Happy Llamakkah Release

Last Updated: December 17, 2022

I wanted to address my mistakes on releasing the ‘Happy Llamakkah’ set recently.

In retrospect, I should have not released this set early access at all. I did release this early access originally because I had spent a significant amount of time on it and since this is my full time job, I rely on new sets and Patreon to put a roof over my head.

After quick feedback from the community, there was no hesitation in my decision to release this for free. I did make the switch on my site as soon as I was able to, but there were several issues that resulted in the front end of my site not being updated right away.

Protecting your data on my site is of upmost importance to me so I have set certain measures in place requiring a physical authentication key (YubiKey) to be used in order to make changes, access information, etc. Since I was not home and didn’t have access to my physical key, this led to several days in between when I said I would release the set for free and when this change was actually reflected on my website.

During this time, I did not promote the “Happy Llamakkah” set on any social media platforms. This decision was made intentionally because I wanted to ensure the set was available for free before any promotion/distribution. I never had ill intentions or was motivated by exploiting an underrepresented community for personal financial gain and I am truly sorry if this delay made anyone feel this way.

While this set had a smaller number of items, much of my time was spent learning about a culture I was unfamiliar with. What I learned was beautiful, enlightening and fascinating. Instead of churning out a bunch of objects, I choose to spend my efforts making custom coding that would accurately represent the Judaism traditions.

The existing EA menorahs give two options:

  1. Light each candle on the menorah one at a time, but this is only available as a solo sim.
  2. Light the candles as a family, but all are lit at once. (restricted to Season EP)

Because of these limitations, I wrote custom coding to better represent the traditions of Hanukkah. These BGC interactions allow you to light the candles one at a time as a family

Based on what I have learned over the past year, there are other holidays in Judaism that have more significance than Hanukkah. Because of this, I decided to release a smaller set for Hanukkah with the intention on making a larger set for Passover. When I do release this set, I will take and apply the lessons I have learned from this experience.

I have learned from this experience and promise to do better in the future. I never had ill intent with this set or was motivated by exploiting an underrepresented community. I started this effort in December 2021 and was grateful to have several Jewish simmers, especially @needleworkreverie, spend many hours teaching me about Judaism since then.

I have created a dedicated resources page for a list of Jewish cultural CC in the Sims 4 as well resources of ongoing efforts to improve representation in The Sims 4 and ways we can help. Because I do not practice Judaism, I don’t feel that I am the right person to host this resource. I did find other Tumblr accounts that were dedicated to this cause, but they are no longer active. So if another simmer would like to take over & host this resource I am happy to send over all the information I have collected.

We can do better.

I have room for growth and improvement – not just in this case but always. I will take every opportunity I have to be a better person and learn from my mistakes. I also challenge The Sims 4 community to do better when approaching these types of situations. We are so unique because we are made up of primarily women and marginalized groups.

We should be standing together, side by side, and showing each other love, support and compassion. If one of us is unfamiliar with a topic or made a mistake, let’s take the time to educate them.

When a group of people choose to assume the worst and put their efforts into tearing someone down instead of taking it as a learning opportunity and a chance to demonstrate the principles you live by, then everyone loses.

I can do better & we can do better.

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Happy Llamakkah Release

My public apology and response regarding the issues around the ‘Happy Llamakkah’ release.

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