Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Bank Business Revisited

Well, I have access to my money back, though there's a catch.

The bank I did business at, JT Financial, had briefly opened up withdrawals after the no-interest rule. But closed them again soon after due to large numbers emptying them out. Frustrated, I could only wonder if I should have taken it all out, stocks and all, after all. But the bank kept mentioning an SL Wallet, saying it would soon transfer their funds over to it. And so I waited, my attention going to other matters, and time to time checking on the account via the internet. I didn't go back to the bank itself as there was no use doing so, not wanting to deposit any more cash while unable to withdrawal.

Finally I heard SL Wallet had gone up, so I went to my account and found my password wouldn't work. I then IMed an employee for help, and he told me how to get a new password. So I went to the bank and the ATM, and it worked. However, there was this notecard I got from the sign that had been placed beside it while I was gone:

Please check your account balance via the website - all your L$ have been converted to SLW (SL Wallet) shares, due to liquidity issues and as per announcements on capex - most recent announcement is available here
Please note that shares have been valued at 1.00. Recently the price has dropped because people have been in need of Linden, so they are selling at market price. If you do not need your funds straight away don't sell them right now, or place an order to sell at 1.03L$. To do this please refer to the SLCapEx Walkthrough that can be received by clicking the sign below that says 'New to Trading'.

Please note that shortly Arbitrage Wise will be doing a SLW share buyback at 1.03L$ - so if you can hold off till then, so you don't incur any losses.

And checking my portfolio, my stocks were fine, but these SLW shares had not just dropped but plummeted to just half their value.

Man ...

I'm not really blaming JT Financial, and I've given away in charities and tips far more than was lost here. Besides, it was just a fraction of the prize money I had won in a trivia contest. But this whole bank mess cost a lot of people huge amounts of cash, and in some cases their land as they found themselves unable to pay Linden Labs for their continued rights to it.

Bixyl Shuftan

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Reader Responses

Being SL Newspaper's "Fox reporter" has been interesting. Among the perks are the responses to my articles and cartoons. Usually the responses have been simple complements. But sometimes they've been a little more detailed.

In my screenshots, for cartoons but also for articles, for most the response has been a hundred percent positive. There was one misunderstanding though. I took a shot that included an object she made with a picture of her. Well, she saw it when we talked about the paper, and seemed to say she was upset before leaving. Thinking I offended her, I later apologized to her, and she explained there were no hard feelings. In the end, we became better friends.

Only once I ever did got a real complaint. I was with Sean Voss' tour group when it went to "Hilarious 2008," part of the Caricavatars sim, owned by Christopher Hugo, a French political satirist. A friend of mine in the tour group brought up an article by a Second Life tabloid that criticized Hugo, and Hugo promptly kicked him out. I did later make an attempt to talk to Hugo, but from what I had seen, and read in the article in question, doubted I would get a response, and as I mentioned before, he just responded to me in Chinese characters. 

So I went ahead and wrote the story. I thought that would be more or less the end, but it wasn't. A few days later, I found the following as a comment under the article when I was about to send the link to a friend:

Christophe Hugo said...

    As a result of your b**chy blog entry, Sean Voss and the entire Virtual Travel Hub group in Second Life have now been banned from Caricavatars.

    They will probably send you a Thank-you postcard for the lost business... Keep up the good work - and the slandering blog entries coming, while you are busy doing that, at least you don't do anything more dangerous or stupid.

    Peace on Earth,


I was tempted to respond to him "I love you too," but decided the smarter thing was to say nothing. One of my friends later came to my defense with a comment of her own after his, " ... why someone would take such offense is beyond me." I later mentioned the comment to Sean Voss, and he just chuckled a little.

Well, what can I say? I call 'em like I see 'em.

Then there was the article I did on the Valentines Day in SL that couple friends of mine, Zeny and Tim, had. I thought it would make a cute story, something to give people hope, and after mentioning it to them, I went ahead and wrote it. And my friends were thrilled to see it up. Other friends also thought the story was cute. But once again, I was taken by surprise. Someone told me there were a few comments, and taking a look, apparently my comment about still being single got some attention, "maybe we should start a campaign? 'find Bixyl a love.' "

Whoah! O.O

I could say a lot of things, but perhaps I should simply say I'm quite flattered.

Bixyl Shuftan

Monday, February 18, 2008

A Friend's Special Valentine's Day in Second Life

Sometimes Valentines Day is just a sad reminder of me not having found anyone, or as another avie put it, "Happy Stick It to Singles Day." But for a friend of mine, the holiday turned out well.

I had logged on to attend to attend a Valentines Day dance at Fortaelia. I doubted I would meet anyone for anything special, just a little time to relax. As the party called for red, white, or pink clothes (presumably only girls would be wearing the last one), I put on the fancy white outfit I had won at a contest recently, and ported over.

Shortly after arriving, one of my friends logged on and IMed me, Zeny. She had not logged onto SL for several days, and explained why. Her boyfriend and partner, Tim, was in the hospital. Although better, it was unsure when he'd be out. And it being Valentines Day, she felt alone and wanted to be with a friend.

And so we danced for a while at the party, chatting about things in both Second Life and Real life. As the Fortaelia party was starting to wind down a little, Zeny got an invitation from someone on her friend list to attend a wedding in Second Life. She was curious and wanted to go. I had been to some real-life weddings, including one with some ethnic traditions added, and had been to a couple roleplayed ones in the "Runescape" game. But I had yet to see one here in Second Life, so as I already had a fancy outfit over, I joined her in the teleport.

It took a little while for things to rez, the chair Zeny was sitting on among the last parts to appear. But the scene was quite detailed, with detailed white structures and flowers all around the walkway, which was next to a forested area. There were several bridesmaids there, as well as the best man and a few other guys. The seats, which were also white, were just about completely filled with guests, mostly dressed neatly though one lady in a formal gown still had a number of tattoos on. And of course there were the bride and groom up by the altar, holding hands.

They were waiting for the minister, and so we all waited, Zeny and I chatting a little about weddings. Then a few people crashed and disappeared, including the groom. So we waited for both them and the minister. They soon reappeared, and then came the minister. Finally the wedding could take place, "If there is anyone who objects to these two being joined, let him speak now or forever hold his peace." One lady typed *readies shotgun for anyone who objects.* And with that the wedding proceeded smoothly.

With people congratulating the couple, Zeny told me with excitement she had just gotten a call through Yahoo from Tim. He was finally out of the hospital. She was a bit quieter as she chatted with him, us following the others to the wedding reception dance. And we joined everyone else there, Zeny getting a blue gown out of her inventory.

Then someone else walked up, Tim. He had logged into Second Life, and Zeny had told him where they were. He went over to Zeny, who was next to a pair of dance poseballs, and they joined the others in the formal dance.

Together again, it was a Valentines Day for my friends to remember.

Bixyl Shuftan