Friday, 6 March 2015

AnneMarie Otoole gone - for now

As recently reported on Echt Virtuell and other blogs, Linden Lab (LL) has suspended AnneMarie Otoole's account. If the name doesn't mean anything to you, you've really missed on one of mainland's legendary figures. People usually use the word "notorious" when referring to her, which is probably well deserved. What AnneMarie was doing for years, was to create all kinds of automated vehicles that would run on mainland public roads and railway tracks: from ice cream vans to different cars and trains, tanks firing shells, even giant rideable spiders!

Ms Otoole, spotted at Melanthia Station a few weeks back
Most of the time people would complain of the crazy vehicles, clogging the roads, getting stuck all over the place and contributing to lag. Her basic response was that she wanted to make SL more fun for everyone. Many of my friends told me about filing abuse reports and complaining to LL, to no effect whatsoever. I never went that far, but on one occasion I sent her IMs to complain, to which she promptly responded. For some reason I expected her either to ignore my messages or be rude about them, but she turned out to be kind and friendly. Not that she actually did much to improve the situation I was complaining about.

I'm not sure if she did it on purpose, but several months ago, the vehicles began to multiply everywhere, rezzing automatically from a number of locations on the continent  in a quantity that clearly went out of control (I'm referring to Heterocera, not knowing what she did elsewhere). Using the roads became a struggle, always having to be on the lookout for the next erratically moving obstacle. Many of them were lying around, stuck in ditches, by the side of the road or flying up in the air. Not a pretty sight. Eventually, some rezz zones, such as Melanthia Station, disabled rezzing permissions, probably mainly to preempt AnneMarie's activities. Other parcel owners came up with different solutions, managing to divert the vehicles or take them back.

It was roughly a week ago that I realized the vehicles were gone. Living next to the SLRR tracks, they used to pass by my home all the time. The silly tune emitted by her ice cream vans was one of the first sounds I heard when I bought my parcel a year ago. I didn't think I would feel nostalgic about it all, but now that they're gone I must admit I miss them a bit. Annoying as they were, they were also entertaining, and they gave the neighbourhood something to chat about. And it seems I'm not alone: when I first posted about AnneMarie's suspension on social networks, the initial responses were actually in support of her. One of my friends posted the following: "NOOO!!! I loved the drunken car. Recently I had some contact with her alt [...] and she was just lovely to talk to. She was responsive to the issue and contacted me after she fixed the issue to make sure all was ok. I will miss those cars if this is the case. They are a very old part of SL."

I'm wondering how long it will take before she's back. Love her or hate her, it's difficult to think she's history. Even when she's already the stuff of SL legend.

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