Archive for the ‘Polls’ Tag

2013 Oscar Fashion Photo Contest — A Poll!

An update already to this year’s OFPC?  It takes me by surprise, too; but there’s a reason for it.

I always have a dickens of a time getting the word out about the Contest, and so I try to saturate as much of the SL media as possible, as well as encourage people to spread the word themselves by linking to the rules and passing links in the social media (hint, hint).  Iris Ophelia at New World Notes was kind enough to write me up for an article based on my press release, for which I thank her very much.  But she raised a small objection in her own comments to the rule limiting entries to human avatars.  I have always felt that this was a version of the red carpet walk that we could participate in ourselves.  However, it is a valid thought that this is our version, as in Second Life’s version.  So I’ll offer it to everyone in a poll, which will run for one week here, and I encourage you to vote.  The results will decide how the rules will change for this year.  I’ll reconsider for next year’s Contest, any road.

signature 3

New Splash Page with Latest LL Viewer Update

For those who have downloaded the latest update to LL’s Viewer 2, you’ll notice a change straight off.  Instead of the traditional photograph, rotating from view to view with each sign on, we are now given a menu of pictures, destinations and events to examine in a browser when we click on them.

Do you think this gives the LL viewer more versatility or usefulness?  Do you like it or not?

UPDATE:  August 9 —

New World Notes suggests that the “What’s Hot Now” line might encourage more new user retention, as they now have a few suggestions where they will find other Residents congregating.  Check out Ham’s article.

Posted August 5, 2011 by Harper Ganesvoort in Polls, Software

Tagged with , , , ,

New SL Traffic Algorithm Announced

Jack Linden announced recently on the Big Blog that Linden Lab plans a change to the calculation of Traffic on parcels of land in Second Life.  Instead of the current calculation,

…(t)raffic will be the cumulative minutes spent on the parcel by all visitors to the parcel within the previous day. It will be calculated from the total seconds spent on the parcel, divided by 60 and rounded to the nearest whole minute (up or down). It is calculated in real-time, and will be updated every morning at 1am PST for the previous day.

If you think about this, you can tell that the calculation will be far more straightforward than measuring the amount of time a given avatar hangs in a parcel, to see if it stays there for at least 5 minutes.  Jack says that this new method will take effect on August 31, with results becoming available on the next day’s traffic reports.

Some businesses and locations may be displeased with this change — mostly the locations that game the traffic stats, usually through the use of bots and camping.  I’m wagering that the truly popular locations will not go down on the charts, and may actually go up.  (I can tell you that my traffic at my store won’t change more than a hair, if that — since I have almost no traffic.  Se la guerre. [sigh])  But do you think that things will improve or degrade with such a change?  What are your ideas on the matter?

Harper's signature

Linden Lab Revises Planned Openspace Price Change

As promised, Mark Kingdon released an article for the Big Blog today, announcing changes to the planned price increase on the Openspace sims. As you may recall from our last exciting episode, it was originally planned to do a blanket increase on setup and maintenance (“tier”) in January 2009, with the tier rising from $75 USD to $125. The result was quick (if not instantaneous) and substantially explosive. In addition to blog reactions, a substantial Forum thread was started by the Lindens that grew to at least 250 pages, filled with gripes — but also with calmer, thoughtful commentary and suggestions.

The Lindens read, and listened, and considered. Now they’ve answered:

1. We are going to retain the Openspaces product at its original price point and its original intended use (forest, water, etc.). We will have technical limitations to help regulate their use, initially avatar and prim limit restrictions, eventually event, classified and script limits. Those of you who chose to use the Openspaces as intended may stay at the US$75 rate, but will need to contact the concierge team to do so.

2. If you want more than an Openspace, we will offer you the choice of moving to a new product called Homesteads that is intended for light use such as low density rentals. For existing Openspace owners we will phase in the price increase for this new product over the next 6 months. Homesteads will also have technical limits for avatars and prims, and eventually script limits as well.

* January 5, 2009 – non-compliant Openspaces will transition to Homesteads and the maintenance fees will go from $75 to $95 per month. We will offer an educational discount to qualified educators on the new Homestead product. The discount amount will be the same as Private Regions, roughly 30%.

* July 2009 — the maintenance fees for Homesteads will go from $95 to $125 per month.

There is more detail in the FAQ posted at the Knowledge Base, and a new Forum thread for comment.

This has to be looked at carefully, but I’m not sure that it’s a better deal for the ones who will get burned most — the Residents who were obeying the rules. If I follow correctly, the original void sim had an 1875 prim allowance; now they’re planning to drop it to 750 prims, and with script restrictions in the future that may wash out some recreational vehicle use (this is uncertain as of writing). The people staying in the new Homestead sims will eventually still pay the $125; it’s just deferred until July 2009, instead of January. I won’t say this is a bait-and-switch routine, as some posters in the Forums are accusing the Lindens of doing; I’m not a network or other form of technical hardware specialist, and I’m willing to accept their explanations for now. What I do say is that the proposal is imperfect, and needs more consideration by Linden Lab. It sounds as if they are still willing to listen to calm and reasoned debate — the best kind — and something better could be thrashed out yet.


Other reactions:

  • Hypatia Callisto suggests that the solution is for Linden Lab to allow large communities to rent their own server and divvy up resources within that area.
  • New World Notes is running a poll on the question. At writing, the “dissatisfied and worried” camp is leading, with about 38% of the total; but those satisfied are second at just under 30%. James also writes about the question for GigaOM, noting that a lot of the “contentment” is seasoned with a good bit of grumbling as well.
  • In the category of “contented”: Common Sensible; Crap Mariner; Harper Beresford; Nexeus Fatale.  Not thrilled:  Hotspur Otoole.  Okay but critical:  Raul Crimson.

Harper's signature

New Openspace Statement from Linden Tomorrow

The Big Blog has word from Jack Linden that Mark Kingdon will put up a piece tomorrow on the Openspace flap.

The post will be our response to all of the great feedback you have provided and will include details about how we intend to proceed regarding Openspaces.

I don’t know if this is promising, but it shows that Linden Lab does at least seem to listen to their customers.  Be there, and here, tomorrow!  (However, I’ll probably be posting late on the matter, as I have morning shift RL.)

SL Openspace Controversy — Hamlet Au Interviews Mark Kingdon

Wagner James (Hamlet) Au of New World Notes got an opportunity to sit down with Mark Kingdon, a.k.a. M Linden, the CEO of Linden Lab, and questioned him about the Openspace controversy set off by last week’s announcement.  Read his article here!

The best comment I’ve seen on his article (to this point of writing) is by Hypatia Callisto, who headed her comment with one of the best “scientific laws” ever created, Hanlon’s Razor:  “Never ascribe to conspiracy what you can ascribe to mere stupidity.”  The comment is for those who are certain that Linden Lab is jacking rates to make money preparatory to an IPO, or just to fill company coffers.

Openspace Protests Growing

First came the shock; then the anger.  Now the rage.

It appears, based on this article from Vremya Mrigesh, that a login strike is being planned for today (Oct. 31) to protest Linden Lab’s planned price hike on Openspace regions.  Others, such as Petros Miklos, are taking it longer, through the weekend.  Running a quick test on how many are present — in other words, opening up the client — it doesn’t seem to be having much effect; at 8:15 SLT this morning, 53,695 are online.  That’s about right for this time of day lately; a low number would be well below 50,000, maybe close to 40,000.  This suggests that, even if a number of people are being affected by the price raise, either it doesn’t impress the majority of Residents (many of whom probably don’t own/rent an Openspace sim), or else the strike call isn’t taking hold.  (It could also mean that enough newcomers are logging in at the same time to compensate for outflow.)

Even if there is a noticeable outflow, though, will it work?  Residents staying logged out does not hurt the Lab at all; they don’t charge by the amount of time you’re connected.  That concept went out the window with the advent of broadband.  Drop in concurrency?  A three-day bloop in the statistics at the most, which can be explained away by the nature of the beast; they know what it’s about, and so they disregard the data.

The way to achieve change is to actually work with the Lab.  While it’s not certain that they will alter their approach, they do sound willing to at least listen to concerns.  Moderate, cooperative and proactive approaches are long shown to make more progress than boycotts and people burning themselves in effigy.  (And anyway, Second Life doesn’t have a region named Effigy, so you can’t burn yourself in there in the first place.)

Vint Falken — List of Blogs on Openspace Controversy

A quickie note here:  Vint Falken has a list of at least 40 articles on the Openspace flap on his original piece.  Vint is one of the more read and outspoken bloggers in Second Life, and his article is pretty good; go give it a look for his opinions, and those of many others.  I wish I’d found it before, but Vint has his own domain, and so he doesn’t show up on’s tag surfer.  (I don’t recall him in the Technorati list, either.)

Openspace Fee Raise Continues to Burn — and Flame

Linden Lab’s decision to raise tier maintenance fees on all Openspace sims continues to provoke ire since my last article.  In approximately 48 hours, the Forum “discussion” has racked up 169 pages, with a high proportion of posts filled with bile.  This, frankly, is one reason why I don’t weigh in on important matters at the Forums; the level of vituperation gets out of hand.  I’m not sure if anybody is being listened to if there is an actual workable alternative to the raise, or if anyone at Linden Lab is still reading the messages.

The articles I’ve read so far are mostly confined to blogs, but they’re calmer for the most part.  Hamlet Au’s New World Notes summarized many of them Wednesday (including my own previous piece); much more has been written since.  While opinion still runs far against the mechanics of Linden Lab’s decision, the logic behind their choice to do something about Openspace sim abuse is more understood.  For instance, Bailey Longcloth offers, among other points:

…Openspace sims had their prims increased and the  prices lowered.  It doesn’t take a rocket scientist to figure out what’s gonna happen.  And look!  It happened!  For the most part, I imagine the majority of people have not abused them.  Some people have though.  Too many avs, too many scripts, too many textures etc etc.  I think the abusers should be paying more for their over use of the system resources….

…In the 2 years I’ve been in SL, I’ve seen residents up in arms over a number of topics.  SL5B, lowering of island prices, ad farms etc etc.  Never have I seen such an outcry against LL as I’ve seen the last 24 hours.  It’s good to see so many residents standing up for what they believe in.  Just remember, in order for a protest to work, you need your opponent to listen to you and agree with you.  This isn’t going to happen without rational ideas and suggestions.  As a professor of mine used to say, “Do not complain to me unless you have a suggestion for a solution.”    Simply complaining does nothing.  Give LL suggestions that make sense for everyone….

And Isadora writes:

…When I first found out of Jack Linden’s decision to increase Openspaces rates, I was livid like the rest. I find out Eshi won’t be able to afford to create her magnificent art in Desperado due to this move, and I also read of the rest who won’t be able to build anymore because of this. At the onset, doing this will be a big mistake.

However, this turn of events is like an onion, once sliced and diced, it brings tears to the one holding the knife, but as Nexeus Fatale and some few others have said, this change will bring good in the long run….

The displeasure is still there, though, even when the writer recognizes all the data in the matter.  Tan Tantalus:

…I feel sorry for the many people, like me who operate an Openspace sim in a responsible manner as we are the ones who will suffer because if the actions of the greedy club and mall owners who care only about getting traffic and subrental from stallholders because they operate their business from an Openspace sim when they should be using a full sim.

Linden Labs has seriously mismanaged this. They should have instead announced control measures with Second Life to reduce the load the sims were causing. This will not deter the abusers for they are making money from Openspace sims from rentals and sales – it will only deter those who have invested in Openspace sims to create lands for light usage as was originally intended…..

The good news is that Linden Lab, and especially Jack Linden, seem to be listening to the protests.  The latest from the Big Blog is that they are reading everything they can find in reaction to the decision, and that they are taking the facts into consideration.  Jack quaintly refers to the Forum discussion this way:

The first thing I would like to do, is to thank everyone for taking time to give feedback. We’ve read it all, including the forum posts, and almost all of you have made your points constructively and clearly. We are blessed with highly passionate and intelligent residents and that makes for good dialogue, which we really appreciate.

Jack must have read a hell of a lot more messages than I did.  My stomach started getting all “squeamious” (I don’t remember where I got that word) after less than 10 pages worth.  He’s surely right about “highly passionate” Residents….

My coverage shall continue as time allows.  If you wish to find more voices on the question, I’d suggest going to Technorati to check other articles.  My link should take you to the actual search; but if it doesn’t, just plug “Openspace” into the search box.  Comments are still welcome, of course!

%d bloggers like this: