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Wednesday, July 25, 2018


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sirhc deSantis

All you humans look the same to me. My world my imagination.

Adeon Writer

My avatar is 5’8”, it matches my real life height, and it along with my gender it’s one of surprisingly few things my avatar has in common with me.

Everyone in SL things I am a child though at that height, I barely make it to some people’s hips.

Clara Seller

Instead of clubbing people on the head, if this is really a problem for the lab, why don't they offer some incentive? A better proportioned base avatar might go a long way in stopping people from going to such extremes to look correct.

It's all really built on a bad foundation.

It's not always "our problem" to make them money.

Monica Querrien

Every time I read sentiments such as these, I wonder if the people who believe them were discriminated against in the past for wanting to be shorter in a taller world. And since the height trend as of late has more avatars wanting to be shorter, these same people want to actively attack taller avatars. Now, being taller costs Linden Lab to lose money? Wow.

Who says that human avatars must follow real life height? Also, just because a house or an avatar is smaller, does not automatically make it proportional. I have felt lost in huge homes, and claustrophobic in tiny homes - both due to not being proportional.

The suggestion to charge people for choosing to be a certain height in SL would be discriminatory. There are plenty of options in SL nowadays for bigger and smaller avatars when it comes to buying homes - one just has to be familiar with the brands that cater to each population.

Pixels Sideways

Your world, your imagination. Until some dweeb comes along and tries to ruin it.

What's the point of going into the virtual world of SL if you're going to be stuck looking like average humans?

Everything is scalable in SL - Have you been to Tiny Towns? Dragon Lairs?

SL is losing it's imaginative magic with every whine and cheese article about avatar size or avatar dress or this or that people think should be limited. There's already stupid discrimination in SL at clubs that don't allow in Furries or Tiny's.

It's this kind of dribble that makes me think about chucking SL and taking the revenue I give to Linden Lab and spending it elsewhere.

D. Tree

There are so many things wrong in this piece. For starters, the "Typical SL Avatar Height" depicted in the image at the top is not typical. That's just giant dude in an Aesthetic body. The typical SL male is wearing Signature or Belleza bodies. Not Aesthetic. So right out the gate you're providing false information derived from baseless assumption. The giant avatar thing is not anywhere near an issue like it used to be. I am out and about on the grid all the time and my 6'0" female avatar is rarely dwarfed by giantess women and giant men who could pick me up with one hand. I hardly ever even see the Aesthetic body anymore. Most women are about my height and most men are clocking in at around 7'0". Is it still taller than the average real person? Yes. But I have never once encountered this problem you speak of about giant houses needing more land and thus ending up homeless because I'm JUST SO BIG!! Even in my old days when I was over 7'0" myself this literally never happened. Nor have I, in 11 years of SL, ever heard a single person complain about this imaginary problem. Your speculation that Linden Lab is somehow losing money because of this homeless giant epidemic has absolutely no basis in fact, research, statistics... I don't even see any valid anecdotal evidence presented here. Penny Patton is only relevant in a handful of role play communities so she only speaks on her experience within role play. In role play, realistic avatars are often required to participate in a particular community for the sake of immersion. This is the only time an avatar's height would actually matter to anyone at all. So this is a role player complaining about a role play issue and cleverly devising an argument to try to convince Linden Lab to intervene because she's tired of policing avatars on her role play sims. Oh, and... she wrote that article 7 years ago. SEVEN YEARS. Second Life has come a long way in 7 years. Your entire article is just jumping to this hyperbolic scenario where other people's avatar heights is ruining Second Life and using a 7 year old complaint from a niche resident to validate this point.

Imposing a height limit is nonsense. If you don't want to be 8 feet tall, don't be 8 feet tall.

SL is about being whatever we want to be and, for some, to escape the oppressive and demoralizing limitations we experience in real life due to our appearance, proportions, or physical abilities. My roommate in real life is a Second Life resident and he is 6'6" in real life. He already faces enough singling out due to his height in the real world, but then, in your opinion, he should have to come to his virtual world escape and be singled out again and charged extra money for being tall if he wants to represent himself accurately? That's discrimination.

This entire article is simply ridiculous, judgmental, and utter nonsense. There are a lot of things that Linden Lab does (or doesn't do) that prohibits growth and further success of Second Life... this height "issue" does not even rank in the top 100.

Eugenia Darmody

I've read plenty of things that could be considered manure but this is right up there near the top.

Are you serious? Like this is not satire or some feeble attempt at humor? REALLY?!

It seems to me that you are proposing via proxy what is very likely being considered by LL, wouldn't shock me a bit .
They have their grubby hands firmly around the old cash cow's teets feverishly milking away. That old cow is getting tired and she is going to dry up. You let them just try this nickel and diming b.s. and I am gone. I will take my 4 premium sim owning accounts and just go. Probably to nothing else but it would be better than being taken advantage of with crap you are suggesting.

Moggs Oceanlane

If you charge people for the privilege, chances are more people will want a taller avatar than less. It might become a status thing.

Personally, I'm for choice. (Even though my avatar is possibly short by SL standards)


Oh please. Anyone in the land biz in SL knows that land size isn't the limiting factor - prims are. If you made a tiny avatar and had a tiny house on an appropriate size plot of land for that house you wouldn't be able to furnish it without running out of prims. The lab can't concentrate the prims any more without sacrificing performance. And if avatars were smaller we'd have more of them on a sim and that would affect performance even more.

As it is, furniture and vehicles are all built for what you call "giants" and forcing everyone to be smaller would basically break almost all that content.

Your favorite chinchilla(in disguise)

Very good point. All of that "your world your imagination" stuff should be available only to residents who passed a special training. Most of SL residents have no idea how to use any of the building tools, how to get the exact numbers and whatnot, and they just make their avatars "average" height or "slightly above". And current "average" is around 7ft >.<

Summer Haas

Another option is simply make a height slider that overrides everything else. Set your avatar to 6 foot or whatever and as you adjust height and other things it proportionately locks to whatever you decided to start with.

If you want to have an 8 foot tall avatar, fine. But you are consciously doing that instead of the way it is right now where everyone just immediately goes and slides everything up.

David Cartier

How about incentivizing the skin and shape makers - along with fashion leaders - to simply make smaller avatars, and limiting the choices available to new accounts? LL can't simply dial things back, unfortunately, or everyone would be running around in oversized wigs and vehicles.


In the last years I'm seeing more realistic sized avatars, especially at shopping events. Perhaps you should count more on women with this. I suspect the issue touches guys more, as they (usually, I don't mean everyone) don't like to appear shorter that other men, so they raise their height and so on. Of course there are also individuals affected by giantism in real life, but the whole population 8 feet tall is a tad odd. Women instead (again, in general) could feel not so comfortable in towering above everyone else, including their boyfriend.

Of course every item you see in SL is imaginary, but there is an in-world measurement reference at least, i.e. regions are said to be 256 x 256 meters wide. When you use that, it's easier to make everything on scale, else it ends up more or less messy. In Second Life the latter tends to happen.

It's true that if everything is scaled up, you have less space to place your stuff. If you rent, lets say, a 32 x 16 m parcel (512 m²) and your simple 2 rooms house footprint is already 30 x 15 m, then you have barely just the space for that. But if your house has a realistic size instead, with realistic sized beds, realistic bedrooms (e.g. 3 x 4 meters), as well as the other rooms, then that parcel is enough for having a nice house and a garden. Or if you have a garden, you can have a more spacious garden with the same amount of prims and at the same price.
You can go down further more: if you put a "tiny" on a mircro aircraft or you use a "warbug" aircraft, you can fly decently and have fun even within a single region.

When we talk about buildings, rather than the avatar height, I think the biggest problem is the default camera placement: a 3 meters tall roof would look cramped in SL in 3rd person view, so you tend to make them at least 5-6 m tall, your small house becomes as big as a castle, then everything goes out of proportion, not even scaled up accordingly, you have something huge, something less huge.

SL is a creative platform, and creators and tinkers don't like when you want to limit their creativity too much. Furthermore you can see how residents keep to circumvent those limits, at least for not human avatars. The first example is the Tiny community. Then as rigged mesh bodies were introduced, people had fun in making micro humanoid avatars, such as 0.3-0.4 m pixie fairies, while on the other extreme there are true giants, 11-12 m tall, if not more. You could see them in Fantasy Faire too.

But a 2 m tall pixie or a 1.80 m / 6 feet tall toddler would look strange, isn't it? When we decide a standard measure unit and we want to reproduce real life things in-world, it works better when things are on scale and it's easier to set your height if you want it to match your real one. So I'm glad that there are more realistic sized avatars now.

jackson redstar

I often laugh at the "heightests" in Sl. The claim they MUST be no taller than their rl in order to be "real" Oh, ok then, then you have a perfect fit body, a butt so tight you can bounce a quater off of and and 33DD boobs that defy gravity as well? LOL


So what this article is saying is:

1. Give people the ability to make giant avatars, then more and more people will make their avatars giants until it pushes the majority up to giant sizes.

2. Larger things use more space. (And, if we're talking objects, more prims. Susan forgets that larger objects use more land impact so building smaller actually allows you to put more content onto your land. Susan is partially right about performance but if you understand how Level of Detail works in an environment like SL then you'll see how smaller objects are easier to render.)

3. If you want more space, it costs you more money. Make a giant avatar, then make all your furniture and the house you put it all in larger, you are going to be paying twice as much money as someone who builds an identical house, uses identical furniture, and has an identical avatar, all just smaller in size.

This is all pretty straightforward and easily proven.

That said, I don't agree with the "solution" the article presents; charging more for larger avatars. I think it would be better if Linden Lab lead by example. Making the starter avatars more reasonably sized. Making the public environments and content like Linden Homes more properly scaled. Simply providing good avatar creation and building habits from an official Linden source could go a long way here without actually restricting the size of avatars.

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