If you've spent any amount of time in Second Life, and especially in Bloodlines, and you're a fairly observant person, it doesn't take long to figure out that there is an undercurrent of tension. Between clans. Between people IN clans. With people who hop from clan to clan, and so forth. And then there are the various romantic liaisons that take place between people of note (and they aren't always clan leaders).
I have had my time to narrow down just what I want and what I do not want in my virtual life. I've also got opinions that I won't keep to myself just because they may wind a few people up. I don't believe in Political Correctness.
For instance - The clan I'm in now has a very well-written and planned-out ritual for Turning someone. It's not just a matter of standing around and watching. There is ceremony, behavior, and dress. Each and every Turning is special for all those involved.
You would think the people who want to be involved would take the time to wear the right items, and behave the protocol our Regent has so carefully laid down...yet on more than one occasion I've seen people wandering around, apparently clueless.
The Regent has taken the time, on more than one occasion, to make sure everyone has the materials they need - and yet there are too many who zip right though notices without at least stopping to see what they're about and whether there is anything attached worth saving. As a result, they do NOT have the materials and do NOT have a clue of what is really going on. That can be fine, but - why don't they ask? They can see others getting ready, wearing and doing certain things. If they don't have what they need, why don't they ask? Asking is far better than standing there going "I dunno" in all its various flavors.
This is supposed to be an important, and family intimate, time for the person being Turned. If it were you (generic) in the center of that circle, wouldn't you feel better if your family members showed some respect and willingness to do it right, for your sake?
Why do I even have to put that thought in people's heads? Why doesn't it come to them naturally? I think a part of it is getting a person to focus on the NOW, rather than having their attention scattered willy-nilly. When you're attending a ritual, you need to turn off the other IMs, stop looking at Facebook, or anything else you might be doing, and focus on what's going on at that very moment. I've been trained to focus on the NOW but not everyone has been.
Another problem is having people focus on something besides their own needs and wants.
There are at least three business-related groups that I'm involved in where I have witnessed other people advertise their blogs and their inworld products or services. This is a total disregard and a total show of disrespect toward the owners of the group and the group's purpose. People see a captive audience and don't stop to think that it might be really rude to take advantage of that. They don't read the group charter, which is right at the top of the group information window - and even if they don't, they fail to stop and think that if the group is for XYZ's business, then it's NOT respectful NOR proper to be advertising your stuff, period. Make your own group or join one of the thousands of advertising groups set up for that purpose. Don't be an ass.
There are certain clans and certain groups of people that, rather than trying to figure out whether they're "good" or "bad", I am electing to avoid entirely. It is far less stressful to distance myself from families or people who are controversial. I am very proud and protective of my own family, so I've become a lot more choosy in who I might hunt. While this may mean that my bloodline grows slowly, it keeps everyone else much happier, knowing that those I bring in will use their heads and behave as adults.
Many Bloodlines players are in it to make themselves look good, to get fancy titles they can wear above their heads with as little effort as possible. Many major clans will "stack" people who cozy up to the right people or who meet some set of requirements. I won't pretend to know what those requirements are except to say that they usually don't have anything to do with knowledge of the game, nor helping other people. I have seen countless individuals "gifted" with Bloodlines King or Queen tags whose personal soul count is under 25 but total souls are some ridiculous number in the thousands. Many of them scarcely have enough time in Second Life itself to really know much about virtual reality, much less about Bloodlines itself. They get their title, then go around and do whatever it was they were doing before, instead of learning the game, learning how to teach minions, and bringing in new minions.
One "thing" that really gets me is how many of them are playing vampires and have 3 or 4 babies, and play this big family thing with a nuclear family. If you're a vampire, you are dead. Women cannot have babies. Depending on the lore, a man may or may not be able to father one - but the one thing vampires aren't about to do is take the time to indulge in creating a nice little vanilla nuclear family. If you want to do that, then why bother with Bloodlines at all? Go off and create your family and have your nice family time - but don't try to tell me you're a vampire, because all that tells me is you know absolutely nothing whatsoever about the vampire as a genre.
Hybrids and Lycans are a different story - technically they're not dead and can have kids; in fact, lycans are liable to have litters of them. That's natural behavior for the genre. At the same time, the family sure as hell isn't going to be like your family-next-door, either.
If you are in the game but playing a character that isn't currently defined by Bloodlines, that also is a very different story. You will be bound by whatever rules are commonly known for the species you are. A good example are dragons, two of which are in my own bloodline. They will be defined by the rules governing dragons, despite choosing Lycan for a Bloodlines type.
I guess the point I'm trying to get at is: Why get involved at all if you are never going to take the time to do it right - and by right, I mean taking the time to learn something about the genre at least so you don't appear like an absolute fool.
Individuals. Some people's names come to the forefront more readily than others. I know of the major players in a recent romantic clusterfuck and have called one of the three my friend. Now, some of what I hear about him I know personally isn't true - I've seen the video evidence that proves his ex told a whole string of lies - but some of what I am hearing AND observing isn't exactly what I'd consider behavior of a truly upstanding guy. No...what I'm seeing is someone in a big hurry to get himself a partner and not really paying attention to what he is doing. This doesn't mean I like his ex and her new man any better. They both have engaged in behaviors which do not inspire a sense of trust in me. At this point, I would rather walk away from the whole lot of them then try to figure out who should be on my friends list and who shouldn't be. I have had my own ass bitten one too many times from people who put on a facade of trustworthiness. It has gotten easier and easier to see beneath the facade to their true motivations, and I'm sad to say that I usually find more shallow motives than deep ones. I'm too old and too worn out to deal with the crap that comes from shallow, self-serving motivations. I'm not saying I'm serious 24/7 - I know how to have fun - but when it's time to be serious, I am, and when it's ok to let loose, I do.
What's important is knowing the difference.