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And Malinda Chung for the win.
zz bottom has made an interesting observation. The usual LL cheerleaders seem to be losing some team spirit when faced with the possibility that they are just like everyone else... disposable. If all the "little" people have sunk with the ship, there will be nobody left to care about the "special" ones.
Let's see, LL announces a supposed "discount" (which is really a back-handed increase in transfer fees) and only 11% of responses are favorable. I think the real story is the numbers on the bottom. Who doesn't love a sim "discount"? About 89% of respondents. Only LL can do a promotion, like a spraying skunk, that manages to repel customers. Big high five to the Sales Team.
"Seriously, folks: would you want us for your customers?" Seriously, yes. When I see how much residents spend at events and how much they are willing to spend on teir, I'd be happy to take their money. I'd be happy to go to work every day and think of ways to improve their experience and invite their friends and family to come in and spend their money too. I'd make it more about running a tight business where the customers are the superstars and I work for them. LL needs to grow up. Customers don't fail the business, the business fails the customers. It's a little bit of Stockholm syndrome to believe that thousands of people who each put hundreds of dollars a month into your sales are somehow problematic or undesirable. Seriously, what the eff does it take to be a good customer?
"let alone launch and sustain Project Sansar before it gains enough paying users to be profitable on its own. (Probably 2-3 years at least" 2-3 years of rocky profit & loss seems really problematic in the wake of the new $600.00 transfer policy for grandfathered sims. These sims seemed to be the biggest commodity for mom & pop land deals right now. As much as there is a bottom line for LL, there is a bottom line for it's customers. By the time you've found that bottom line, it's too late. (let's give a shout out to the non-profits wherever they are) If SL is supposed to carry this elephant on it's back, something's gotta give in SL and it needs to be more than just "Coffee Talk" with Ebbe. There needs to be some serious rethinking.
I rant about LL a lot. I'm currently having a mainland billing issue with a parcel I sold months ago. I keep getting billed for it. Two months ago, I called support and was assured that I've made the last payment. Today I tried to get the issue resolved through live chat. No response. I called support and talked to the representative. Explained the situation and she agreed that I am being charged for land that I don't own. She apologized and then informed me that I will be charged again in December and that will be the last time as she has corrected the account. This is $150.00 that everyone agrees wasn't owed, but I'm still going to have to pay it. There has never been a heated exchange about this and the customer service rep was kind and sympathetic. I'm a SL addict, so it's going to take more than a $150.00 loss to push me into rehab. But this is another personal experience that makes me confident that LL future endeavors are going to fail miserably. You don't magically learn how to care about your customers and be ethical just because you have a new name for your business. It makes me sad that I accept this.
It's the least LL could do for it's customers. The very least. If you're not prepared to realistically meet the needs of your customers and take a good hard look at the value and fairness of your business, then don't do anything. Why draw attention to your failings with the flap of a hand and a lame attempt to whitewash a giant turd?
I had to reread Estelle's comment a couple of times and I kind of agree. But I don't think that SLers behave all that differently from how the general public will behave. When people are given the opportunity, they're more interested in themselves than anything else. So much of what people "share" is a giant selfie looking for an audience. If the idea of virtual reality is to get lost in the scene, I believe the general public will get bored very quickly and go back to looking for their idealized self-image. Right now, even VR enthusiasts... look at me, I'm so smart, cutting edge, an enlightened visionary... and you're not.
Linden Labs needs to save it's ship. I predict that Ebbe Altberg will be the Carly Fiorina of LL. They need a quick intervention. If they truly have any fruits from their Sansar development, which I highly doubt, they need to redirect it back to focus on SL. It's insane to fail your foundation and expect trust and confidence in uncharted territory. SL is the place for imagination and dreaming, the LL profit & loss statements aren't. Save the dreaming for tomorrow, there is serious business today.
What LL chooses to focus on... odd. What are these new starting avatars leading to? LL is so late to the party with these that they are pretty meaningless. The problems are now way beyond the experience of new residents. The problems are the dead ends for their core customers.
Everything about Sansar remains very strange. You'd think that a company developing a new product would care about the future of their existing customers. Nope. This teaser doesn't do anything to intentionally excite SL users. Just leaves them scratching their heads and attempting to fill in cracks the size of the Grand Canyon. At this point, I choose to fill in the cracks believing that the reason info is so scarce about Sansar isn't because it's so groundbreaking that LL is afraid to share it's pot of gold. I think LL is bluffing, sweating, and hoping their luck starts getting better real soon. Nothing they've done makes me think they have anything in the cards.
I agree with the half-hearted clapping of the audience as they open their beautiful empty gift bag. Okay kids, let's go get some ice cream.
Why isn't LL asking these questions directly to their customers? It's the only way to get a meaningful consensus. NWN readers, and their concerns, are nothing like most of the residents I know inworld. Yet these people sign in day after day, own land, and consume merchandise. If LL isn't willing to ask or listen themselves, then what information of any value could polls like this provide?
Well, cheaper land prices is a good one, but I don't have the strength to argue that one anymore. I wish LL would remold the base avatar into an acceptable human form for the 21st century. This would return the ability to make skins, clothing, and shapes to the hands of amateur artists. Right now, I think that a handful of creators are calling the shots for too much. It's very complicated and very boring to have to start defining your individuality by erasing everything that your are "born" with and being at the mercy of the churned out formulas of a select group of SL plastic surgeons and designers. Yea, I know this can't be done just like land prices can't be fixed and the American middle class cannot be saved. So yes, I think what SL really really needs is greater compatibility with mobile devices and a few more of those gemstone freebies we get with a Premium account.
Reuben Steiger's Medium post was an enjoyable read. I agree with Iggy's feelings about Rosedale. I think that Philip was important to SL and that a lot was lost when to both when he left.
Well, it seems like a lot of readers are taking their "interest" from the viewpoint of being SL users. I think many SL users are hungry for evolution and the only thing that they have to pin their hopes on is Sansar. Many are watching LL operate behind a locked door and assuming that Sansar is really just a big Christmas Surprise in a box for them because they have been such good boys and girls. I think SL users are gonna wake up one day and find that there isn't even a Christmas tree, let alone a present.
"But which company has ever told customers about a risk involved in their product?" Answer: Literally too many companies to name. We have government agencies that are devoted to making sure companies inform consumers about risks involved with their product. Good companies that care about doing good business and keeping customers take the time to educate their customers and design their products to work for their customers. Please. Let's not pretend that all companies operate like LL.
"business management for dummies" I don't think that LL has ever read that book. I think they have referred to "business management by dummies" for advise like it's better to fail huge than to succeed modestly and the best way to get new customers is to marginalize your old ones.
Thank You to Shockwave and everyone else who made very convincing arguments against this "cup of coffee". There is all kinds of investments that residents have made in SL over the years. Money, time, and emotional investments. Most of us had to work at growing into this world and mastering our identity. There are things that will just never be able to be transferred to a new platform. Our identities are more than just our names. If your SL experience has been nothing more than a Grande Latte to be slurped up and flung into the trash can, you may have missed a few things along the way.
Philip Rosedale's ludicrous vision of RL as being a museum... vomit. It's just drivel from an over-privileged narcissist who hasn't looked away from his reflection long enough to see all of the people who keep his museum functioning. Real life will only be a museum to people who are dead.
I'm more concerned about Sansar being a destination that I even want to go to. I'll worry about packing my bags later. I've only seen one vague PR image and a log in page image. I don't have a clue about the avatar. It doesn't sound like Sansar is a connected "world". Couldn't this be a lot of concern about what everyone will be able to take with them on their solo trip to Siberia? There might be a lot of free time to make any new thing you want out of snow.
It's really interesting to see the exchange between Lemon Panda and Zaphod Kotobideh. I really wish the survey had asked "Do you trust LL?" Because trust is all that anybody really has regarding the future and Sansar. Everything else is speculation and very limited amount slippery facts. Sansar is a greased pig that nobody has a grip on.
I've only talked to Maxwell Graf one time inworld. He was a very kind, approachable, and inclusive guy. This post has been up for a few days and I'm really surprised that the comments, so far, have been... "crickets". I'm not a "voice" of the SL community or a self-proclaimed expert, so I'm really dying to hear from the enthusiastic LL fan bloggers as to why the SL community is or isn't boldly going to where no man has gone before. Where is the SL community going?
Everything must start somewhere and this might make Project Sansar superfluous. LL shouldn't worry because there's gonna be more than enough superfluous passed around involving everything with Oculus . Flashback to Google Glass and how everyone in videos and at conferences nearly had to wear diapers because they couldn't contain their excitement at this revolutionary product developed by a big company who could never be wrong in thinking they could actually market autism in a box to a hungry public who couldn't wait to lap it up. But, I guess, these products are two different birds and the nature of how humans relate to their lives and environment have changed so much in the last year or so. This is really gonna be huge.
It's too bad that there isn't some kind of program where popular builds couldn't be donated to one of the many mainland wasteland abandoned lands where they could be absorbed by the Governor for public use and help uplift the dreadful decay. So much waste.