January 29, 2010

Linden Lab Purchases Enemy Uknown (Avatars United)

Today, M. Linden (Mark Kingdon) announced that Linden Lab had acquired Enemy Unknown, a Swedish web development firm that is working on tools and widgets to connect various MMOs (massively multiplayer online games & worlds). Read his blog post here.

If this was the real reason behind Wallace Linden's blog post on linking real life information with Second Life, it would have been helpful to know it up front. We could have saved some 300 hyperventilating blog comments worth of electrons along with god knows how many external blog posts and forum posts.

Obviously, M was aware of the uproar because he took pains to make the following statement in his post about the acquistion:
"One thing I want to be clear about:  The first design principle in this social strategy is respect of your privacy.  We aren't going to take away any privacy or anonymity for those that want it. We are not going to "out" people.  We are not going to force anyone to reveal any private or personal information.  But for those who want to connect their various online identities, we do want to offer that option.  Second Life has always been inclusive, and although there are many Residents who keep a strict separation between SL and the rest of the Web, others wish there was a better way to actively link their SL account to other Web services, and do things like share screenshots, locations, wish-lists, experiences and stories more easily."
So anyway, I think it's an interest turn of events and one that could work out well for Linden Lab and Second Lifers in general. As long as the process is always opt-in, opt-in, opt-in with a clear focus on security, then I don't see any problems here. Sigh.

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