Saturday, June 23, 2012

some people call it a one night stand, but we can call it paradise

From Mysticarose Olinger on the Marketplace JIRA:
I am angry that some of my items show images from other sellers. How are the buyers supposed to know what they are buying? This is not cool.
I am ready to shut down my store if this is not resolved soon.
Here's what I know, for a fact, about customer complaints: if a company (any company) received a letter (we're talking the days before email was a big deal) of complaint, that one, sole letter represented eight people who did not complain formally, but were just as upset.

When email arrived and became popular, the overall average of customer comments and complaints went up because it was easier to dash off a reply in a format that didn't require envelopes, stamps and a postal box. How'ver, that didn't change the equation by that much; in fact, for many PR departments, the advent of email tilted the equation in very unfavorable ways. In essence, receiving an email complaint meant there were, on average, thirty people who did not complain via email, but were just as upset. Further, those thirty people had other venues of complaint open to them, from telling their friends to posting on product review sites.

While, granted, I haven't pored over this particular JIRA lately, but when last I did, there was one individual who's had no problem with switching over to Direct Delivery from the (usually not renamed) XStreet boxes.

One. Versus everyone else in the thread who's complaining.

Multiply that by potentially hundreds of individuals who don't read the Marketplace forums, post to the Second Life, forums, comment on the JIRAs, or directly interact with the Lindens to try to reach a resolution both sides can feel happy about.

At one point, I said something akin to there being about half a million corrupted items on the Marketplace right now--products which cannot be edited or deleted, because they are not actual physical listings, just corrupted data points--which I still feel is a fraction of the true depth of the ongoing problem. But let's say, just for argument, that each maker affected lists one hundred items. (Obviously, individual makers will have less or more, but this is just to pose the argument.)

That works out to about five thousand affected accounts, give or take. (And I think that's a radically low figure.) Now, admittedly, operating from this mythical five thousand accounts, when the figures for SL are much, much higher, makes this seem a low and insignificant number indeed. In 2007, Beta News reported that there were 6.16 million user accounts for Second Life. In 2009, WebProNews reported a figure of fifteen million user accounts--with the additional metric of having 70,000 users online at any given time.

In 2012, Tateru Nino posted a reply to a similar question on the community forums:
There's between 800,000 and 1.1 million Second Life users logged in per month - but there's very little data on how many per day. Based on concurrency data and a few not-too-unreasonable assumptions, I'd say that there's roughly 150,000 to 175,000 users on any given day. Only a small number of those, however, would be people who log in seven-days-per-week, though.
Okay, so just going from there--taking the higher figure of 175,000 players in world, each day, then 5,000 of those are having Marketplace issues. Big Marketplace issues. And that's not even three percent of the total, but...multiply that figure by the total occupancy of Second Life?

How many of those are having problems? And how much higher is that number, then? How high, in fact, does the percentage of users with issues have to get before the Lindens pay attention?

There's a lovely article on objectification in Lollipop Chainsaw which I think is well worth reading; of course, for those of you who've never heard of the game, here's the official trailer, the special Hallowe'en trailer, the trailer for the Japanese edition, and the official Nick and Juliet trailer. Do I even need to describe the game after those?

I'm not saying it's a sign of progress in gaming, but hey--at least in this one, the main gender of the objectified person is male. At the very least, as the article points out, it just might get through to some brains that if they're uncomfortable watching this level of objectification in another male, well, hey--it might just be wrong to objectify women the same way.

Just a thought.

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