First off, let me mention the JIRA issue that's arisen on this. Go read it if you haven't; acquaint yourself with the issues, and come back.
Okay, everyone back? Wonderful. Let me pour a round of tea and become extremely unpopular.
While I believe, to the heart and soul of me, that Caledon is a community, that other groups of private estate sims are communities, that the groups residents make on SL can foster interests, interaction, and deepen that sense of belonging...at the heart of it, Linden Labs is not running a group of commmunities here. They are a business. Second Life is their product. They are interested in keeping their numbers up, they are interested in turning profit, and maximizing successful gaming experience and fostering the brand name over every other concern.
I have been here before, passionately committed on a topic, and frustrated, angry and hurt that they didn't seem to listen. It took me a long time to admit to myself that the only thing that will change anything at Linden Labs at large, is a blow to their financial gain. Because they are a corporation. They have corporate and technological concerns, they will not react one whit to any emotional outcry.
Am I being in any way unclear on this? NOTHING WILL CHANGE if no harm comes to their bottom line. That bottom line being profit, financial receipts, technological upgrade of needed systems...for the game that is Second Life.
Let me be absolutely clear on my position, as well: am I supporting the raising of rates on OpenSpace sims? Not entirely; I think they could have reduced the price and still brought in effective numbers. Do I support that Linden Labs had to make a change, or suffer in providing services?
Do I believe this is a conspiracy, or a "bait-and-switch" something-for-nothing maneuver on the part of Linden Labs?
Here's something you may not know, all of you who are screaming that this is so massively unfair: yes, Linden Labs told us that four OpenSpace sims would be allocated per server. In certain cases, this is true, but per processor; so in certain cases, there are up to sixteen OpenSpace sims per processor, on a quad-core server.
Think about that a moment. Imagine that. Because of the cut cost of OpenSpace sims, because of the request--over and over, in all paperwork and blog mentions leading up to any individual purchase of an OpenSpace sim--that these be "light use" sims, low scripting, low objects, low texture use--some of these sim groupings were stacked four to one server machine; eight to one server machine; a full sixteen to some servers. What would that be like? What would that feel like, if your sim was one of the ones adjoining, if your sim was one in that same stacked group when one--or more--abuse such "light use" guidelines?
I can tell you. I can tell you easily. Because before Rivula was upgraded to a Class 4 server, Rivula, Lunalis, Lunula and one other sim in the chain were stacked on one server. Rivula for half of its simlife--until the Enigma club closed--was stacked as one of four, with three other sims containing residences, businesses, and dance clubs. Rivula itself had two clubs and one full amusement park, complete with flume ride and bumper cars.
Rivula was a full sim, with full prim allotments; yet, because it was so stacked in chain, there were times I could not go back to my home. I could not go home, period, because home wasn't there. Rivula had gone down, again, Rivula was subject to script overdraw, again, Rivula was lagged, again, because of script usage in our sim, or in one of the sims stacked with us.
This is frustrating in the extreme. Had someone come by and said, to the sim owners--listen, we hear you, we know this is frustrating--what if we move you to your own server, upgrade the server platform, and tighten everything up? Just cost you $300, instead of $100 per month.
I think the sim owners would have leapt at the chance. More stability? Not having to restart the region twice a week? Not having to watch scripted objects die and not being able to reach a Linden for help because stacked sims, in all honesty, didn't receive the same consideration and solid support that sims on single servers did?
They would have blessed the Lindens. We would have rejoiced utterly to get away from the three other full sims we shared that server with.
So breathe. Calm down. Stop bitching. Realize the only alternative you have is to raise the funds, release the sims, or work with people who can effect change in a rational and reasoned way--using logic, tactics, and what the Lindens understand--fiscal accountability.
Nothing else is going to work. And you're just whining without excuse if you think it will.
*sits back and waits for the death threats to pour in, sipping Earl Grey*
Updates, the day after:
Aminom Marvin has it exactly right, I think:
This leads me and many others to believe that the current policy's rationalization is an out right lie. The most obvious reason is that Openspaces are "too successful" as a product; people have flocked to them and away from mainland because they wonderfully suit user's needs in price vs. land size and prim use, and avoids the problems with ugly builds on mainland and renderlag from having adjacent sims all around a sim. The result is a devaluation of mainland; many parcels can be found for less than L$3 per meter--the equivalent of $600 for a full sim.
Gregg Barrymore--the owner of Antiquity--has stated he is abandoning all twenty-six sims as protest. If his opinion hasn't been changed--then Antiquity is gone. Which means--just from what I know--that Antiquity Texas's amazing reconstruction build of the Texas capital building--gone. Wulfenbach's Consulate building in Antiquity Township--which Mr. Allen and I constructed to specifications for the parcel space--gone. The Marzipan Teahouse Ballroom in Antiquity Haven--which has contracted every two weeks for a host and presenter through Radio Riel--gone.
So just from my small involvement in Antiquity, that impacts nine people directly--and without a doubt, affects many, many more. In addition to the loss of Antiquity as a concept.
Sascha Swindhurst puts it very simply indeed:
It is not simply about the future of open spaces and it's 'legitimate use' (which i think is not supported by this issue)
It is not about paying more cash for a product (as we can always decide SL is another luxury good we can abandon payments for)
It is not about me being angry to our 'evil landlords' who raised our rents by 66% (which would be completely legit as protest in RL)
It is because this measure is one that does no good to the reputation of Linden Labs and their product. There are those who may argue similar things had happened in the past and the grid survived. Those people will also have to consider many customers have left because of these events. In the long run business and product reputation are necessary to keep Second Life up as a product name. You will simply have to be doing better than this.
Will they realize it in time? Who really knows? They didn't all the other times they made unfortunate decisions in the past...