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Wednesday, April 18, 2012

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Osprey

I agree with you. This is for the best.

Dartagan Shepherd

Tend to agree that it may work out for the better, although I get the sentiment about missing that singular large experience.

Some people have said that it may be a sign of LL focusing on becoming a provider of the framework, and I'd have to wholeheartedly agree that is exactly what they should be doing, re-investing in the quality of the product and their offering and staying relevent with the technology. All the rest are add-ons in effort and investment that never really pan out anyway.

Although if they're serious about backing off on world involvement (aside from marketing and showcasing various user content and activities) there's plenty more that should be on the chopping block that competes with users for eyeballs, user hours and money.

Linden Realms, Linden Homes, Linden themed sims, Linden sandwiches, Linden soup ...

Best possible thing they could do is get back to non involvement, getting the product and hardware back in shape, modernize the pricing points, simplify where possible and THEN get back to innovating not on add-on stuff but features and improvements that are integral to the framework itself.

Scarp Godenot

Oh, becuase there were a handful of avatars whining about a couple of minor incidents, it is better not to stage the LAST remaining grid wide event not based on selling specific products? Please.....

And lag? Fer crissakes, EVERY Second Life event has horrible lag. What is different about that? The event lasted effectively two weeks, and anyone who was interested in attending and viewing the exhibits had a full opportunity to do so. And YES they were interested. Let me refer to to the lag for proof!

This announcement is just the latest example of the Bureaucrats at the Lab telling the users: "We aren't in this together, and we don't want to be bothered with this second life cultural crap: Our only goal is to keep things going at the minimum level that assures that people pay their Tier and buy lindens and marketplace items with our commission cut."

To hell with any idea that Second Life might be the only truly creative and functioning large virtual world that isn't a spoon fed game of some sort. Forget the idea of Second Life being something special and different and worth fostering culture wise for the long term.

First Burning Life, now the Birthday. I'm also guessing that the Linden Endowment for the Arts experiment will go the way of the Dodo down the road too after not too much longer.

This decision is NOT trivial. It is a statement by current management that things have changed. It is a statement that we are NOT inventing the virtual world together. It is a statement that the relationship between Linden Lab and Second Life's user is one of seller/buyer only.

Such is life.

Iggy

@Scarp, I'll have whatever you are drinking. You only omitted the kick in the teeth meted out to Nonprofit and education.

Dress-up with great content, straight from Marketplace!: That's SL9B.

But my new facial hair! It's...so important.

Rusalka Writer

Nice for folks who have the extra land. Very Republican of them.

shockwave yareach

I'll join in that drink with Scarp!

This is just another boneheaded move by LL. The party is the cheapest, most ideal way of getting good publicity that anyone has ever thought of. By hosting a giant party, blogs and LJs and plurks and Flikrs and who knows what other mediums positively explode with the exciting things everyone saw at said birthday celebration. And lots of people who have never seen SL get curious and join up.

But by saying we all have to do it ourselves, there will no longer be people bothering to create giant cakes and flying banners and such. Because the hundreds of events will be scattered over the grid, where few will find or see them. So who is going to work so hard at something when almost nobody is going to see it?

Even more importantly: if LL can't be bothered to celebrate their creation, why should we?

Elsbeth Writer

I agree with shockwave (love his last sentence). If people wonder "what is there to do in SL? whine, whine..." they only had to go to the SLB to find hundreds of organizations, companies, events, activities, and places to explore. There was no better place to get an all-in-one overview of the world.

What I'm hoping (prbly in vain) is that the tenth anniversary will be something spectacular. Correct me if I'm wrong, but isn't 10 years in existence unusual for a non-game virtual world?

Rin Tae

I think it is rather sad from the side of LL to decide not to orgenize the event. The last one was horrid and the one before was even worse but I remember those that came in the years before those two and I have very fond memories of them.

They have been nicely build, well run and showed off what SL had. They gavea rich opportunity to learn about new things and have not been so clustered and mixed together then the last ones.

But those are sentimental points and what is more important I think is the image that it sends. LL does not care about the celebration of the birthday of their main product. No speaches, no saying thank you to the community ...
I don'T think it matters much that we know that the former event have not been run that well and could be better .. what will those think who have not seen them or are new? What will thes think of a company that behaves this way?

Pathfinder

When I worked at LL, I was the employee who organized the 2nd Anniversary event in 2005.

Hosting and putting together a central event like that was messy and crazy and...simply wonderful. In other words, it was a very human endeavor.

It was also a fabulous (and free) showcase for everyone’s work. The central location encouraged serendipity and highlighted why a "sense of place" is so critical in virtual worlds.

I think something very special happens when people’s dreams get to rub elbows with other people’s dreams.

Ezra

Totally agree with Dartagan's points. The more Linden Lab is an invisible platform provider not competing with or favoring one customer or content type over another, the better.

I have no doubt prior Second Life birthday celebrations were wonderful. I've attended the last three or four, but the fact that so many feel Linden Lab is the only body in Second Life that can pull off such an event highlights exactly why it shouldn't take place in the first place.

If large celebratory gatherings like prior SL#Bs are impossible because they're prohibitively expensive for anyone else to bother, why get pissed at Linden Lab for not doing it? Why not instead get pissed at how much they charge for land? Or how little land they provide for their price points?

Linden Lab should cease doing things that their customers can't do. It creates reason to not improve the platform if Linden Lab can ignore huge problems by granting themselves sims for free, and hacking together tools accessible only to them.

If Second Life sucks more because there'll be no central SL9B celebrations this year then lets fix the REAL problems.

Hitomi Tiponi

If LL were to really promote this new approach and give support and publicity to user-organised events it might work - maybe with an event hub or web-page publicising events. In reality we know that all there will be is a couple of Message of The Days, and a blog post mentioning an event tag.

Second Life becomes less of a world and more of a sandbox every time this sort of thing happens. It is a poor direction to take.

Silverfox Rainbow

i loved the Sl birthday events - always got a sence of achivment and joy ages ago when i placed a fountain back in the 2006 time capusle - then to it see on display again :D
it was a great way of seeing other peoples work and showcasing so many different types of builds, i was hoping to get involved with it later on down the track, so this is a bit sad that an another SL tradiation is gone now to

Flo2

I'm very sad to hear in this blog from a post that a grid-wide, annual, traditional SL experience is a "giant drama fest", and a "cluster of horrid lag". Terribly sad and I think unjust. It signals clearly that for actual Lindens the holidays and traditions of SL mean nothing.

It's not my duty to explain here why traditions, annual holidays and other kind of grid-wide experiences, when people can meet each other _and maybe_ the Lindens! are so important in a community's life. Everyone who ever organized events or managed any communities knows that. I don't state that these traditonal events were not a bit outdated. Certainly, changes can be necessary in planning and executing, to make them more contemporary, following the novelties like Kinect, shared media, mesh, auto-attachments etc.

But the point is, that old traditions are killed but we can't see anything new instead. (No, Linden Realms is not a grid-wide community experience.) I don't see any plans for new holidays that could become new traditions. And obviously can't see any plans to make opportunities for meetings between the Lindens and the residents - inworld - at an event - as a fun or entertainment.

Traditions that are killed so far:
- Burning Life
- Linden Prize
- Winterfest snow fight with the Lindens
- Valentine day Kiss-a / Hug-a Linden
- SL Birthday.

Will SLCC be the next? Oh, no, I forget it's not LL-hosted, thanks god.

Alazarin

LL has overlooked the fact that not all contributors to SLB's, Burning Life, etc are landowners. So now participation [from a content-creation POV] is restricted to landowners and those that they favour.

This idea of a decentralised SLB event is plain daft. You'll end up with 'labour-of-love' builds dotted around the grid surrounded by fugly junk. Or, worse, how many of the so-called SLB events will be little more than TP landing sites in shops and malls?

Is LL so short of cash and resources that they can't set aside a few servers on a rack for special events such as SLB's and Burning Life? Heck they'd even be ideal opportunities to experiment with cloud-based scalability.

On a related note: what are the dates for this supposed SL9B so that I can list my live music performances at my home venue on the mainland as being 'Part of SL9B' or whatever the official endorsement is supposed to be.

Arcadia Codesmith

I think LL should be actively promoting the best content on the grid, regardless of how subjective that assessment is. They should also be competing openly with users, with every unfair advantage at their disposal, to break up cartels and push quality higher and prices lower.

Linden Lab is effectively the government, and it is the right and proper role of government to exert soverignty over its territory and resources and administer them for the good of all citizens, not just those that can afford the buy-in. They should do it boldly and unapologetically.

Of course sponsored events create conflict and drama. Revel in it. Conflict and drama are life. Passionate users are invested users. Apathetic users are your competition's early adapters.

Stone Semyorka

LL should build and open for the birthday period a single nice SL9B HQ sim to tie things together, but not be a place for activities or builds. That will help their image of seeming to care about SL residents and our shared history.

val kendal

ditto everything - first Burning Life and now this? SLB had huge issues, but it was a celebration of all things wild and whacky SL and a GREAT place to see creative works made by your fellow residents. The solution to the problems of the last few SLBs would be to downsize, not obliterate imho

I think it shows that they are busy with 'other things' at LL, and hosting a celebration of SL is not very high on their priority list.

Scarp, if they pull the plug on LEA too, there may have to be a good old fashioned riot with pitchforks and torches - do those Linden homes burn well?

Roger

I lit a candle as 9th birthday celebration at
http://slurl.com/secondlife/Humble/29/123/18/
Please feel free to come by and look at a lit candle as a reminder of all the past great drama that made us identify with a very unique experience.
Last years SLB-day really was horrible and dated and boring, but at least it WAS and we had something to complain about. There are always 3 ways to go, listen and improve, or ignore and keep going, or just cancel so you just don't have to care. LL takes the 3rd path. They just stopped caring. Which i find very brave actually. Let's all just stop caring.
Whatever!!!

Pussycat Catnap

I find this to be an utter fiasco...

This is like saying 'no birthday for you' to a kid as you take away their birthday cake - its just not good.

The SLxB event is an expo like event. That's what it has always been and if for. It is -THE- second life Expo.

It needs to have Expo grounds to be on.

Sure it is always laggy as heck, and has a certain level of favoritism.

But that is vastly outweighed by the good of having a centralized expo for SL.

Its the one time when all the different communities of SL end up in the same grounds, seeing each other's existence, and having to come to terms with an accept that Sl is a wider experience than just their own.

Now that is gone.

But given the company's absolute disastrous state of affairs regarding community and communication, this is no real surprise.

The built up a -LOT- of goodwill and regained credibility over 2011 with improvements on a major scale to the viewer, the platform, the stability, and a whole new way of bringing in content with mesh.

Then they burned that to the ground with the lies over last names and shutting down of communication only hours after asking for communication over the very situation.

Now, a chance for them to Expo all the things that went right this past year... they're blowing it off.

2011 was year the Lindens left the building.
2012 is the year they tossed in the towel on having anything to do with those left inside.

SL needs its Expo...

Pussycat Catnap

"I agree with shockwave (love his last sentence). If people wonder "what is there to do in SL? whine, whine..." they only had to go to the SLB to find hundreds of organizations, companies, events, activities, and places to explore. There was no better place to get an all-in-one overview of the world."

This. Quite a few things have been first discovered at SLxB.

That's what an Expo does. It exposes you to things that are different from your norm.

The Destination Guide as a replacement? Yeah right... Everyone's eyes are trained with things like that to pay attention to their interests and move on. But the Expo put it all side by side, in your face.

I recall at the last one, finding a whole series of vehicle makers and even types of vehicles I'd never known about, because the plot for them was in my way when I was trying to get to the place behind it.

So as Shockwave said; "[I]f LL can't be bothered to celebrate their creation, why should we?

Kim Anubis

Last SL bday I knocked together a build for a RL nonprofit run by a friend, played with a VERY fun Soyuz docking game built by a guy actually in Russia, and ended up at an impromptu dance party hosted by Marianne McCann, so I turned into a kid avatar and rocked out. I bought a new outfit to wear for the birthday, including new hair and a shirt with a monster eating a birthday cake, and braved the lag, toting my favorite virtual pet as I went to see some really cool builds (there was something fascinating about that giant glowing brain!) and had a great time running into people I hadn't seen in a while, and meeting new ones. It was the kind of time I joined SL to have.

This year I guess I'll see what's on Hulu and maybe catch up on the laundry.

Ann Otoole InSL

There is much to showcase this year. Mesh, Petites, Meeroos, etc. A website is needed. With a database. So there is a whopping $20 so far. Need a high quality website dev. Dunno how much that would cost. Need a scripter for in world kiosks (hat tip to Adeon from Tateu's blog). Maybe some cash for banner ads. Perhaps this can be crowd funded. My name is tainted and hated so I can't run it. Who can?

Ann Otoole InSL

oops. that is Aeonix Aeon not Adeon. Sorry.

Will Webb

I agree with Pathfinder.
I did SL4B and SL5B myself, they're horrible to run and you're always late and running yourself ragged, but so much fun really :-)
I saw the change from a community run event with Linden support (SL4B) to a Linden run event with community staff (SL5B); that last one was the year they thought that the SLxB event was a good way to attract business to SL.

I also ran the timecapsule every year, which is a tradition that dates back to the original beta. I'm sad to see so many good and long traditions thrown out like this.

We dont need them to run this event, just give us some sims and let the community do its thing, just like we used to.

(Maybe it grew a bit too big though, SL4B with 9 sims was manageable, but the 20something sims of later events made the organisation a nightmare.)

shockwave yareach

@Will -- if we had a good organizer willing to take the job, and LL just provides 16 sims temporarily, I'd have little issue with that.

But one thing LL is forgetting with this "Do it yourselves" approach is that by letting everyone everywhere do whatever they want for SL9B, now the potential exists for all the Adult sims to host the most wild, ribald, and horrific expos with the SLbirthday tag on it! Where before, the birthday celebration had LL limits on taste and at least a little bit of editorial control, this approach surrenders all of that.

And so, where we used to have great imaginative and fun builds, and everyone on the internet saw them, now we will have stories and pictures of the most wild pixel debauchery involving farm animals and steampunk sex toys. And yes, the entire internet is going to see THOSE as well. LL has destroyed its sole good publicity venue and now it will be turned into terrible publicity instead. After all, if they tell the customers to do their own thing for the birthday bash, they can't complain when we do exactly that.

Will Webb

I'm sure last year's team, together with a few older volunteers and a few new ones, would be willing to pull off something if they got the go-ahead now (start any later than may 1st and you're not gonna make it).
The older SLxBs were very handy as a start-off point to learn about SL culture, especially since they can be so diverse that even I learned about new things from time to time.
I can only deplore the total disregard for what the community used to pull off on their own. Our biggest hurdle was (and still is) money for sims. Donate a set (and I'm sure they can, they've got dozens of test sims active that they could shut down temporarily if really really needed) and we'd be good to go.

Ann Otoole InSL

I kind of like LL not being involved at all. That way there can be events with art that has nipples and other things LL cannot allow for legal reasons if LL sponsors it.

Metacam Oh

This is an inevitability, and like someone said earlier in this thread, I hope its just the precursor to Linden Lab removing themselves from interference in the grid. Linden Homes should go next.

Dave Bell

The lag problem is real. The only way out of that is to abandon the big central stage and disperse the whole thing across the Grid.

There's enough abandoned mainland out there that the Lindens could make land available without firing up a single extra server.

But I can't see how anything can work without more central organisation than a mere Destination Guide. It needs something more to link together the in-world locations.

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