worth the very occaisional annoyance of an RLV griefing to experience that buzz.

Incidentally tops, I’d reccoend getting a Susan’s controller and running RLV yourslef, it’s an easy way of finding out exactly what RLV can do and you don’t need another person around to do that.

Next up – RLV & Communication. Yes, I know that was going to be this one but I figured this one should come first as it’s kinda fundamental.

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Recently I’ve become aware of polarizing attitudes with respect to RLV. There are some out there who deride it as being a crutch, replacing RP, being a tool of lazy dominants and overall detrimental to BDSM.

To an extent this is understandable, I’ve seen some appalling uses of RLV. Then again I’ve seen appalling uses of motor cars, bicycles, hammers…see where I’m going here?

It’s not the tools you use, it’s how you use them. Now I’m not setting myself up and an authority on RLV and how it can be used as a tool to enhance your SL BDSM experience; this is how I do things though.

Before I get to that, though, some defining of terms.

RLV is a tool for bondage and control, so I"m not going to be talking doms and subs, I’m going to be talking tops and bottoms. Domination and submission is a completely different subject and RLV will not help you there. It can enhance activities surrounding D/s, but if you don’t have the foundations RLV will do you no good.

Top
The top is the main protagonist of the scene. I use the term top specifically because it has little to do with domination. One can still be submissive i nature and in act yet still be a top in a scene. This is an important distinction because bondage can have absolutely no bearing on D/s, some of us just like bondage.

The top is the pilot for the ride. It’s the top’s job to control the environment for and around the bottom and that leads us nicely to the…

Bottom
Just as a top needn’t necessarily be dominant, a bottom needn’t necessarily be submissive. What the bottom does do though is surrender some control to the top of the scene. The bottom essentially straps in and allows the top to take him or her for a ride.

That does not mean that the bottom’s role is a passive one, oh no. I don’t know many tops who like unresponsive bottoms. The bottom’s role is to react, respond give the top something to work with. It’s a bit of a balancing act for the bottom as there is a risk that topping from the bottom may occur; I’d go in to that in more detail but I’m trying not to lose focus.

Next up – RLV Tools of the Trade

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The new RLV is out, courtesy of Marine Kelley. One of the new abilities is to lock attachments, regardless of whether the item is mod, no-mod and even if there’s an attachment on that point at all.

Used well, this is a good enhancement. If you’ve got no thumbs thanks to some kind soul locking mittens on you, or even strapping, hard to undo mittens with no thumbs, then you shouldn’t be able to dress or undress. This is a good thing, it enhances the bound experience.

It also opens up the door to many no-mod cybernetic / robotic attachments being made no-detach. Vel makes a very cute femmebot at the best of times and she spent some time putting primlock scripts in to the ER F-Type avatar; very very very cute (should change her in to that more often). Now all that work is un-necessary as the viewer takes care of it.

Controlling, moi? Surely you jest 😉

Of course there’s a downside. I expect to see plenty of otherwise unrestrained subs roaming SL unable to change their clothes, appearance, wear huds etc etc. That just doesn’t do it for me, I know there are people who get their kicks out of that sort of thing (on both sides) but for me unless there’s some kind of restraint RP wise going on that would logically prevent it, then it leaves me cold. Mind control / dollification being noted reasons for this type of behavior, but the `oh because my Mistress locked all my attach points ’cause she wants me to stay in this’ just doesn’t work for me. If you’re otherwise unrestrained and your dominant asks you to stay in one outfit or another, that’s an act of submission, not bondage, and should be treated as such. Hmm, ,differences between bondage and submission…I should blog about that one day.

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