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Destiny Eberdene

Is there any equal fairness in SL?

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I have been playing SL now since 2008. I have rented many different sized land from many different companies. I now work for a "quite respectable" land company, not tootin my own horn or anything, but seeing how alot of our tenants are leaving for "lower prices" elsewhere, only to find out they are "introductory rates" and increase after the first few weeks. Those tenants also find out that when they are in need of customer support, there is none to be found, or you wait for days, sometimes a week or more, for help with issues. Those companies, are basically killing the other "decent" land companies because they have "grandfathered sim prices" from way back in the very begining. I not only speak for myself, but many other people within SL, that this sort of thing is very unfair, not to mention shady on the land companies owner for doing such horrible business practice. There has to be some kind of equality brought in by Linden Labs on this issue. It's not very fair that one land company pays basically nothing for thier sims, while everyone else pays way higher rates in tier, and keep getting poached from by ridiculously low "introductory rate" and no customer service at all. I only know this because I have, in the past, rented 3 different sized lands from this other company, and the final straw was an issue with a tenant on the other half of the sim I rented. 3 clubs and a mall that took up the entire half of the sim, dj's and shoutcast boards shouting across the sim to my store customers, and shouting up to me, in a skybox above 2000m in the air. When I finally did track down someone to help me with the issue, after almost a week of this nonsense, I was basically told to suck it up or leave, so at this point, I don't need to elaborate on what my final decision was. It's going to come down to one thing, and one thing only: This "grandfathered sim" company will end up monopolizing all of the sims in SL, basically putting every character at their mercy, and eventually after having enough of the lag and lack of customer service, will leave SL completely. Where will that leave SL? One land company and no renters. It's not that difficult to figure out and see, if you actually speak to people within the community and take a consensus of who people do not like renting from and who they do. Me personally, as well as a ton of other people, would rather pay a bit extra for customer service, than to save a few pennies and just be left to my own devices with rented land. I really hope LL's does something soon, or the SL population will start dwindeling very fast.

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That's exactly my point, the company that has the majority of those "grandfathered" sims, is killing the rest of the land companies because they are luring people in with low introductory rates, then hiking them up to just a hair below normal market value, and offer no customer support for their tenants. There has to be some sort of equal fairnes brought about by the lindens at some point soon, or folks are going to just leave SL completely, as they really don't want to be left to their own devices after paying huge amounts of lindens each week for tier, and not get help with issues.

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Agreed, we pay over the market rate for our grandfathered HS because we have a great relationship going back a few years with our landlord, but biz is biz too.

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Very true, as most of those tenants find out after they give up the good quality they had for less expensive, and when those tenants return to their previous rental company, the company the left for, comes along with alts and poaches them away, at gross amounts of numbers, almost crippeling the other company. It becomes a never ending vicious circle :(

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Your post is unfair in its gross generalizations about a lot of very good estate owners in SL that happen to have been in business long enough to be grandfathered.

People are grandfathered because they have owned and paid tiers for a LONG time.  Probably a LOT more than your company has.   If the people sell the sim it will no longer be grandfathered.   Seems pretty fair to me.   They also give volume discounts to people that own a lot of sims. Maybe the company you work for is one of them   If so, is that unfair? It is common practice in business to give long term faithful customers and volume customers a price break.

Just because a sim is grandfathered doesn't mean the service is poor either. To be fair, there are a few I know of, but I won't rent from them.  People don't hold on to sims as long as grandfathered sim owners have by not offering what people want and/or giving bad service. My own experience is that I've gotten better service and also a better run estate from most people that have been around that long, while all negative experiences I've had are with newer estate owners that haven't been weeded out yet.  That is not to say that all newer estates are this way, however.

You should read covenants before you rent from anyone.  Obviously that was a commercial sim that allowed clubs.  There are plenty of commercial sims that don't allow them.  Unless the covenant forbids them, you can't complain if one shows up.  If they rent half a sim, they are entitled to use every prim and square meter of land they rent. Scripted objects can't shout as far as you claim. They are limited to 100m, if they use llShout and 20m if they use llSay.  It is not possible to use llRegionSay on the public chat channel only on higher channels script to script.

If the grandfathered sim company you are complaining about is the one I think it is, then all can say is I've heard the same dire predictions about them cornering the market since they few large. They haven't and probably never will.  There are enough people that won't rent from them, due to past experiences they have had or heard about, that there will always be room for other land companies as long as there are people wanting to rent land.

 

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I've seen this as well. But nothing can be done, last I heard was Linden Labs had actualy added  on the Grandfathered regions, that they are Grandfatheredin the  Region info display. So hopefully those who rent land know the difference in pricing between a regular Estate and a grandfathered and don't fall for the   'regular Estate prices' they may charge on their Grandfathered Estates. But guessing on the 100 USD / Estate cost difference someone saves on per month on a full prim Grandfathered Estate, when times get tough on SL. They can pull thru easier and lower their costs to absorb other tenants to fill the void thru those times. Like I say you cannot compete against a monopoly.

Your best bet is hopeing yor tenants are faithful and enjoy it where they are and refer their friends. Can't beat them at prices but you can show your tenants your there and offer alot of friendly service. I'd stay away from Estate growth though. Too hard and stressful to meet costs.   

 Added:

The big mistake made wasn't so much in allowing investors low cost Regions for their support thru the early days of  SL. But more a case of allowing them to be sold between Avatars for years after.

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Actually... the much bigger issue is the lack of transparency within SL in regards to land pricing. There are hidden 'deals' made all the time allowing some "big" land owners to get below market rates.

As examples of what I'm talking about: most think you have to pay premium membership fees to own private SIMs, LL doesn't tell you you do not - and I'm talking about buying these private SIMs from LL not the folks buying them from the private land owners. There's also a tier level called "extended support" above concierge level... which pays a lower rate both to buy SIMs in bulk and the tier to LL on these SIMs. Again you won't find information on either of these two things anywhere in LL. If you do it's well hidden and I'd love to see it. Even in calling live support they deny it exists, but clearly in talking to individuals confidentially within SL these "deals" are there.

So to answer the post's original point, no, there's not fairness within SL and things aren't equal. It's the same as the "real world" when it comes to business and money, cut-throat, unequal, and not fair. Big fish will always try to eat the little ones and become the only fish swimming in the pond.

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NoName Quandry wrote:

Actually... the much bigger issue is the lack of transparency within SL in regards to land pricing. There are hidden 'deals' made all the time allowing some "big" land owners to get below market rates.

As examples of what I'm talking about: most think you have to pay premium membership fees to own private SIMs, LL doesn't tell you you do not - and I'm talking about buying these private SIMs from LL not the folks buying them from the private land owners.
There's also a tier level called "extended support" above concierge level... which pays a lower rate both to buy SIMs in bulk and the tier to LL on these SIMs. Again you won't find information on either of these two things anywhere in LL. If you do it's well hidden and I'd love to see it.
Even in calling live support they deny it exists, but clearly in talking to individuals confidentially within SL these "deals" are there.

So to answer the post's original point, no, there's not fairness within SL and things aren't equal. It's the same as the "real world" when it comes to business and money, cut-throat, unequal, and not fair. Big fish will always try to eat the little ones and become the only fish swimming in the pond.

I'll reply to the OP shortly, but first to respond to NoName:

Extended Support is not what you think, nor is it hidden.

http://community.secondlife.com/t5/English-Knowledge-Base/Accounts-overview/ta-p/700019#extended

Scroll about mid-way down the page and you will see it.

Anyone can qualify for Extended Support.  You need to have a tier bill of $5,000 USD per month or more.

In exchange, you get faster service from LL.  ie: Extended Support.

There is nothing mystical or sneaky about it.

"In addition to existing Concierge benefits, extended support membership includes:

  • Accelerated ticket response — 24 hour response and average 48 hour resolution for most issues.
  • Discounted island (Private Region) rental."

The "discounted island rental" that they mention has nothing to do with TIER.  It is referring to if you rent an island from LL for a day, which no one ever does.

Lizard Howl

Segarra Estates Owner

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Destiny Eberdene wrote:

I have been playing SL now since 2008. I have rented many different sized land from many different companies. I now work for a "quite respectable" land company, not tootin my own horn or anything, but seeing how alot of our
tenants are leaving for "lower prices" elsewhere, only to find out they are "introductory rates" and increase after the first few weeks
. Those tenants also find out that
when they are in need of customer support, there is none to be found
, or you wait for days, sometimes a week or more, for help with issues. Those companies, are basically killing the other "decent" land companies because
they have "grandfathered sim prices" from way back in the very begining
. I not only speak for myself, but many other people within SL, that
this sort of thing is very unfair
...

Hi Destiny,

Thanks for starting this thread!

Without a doubt, so called "grandfathered" pricing is the proverbial Elephant In the Room when it comes to Second Life land.

Anyone with a calculator and basic math skills can see that a handful of companies are charging well below retail rates for sims.  The "cover story" is that the sims are Grandfathered.  For this to be true, that means these sims would have been on the grid since June 2009 or earlier.

Ref: http://community.secondlife.com/t5/Land-and-Sea-General/Today-is-your-last-chance-to-buy-Grandfathered-Homesteads/ba-p/646048

It is mighty suspicious how these Grandfathered sims seem to multiply every week, and are offered in apparently endless supply by "you know who" and "the other guys" too. 

Be that as it may, the only solution to this issue is for Linden Lab to flatten the prices across the board, either by bringing all sims up to the current retail price, or by dropping the price on all sims back to the Grandfathered price.

Is it ever going to happen?

No.

Is it fair?

No, not really.

On the other hand, all large companies offer a discount for their best customers, why should Linden Lab be any different?

I'm afraid you are right, the inevitible conclusion is that one day there will be no Estate Owners except for the huge Estates, which in turn will continue to drive customers out of Second Life.

It's a real shame that the powers that be at Linden Lab don't see what is plain to you and me.

Lizard Howl

Segarra Estates Owner

 

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sim tier grandfathering was done bc back in the day was class 4 servers and class 5. when the tier went up bc of the class 5, people were offered a choice: stay on a old slow class 4 at the same tier. or move to a class 5 and pay more tier. some people choose to move. some not

thing was when linden finally replace all the old class 4 sim servers some time later then was a problem. so linden said cant transfer/sell your old class 4 sim anymore and preserve the old class 4 tier. bc is no actual class 4 sim servers anymore. but can keep on paying class 4 tier while you still the owner. bc the decision to change you to a class 5 is not a choice for you to make now. not like it was before

so anyways that the story of grandfathers

+

 is the Atlas programme that offer preferentials rates which i think affects you more. maybe

the thing about the Atlas programme is that everyone in the Atlas programme doesnt talk about the Atlas programme. is part of the rules of Atlas club

is some speculation that some people with 50 sims are in the Atlas programme. some people say you need way more sims than that. dunno. have to be a member of Atlas to actual know

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Never forget that when paying for something - you are paying not just for a product but for the service.

I used to rent at IOP and the service is unbeatable. You can count on maybe L$2 per prim, a bit less even, but anytime there is a problem, the managers are there to help.

Then I have been to cheaper rental places but trying to get any kind of service is out of the question, one time I rented a place thinking they might have an auto-invite to group but no, I ended up waiting 4 days. I didn't stay long.

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I have leased land from many of the larger estate land owners, sometimes called land barons. They are all part of the Atlas Program and are able to receive new sims at grandfathered pricing. Is that fair? Nope. However, it does allow me, whenever I want, to have full admin rights to a complete sim at near current tier level prices, and paying weekly only and leaving any time I wish. That is something I can not get directly by purchasing from Linden Lab, AND I do not have to put out those huge initial set-up costs. Therefore, financially, it is to my advantage to lease from the barons.

As for the service from those land barons, well, I have leased from several of the larger ones and they all provide excellent service. Granted, since I know what I am doing, most times anyway, I rarely need their customer support.

We must face the fact that Linden Lab is trying to push out the smaller land owners in SL so that it can reduce its customer support staff, and allow the barons to deal with those issues. In the long run, those who provide the best price/service will gain the larger share of the market. The days for the small land owner becoming a land baron are long past. The barons are here to stay, and to monopolize the land market, with LL's blessing. That is a dose of reality we all should swallow.

Linden Lab is in business to maximize its profits, and not to deliver fairness to all its customers.

 

 

 

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I just recently had a rental go south on me, and feel it is not against TOS to warn people about these companies. I payed 10k for 2 weeks the day before i was told that they were returning sim and i had 1 day to move to a location they would provide.

Anyone that does business in SL knows that getting traffic is important, i did not want to do business with a company that cant afford its sims. And for that i get no refund. I would understand if it was my decision to move. But it wasnt, and i am not responsible for his lack of income. i always pay on time and never missed a payment. I overlooked several issues, my land getting terraformed my managers etc.

I will make a thread on this topic tho...

But as far as i see it, the renter has no protection in SL, and it seems the land owner id even protected against legal action. I doubt i couold get any info to persue a small claims against this person. And linden states they will not mediate.

 

 

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Windspeaks Mistwalker wrote:

I just recently had a rental go south on me, and feel it is not against TOS to warn people about these companies. I payed 10k for 2 weeks the day before i was told that they were returning sim and i had 1 day to move to a location they would provide.

Anyone that does business in SL knows that getting traffic is important, i did not want to do business with a company that cant afford its sims. And for that i get no refund. I would understand if it was my decision to move. But it wasnt, and i am not responsible for his lack of income. i always pay on time and never missed a payment. I overlooked several issues, my land getting terraformed my managers etc.

I will make a thread on this topic tho...

But as far as i see it, the renter has no protection in SL, and it seems the land owner id even protected against legal action. I doubt i couold get any info to persue a small claims against this person. And linden states they will not mediate.

 

 

Linden Lab will not mediate. As long as those who buy estate sims pay their tier every month, LL is happy. If the owner leases out land to someone else, and that someone else is cheated by the sim owner, Linden Lab will not intervene. It does not have the resources to do so anyway. It is always best to lease from a large, reputable estate owner, who has been in business for several years. They are not hard to identify and find.

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