I guess, first, Terrence Linden's post on thirteen to fifteen year olds joining their older teen cohorts on the grid struck me as in extremely bad taste, after the joint Linden Labs decision that gutted SL-based education. While I haven't heard of any institution-level closures, give it two months. I'm betting, between two and six months from now, we're going to see bigger changes on the grid than the Lindens anticipate.
Then...Brodesky Linden apparently lost his mind.
On a JIRA posting that dealt with the extremely broken SL Marketplace...well. Let's start with what ab Vanmoer said in response to the initial interchange:
@BrodeskyBrodesky Linden answered:
Instead of wasting time with cosmetics why don't you fix the important stuff first like the migrations and the broken XStreet ID that has wasted everyone's time trying to use it.
Correctly rounded star ratings may be important, but not if the reviews are not showing at all!!!
Why don't you stop wasting time and put in comments in the correct tickets. I filter (Ab's) emails to trash. Gmails makes that very easy to do.Now, I grant you, I don't hang out in JIRA lands that often these days. I've come to the conclusion that the Lindens really don't so much care, and moreover, I can't figure out what they do care about, so...
But this? Seemed insanely hostile as a first comment. Obviously there's enmity there, deep and abiding, but just off the bat, as a casual reader? What Vanmoer said sounded frustrated, but reasonable. Because Marketplace is badly flawed. Marketplace has deep problems, and they are infuriating problems that should have been fixed before release.
VanMoer answered back, and actually sounded calmer:
Actually this is a related ticket, it is about review ratings, many listings still don't show those at all, never mind having the incorrect star rating.I would tend to agree. But it didn't stop there.
As for filtering my emails to trash, seeing as I have only sent three to the commerce team I find it sad that that is the level of customer service you are providing, however that didn't preclude you from responding to todays email. However not in a helpful way.
Seriously, did a Linden just publicly say "we filter your emails to trash"?Sort of confirms why there are so many black marks on their Better Business Bureau account, doesn't it?
Quickly adds Brodesky Linden to his Trashy Linden folder. Nice people skills there dude.This is the kind of incident that gives Linden Labs as a whole bad press. Do they not realize this?
How long is Brodesky Linden's bad attitude and rude demeanor going to be tolerated? That's acceptable why?I'd be interested in that answer, too.
Vanmoer returned with a comment:
Please can we refrain from turning this into a Brodeksy bashing.That's noble of him, truly. And I agree in terms of the Marketplace--the entire refurbishing of XStreet to the Marketplace was done with fewer people than the project needed, in an atmosphere of dread and terror that saw, every day, people around them falling in a battle most of them never saw coming. If they had had the best and brightest coders on the job, it still wouldn't have been perfect on release, because you just can't lay off 30% of your total workforce and have that decision not ripple through the company at large.
He was obviously angry and lashed out without thinking through what he was saying.
I have been a rather vocal critic of the SLM, however I think that the real problem is that the project has been severely understaffed and not a criticism of Brodesky personally.
But here's my thing: if I say something sucks, well, who the hell am I? Just another avatar. Just another virtual girl in the world. Who cares?
But if a Linden says that thing? I know we shouldn't, it's the worst level of conflation, but just on the off chance that any Linden-type is actually reading this...what one Linden says, the company says. If Brodesky Linden says this, the Labs have said this. If Frontier Linden acts like we're thicker than frozen mud, and steadfastly refuses to do his job, instead choosing to blame the customer for a wholly server-side issue? People remember for years afterwards. (I know. It's been over three years, Frontier's not working for the company anymore, but I still remember.)
It's not at all surprising that it works the other way, too. I was deeply sad to hear Spike Linden left...or was fired...or laid off...whatever it was that happened. He helped me, once, and that sense of gratitude and loyalty lasted until the day he stopped being a Linden. Because of that sole time he helped me.
And when the name "Linden" is attached to a public comment on the corporate website, no matter where it is, it carries a lot of weight - and this public comment is quickly becoming a "shot heard 'round the grid".Precisely.
And then Brodesky had to say that one last thing:
I'm glad this has been entertaining, and Ab is enjoying all the publicity this is bringing him. You can thank him for all the emails he has sent the commerce team about changing the item that gets delivered.Honestly, I give up. It doesn't matter what we say; the Lindens don't listen. It doesn't matter whether we own sims or not; they attack whomever they will with no sense of conscience. It doesn't matter if we show them financial figures; they do what they feel is good from the company, even if it's tragic in the long run. And they keep making these goddamned rookie mistakes, over and over and over again.
It's like watching two children play dominoes, only one child is alternately setting up dominoes to flip and wandering away, and the other one is hitting the dominoes with a mallet, thinking that will make them tip faster.
Why is this happening? Why is Brodesky Linden not out the door with everyone else? Do the Labs only want people have all the social skills of viruses? Will it ever get any better?
Gods, I can't believe I'm saying this, but I'm actually starting to miss M 'Just call me Dubya' Linden. And that, friends and neighbors, is terrifying to contemplate.
Finally, we come to Philip. Philip who returned, and sent M into the darkness of obscurity, and there was much rejoicing...only now he's turning out to be nearly as bad as the venal bastard himself.
I have to ask again, why is this happening?
Philip held a contest to update his avatar. The winner? Someone who made him look like the same damn person. And did he take time out of his so-busy day to thank the contest winner, even distantly?
And a few days later, somewhat as expected, Philip announced he was stepping down--again--and the search for a new CEO would commence.
Why am I even surprised anymore? Right now, with a new group, and the momentum of the Unknown Hunt behind me--let alone the incredible diversity of businesses who have fled SL entirely--my small business is poised to make the leap from miniscule to tiny. I could actually start advertising things. I could perhaps start selling things.
And...I can't even bring myself to design new things. I'm staring in the face of wondering why any of it matters. If the Lindens are just going to keep smiling and loading the gun, pointing it at their collective heads, and firing, hoping to miss. How long is this insanity going to continue?
I think I'm one of the (mostly) silent people standing behind Bettina Tizzy at this point, thinking our best shot to get through this is to help in every way we can to pressure the Lindens to sell their damned company and get the hell away from Second Life. And that is a sad, tragic thing indeed.
Horrorfest has opened, in honor of, and in support for, the Sophie Lancaster Foundation, which was set up in part because of the pure undiluted shock and tragedy of how she died. For anyone who doesn't know, she and her boyfriend were making plans to get married, and were taking a romantic stroll through a park local to both of them. A group of thugs saw the black hair and the pale skin and did their best to beat them to death for no other reason.
Sophie died from it, kicked so savagely she was unrecognizeable. Somewhat more tragically, her love did not, and has been endeavoring to put the pieces of his life back in some sort of order, afterwards. Her mother? After mourning her daughter, she set up a charity and is soliciting funds to raise awareness. Because she doesn't want this to happen, ever again.
This is one bright spot in all the chaos and bad decision-making. Because someone beloved to the people who run Octoberville died recently. It was unexpected, and no funds had been set aside for burying him. In a panic, Cherub Spectre turned to her community, the community that she and Master Kaos have patiently built up, and begged them for help.
They helped. Over the course of half a week, they raised enough money to bury him, and the date of the funeral was announced to the group as a whole, in case anyone could attend from the group.
That is a good thing Second Life does, and does well. It still is an excellent tool to put human faces on tragedies, to raise awareness and raise financial support for good causes.
And it's all resident-based. Linden Labs? Is too busy loading the gun for the next super-amazing set of announcements.