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Google Lively“Lively,” a virtual world from Google went online today, as predicted by me and 10,000 other bloggers. I’ll dig into the TOS and see how they’re approaching intellectual property and other legal issues. In the meantime… thoughts?

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9 Responses to “Google’s Virtual World “Lively” Goes Online”

  1. on 08 Jul 2008 at 8:20 pmDoubledown Tandino

    played it. done. next.

  2. on 08 Jul 2008 at 8:36 pmBenjamin Duranske

    Oddest thing for me so far is that they allow other-avatar non-consensual animation. I logged on and was hugging somebody, then playing patty-cake with someone else. Surprisingly cartoony too.

  3. on 08 Jul 2008 at 9:44 pmandrew

    Hi Benjamin,
    I am currently writing a paper on virtual world and the issue of trademark infringement going on in worlds like second life. I was wondering if there were good sources to look to? Ive read countless articles you’ve posted and others on the web, but are there any good cases you would recommend I read? Thanks!!

    I read the TOS for lively and it seems like similar to second life in regards to user created items in lively (you have the copyright to them). Did you discover anything interesting from it?

  4. on 09 Jul 2008 at 12:09 amMichael Donnelly

    1) Follow link to from blog post.
    2) Click “Terms” link at bottom of page.
    3) Click “Terms of Service”.
    4) Attempt to understand what rights are being stripped.
    5) Ctrl-F, “reverse”. Note section number.
    6) Alt-F4.

  5. on 09 Jul 2008 at 7:17 amPJ

    Google is certainly no longer your friend, at best they are a dubious acquaintance now: You can’t download lively, you have to download their installer program – which then sets itself up as service on your system for instance.
    You don’t get to chose where on your system to install it either.
    And while a browser plugin might be necessary to run this in the browser, why would it be necessary to install a BHO for google update? – Go away google.

    As for the junk itself, you can’t redefine the totally uninvitive movement keys or use mouselook (one of the things which makes second life second death) – however most of the time i just got a “joining room” and nothing more happened – so whatever it is, it doesn’t appear ready for primetime.

  6. on 09 Jul 2008 at 7:24 amPJ

    Oh, and even if you uninstall lively it leaves behind the update service, and has set up a task to be run when the user logs on.

    Begone Google!

  7. on 09 Jul 2008 at 10:33 amBenjamin Duranske

    @3 – The only two cases that I know of that go directly to trademark in virtual worlds so far are Eros v. John Doe (the guy sued has since admitted he is really Robert Leatherwood) and Eros et. al v. Thomas Simon. I’ve got extensive coverage of both here. Both ended in victories, of sorts, for the plaintiff — one was a default judgment since Leatherwood never answered the complaint, and the other was a consent judgment, where Simon admitted liability. Otherwise, there haven’t been any other suits that I know of, though there have been a fair number of cease and desist letters that worked, making a followup lawsuit unnecessary.

    @ everybody else, thanks for the comments. Starting with the Google desktop search thing, I began reading the Terms fairly carefully and declining a few services here and there (including that one). I’ve got a longer reaction to the Lively TOS posted now.

  8. on 09 Jul 2008 at 12:16 pmNate Randall

    Here are some of my thoughts on the subject, is lively REALLY a Virtual World?

    I would posit it all here but it is a pretty long discussion.


  9. on 09 Jul 2008 at 1:07 pmSophrosyne Stenvaag

    I’ve found it freezes/crashes every minute or so; has a logon/help experience that makes Second Life’s orientation seem like the pinnacle of design; and the interface reflects some really bizarre choices.

    The most interesting feature is deeply buried – the ability to associate hyperlinks with particular objects in the room. Without user created content that loses most of its potential usefulness, but it’s got potential.

    I expect much more from Google’s products, and as an entry into the ever-expanding stable of 3d web products, it’s pretty mediocre. It might catch on as a step between IMVU/Club Penguin and Second Life, but without some work, I don’t really see this going anywhere.

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