The Record

To Clear Up a Few Things

It’s been some time since I’ve mentioned Vic Zuzu. In fact, the last time I spoke about him I hoped it to be the last. I’ve been quite happy to continue to conduct my business in Second Life and leave Vic to carry on with his. I have not contacted Vic, I have not spoken about Vic and I have not contacted his group members regarding him. In fact, I had all but forgotten about Vic and his “MAKE HIM OVER II” project, that is now apparently MAKE HIM OVER II – V6. That seems like a lot of numbers to me, and considering my name is Rob1977, that’s saying something. Unfortunately, Vic hasn’t forgotten about me, nor has he forgotten about MENStuff. It’s sad really, since his group seems to be doing fine, it’s not quite at MENStuff levels, but his efforts are admirable all the same. Most of the designers in his group also seem to be capable of ignoring Vic’s past. The past that has openly dismissed creator’s rights and that has laughed at DMCAs. The past that has taken original content and reproduced it. The past that has impersonated a Linden to use in his promotional materials and the past that has slandered and attempted to discredit other well respected members of the Second Life community.

It was brought to my attention by a number of designers who had been contacted by Zuzu that Vic is making claims that the MENStuff team are paying bloggers to slander his hunt. Honestly, we don’t have the time for this. We’re managing a group of 12k members as well as conducting our own successful Second Life businesses. Vic, however, does seem to have time to sit around and spread mis-truths regarding our group.

The latest lie was just a step too far and has pushed me into breaking my silence regarding this matter. Vic is now claiming that the original “Make Him Over” group (the one that he took the name and logo from) is in fact a fake and his group “MAKE HIM OVER II” (even though it clearly states “II” after the name) is in fact the original group. He seems to think that the original group was deleted, but if that was the case then surely Vic himself would have taken the group name, but he couldn’t… because the group was never deleted. It was passed over to us when Sam and Tarsis fell out and we recently passed it back to them. Join the group and check the owners if you want to be sure.

Besides the name of the group and the concept, even the logo is a direct copy.Here’s a link to a post Vic made regarding this topic, I’ve also screen capped the post (and have taken an archive) just in case he decides to pull it down.

http://viczuzu.blogspot.com/2011/02/evil-vic-zuzu.html

Vic also continues on in that post to make a lot of other claims such as Ivy and myself using the old Make Him Over blog and Flickr “illegaly”. Just to clarify here, something is illegal when it’s against the law. We didn’t break any laws here so I’ll presume Vic is a little confused as to the meaning of that word. Regardless, Tarsis and Samara gave us the Flickr group and the blog so that we could moderate them as Vic was posting spam on both. We still possess the blog and Flickr group which in addition to the original Make Him Over group (which we since returned) should be a really solid indicator as to who is the “rightful” successor to the original Make Him Over group and hunt.

While many of the content creators in Vic’s group seem prepared to ignore the character of this individual who operates without ethics or scruples, an individual who has shown a blatant disregard for Intellectual Property in the past, I am not prepared to ignore it. I will not support an event that he is part of or that he organises. I am highly disappointed in those who are aware of his actions and support him. I hope that the majority of his supporters are just mis-informed.

If you want to read more about Vic, really, a bit of time spent looking around his “fashion” blog will give you an excellent indicator of the character of this man. I put the word fashion in quotations because I’m unsure that I have ever seen anything resembling a fashion post there, certainly not in the last six months or so. Vic does a great job at assassinating his own character, a much better job than I could ever hope to do in a blog post. He also makes a few attempts at slandering individuals based on their sexuality or stylings.

His blog can be found here: http://viczuzu.blogspot.com/ and it will support any claims that I have made in this post. I am not making wild accusations here, this entire post is based on fact and I will stand by that.

I will conclude this post by stating unequivocally that the MENStuff group does not pay bloggers to slander MAKE HIM OVER II or Vic Zuzu. Most people have their own minds and will have come to their own determinations about him and based on those they may have personal policies regarding Vic and his group in place. We do not dictate what any bloggers have to say on Vic, or any other matter.

For more background on Vic, you can also reference my last blog posting on this matter here: https://robmoonites.wordpress.com/2011/07/26/meet-vic-zuzu/

Thank you for reading.

Meet Vic Zuzu

Since I’m getting pretty tired of hearing about this guy, and I’m sure you are too, I thought I’d put together a bit of a general response to him and his postings over the past few months. If you’re over this issue, as many of you are, then you don’t have to read this. I’m writing this post so I can put the matter to bed also.

Vic Zuzu first came to my attention last April when he sent me a notecard asking if I was looking for in-store models. I don’t use in-store models, I never have, presumably he visited my store and realised this, but I’m guessing there’s a lot of other creators out there that received the same notecard and ignored it. I decided to check out his profile as it was the first such request I had received. When started checking out the picks tabs on his profile I couldn’t really believe what I was reading.

Here’s a link to the profile

His model request…

accompanied by this picture…

For the tl;dr crew, there are some real gems in there, such as “if you would like a hug, send me a notecard outlining the reasons why you need a hug” and “if you would like to be friends, send me a notecard outlining your likes and dislikes”. He also appeared to be a master many trades, trades which many of us regular Second Life residents spend many hours, days, months and years perfecting. At this point Vic was only a month old…

I notecarded the profile and I also tinypasted to post on plurk. Quite a lot of people got a good laugh out of it and within a day, Vic was forgotten as quickly as he had appeared on our radar. It was a few weeks later when Vic contacted me again. It seemed that he had put his head down, done his homework on some Second Life stores, and had achieved the level of “stylist” for GLANCE. He was requesting some clothing from my store to review on the GLANCE blog. I remembered his name from that epic profile and I decided to check up on his credentials before I sent him anything. A friend of mine, Wicca Merlin, is the head of GLANCE model school and I checked with her about Mr. Zuzu. She then, in turn, checked with Patty Cortes “CEO” of GLANCE. Patty passed on the message that no items were to be sent to Mr. Zuzu and he would be spoken to. Presumably this is when Vic and GLANCE parted ways.

Here’s the notecard I received from him at that time

I try to keep up to date with as many male bloggers as I can, since I primarily make men’s clothing. I had added the “Men’s Guide” feed to my reader and would take a few minutes every few days to check up on the latest postings. I began to notice an individual popping up on the feed every few days with quite an interesting sense of style. After seeing him a couple of times I realised that Mr. Zuzu had once again reared his head, this time, in the enterprising fashion that Vic is now so famous for, on his own blog. I jumped over to his blog and skipped through a few posts, each more eccentric than the next. I posted a few images on Plurk and a few of us again had a bit of a laugh at Vic’s individual sense of style.

It was to become a bit of a fixture on Plurk for the next few weeks, every time one of us caught the latest installment of Vic’s blog we would have a bit of a laugh about it on Plurk, there wasn’t a huge amount more to it than that. Then Vic began to get restless in his role of blogger, and decided to branch out into the field of Second Life fashion journalist, interviewing some of the more well known (and lesser known names) in SL fashion. These interviews were quite comical, they usually involved Vic pandering to his guest for a while and then he would provide commentary on the interview where he usually slated the person who had just freely given their time to him. Again, more laughs were had, but then Mr. Zuzu began to turn really nasty…

There was the Fashion Institute incident, where Vic posted private IMs and notecards he received from the students of his class while he was still an instructor there. His commentary didn’t exactly show much regard for his employers there either. An IM to their directors with a link to Mr. Zuzu’s blog post was all it took for him to get the boot from there also.

Then Vic was accused of “borrowing” his photo layout style from a prominent Second Life male blogger. Besides the quality of items being reviewed (on occasion) and the more amateur photography skills on Vic’s behalf, the actual way he presented the items in his blog was identical to this particular blogger.

Presumably, Vic got wind of the growing resentment towards his “borrowings” through his comment box, and probably the odd in-world IM from a number of well-known Second Life residents, and he decided he would hit back in a blog where he criticised almost every other male blogger and stylist that he could find. This obviously gained him quite a lot of enemies.

When the Make Him Over group was on the brink of folding a couple of weeks ago, a few of us decided to get together and steer people towards another group we were in the process of creating, now known as “Menstuff”. Our crew was comprised of previous MHO organisers and deisgners, as well as a number of well-known bloggers. Our sole aim was to keep the members of the MHO group together, preferably in one group, so that the community which had been created could be maintained. There would still be a place for designers to notify their customers of new releases and sales, as well and continuing on the tradition of male hunts that MHO had started. Vic Zuzu had the same idea…

Vic’s methods were less than ethical however, rather than creating a new concept, he simply hijacked the old. Vic took the MHO logo and placed it on his blog, his profile and his initial group inviters. Vic also ripped the designers list from the KMADD website which Eve had compiled after weeks of work. The list was incomplete, but there was no doubt as to its source. He even named his new group MAKE HIM OVER II. Again, the issue is not this being an alternate option as a group for men in Second Life, the issue is Vic piggy-backing the name and reputation earned by the initial group founders. It was extremely mis-leading and has cause a lot of confusion. Mr. Zuzu also began to list creators on his blog as participants in his new hunt, creators that had no idea who Vic Zuzu even was. His profile also lists him working closely as a consultant for some larger SL brand names, again, when contacted, these designers either didn’t know who Vic was, or wanted nothing to do with him. Most other designers, once pointed to his blog, wanted nothing to do with Vic anymore either.

Vic has personally attacked those involved in Menstuff in his group and his blog, even calling me “Rob Someone” when as you can see from his previous communications with me above, he really must have known my name.

Another issue that has been rearing its head in Vic’s latest blogs is a pretty serious issue for any content creator in Second Life, Intellectual Property or IP. It would appear that IP is a mythical concept to Mr. Zuzu. He does not believe in DMCAs, copybotting, Intellectual Property or fraud.

A few notable comments direct from Vic’s blog:

“Now, about the stealing of the intellectual property which scared my designers a lot. Fisrt of all lets face it, there is NO intellectual property in SL.”

“When somebody talking about copyrights, intellectual property, DMCA, copybotting and other blah blah for serious, its just hysterical.”

“I had quite few messages for instance like: “IMMEDIATELY remove my link from your site blah blah”. They really believe I should do it since they asked me to do it? I can link everything I want and nobody can stop or order me to do it or not do it. Retard people always contact me and want me to do what they want.”

Vic also seems to have difficulty understanding what a trademark is. I will not insult you by pasting a dictionary definition, anyone reading this is more than capable of looking it up if they are unsure, as Vic probably should have done himself. I will say however, a trademark is very different to a copyright, it is aligned to how the name is used and it does not prevent another individual from using that name in conjunction with another concept.

He also took to using Adam Linden, a Linden Labs employee whose name was retired more than a year ago, on his promotional materials. He then went on to brag about how he could use whoever he wished to promote his hunt, whether they existed or not. Unfortunately, LL seems to have done nothing about this as of yet.

All in all, Vic’s major downfall has really been himself. We can all just sit back and wait for the next installment of his rantings for him to put his foot even deeper into his own mouth and alienate himself further from the people he claims to support and work for. Most of us have known this story for some time, the rest have learned what kind of a person he really is from his epic streams of consciousness in his own blog and I can only hope that whatever few supporters Vic Zuzu has left will not remain after reading this posting. If you align yourself with him and his reputation you stand to hurt your own, but at the end of the day, we’re all more than capable of making our own decisions. If you got this far, thanks for reading.

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