LL Corrects Last Name Slur Snafu [Updated]

7:19 pm last names, research

((
About a year ago in March 2008, LL released a last name that coincided with a racial slur. To be fair, it is also a fairly common RL last name. The name was only available for 11 days. Other names from this batch were closed at that time, so even though it seems obvious that it was closed for this reason, it is not necessarily so. In that 11 days, customers opened 156 accounts under this last name. My bot recently noticed that the usage count of this name dropped to zero:
graph_of_last_name_coon_usage
After some investigation, I have found evidence that all these accounts were reassigned a different last name sometime between Nov 2008 and Jan 2009:
graph_of_last_name_raccoon_usage

Update: I interviewed one of the affected residents.

Nicolas Biddle: Excuse me. Was your name once Yotori Coon?
Yotori Raccoon: yes but the stupid game changed my name
Yotori Raccoon: yes but i hate tht the game changed my name from yotori coon to yotori raccoon and it offends me
Nicolas Biddle: I’m sorry that happened to you. I run http://slnamewatch.com , which maintains a database of Second Life last names. It is very rare for LL to make a change like this. Can you tell me how it happened? Did you get a notice, or anything? Or did it just change one day?
Yotori Raccoon: i got a notice but every time i go to the send in a ticket it gives me 404 error. So i cant change my name back to its normal name Yotori Coon.
Nicolas Biddle: That sucks. I don’t know that they would let you change it back. There is no last name Coon anymore. The number of users registered under it has dropped to zero. Do you mind if I post this chat log to my blog post related to the subject?
Yotori Raccoon: ys please do i just want my old name back…this new one doesnt work for my avi or character

The evidence is conclusive. Later in the interview, Ms Raccoon reported that she did not know about the slur.
-Big Adz ))

5 Responses
  1. Waki Janus :

    Date: April 11, 2009 @ 22:09

    Hi Adz,
    I and a dozen boys got banned permanently today, please can you tell everyone at Him & I & Us that my email address is wakijanus@gmail.com. I guess this is end of Him & I & Us and of me in SL. I have so many friends in SL and hate it to end this way unable to contact them. But it is no longer a world I wish to inhabit

  2. Waki Janus :

    Date: April 11, 2009 @ 22:10

    oops me email was wrong
    wakijanus@gmail.com

  3. Adz :

    Date: April 11, 2009 @ 23:14

    Waki,
    I’m terribly sorry it ended this way for you too.
    It may be therapeutic for you to try to see things from Linden Lab perspective, even if you disagree.
    Take it easy and good luck on your next thing.
    -Adz

  4. Peter Stindberg :

    Date: April 12, 2009 @ 03:19

    I was not aware about the racial implications of that name, so thanks for bringing it to my attention. The Lindens have in the past chosen unfortunate names as well, like my friend Therese showed already back in 2007 ( http://theresecarfagno.wordpress.com/2007/11/21/is-quisling-a-good-sl-name-lindens/ ). When she brought the probelmatic Norwegian name up I checked the list and found a few names which are at least dubious as well.

    On the other hand, the would probably need to employ a team of historians and sociologists to make sure new names are not “loaded” – not only in the US but all over the world. A almost impossible task.

  5. Adz :

    Date: April 12, 2009 @ 10:33

    An almost impossible task, indeed. For the record, I was not offended.

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