Chicken Linden Follow Up: Texture Resources

In my previous post, The Tale of Chicken Linden: Mass Hysteria, Copyright, TOS and Self-Empowerment, I received some excellent comments from Dee Wells. She pointed out another important part of this problem.

Dee says:

"The real trouble for many of us is in licensing of copyrighted content, which is now impossible: i.e.: textures, etc. It's tough to build something in SL without texturing it, and for most of us 15 hours into a detailed model and having to now travel to a location to photograph that perfect castle wall or bridge or whatever, well, project cancelled.

So we use stock stuff, online textures, whatever, but the catch is they all have copyrights on them. According to the User Content section of the ToS, before the change, you could fudge this and defend yourself in court, so everybody went along with it. Now it is worded in such a way that it is not within your power to upload anything, licensed or not, to SL if there is a copyright held on it by anyone."

This huge problem connects back to my question of "why on earth would LL do something that would prevent creators from adding content to SL?" Unless they are trying to eradicate one of the original tenants of Second Life, which was that it was a world created by its residents. They might be trying to do that. If they want to remove one of SL's biggest reasons for being on top of the virtual 3D environment market? Ok. That's their choice. Perhaps their "numbers" aren't what they want and they are seeking other ways to boost revenue.

I asked Dee if she could recommend any resources for finding textures and she helpfully replied with several as well as some other ideas.

Dee says:

"A couple of sites offering Public Domain marked stuff that I use are:
Those are where I started; there are tons more. One thing to keep in mind with most free texture sites is that they are supported either by ads or by other stuff they sell, so there will be some ad material to wade through.

Also many sites, especially those operated by a private person just sharing resources have textures with different licenses mixed in, so check for the specific Public Domain mark, ideally CC0 (Creative Commons Zero/Public Domain), but as long as the texture you're getting is marked Public Domain, it is reasonable to expect that you can use it for anything, or often there will be another general message stating that they hold no copyright on the image."

Thank you Dee for adding huge value to my original post! This is the information that we should all be sharing in order to best empower ourselves as we move forward and learn what we can do to effect a change in the TOS.


Thanks for these links, both of you!

I would recommend that people be very, very leery of sites that just say "we don't own the copyright." Someone owns the copyright unless it is truly public domain (vanishingly few photographic images you would use for texturing are public domain: they're not old enough). You should look for an affirmative statement of some form of licensing such as creative commons.