Nazis in Berlin

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We do not allow Nazi symbols in our 1920s Berlin project, part of the virtual online world of ‘Second Life’.
We have several reasons for this, to read more about our motivations behind not allowing Nazi’s have a look at this special post on our blog;
https://1920sberlinproject.wordpress.com/2011/07/21/no-nazis/

But because Nazism plays a bit part in Weimar Republic history you can find references to it in several places across the sim.

I wanted to show the Nazi presence in a less subtle way without breaking the rules in SL, it is simply against the Terms of Service (the law) to display Nazi symbols.
So I decided to use the flag of Tomainia.
This is the fictional country in the movie ‘The Great Dictator’ by Charlie Chaplin.
Made in 1940, it shows a country under a vile dictatorship very similar to Nazism.
The movie is a great anti Nazi story and by using these symbols we give the sim a little bit of a Nazi feel but are actually insulting the Nazis.

flag

Nazi flag... or maybe not?

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4 responses »

  1. I’d say it’s better to just leave them off entirely than be inauthentic. I disagree with the SL TOS regarding swastikas, but if it’s a problem to have them in the sim, that alone creates an authenticity problem. So I think it’s better to just RP that the neighborhood is anti-Nazi which would explain the lack of nazi members or symbols, which realistically would have been extremely common and inoffensive at the time.

    • I like this one ‘nazi’ flag in Berlin, especially as it would annoy (neo) Nazis.
      Either way there is no need to be unauthentic and not show lots of Nazi stuff, as I wrote in the other article, Berlin 1929 was not (yet) flooded with them.

      • I doubt it will annoy any neos. They mostly don’t use the real swastika flag anymore, using flags actually most similar to this “Tomainian” one or even faux-Imperial symbols due to legal restrictions in many countries without political free speech laws.

        Speaking personally, it seems to give the neos and other nazi sympathizers (who are rare anyway) an unearned power. Saying that they are so dangerous or their symbolism so powerful that we are afraid to use it. In reality nobody is afraid of it. Nazism has been dead since 1945 as a political cause. In fact, it was dead long before then as a political cause in every other country in the world save for Germany and sometimes not even popular there.

        If we are afraid of symbols due to their “power” or evil use we might as well just ban the hammer and sickle, red communist flag, Japanese rising sun, or any number of others. Any and all of them have equal reason to be banned as the swastika, and some of them much more.

        As I said, I understand it’s a Linden TOS issue, but I also think it’s an idiotic one.

        • I think it is mostly an emotional issue, not rational.
          Living in a country that was occupied during the war I know the effect these symbols still have today, on those who lived trough the war but also their children and grandchildren.
          I care more about upsetting people then about avoiding controversy or showing the symbols for what they are.
          I think the symbol itself should remain banned except in special situations.
          When you make a movie or have a museum, you can use all the swastikas you want, even in Germany today.
          Maybe they should do the same in SL, only allow swastikas for certain sims.
          I think it is sad that for instance the Holocaust museum in SL can’t use swastikas.
          And yes, I’d consider using them for Berlin if LL would allow us.
          Either way, even the Tomainian flag has a certain threat to it and its the feeling and the general look I’ll use for now.
          Mind you, this one flag will probably be the only one in Berlin and may not even be around much.
          Just put one up to balance out the flags we had out on constitution day.

          As for Nazism being dead, I wish.
          It is a lot stronger then most people thing, it is a lot more subtle these days but the danger is still very real.

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