The merge, or teen transition, is the transferral of all teen grid users and regions over to the main adult grid. This decision was announced at the SLCC, in August 2010, by Philip Rosedale of Linden Labs. The plan is to lower the minimum age of registration for Second Life from 18 years to 16 years of age. All those under 16 will need to join a non profit organization currently active on the teen grid so they may be transferred into its private region on the main grid, or create an account on one of the many open grids and reside there until they turn 16. Everyone 16 and over who are transferring will have their access limited to areas with a General/PG rating, will have access to the marketplace, rent and purchase land and will be able to communicate and exchange items and linden dollars with other teen and adult residents. This decision has caused quite a bit of controversy and mixed emotions among teens and adults alike. The majority believe that, No, this should not go through as teens, even at 16 years of age, are vulnerable on the main grid both to sexual predators and potential legal issues. This same problem is faced with adults who may unknowingly end up in a serious situation with a minor, unless Linden Labs adds some form of identification. Other groups of people believe that integration of the two is a step forward in the right direction as more users will be able to have full access to the high quality content and areas that the main grid has to offer. Whether or not the decision is a good one it is happening. The final date for the merge was posted on Terrence Linden’s twitter to be December 31st.
What is the merge?