Which grids are open?

An open grid is one that allows outside people to connect their own regions.

Those regions could be hosted for free on home computers, or be provided by third-party hosting companies, such as Dreamland Metaverse, Zetamex, CloudServe, Oliveira, or any other grid-agnostic vendor on our hosting list.

Here is the list of the open grids, in alphabetical order:

If there are other grids that are open that I’m missing, please email me at [email protected].

Which grids are closed?

Closed grids are those which do not allow third-party connections, have hypergrid turned off, and all the land sales are directly from the grid owners.

Here is the list of the closed commercial grids, in alphabetical order, not including closed private, school, and company grids:

Which grids are filtered?

Filtered grids are closed, commercial grids except that they have hypergrid turned on — but only allow certain types of content to leave the grid.

For example, a grid might allow only full-perm content to leave the grid, or only copy-transfer content, or only content that has the new “export” permission.

These grids embrace the best of all possible worlds. They satisfy content creators by allowing them the option to choose whether their content can go on the hypergrid or not, while allowing residents the option of exploring all 200-plus grids on the hypergrid.

Right now, as far as I am aware, only six grids offer this kind of filtering:

If any other grids also filter content when users hypergrid out, or save OAR or IAR backups, please email me and let me know.

Which commercial grids are hypergrid-enabled?

The last category of commercial grids — meaning grids that will rent land to you — is hypergrid-enabled but does not allow outsiders to connect regions, and does not filter content.

Which type of grid is right for you?

If you are a content creator with content that can be stolen via copybot, then choose a grid based on where your customers are.

Make it easy for your honest, paying customers to find you, to buy and use your products, and to get service and support.

All grids, including Second Life, battle against copybot thieves. No grid has yet been successful.

The one area where content creators do have legitimate concerns in OpenSim are scripts and rigged meshes. These cannot currently be stolen by copybot — but can be stolen but unscrupulous grid or region owners with access to their asset databases.

For maximum protection of scripted and rigged mesh content, creators and merchants should consider limiting distribution to closed and filtered grids only, and stay away from open and hypergrid-enabled grids.

However, even among this group of creators, some are already experimenting with selling their content more widely, usually starting with last-season content, or content that is not otherwise selling well because they calculate that the increased revenues from hypergrid sales will offset any actual losses due to theft.

Fortunately, there is currently no mass distribution channel in OpenSim itself for pirated goods.

Let me repeat that again — there is no mass distribution channel in OpenSim itself for pirated goods.

On the Web, you can use torrents and pirate sites to quickly find movies and music and cracked software — if you’re willing to put up with viruses, of course.

In OpenSim all the major grids have cleaned up their biggest freebie stores and welcome areas.

So the piracy that is going on is minor and not likely to significantly impact sales — an out-of-the-way freebie store somewhere that nobody knows about, or a friend passing along a copy to another friend.

Finally, many merchants are adopting a “trust but verify” philosophy. They make it easier for paying customers to get their content, but they also check in once in a while with the major distribution venues — like the Kitely Market or the most popular freebie stores — to ensure that their content isn’t being illegally distributed.

There are online copybot sites

Zetamex owner Timothy Rogers just pointed me to a site that advertises itself as a place for copybot content. Content creators who don’t already know about it can contact me directly for the link.

The site is not particularly user-friendly, difficult to search and use, and certainly not a place where your legitimate customers will be coming to buy content. Sites specifically set up as piracy sites are frequently plagued by virus-laden content, and garner attention from the authorities when they get to any appreciable size.

I can see these sites as causing problems for creators if crooks go on the site, download a large collection of pirated content, then try to re-sell that content in-world. It would save the crooks a little time — they can go to the site, instead of using a copybot themselves to steal the content. But it doesn’t solve their distribution problems. If they set up a store on any popular grid, they’ll get taken down and, eventually, perma-banned. And the more they advertise the store to get customers in, the more likely it is that their store will be noticed as a copybot store and shut down.

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Maria Korolov

Maria Korolov is editor and publisher of Hypergrid Business. She has been a journalist for more than twenty years and has worked for the Chicago Tribune, Reuters, and Computerworld and has reported from over a dozen countries, including Russia and China. Follow me on Twitter @MariaKorolov.

29 Responses

  1. I’ve also just updated the active grids list.

    Here’s the list of all the grids, and their loginURIs and hypergrid addresses: http://www.hypergridbusiness.com/statistics/active-grids/

    Here’s a list of all the grids, along with the type of grid they are: http://www.hypergridbusiness.com/statistics/opensim-grid-list/

  2. trrlynn73@gmail.com' Minethere says:

    The reef is not hg enabled…it is on that link you provided.

  3. sargemisfit@gmail.com' Sarge Misfit says:

    I thought an open grid was one that was open to hypergrid. That does seem to be the way people use the term.

    • There is quite a bit of overlap — and all the open grids are also hypergrid-enabled. And many people do use the terms interchangeably.

      Plus, it doesn’t help that the “open metaverse” refers to the hypergrid.

      However, when vendors say that they “will connect to any open grid,” they’re referring to open as in “can attach regions” as opposed to open as in “hypergrid enabled.”

      If someone has better terminology to suggest, though, I’m all ears!

  4. me@timothyfrancisrogers.me' hack13 says:

    Actually Maria, there is 2 big distrobution sites that give away pirated content for opensim. I will email them to you if you like, but you really should look around before claiming ther is NONE. Because there is “2”

    • Could you? I’ll pass them along to copyright holders.

      • and I was going under the principle of “it can’t be that big if I haven’t heard about it” 🙂

        • me@timothyfrancisrogers.me' hack13 says:

          You might want to update that story now, because as I emailed you there is a massive outlet for it.

          • Just updated — and spent quite a bit of time looking around the site you mentioned. It looks like the site is aimed primarily at crooks, as opposed to being aimed at real people.

            It’s not a marketplace at all. If you wanted to find a pair of shoes to match your dress, this isn’t the site for it.

            However, if you were a crook looking to gather up some content to sell in your PiratesRUs store, this site could save you a little time and trouble since some of the content will have been copybotted already.

            So now you’re a crook, with a bunch of pirated content. Content which, originally, mostly came from Second Life (since that’s the grid with the most content) but which, say, you also copybotted from other grids.

            In the past, you could have used that content to outfit your brand-new grid. But these days, you’d get slapped with DMCA so fast your head will spin, and your grid will be out of business before you started. Unless you host your grid in Timbuktu and don’t tell anyone about it. So now you’ve got a slow, laggy grid in Timbuktu with stolen stuff on it and no users. If you advertise it, people will find out about the stolen content. You certainly can’t get any merchants to come and set up shop on this grid — it’s full of pirated content. I’m having trouble seeing a business model there.

            So, let’s say you use the content to set up shop on a popular, successful grid. You pick a big commercial grid, with currency — so you can make money. And now you’re in the same bind. If you advertise your store, people will hear about it, and slap you with take-down notices, and, eventually, you’ll get perma-banned. The best you can do is run a store in stealth mode, hoping nobody notices that you’re selling stolen stuff. Again, not a recipe for retail success.

            The bottom line, for creators, isn’t how much stolen stuff is out there. The bottom line is how many legitimate, paying customers are being diverted to the pirate sites.

            Selling content on the hypergrid doesn’t affect the amount of stolen content — copybots don’t care whether a grid is open or closed. But it DOES give a way for your legitimate customers to buy stuff from you, and makes it that much harder for the crooks to divert them away.

          • me@timothyfrancisrogers.me' hack13 says:

            Your only half right though maria, the problem is I see this happen far too often. I see these content in grids like OSgrid and Metropolis, but these grids don’t have too much to worry about as its such a big grid people can’t police it well enough. Also when you go to the original content creators they don’t want to go throught the process because they just find it too much, and they have already written off opensim as just this huge copybotter’s paradise. I know I have spoken too so many SL content creators and this is just how most of them feel.

            The issue of getting caught like you say, you make it sound like its that easy. But look around the site, then login to OSgrid and Metropolis and see what some people are wearing… you will see a lot of people with the stuff. There is a big Tree creator in SL who has all her Tree’s and now everyone on the hypergrid has her trees from SL and most people don’t even know its copybotted!!!

            See Maria your giving people too much credit, a lot of people don’t know if something was copybotted or not! I mean who is going to look really, unless your someone who is a freak about that stuff like me and affraid of law suites. The shopper will say “Oh that looks nice” they are not going to go then sit and go to the SL market place and see if they can find the same exact thing.

            The sad truth is if your on OSgrid, Metropolis, or even your own standalone and you have been around right clicking and picking up freebies. You honestly cannot know, that everything in your inventory is copybot free. Because I will tell you, there is a lot of stuff that people have, that think are freebies, and they were copybotted a long long time ago and brought to OSgrid and given away as freebies.

          • This is where content creators really have to step up. It’s not all that hopeless.

            Once you file a complaint with the grid, the grid’s owners can remove that content from everybody’s inventories — and they do! And they will often proactively go through and check the related content as well.

            Yes, it’s a pain. But once you start doing it, you realize that it’s actually less of a pain than you thought — and only only have to do as much as you want. So set aside a certain amount of time a month — whatever sounds reasonable to you — and check the Kitely Market, and check the biggest freebie stores. If you see something, say something!

            And if you see something that’s from another creator that you think shouldn’t be there, let the other creator know, as well, in addition to giving a heads-up to the store owner, region owner, and grid owner. They don’t HAVE to take down the content unless the original creator files a notice — but they CAN, if they want to. And if they get enough complaints, they will investigate, and they will take stuff down.

            Stores full of copybotted stuff will get taken down. Repeat infringers get banned. And the content will get pulled from user inventories.

            I’ve seen it done.

            And I’ve seen the welcome areas and freebie stores on the grids change dramatically over the past five years.

            They’ve gone from random collections of suspicious stuff to curated collections of Linda Kellie content and local designers.

          • me@timothyfrancisrogers.me' hack13 says:

            I am not saying all hope is lost, and I am reporting it to the copyright holders. You just have to understand what I am trying to say. A lot of them have already given up, they have seen the stuff everyone already owns…. I see a few grids setup outside of DMCA countries.

            Like I said before, if its online, it can be stolen, it will be stolen. We just have to be good citizens and report to the owners when we see something stolen. No gurantee it will be removed.

          • I know where you’re coming from — I’ve seen the creators who’ve given up, as well.

            If you are one of those creators — you have options! Worst case, email me and I’ll raise a fuss. [email protected]

          • geir.noklebye@dayturn.com' Geir Nøklebye says:

            I don’t think they think of it as copybotter’s paradise as much as they feel they completely loose control of their content as it is passed on via IAR and OAR archives with full permissions.

            Copybotting is something they live with daily on SL and there are certain things you can do to combat it, like blocking viewer signatures from your grid. As long as there is a viewer there is scope for grabbing copies with it.

          • trrlynn73@gmail.com' Minethere says:

            During my childhood I thought Timbuktu was a place, somewhere very far, where my Mom would send me if I wasn’t good-))

          • trrlynn73@gmail.com' Minethere says:

            I learned that much later on-)))))

          • geir.noklebye@dayturn.com' Geir Nøklebye says:

            Actually there is very little stolen content for sale. Most of it is passed on as free items one way or the other. – Like virtually all male animations you find on OSGrid and other Grids are copybotted Vista animations from SL. Female hair also goes into the same category.

      • me@timothyfrancisrogers.me' hack13 says:

        You can, but the sad thing is, the site is hosted outside of copyright law countries so not much can be done.

      • geir.noklebye@dayturn.com' Geir Nøklebye says:

        Most copyright holders are already fully aware of the site(s) and monitor them constantly, but as hack13 said they are outside most jurisdictions, so takedowns will have to be done at the file distribution site the uploader has chosen to use to the extent that is possible. You will often see content specially prepared for “sharing” on OpenSim. For SL they have more cunning ways without moving any inventory so a DMCA will in reality not apply.

  5. me@timothyfrancisrogers.me' hack13 says:

    Another correction for you Maria, 3rdRock Grid DOES filter content. No one can take anything out that is not allowed, and foriegn avatars visiting can only get items that are allowed permissive.

    • me@timothyfrancisrogers.me' hack13 says:

      Still got it wrong sorry Maria, must be a monday feeling for you. But 3rd Rock is not a Closed grid…. they are very much on the hypergrid, just they are filtered. They go on the same list as Spellscape 🙂

    • Butch Arnold says:

      To set the record straight… 3RG allows everything to come in on Hypergrid, and allows all to go out except animations. Animations can come in, but they cannot go out.
      The confusion might be from when we first implemented HyperGrid… we had very tight restrictions.. everything could come in, but only landmarks and notecards could go out… but now that is not the case… everything can come and go except animations.. they can come in, but they cannot go out.

  6. trrlynn73@gmail.com' Minethere says:

    Rich, you may not be aware that you can buy licensed content from the Kitely Market. The Palm tree you speak of are there also. Heart Botanicals.


    • ilan@kitely.com' Ilan Tochner says:

      It is also a product that sells quite well in Kitely Market despite there being illegal copies of it available in various grids. When you give people a convenient option to acquire content legally and have it delivered directly to their avatar on their preferred grid, many people will buy that content even if they have illegal options to get it from someplace else.

      • richardus.raymaker@gmail.com' Richardus says:

        I did not really got time to look there much, but this looks hopefull and intressting.
        Is there a demo sim to see how good the look ? But first need to setup my own grid and configure things right then.
        Also need to read the license betetr. enough work todo. But still try to make my train s cript. getting close the old way.

  7. roddie7588@yahoo.ca' Roddie Macchi says:

    And The Great Canadian Grid also Filters Content as well as 3rdRock Grid since Butch Arnold was the one who revamped and helped me to quilckly get the GCG back online after our crash. So we too have it the same. 🙂