Linden’s VAT bombshell hits the SL art world

Linden Lab’s European customers received an email in the last couple days telling them that their Second Life bills were going to be surcharged with the European Value Added Tax (VAT). No advance notice. No time to adapt/adjust.

Sadly, this sudden move hit the SL art world hard. But to tell you that story, I have to tell you another.

You see, there’s this place, Lauk’s Nest, that was created by one of SL’s visionaries, Laukosargas Svarog. Lauk’s Nest was Svarog’s effort to create an entire environment – an ecosystem – on an island in the Alviso sim. Unique vegetation, animal life….everything. All from Svarog’s vision.

Lauk’s Nest is a pretty popular place – even Linden Lab CEO Philip Rosedale liked it enough to show it off in his Rolling Stone interview:

Rosedale teleports to his favorite spot in-world. It’s an artificially intelligent island designed, he tells me, by a computer genius. There are birds. Weird animals. Vegetation growing on stems. This is what he always imagined Second Life would be.

“I’d like to see it get to a point where it’s all irreversible,” he says…

But like most of the great SL building minds, Svarog chose to move along. SL isn’t irreversable, and keeping any build – even one on the scale of Lauk’s Nest – around after the building stops gets…well…kinda boring. So Svarog put Lauk’s Nest on the market.

Enter Lukas Mensing.

Lukas is the classic patron – an investor in culture. The Swedish SL resident saw the majesty of Lauk’s Nest, recognized its significance. The sophistication, the vision, the artistic and aesthetic merit. And he wouldn’t let it die. So he bought Lauk’s Nest. All of it. Lock, stock and barrel. Every brick in the Mayan temple. Every unique tree and flower. Every one-of-a-kind animal. He now had this venue – he had to figure out what to do with it.

After mulling his investment over for a while, Lukas developed a vision of this incredible venue not just as its own unique place but instead as a platform to promote higher thinking – creativity in Second Life through art. Lauk’s Nest, overnight, became one of SL’s finest art venues. Lukas didn’t change Lauk’s Nest, he augmented it.

Lukas and I shared a number of ideas early in his ownership of Lauk’s Nest – especially our love of the unique nature of SL sculpture, and we have a number of artisan friends in common. So it came as no surprise that Lauk’s Nest featured incredible shows featuring artists like Cheen Pitney…

…and Sandhya2 Patel.

Here’s the kicker – Lukas floated the whole thing on his own dime (or Euro?). As best I know, he never sold a single piece of art. I wasn’t kidding when I said that Lukas was a patron. You can’t help but respect that.

Now, back to this VAT thing.

I slipped in a word earlier when describing Lukas, one that I’m sure you caught onto. Swedish. Yup, Lukas is a resident of a European Union country. And Lukas, this week, got the dreaded VAT email from Linden Lab.

Sweden’s VAT is an impressive 25%. Not two-point-five but TWENTY-FIVE. And this patron of SL art and culture saw his cost of residency increase overnight by 25%. For a man who is sustaining Lauk’s Nest – a HUGE property with impressive tier costs – and highlighting SL art out of his personal generosity, that was it.

Lukas put Lauk’s Nest on the market this week. It’s not a cheap property, but he tells me that he will not make a single Euro of profit on the transaction. Lukas thinks that a couple groups of investors are working on purchasing the property with an aim of maintaining Svarog’s majestic build as the SL historical artifact that it is. We can only hope that it happens that way. From Philip Rosedale on down, everyone who has seen Lauk’s Nest recognizes its value.

And I just can’t help but feel for Lukas. Owning and maintaining a giant property is a huge task for someone with real life obligations (job, family, etc.). He chose to stake his claim in SL on high – and pure – motivations. His donation (and it really was a donation) to Second Life society through his maintenance of Lauk’s Nest was guided by such high-mindedness. I know this personally; he and I have talked about it a lot over the past year.

I appreciate that Linden Lab has to respect its real world obligations, and tax payments are part of the deal. (Whether Linden is actually conducting the tax collection process correctly apparently is up for debate, though.) I just wish that there was a way that this could have been done differently, in a way that would let patrons like Lukas hold on to their landmarks and continue their donation to the cultural landscape of Second Life.

Rosedale, after showing Lauk’s Nest to his Rolling Stone interviewer, said, “I’d like to see it get to a point where it’s all irreversible.” Policy shifts like this, done in such a ham-handed manner, run directly contrary to that statement. By doing what they did, in the manner they did, Linden Lab has come close to making the majesty of Lauk’s Nest disappear forever.

[UPDATE: Another post on this topic is available right here.  Also, an awareness-building art/music event will be held on Saturday, 6 October.  Check it out!]

35 Responses

  1. WHat happened is that they simply sent us europeans a e-mail at midnight, saying:

    “We have identified that you reside in a European country. Accordingly, your next bill will reflect Value Added Tax (VAT) charged at the rate specified by your country. Please note that VAT applies to all payments to Linden Lab such as land sales, monthly maintenance fees and Premium subscription fees.”
    Follow some “practical” information. The RULE was applied immediately on our accounts!
    Now, from what I understand, the EU authorities did not contact Linden Lab to ask them to comply with the european rules on VAT, they simply did it by themselves to comply!!!
    What is also surprising is that they don’t seem to try to comply with any other country rules about VAT…seems weird
    Now when Linden Lab will comply with Saudi Arabian rules on women and oblige women avatars to wear a veil? And Chinas rules about freedom of speech, and burma, etc etc etc…

  2. […] Soupcoff wrote an interesting post today on Lindenâs VAT bombshell hits the SL art worldHere’s a quick […]

  3. When I received my letter in England I immediately sent copies of it to all the English newspapers, and to blog sites I know of around the world.
    I’d like to know why we received no notice of this, yet the Lindens took plenty of time to set up an office in Bristol, England. So they must have known about this for at least the last month or so, why didn’t they say something earlier? perhaps it was done so as not to give people time to sell up and leave SL before the next tier charges became due.
    From a business point of view I’ve noticed SL is slowing down and the busiest places are the benefits island and any money trees and freebie warehouses. From an artists point of view I wonder if its worth staying in SL.
    I’ve downloaded a copy of HiPiHi, I haven’t looked at it yet but if its not much good then maybe the skilled people in SL should migrate across and improve it.
    Yes its run out of China,and there may be some issues there but can you see the EU bullying or conniving with the EU? I doubt it.

  4. BUT, they did not comply with EU law on tax, they gave no notice, they do not have ex VAT marked on their prices on the web site,
    all prices must be marked as not including VAT, or VAT is deducted from the marked price.
    In the USA it is normal to have tax added at the checkout, that is not allowed here, so they have not, as they stated, taken legal advise, or if they did, the people they took advise from should be kicked out of the company.
    I have sent a support ticket in to SL stating…
    In the UK, the price marked at the till is the price payable, to add extras is against the law. please remove VAT charges from my account untill you comply with the law in this respect.

    now I await the reply.

  5. I know very little of economy, but at least it seems logical to me that whenever I buy something in the US, I do not pay tax to the Dutch government. All tax I pay then is US tax laws.
    I don’t see how buying something remotely in the US (I buy directly in the US, but pay from Europe), all of a sudden now I do pay Dutch tax.

    How is it possible we all have to comply to all US laws (broadly offensive & stuff), but out of the blue, only tax is not US?

  6. If this is another pre-emptive strike dictated by external law, like the Burning Life playa censorship, then Linden Lab needs a new lawyer. They no more ‘had’ to start collecting VAT then they ‘had’ to start sticking medieval censor boxes on statues.

  7. in answer to “who will save lauks nest”
    Actually, Linden Lab can help saving Lauks Nest. There is a program, obviously hidden -impossible to find information about it on their website – for non commercial cultural places on SL. Lauks Nest is a non commercial place, we have been using it to show art, without selling it during events. Many great artists exhibited their work there, and many others are awaiting to exhibit their art. It is also used as a event and meeting place for the soelse non commercial group, working as inter-cultural communication interface. There is a shop belonging to Laukosargas Svarig on Lauks Nest, but it is not rented, just a memory of the past and a possibility for many visitor to buy Laukosargas trees or bees and birds…I never got a cent of it or any business on Lauks, and received many offers to rent it for meetings, weddings or conferences, and I answered always the same way: “You are welcome to meet here, organize your event or conference. You will never have to pay a Linden for it”…I will apply for this program and need support for that. this way lauks nest will remain and perdure and develop as a art place

  8. Tout ca pour une histoire de fric…. A part si LL a voulu anticiper une eventuelle mise en demeure de l’UE.
    Il n’en demeure pas moins vrai qu’en faisant cela, ils detruisent le travail et l’investissement personel de centaine de personnes comme Lucas! !
    C’est proprement choquant… Pour a part c’est simple si SL ne devient que commercial (et ce genre d’action me pousse a penser que cela tend vers cet extreme) je quitterai ce monde virtuel qui aura simplement tout mais alors tout de mon monde réel!!
    Plus de possibilité d’évasion… Donc déco a jamais!!

    Courage Lucas…. Lauks est une merveille qui mérite d’etre defendue… tu as tout mon soutient!

  9. This news is scary and deceiving…
    the linden lab should of worked harder to save what’s true and precious to second life and the world….
    Yes, Second Life is a game but NO!!! WRONG!!! NOT ONLY…it’s actually a great platform for communication and an easier way for artists that would probably not get the chance otherwise to express themselves !
    This sanctuary called “THE LAUK NEST’ visionised,realised and developped with love and hope that this world could finally come to piece and get better.
    Visionarys like Lukas are vital to our world that is saddly crumbling under shame,hate and aboration.
    Linden lab could of at least respest the dedication and acted differently.
    This political news makes really no sense to me…
    Where is our world going to if we can’t trust our pairs to help and protect what’s good and genuine…

  10. As a resident of Missouri, in the US, I do not pay taxes on anything bought online in California. Should I expect this to change as well?

  11. Mr. Rosedale et all;

    I have been a member only since last January. When I first arrived into my Second Life, I was in complete awe. Never before in my entire life have I experienced what I have in SL. Your vision of virtual worlds is, I hope, as you stated to the Rolling Stone, is in fact what you said. At the risk of not ever being employed by LL, as I have applied on 2 occasions, and will not give up. I believe I share this same vision or dream. If I had the $$ I would purchase Lauk’s Nest in a flash. (recent RL events are preventing me from doing so.) Again, Mr. Rosedale, whether or not you were compelled by some potential enforcement of some law in another country is, obviously, open as a debate. You need to speak to those that support YOUR vision, you need to hear them, you need to act, FAST, in a manner that respects your vision, Lauk’s Nest vision and by God….you heart and soul. On a surface level, or RL level, you really need to look at how you are supporting GOOD customer service. Should you not…the words below, that I wrote after only a brief time being in SL, and almost solely inspired by SL will die like an OFF switch. I pray, I implore, I beg you to NOT let this VAT thing being your undoing and the beautiful souls that create the dreams they have and that other have but may not have the consciousness to carry it out. Please…please… listen and help us help ourselves as you have the light switch. Thank you for listening.

    Dream II (version 2)

    I enter a dream,
    The dream is yours,
    The dream becomes mine too,
    As I’m with you.

    I watch as you create,
    that which is in your heart,
    I become the heart,
    Even before I start.

    My soul is revealed,
    exposed like a mirror,
    I can run, I can play,
    Alviso is where I stay.

    The revelation is imagination,
    expanded, naked, plain to see,
    having been beyond comprehension,
    and my lips had never mentioned.

    I walk away with this dream,
    and my eyes, my mind, my soul,
    becomes.

    Sincerely,

    Gary Kohime

  12. There is no VAT on transactions between avatars. The future is i think that americans can own the land and we europeans then can rent it. Thats what we do now we are selling all land we have in SL. For us its going to be much cheaper to just rent the land we need for our different projects.

  13. Hello excuse my english it is bad
    I think all non commercials sims hav’not to pay the TVA
    It’s the same like french cinema taxes
    Builders Art in SL must be protect ..it’s a very dreaming world
    and also all caritative and sims who fight to human rights in the world
    With Lauknest all the little european sims will become go away !
    and our planet need this extraordinary communication
    All my things to Lukas and all proprietarys who hope for a new better world

    des news sur les “esselien(e)s francais sur cette terre d’armoise
    http://artemisia-terredarmoise.blogspot.com/
    a+ arte

  14. Once again LL takes a reasonable action and communicates it in the worst possible way, creating ripple effect chaos in SL – amazing. Good communications is not just about using the right words. It is about getting into the listeners’ head and understanding how the words will affect them – and actively avoiding negative results. It’s a critical skill, one in which LL have demonstrated serious deficiency.

    I was unaware of Lauk’s Nest until this blog was started, so I do not have a long-standing appreciation for the place. But it is clear that this place is treasured by many, including LL’s execs. The way I see it, nobody should have to buy Lauk’s Nest at this point. LL have an opportunity to generate some valuable good will with its customers and solve this problem (which they have precipitated) themselves…

    LL could take over the land, putting action into Rosedale’s words – a perfectly consistent thing to do from a business point of view. It costs them “nothing” to do this (technically, there is a cost, but it is infinitesimally small compared to all other land-related LL costs, a rounding error in their financials).

    LL has an opportunity to silence this entire blog AND generate some good will amongst the population that cares about this AND demonstrate consistency in its public statements. Even if it only pleases five people, those five people will no longer badmouth SL or go to the newspapers or “make waves.”

    I would suggest that a petition be started asking LL to take action. Author the petition underscoring that Rosedale himself believes that Lauk’s Nest should be preserved and tie that dot with the fallout of the VAT announcement. If LL do nothing, well, that’s another loud message to which we ought to pay attention.

    For many months I’ve been building a modern contemporary rentals SIM exclusively for artists. I hope to finish quickly, so that I may be in a position to offer homes to some of you who have been affected by this. This whole VAT thing is awful – so many people have been affected so much…overnight! I see people outright being forced to sell their land – keeping it no longer makes any sense! It’s frankly made me pretty sick to my stomach. LL have done some pretty awful things before, but I think this one tops them all – by far. The worst part is that I totally understand WHY they did it; but I cannot fathom HOW they went about doing it.

    DK

  15. Soon after my rez day, I remember being pleasantly surprised when I realized how *many* Europeans have a Second Life. This perception was confirmed when I looked at the population stats.

    I spoke with several Euro friends after I ready your post, Morris. The amount varies from country to country. In the UK, for example, VAT is 17.5%. The people who are going to get hit the hardest are those who own islands. When you are paying a monthly tier fee of $295 and then get taxed on that… well… ouch! Multiply that by 12 months in the year and… double ouch!

    I suppose we’ll never know what prompted the Lindens to do this overnite, but it would have been smart for them to give everyone a heads up, and not just a here-comes-this-bad-news kind of a thing, but a more thorough explanation for WHY this was happening. Were they issued a warning by the EU? Is the LL CFO in talks with someone? Whazzup?

    Linden Labs… we are your citizens. Look after us and please govern us with consideration and treat us as thinking and fairly informed people.

  16. Well there is a great deal about this situation that leaves me at a loss for words…

    Though I may not be European, it doesn’t take a genious to see the future implications of this VAT compliance. I also find myself completely shocked with the idea that there is an actual LL support system for non-commercial builds.

    Over the last 4 years, I have spent at least 75% of my SecondLife working for, supporting, and expanding the SL Parks and Recreation Service in order to help places like Lauk’s Nest. I have presonally had the pleasure of meeting Lauk and Lukas alike. Both incredible individuals as well as artistic visionaries, of whom I have the utmost respect for.

    When SL began, it was purely an artist community. Most Residents built for the sake of building, everything was practically bartered for, and commercialization was a destructive thought to the community.

    In order for SL to reach its true potential, commercialization was an inevitability, but without the artists, it would look like major cities and completely lack culture and class. After all, there are only so many types of buildings one can create with the prim limits imposed on Residents.

    I began the SLPRS as a bit of a pet project, but over the years have discovered its necessity. Places like Lauk’s Nest have come and gone, due to the basic costs of SL, and now this VAT bill is creating an even greater strain on artists like myself who still create for the sake of creation and donate their time and efforts to the community as a whole.

    I am certain that Philip’s vision has altered over the years, as any good idea should. Evolution is an important part of life, especially with ideas. However there MUST be consideration for SL purists as it were. I say this because SecondLife as a general platform must be attractive enough to a regular patron that they would want to join and enjoy its glory, from simplicity to commerce. If it becomes nothing but a landscape of buildings and things to purchase, it merely becomes another platform for cross-continental Instant Messaging.

    Yes it is still an excellent platform for virtual classrooms, meetings, and 3D sculpture to show off the latest car by BMW. However, with nothing else to offer the real world, Residents will continue their exodus and search for what will actually become the Metaverse.

    No matter how different Philip’s vision has become, I don’t see this as an acceptable scenario for him. Part of the reason I am here is because of he and Cory’s personal vision for what SecondLife could be. I am still choosing to believe in that vision and find a way to make things work.

    My words to Philip are this…

    As one of the few remaining Oldbies, I beg you to stop and review your past, present and future plans for SecondLife. We are trying to help you create the Metaverse that you so clearly envisioned. Now more than ever, we need support from you.

    In regards to Lauk’s Nest and the non-commercial program I know nothing about…

    I am a bit baffled that I don’t know anything about it as I am certain it is somehow based on the structure I created so long ago. I WILL be looking into it with as much vigor as I can muster. I can also tell you that I have several members of the SLPRS who would be more than willing to donate land and lindens to help save Lauk’s Nest. As a group we have a better shot at covering the tier requirements of this SL landmark.

    If you are interested in donating your land, I implore you to IM me in-world, so that we may quickly gather the funds and land necessary to help save this wonderful place.

    Thank you for all of your hard work Lukas, and Lauk, wherever you may be, I hope you realize the level you have touched the community and encouraged the desire to achieve greatness. I wish everyone the best of luck in these hard times we are facing.

  17. Bonsoir…
    Le coeur lourd que je viens à écrire ces quelques mots…
    Nous ommes toutes et tous affectés par cette nouvelle. La mise en place de la VAT.
    Et cela touchent tout le monde… et particulièrement les propriétaire de sim qui n’ont d’autres souhait que de faire rêver les gens en leurs proposant des merveilles architecturales ou des paysages magnifique sortis d’esprit à l’imagination débordante.
    La sim Alviso avec en son centre Lauks Nest fait partie de ces sim magnifique misent en danger avec cette nouvelle réglementation sur les taxes financières.

    J’ai connu cet endroit il y a déjà fort longtemps et j’en suis tombée sous le charme dans la minute. Une pure merveille. Un amoncellement et un mélange entre temple et forêt impénétrales, gorgées de divers petits endroits unique en leurs genres.
    Eco-système autonome, reconstitution historique etc… tout est une découverte et un plaisir pour les yeux. A chaque pas, quelque chose attire votre regard ou vos oreilles. Une sim entière avec pour unique but, le plaisir de donner aux visiteurs un instant de calme et leurs permettre de rêver au milieu d’un cadre féérique.

    C’est au détour d’un des pontons en bois sur lequel je m’abandonnais que j’ai rencontré Lukas Mensing. Heureux propriétaire de cet endroit. Un homme simple, tout simplement amoureux de ce que la vie peu offrir de plus beaux. Sans rien demander en retour, il a toujours voulu partager avec un maximum de personnes cette envie. Et le message passe sans problème entre les mains de ce magicien empreint d’un charisme certain.
    Se dépensant sans compter pour la préservasion et pour lier Lauks Nest aux divers évènements culturels majeures comme des expositions d’artistes, la découvertes des cultures de différents pays etc… tout cela par le biais du groupe So Else qui oeuvre pour une connaissances et un partage des différentes cultures mondiales et ainsi favoriser le rapprochement des peuples si souvent séparés en RL par justement ce manque de connaissances.
    Pour moi Second Life est avant tou ceci… apprendre et se rapprocher les uns des autres. Et j’ai retrouvé tout ceci par le biais de cette endroit.

    Je ne remercierais jamais assez cet homme, devenu un véritable ami, pour tout ce qu’il a pu m’apporter à moi mes aussi à tout le monde de passage sur cet sim qui se prete si bien en ce rêve qui ne demande qu’à prendre vie: que les gens s’acceptent tels qu’ils sont avec toutes leurs différences.

    Merci Laukausvargas pour cette merveille de création qu’est Lauks Nests… Merci Lukas de nous faire partager et découvrir ce que les gens ont de meilleurs en eux…

    Ces gens et ces endroits là ne vivent que grâce à la volonté et les donationsque les gens veulent bien laisser. Mais je devrais dire survivent… alors une augmention de 20% des traites signent purement et simplement leurs arrets de mort.

    Allons nous donc nous retrouver qu’avec de sim remplies de panneaux publicitaire? de magasins brassants des milliers de L$? Où est la part du rêve? Où est cette utopie d’une seconde vie aussi belle que l’on puisse l’imaginer où tout deviens réalisable? Si c’est pour retrouver sur SL ce que je vis tout les jours…. non merci… et la plupart des résidents pensent la même chose. On est là aussi pour s’échapper…

    Pour ça que ces endroits ne doivent pas disparaître… Continuons à vivre au sein d’endroits comme celui-ci… tous ensemble… SL nous le permet… ne nous enlevez pas ça… cette part de rêve et de communion entres personnes de différents horizons…

  18. VAT is a given

    If the legal entity in Europe paying for the sim is not a registered charity, then VAT is inescapable.
    Either ‘someone’ produces the money to pay the extra cost, or the base on which the VAT is calculated has to be reduced.
    Perhaps there is a middle ground.

    Do LL bear (part of) the cost as a business expense?
    and/or
    Do SL residents vote with their L$? – every month on time in sufficient quantity?

    Something (as it is said) has got to give.
    Maybe LL could match funds for artistic builds that draw genuine (L$) popular acclaim?

    Somebody would try to game that 🙂

  19. Something has to give all right. I immediately cancelled my SL account and I ain’t coming back.

  20. Funny how everywhere I read about SL, its nothing but bad news and people complaining about LL’s conduct. I’m also an EU citizen, and now have to compete with people in SL who don’t pay any VAT at all, effectively pricing us out of the market. That sucks. I will probably downgrade my account as a result. Now that I can’t compete for land, what is the point in paying for a premium account?

    Anyway, back on topic…

    I haven’t known of Lauk’s Nest for very long, but it is one of the few places that I consider to be worth more than the sum of its prims. There are too many places in SL which are, frankly, crap. Lauk’s Nest is a shining example of the beauty that SL is capable of portraying. It is also a place where I meet with my friends and relax. The whole island is a beautiful and inspiring place for its many visitors.

    What is happening here makes me seethe with anger. I agree with Duckling Kwak that LL should preserve the land as an act of goodwill towards its customers. Considering how badly they have treated us ever since I first opened my account 10 months ago, I think they owe us that much.

  21. OK, so i’m an american and i’m not up on VAT rules.

    BUT

    why exactly is it LL’s fault that sweden has an outrageous tax of 25% and the UK 17??

    LL has an office in the EU now, so i would think they would have to collect taxes. IF i lived in CA i’d have to pay sales tax and if they had an office here i’d have to pay tax too.

    Complain to your governments that you are being taxed!!! Why is it the Lindens fault?

    And how much notice do you want? Would anyones income really have gone up enough to cover that kind of outrageous tax rate if you had another month, two, six to be warned about it??

    I’m confused….

  22. That’s so sad for Lauk’s Nest…

    And the comments show the evolution of SL, from a world build by artists with the Lindens, where community grew, turning SL in a business with a good cash flow.

    And now the community is just an asset for the Lindens, who use it a showcase to sell their flawed Grid … and with this change the creators will slowly exit SL, letting behind them a mercantile crowd, blind to art and such notion as respect and community.

    I hope Lauk’s Nest will find a new patron, but I think LS sun is bigger and bigger because the world is aging, dying…

    @Reg Mannonen : yes you seem confused, having to find 25% more money is lot harder in no time than in 6 month, that’s common sense. But just visit Lauk’s Nest, I could open you eyes…

  23. It is a huge shame… Linden should consider the consequenses for Lauks Nest… They already make such large profits… The Ivory tower, where you can learn to build is set free from all payments. There must be same arrangements for cultural and art sims.

    How i love to walk all over Lauks Nest… a centre of peace and comfort where the beauty touches your soul!!!! An interesting place, where you can meet people who are so else!! This place has influence on human lives and is making the world of SL a better place… That is what it makes worth, to fight for!!

  24. […] this post in Second Arts prompted me to once again pay a visit to Lauks Nest. In the last week Linden Labs has announced […]

  25. It seems to me that LL got (understandably) tired of listening to weeks of complaining leading up to pre-announced changes and has resorted to dealing with SL members in the same manner I took to dealing with my own nagging mother by adopting the “better to ask forgiveness than to ask permission” approach. Problem is, instead of one nagging mother to deal with there are thousands, if not millions of people affected by their seemingly spur-of-the-moment decisions that have been thrown on us as of late (gambling ban, flooding the market with new land, and now this VAT fiasco).

    I really hope that Philip and company will take a step back and see that they really need to examine the side-effects of future policy changes before dropping bombs like this on their customers again. For example, Lauk’s Nest may soon vanish because of this VAT policy put into effect without any real advance notice and many residents lost not insignificant amounts of L$ savings when Ginko collapsed following the gambling ban-induced rush on the bank. A decent advance warning (like the old days) would have gone a long way in both cases.

  26. Just goes to show that conservative economics are correct, that high taxes are bad, that government taxation should be limited, that European tax rates are an abomination and a drag on economic growth. Do you get it now? All you guys who support left-of-center economic policies must finally see your error. Higher taxes are bad. Tax cuts are good! And who is hurt the most by high taxes? The little guy trying to make ends meet running a small business in SL.

    Remember: the VAT surcharges collected by LL will go directly to your governments, Linden Lab will lose money on this, due the extra costs involved in collecting and remitting the tax. No way is Linden Lab a winner in this. So who wins? No one!

    Time for an ECONOMIC REVOLUTION in Europe!

  27. […] the SL community– Morris Vig IMd me one morning and asked me to help him spread the word on a pressing issue regarding the European VAT tax that was going to eradicate Lauk’s Nest, a substantial […]

  28. Some confusion I think in the article between Svarga ( my current island ) and Lauk’s Nest ( which I used to own and is now owned by Lukas Mensing ). However the point remains the same. Lukas works very hard indeed to promote the arts in SL and all that hard work will be in vain if no resolution to this issue is found.

    Similar to Lukas, the income generated by my store in Svarga only just covers the island’s cost. Adding 25% is too much and means it will be operating at a loss. Ever since it’s conception LL have used Svarga prominently in their promotional material and for that I have received nothing at all from them. I pay full price for the island just like everyone else. Now adding 25% will break the camels back and I’m afraid I now have to sell the island, very likely this means it will also be deleted.

    If you wish to support Lukas and help bring the issues discussed in the article to greater attention please attend the event at Lauk’s Nest in Aviso on 6th october ( all day/night ).

    -Lauk-

  29. No Laukosargas, my dear friend. Do not sell Svarga! Do not let anyone destroy your beautiful work. We will solution this situation.
    Tonight, many people came to celebrate with us your other creation, Lauks Nest. Now we will simply focus on Svarga and all other beautiful places where culture, creativity and beauty make us enjoy SL…
    I will write to Philip Linden and all the lindens of the earth and try to unburry some probable cultural program they are hidden and that will help us survive the era of the merchants on SL…

  30. We all know that we realize our own visions in SL. – We know that we are bound to a virtual system, giving us the chance to do that. – So, we pay for the use of this system, we pay a lot! and this is ok as far as we know what we do. – I am sure you do.

    In case of Lauks Nest, I appreciate this vision, and it is really worth to be held online. But, on the other hand, this is your private vision brought to a well-done state, and as such, its tendency is to be whole-work-done, ready, not-changeable and perfect. – Hmmm? Yo are done…?

    I think on Starax, I think on Janie, I think on some other persons and places I knew, and – honest – I keep them in my mind, much better than holding them in place. PS. I like Svarga very much, Lauk. – Keep on going and – just, go further.

    Beat

  31. The event “Save Lauks Nest” was a great success! We were many to celebrate art and culture on SL, and we were many to celebrate hope and friendship!
    The music was wonderful, the performers did a great job and gave us unforgettable moment of joy! we danced and had lot of fun!!!
    The region (an old region on mainland with a limit of 40 people) was full for several hours. We even reached the “magic” 41 people on Alviso, but the 41th was a Linden employee who came for a minute! They were welcome, and I even invited Philip Linden that didn’t show…
    Many people couldn’t teleport to alviso and join us. I am so sorry SL was messed up and specially this beautiful region. I had asked several times Linden Lab to give a better server to Lauks Nest, as they did for nearby regions that are in general empty, but my demand was rejected in a way or another…
    The region was laggy and at crash frontier!
    Even donation boxes refused money from donators (system can not respond to your request just now…). It is a shame!
    It is still as laggy and unstable this morning…:( so sorry
    Many people helped, the donation was at the measure of the event!!!
    more than 50000 L$ were given during this event!!
    This will pay almost a whole tier and give some time to find a solution for cultural places on SL!
    A special THANK YOU to Laukosargas Svarog (well…my teacher, my friend!)
    A special THANK YOU to MORRIS VIG Who DID this event!!
    A special THANK YOU to ISolde Flamand for her help during this event!!

    The artists:
    THANK YOU! Alizarin Goldflake
    THANK YOU! Taxus Gustafson
    THANK YOU! Xenophile Neurocam
    THANK YOU! Yarosh Nohkan
    THANK YOU! Cyanide Seelowe
    THANK YOU! Sabine Stonebender
    THANK YOU! Gore Suntzu
    THANK YOU! Sunn Thunders
    THANK YOU! elros Tuominen
    THANK YOU! Breeze Winnfield
    THANK YOU! Ub Yifu
    THANK YOU! Sandhya2 Patel
    THANK YOU! Cheen Pitney
    THANK YOU! Vudu Suavage

    And these wonderful performers!

    THANK YOU Andreus Gustafson

    THANK YOU MoShang Zhao

    THANK YOUDoubledown Tandino

    THANK YOUGary Kohime

    And All My friends who were here!!

    THANK YOU ALL MY FRIENDS (almost all these people here are in my friends list!) FOR YOUR PRESENCE, YOUR SUPPORT, YOUR HELP:

    Maczter Oddfellow
    Uva Oxide
    Kara Meili
    BAFANA Beaumont
    Laukosargas Svarog
    Koba Snook
    Alterego Yue
    Giacobetta Oliva
    Pamela Splash
    Mimi Claymore
    Callipygian Christensen
    Anam Gray
    Rain Gide
    Bloody Nefarious
    Nyx Ivory
    Jabber Dix
    Sougent Harrop
    Raidon Bing
    Carol Greenwood
    Florencia Iwish
    Laurel Leavitt
    Chay Weiland
    iris Jie
    Hermes Slade
    JeanHenri Carter
    joefox Fosse
    Misha Otaared
    Christy Cosmos
    Isolde Flamand
    Eddie Stallion
    Masuri Dryke
    Toko Loon
    Doreen Halley
    Jane Pekli
    Salkin Imako
    Maite McMahon
    Salamon Guyot
    Zanara Zenovka
    CapnJac Blazer
    Lightblue Writer
    Jan Kish
    Jamathew McCaw
    Desiree Carbenell
    Nora Umarov
    Crystale Jewell
    Fury Streeter
    Jessica Juno
    Haylie Flow
    Sayara Suen
    Shiny Shabazz
    Zita Demina
    pink Spice
    Violetta Biziou
    junivers Stockholm
    Lelia Snook
    Raina Robertson
    Ellen Papp
    Kandinsky Beaumont
    ShyGuy Fullstop
    Eifachfilm Vacirca
    sypher Wyler
    carton Bristol
    Esmayeeli Delphin
    Van Rydell
    Naxos Loon
    Apmel Goosson
    Razitra Artizar
    Maximilian Proto
    Afrodite Mystakidou
    Saronda Jewell
    Parijanee Dragonfly
    Dragger Lok
    Griffin Halderman
    AL39 Anatine
    IngeAngel Inglis
    Ewa Aska
    Yasmine Isbell
    Clemence Huldschinsky
    Slim Warrior
    Drolma Batz
    LilWitch Allen
    Pamala Clift
    luna Ivanova
    Grey Blackadder
    eris Galthie
    Roy Leakey
    Fafner Hofmann
    Sarah Aldwych
    Peechie Pinkdot
    Kendruc Vollmar
    polysilox Apogee
    Tallbear Platypus
    Bernie Gausman
    Elisa78 Barrymore
    Tuuli Lasek
    Kjersti Allen
    Medora Chevalier
    Jannne Janus
    Mya Frye
    Kay Uggla
    Tingsha Laval
    Azure Blackadder
    EdwardIV Beaumont
    SMART Boozehound
    Alberik Rotaru
    Izikael Novi
    Kikki Lane
    Origin Rang
    Clannan Locataire
    Poe Merlin
    Qwerty Zenovka
    comet Morigi
    Julia Schlesinger
    Matthew Meads
    Jacomo Beltran
    Clarissa Dassin
    Chrisy Jewell
    sial Orbit
    Nasty Seaton
    Ruach Gamba
    Anji Yoshikawa
    Markus Monentes
    Bart Hoorenbeek
    Meepmeep Ruttenberg
    Zach Wolfe
    Corbett Whitman
    Albi Young
    Beat Roelofs
    Metta Yiyuan
    SiFan Shan
    Mackenzie McArdle
    Barns Balhaus
    BoDong Jie

    And thank also to all my friends that didn’t make it, and couldn’t come! Thank you!!
    Lukas Mensing!!

  32. I have to add that this list is ONLY of people who were here yesterday during the event!
    Many people came before and are still coming and helping! The more help we get, the more time we get, and the best solution we can find!
    Thanks to all who came before this event, and also to all those still coming! the art is still exhibited on lauks Nest, and now everyone can come and admire these wonderful SL sculptures!!

  33. I want to see!! I will come and visit!! ;))

  34. […] Revendre les terres est la solution “simple”. Bye-bye LL, la plaisanterie a suffi. Sinon, pour ceux que ça rebute, il est possible de confier les terres à un tiers de confiance […]

  35. […] artists in Second life » Lauks Nest in Second Life October 3, 2007 Recently this post in Second Arts prompted me to once again pay a visit to Lauks Nest. In the last week Linden Labs has announced […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: