Second Life Q3 and Complainers

Meditation on RiverLand

I am not sure why I am venting. I haven’t really spoken out much on the SL blogs or forums. But, lately, things seem to be ramping up for the complainers and the whiners. (yes, I said whiners) Anyway, I just took a look at the Q3 for Second Life economy. It’s not bad. Seriously. You should all take a look at other industries in the real world. Third quarter is usually a low one. The stability of the numbers is a relief. Ok, so what do the numbers mean… I am not sure, but the barrage of comments that followed was much more interesting to me.

Search is borked, or so “they” all say. Why do people think the search is borked? Because their number one ranking disappeared? Ask Google or Bing why they keep changing their algorithms. Because in the real world, companies game the system so that they are at the top of search. Or, “mom and pop shop” are able to focus on search and create exactly what the search engines want.

Search should be constantly changing. It should be a place where anyone can be on top. And, if you notice in the real world, search does change. It has to because the consumer is always looking for different resources. The return search list is constantly a jockeying of positions. This gives an opportunity for companies, both small and large, to reach consumers. So, why should it be different here? One writer in the forum talked about finding some very cool resources for clothing. Me, too. I have found some incredible designers recently that I have never heard of before.

The big merchants advertise. They make sure that their name is in front of us. That is how it is done in the real world, too. It is usually the smaller guy who has to focus on search or a PPC programs to survive. Okey, enough about search.

Too many con artists and slime are on the grid. Well, when you can figure out how to rid the place of them, please help us do that in the real world, too. The retailer who is unscrupulous is not here for long. The slime dawgs are exposed quite quickly in SL. Word gets out pretty fast. It’s like the guy downtown in your community who rips off everyone in car repairs. Everyone knows him and everyone talks about him. He won’t last unless he is providing an excellent repair for an esoteric car for a very small market. Otherwise, the market will drive him out.

Cost of Land is too high. This one is a sensitive one for me, too. I got land, and I have to pay tiers. What I resent is the way everyone claims to know how much it cost Linden Labs to maintain it. One writer talked about the cost of hosting the servers. (What about advertising costs, workmans’ comp, government fees, employee wages and their benefits, utility bills, web marketing, etc etc are all overhead costs to run the company.) They pointed out that hosting across the internet has dropped in price. And then they pointed out that WordPress and FaceBook were free. Uhhh, no it’s not.

If you want a professional WordPress blog with all the widgets available out there in the universe, WP charges incrementally for all those bells and whistles. And, don’t get me started on FaceBook where the dangling carrot keeps moving out of reach for business. FB has totally destroyed all free marketing for business unless you are willing to pay for it. If you dare to use real life marketing tactics in FB, they will pull your account. So please, don’t believe that writer.

Nothing is free. The free account you have with Flickr is worthless if you have a huge catalogue of photos. You need a pro account that cost money. Free is just for the small user who pops in occassionally. For those of us who are marketing or big users on the internet, there is nothing free (well… except from Google who then uses your accounts and internet properties to run their ads).

Teleporting is really borked. This statement, I totally agree with as I have been having a horrendous time tp’ing anywhere. It’s my fault. I am pretty sure about this. (I tested this with my alt; she has no problems with tp) My inventory load is huge. My avatar is wearing so much shiz, that it is ridiculous. Several huds, prims and scripted stuff, and all kinds of fun toys are attached to her. I don’t want to streamline anything. I want to wear it, and I want to keep my ridiculously bloated inventory. But, I want that fixed, please… pretty, please?

What I would like to see is a way that us oldies can keep our inventory, wear our shiz and still tp. If there are old scripts out there, disable them or delete them off the grid. If my hud doesn’t work anymore then that’s the scripter’s fault for not keeping the stuff updated. Or, if the creator is gone, then I just won’t use my thingy anymore. Time to replace it. Just like we replace worn-out old computers and software.

Driving the Second Life experience to the outside world is making the social experience nil. This one is complicated. I think we need a way to access a “store” on the web. But, I do want the shopping experience in-world. It’s more fun. You run into friends or meet new people. You get to test out the furniture or demo the hair. Or, you meet the billboard avi who is sporting a new store in their profile. More resources for me to experience. That is social, not the shopping on the web.

Newbies are scary and probably only alts. Yes, we all have an alt for whatever reason. My friends use their alts to hold groups as we have a limit of 25. And, if you are in here building, scripting; you need an alt to hold your inventory and test your scripts. But, there really are a lot of people coming in all shiny and brand new. Those little noobs are critical to the success of the social experience and to the economy. (Hey, even my alt is driving the economy as I love to dress her in the latest cool clothes.)

The welcome center is very nice. It is clean and informative. Anyone coming in from any gaming platform will learn quickly. Then there are the wonderful learning areas where you can learn to build and script. We need to beef up the noob communities and the rest of us need to welcome them. The new ones will become our loyal customers if we treat them well. So don’t assume that they understand about lag issues when they purchase something and they don’t receive it. Don’t blow them off as if they were stupid. They aren’t. They just don’t know about the techie problems, yet. Maybe provide them with a “teaching notecard” about this issue. Then, have a redelivery system in place at your store.

Someone mentioned a Ponzi or Pyramid scheme on the forum. Duh. If you have a closed system, there will always be the early risers and the rest of us will falter. This is why it is critically important to have new people come here and stay. It is equally important to have the old guard stay, too. But, the old guard must understand that they must change with the times. This is the way of all worlds, both real or virtual. So, if something doesn’t work for you anymore; change it. Do not expect that this virtual place will remain for only your needs. And, if you flee to another place, I think you will be back. With the changes coming to this grid, you will see even more possibilities for both your creativity and your client base.

I am forever here. I love you all!

(If you throw tomatoes, I will gather them up and make the most delicious spaghetti sauce… and then I will open up a little restaurant and sell the dinner to you.)