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James Samiam

Second Life is too expensive!

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So a few years ago I created my own environment or "World" within SL called Griffins Paradise. And I've returned it to the grid several times over the years, but never for long. The problem is the prices. It's so darn expensive just to have my own little creative space on the grid.

This isn't very attractive anymore, not like it used to be. Especially when there are literally dozens of other games these days that allow creative freedom, and usually for much cheaper and on a huge scale.

http://i.imgur.com/fGqCQ.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/U9PRO.jpg

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http://i.imgur.com/JYvjM.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/INVn1.jpg

http://i.imgur.com/7pJmr.jpg

It might not look like much but Griffins Paradise holds a special place in my heart. It just frustrates me to no end that I can not experience it when I want to, and when I do I can't afford it for long.

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For most of the people on the forum you are preaching to the choir.  I'm sure everyone would love for land to be cheaper.  I wouldn't hold my breath though.

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I just make sure I can afford it. SL is a place (not a game IMO) that offers me a lot. And it is my choice to be there and do my things. That has a price. So I don't go out that much, clothing lasts a bit longer and sometimes I skip a haircut. That way SL is not too expensive for me. And even if there are similar places like SL for free or way cheaper, it just are other places.....

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How can you enjoy a thing that causes your rl to downgrade?

Just me.

I would cut corners , but my corners would be the imaginary ones.

 

Signed, the guy who dumped his premium account and subsequently even his "owned" land on a private estate.

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Its not a fu...ing game. Thats your only problem.

In if you, due to some magic, found such an endless number of other "games", which are so much better and at the same time just like SL...then go there. What you do here is the same as if I would go to Ferrarie and complain that I can't afford their cars and my only argument would be that cars from BMW are cheaper and I can also drive them.

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Actually, its HIS sl. And if he needs that to be a game then it is.

There is no great and mystical book that says it is or isn't this or that for everybody. Just because there's a population that likes to get all high minded about what it is for them, that doesn't write it for the world.

And if a body logs in to PLAY then it is a game.

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SinfulPrince wrote:

Actually, its HIS sl. And if he needs that to be a game then it is.

There is no great and mystical book that says it is or isn't this or that for everybody. Just because there's a population that likes to get all high minded about what it is for them, that doesn't write it for the world.

And if a body logs in to PLAY then it is a game.

But it is this kind of mindset that leads to people thinking everything should be free, there should be instructions on what to do, quests, gold, dragons....and everything for free and so easy that even a 3 year old can understand it.

All senseless complaining or crying about how stupid/lame this "game" is result in exactly that view on SL. If you are going to put it in a box with "the other games" then sure...it will look awkward if you expect it to be like Sims, WoW, CS and what not....

Thats the reason why the OP is speaking about these many games which are free and such...I'm not aware that there are milions of "games" which are just like SL but cheaper.

It reminds me of how a child developes its understanding of the world through expanding its inner categories. This process is not fast and it leads to cases where (for example) every brown animal on 4 legs gets called a dog by young child untill it builds new categories for new things and situations.

The same seems to happen with the people calling everything a game as long as its not some office program. Sadly, they are stuck in that step and refuse to remodel their categories.

 

Or in simpler words: Is the fish a loser, because he can't climb a tree as you expect him to do?

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I will second Thinkerer and suggest you take a look at alternatives, especially Kitely which offers flat fee and time based usage models.

The tier in Second Life is too damn high, but there's no easy solution there. LL aren't going to dramatically reduce their main source of income by slashing tier and gambling on that generating a rush in land purchases.

 

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Ciaran Laval wrote:

The tier in Second Life is too damn high, but there's no easy solution there. LL aren't going to dramatically reduce their main source of income by slashing tier and gambling on that generating a rush in land purchases.

 

It may not be an easy solution but I believe there is a solution. 

Step 1 - create 2 levels of tier, 1 for commercial use i.e. any land that facilitates the transfer of L$, and the other for non commercial use. Keep the commercial tier at the current rates. Lower non commercial tier by say, 25 to 50%.

Step 2 -  close the Marketplace.

This would result in a land/tier rush from two sources, merchants picking up land in SL so they can continue to sell their products and services. Non merchants picking up land to take advantage of the reduced tier. 

 

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Close The Marketplace? Have you got a sideline in selling pitchforks and torches? ;)

The commercial/non commercial idea is a good one indeed. I also think there's potential for pay as you go solutions whereby a sim isn't open 24/7 and therefore pays a pro-rata tier but that could get complicated in terms of billing.

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SinfulPrince wrote:

How can you enjoy a thing that causes your rl to downgrade?

Just me.

I would cut corners , but my corners would be the imaginary ones.

 

Signed, the guy who dumped his premium account and subsequently even his "owned" land on a private estate.

SL does not downgrade your RL unless you let it.  YOU are responsible for the amount of time and money you put in it.  If you can't afford it then don't buy things.  If you are spending too much time in SL to the point it is ruining your RL, turn off the computer and do something else.  If you can't control yourself get professional help.

Many people in SL enjoy it as entertainment and CHOOSE to put time and money into it like they would going to a movie or out to a bar to enhance their experience.  For many disabled or isolated people SL might be some of their only entertainment or way to socialize..  It doesn't take much to live well in SL.  What you pay for a movie ticket here in the US will get you a couple thousand lindens.  You may choose to go to the movie or use the money in any way you want instead, but that is YOUR choice - to the only choice for a lot of people.

 

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You make a mistake here, who says all people currently selling their items on the marketplace would be able to afford a inworld store? Especially if they are new to the business and can't count on stable sellrates.

It would mean a huge decrease of products, varity and diversity and would set high barriers for new shopowners and would increase the number of people who have to keep the newbie-look for quite a long time, because good freebies would vanish and it would be much harder to find the still existing ones. (Not talking about the low quality freebies from Freebie Galaxy and such).

Also many products from 10-100L$ would disappear.

And even those who can afford their own inworld store would face a harder time, because its time consuming and ineffective to use the current search function, which leads me to everything but not to the shops I was looking for.

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Yet the very same arguments you use are used by those who want to create games, roleplaying, art and places for people to do something inworld, the costs are prohibitive. At least merchants do have The Marketplace, which isn't going away. However it would be nice if there were moves to allow people to create things that provide people with something to do to get a boost too.

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There was once a time when nearly all commerce was conducted inworld, 3rd party sites such as SLX and SLB facilitated only a tiny percentage of virtual sales. Tier was the same price as it is now and thousands of new merchants managed to launch successful businesses inworld myself included, multiple times over.

Of course, inworld search and other factors that resulted in the demise of inworld commerce would have to be addressed. That is why the solution is not easy. 

Adopting my idea would result in less products and choice it's true, but is that a bad thing? SL markets are oversaturated with content. The best designers would stay and those serious about selling content in SL could start out small renting in malls and other commercial spaces (that would also be revitalized by my idea). My idea would also drastically reduce the amount of stolen and fraudulent content sold in SL. 

 

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Porky Gorky suggested:

Step 2 - close the Marketplace.

 

I don't have much money to spend on SL and if it were not for the Marketplace I would be lost. I can search the Marketplace by setting cost, I search 3L$ to 100L$ to keep the high cost out of the results and keep the DEMOS out of the results. I also check Copy and Modify so all the results I get will be something I will spend money on. I have had in my profile for a long time in the past,

If your product is of such poor quality that you don't think I should not make a backup copy of it, then why should I give you any money for it.

And also, “No Copy, No Cash”.

However there is a place for no copy items, but that place is not in clothing, with no transfer what does no copy get you. I asked one store owner one time and he said, its part of a set so its no copy, I still don't understand that one.

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What are you talking about? I never said SL is a game and even if I did, so what? SL is what you make of it.

I simply said I created my own world within SL and it sucks that I can't experience it unless I fork out $15 a week! And yeah, there ARE other "games" out there which allow me to express myself. Sims, Minecraft, Garry's Mod. SL is the only one that costs an arm and a leg.

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James Samiam wrote:

What are you talking about? I never said SL is a game and even if I did, so what? SL is what you make of it.

I simply said I created my own world within SL and it sucks that I can't experience it unless I fork out $15 a week! And yeah, there ARE other "games" out there which allow me to express myself. Sims, Minecraft, Garry's Mod. SL is the only one that costs an arm and a leg.

Then...well quit? Nothing is going to happen just because what you can't/want pay for what you want in SL. See my car example.

Oh and Sims...Minecraft...well, if they are compareable or even substitudes for you, then fine.

 

@Marketplace-discussion:

I'm mostly a customer. The marketplace helped me in my early time to get affordable clothes and items and know helps me to safe time, when I'm looking for something where I don't already have a prefered brand or store. It would limit my shopping experiance if I had to go inworld for research and spend about 30% of my time waiting for giant stores to rezz and wander around to finally relize everything there costs 200L$ and more.

In the end shopping would get more frustrating for the customer and more expensive for the shopowner.

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I disagree. Second Life is not expensive. It merely puts forth the illusion of being expensive in our minds because each Linden, Euro, Dollar or whatever we spend on it has an impact on our real world lives. When you compare the price of Second Life to any other hobby or game out there fairly, I am sure that Second Life’s rates are more than fair and even profitable in some situations. One must only acquire the heart to put in some labor hours, really, or at least have the maturity to understand the impact versus other things in life that require money.

 

But seriously, have you even taken the time to explore Second Life’s rates? Or have you just been blinded by the fact that it takes money period? Even the most expensive tier of land ownership in Second Life requires $195 a month. That is $6.50 a day. I personally spend more than that during my lunch break at work… In Lindens it is about $1625L. The third highest tier, $75 a month, is a joke really. $2.50 a day is only $625L.

 

But those two land tiers are more than enough to turn your land into a profitable business model. Even if you cannot make a profit, you would at least make some money, if your idea was at least okay, to get a huge discount.

Let me paint a picture for you. Right now I have a friend in Second Life that pays for the $75 tier of land. In total for Second Life, including her tier, she pays about $100 or so in fees. However, she uses her land to also generate Lindens and makes about $60 or so. That means her hobby is only costing her $1.30 a day. I’d waste more money than that simply driving downtown to a bar just for the atmosphere once a week.

 

Second Life is nowhere near expensive and there are plenty of options out there to help you pay for it. Aside from options in game already such as Bletaverse or retail, might I also suggest taking a look at Amazon’s Mechanical Turk or creating a website/blog and using Google Ads? Both are more than enough to cover costs with a little time and effort.

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A  private island, costs USD$295 a month and then some users have to pay tax on top of that, yes it is expensive especially for people who want to create environments for people to do something, rather than places that sell wares.

That's a monthly fee, you can get a car for less than that. It is what it is, but Second Life is most certainly an expensive pastime.

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Is that your solution to everything? Just quit? Sorry but I like SL and I don't want it to go down the **bleep**ter. I've been playing SL since 04, but I'm spending less and less time in-world because of the price to have my own little space. Don't you think that is a valid complaint about the game? How having just a small space in-world costs more than a WoW subscription fee, which is something a lot of people don't find very attractive anymore. Remember it's 2013, it ain't 03-04 anymore. 

 

It's most definitely not reasonable. A plot of land that I own is going to cost me $15 a week regardless if I actually log in or not. And that's a big part of the issue for me. There are times where I am busy in RL and can't play for a week or two yet SL is taking out of my bank account. That isn't reasonable at all.

 

 

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I agree, SL is expensive. VAT in the UK went to 20% on January 4, 2011. That brings $295(USD) a month to over $350(USD) a month. Not only is that a car but its a nice new car, and to put in prescriptive... Family decided to try camping and bought a camper and a truck to pull it. “His” truck was a Dodge RAM four door big V8, brand new off the lot not much over that $350 monthly, comfy to ride in and carried everything we needed and pulled the camper too. Not expensive for a big truck, very expensive for a place to play.

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You do not make very much money, do you, or perhaps you are bad at managing money? I am only saying this because, no, even $295 a month is not expensive. My free spending money for the month is somehwere around $400 and my combined household income is almost $50,000, which is like the lowest tier of middle class for the U.S.A.

 

Maybe Second Life is expensive for people who do not have the money, but in the grand scheme of things, the fees are really chump change according to average household incomes. Sure, you can buy a car for lower than some of the fees, but that point is also ignoring the fact that buying a car is not hard to do. My first car was only $1000 and my second was only $5000. I paid for my first car on the spot with cash and I paid my second car off in 25 months with $200 payments with no previous credit history. If you want to talk cars, then allow me to point out that gas and car insurance alone are more expensive than $295 a month. Do you think one basic necesity is expensive?

 

Regardless of prices though, Second Life's fees are there to show commitment to your ideas and support for the company that allows us to use their virtual world. The fees themselves and whether you view them as expensive or not is purely objective and nobody is forced to pay them. In fact, there are plenty of ways out there to create your own free open sim.

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Syo Emerald wrote:

@Marketplace-discussion:

I'm mostly a customer. The marketplace helped me in my early time to get affordable clothes and items and know helps me to safe time, when I'm looking for something where I don't already have a preferred brand or store. It would limit my shopping experience if I had to go inworld for research and spend about 30% of my time waiting for giant stores to rezz and wander around to finally realize everything there costs 200L$ and more.

In the end shopping would get more frustrating for the customer and more expensive for the shopowner.

There is no denying that the MP offers more accessibility to virtual products than any other method, it's one of the key reasons why it has been so successful, when you consider the alternatives, it is not suprising at all. However, the more success the MP has had, the more merchants abandon inworld stores and the more SL land ownership falls into decline resulting in the 2700+ private regions that were lost last year, around 10% of all the total private regions.

At the moment LL are doing everything they can to ignore the problems crippling inworld commerce and are instead focusing their developmental efforts on the MP, a tactic that I suspect is already biting them in the arse or more specifically their bottom line.

Can funneling sales onto the MP for a 5% commission really offset the loss of tier from all those lost regions? I doubt it but we don't have enough data to verify

The solution is to close or semi-close the MP. They need to somehow incorporate the MP search engine into SL or something like it. Either that, or leave the MP in situ but disable all the "buy" buttons so that the MP can just be used as a search engine for inworld product locations. So you search for a dress and you are teleported to that dress inworld, not the entrance to a massive store, but to that specific product. 

I understand why you are an advocate of the MP, it has gone a long way to keeping SL commerce alive and has essentially made shopping easier for allot of people. However I think it should have been a temporary stop gap whilst LL developed a fair and efficient platform from which to conduct commerce inworld. 

Whenever I use the MP I feel like I am settling for second best, for a lousy plan B because LL are not willing or able to get plan A to work.

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