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Lamont Rustamova

LL's recommendation of DESTINATION...leaves a lot to be desired

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Been IN game for a while now...longer than I care to admit at times...When a destination is SUGGESTED (in the DESTINATIONS GUIDE) perhaps placing an entry that is ONLY for NEW PEOPLE, is not the best. 
London Town - go to see the shopping that LL wants me to go see...only to be met with a greeting device, that asks that I leave, as I am TOO OLD for the sim. It goes on to explain that the location, that LL suggests, is ONLY for new people into the game. 

 

Never got that preferential treatment all those years ago, when I joined...actually, it used to be that NEW people weren't allowed off WELCOME ISLAND until they passed some "tests". 

 

youuuuuuu whipersnappers! *shakes a fist in LLs general direction*

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Here's the list of Hot Destinations, straight from the Firestorm startup screen, 7th February 2017 00:53 AM

Now, taste matters of course. One of my personal all-time favorite sims is on the list and there are two places there I would strongly recommend any builders to visit and study. But I still can't shake this weird inexplicable feeling something's not quite right here. What do other people here think?

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I have no idea why places appear in the 'What's Hot NOW' section when there are zero people there for starters.  (Caps are mine) I'm sure that is confusing to many people, particularly newbs as "now" has the connotation of having a lot of people there.

The application process to have a sim put in the destination guide is clear, but not what the Lindens are thinking when placing a destination in the that catagory.  Most times when I look at it, they have 0 people there.

The other odd thing is that to be in the destination guide your venue should be 'new comer friendly'.  That sure isn't the case with destinations ban new comers who are less than 30 days old.

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I love sion chickens. I still raise them after all these years, and occasionally I go to Boardman to buy their very cheap food ($1 for a month's feed) or the healer ($90) if they die (sometimes due to Linden server reset, sometimes due to food problems.

But I know that there are few other people in SL who are raising sions. Occasionally I might sell and egg -- once a month. Not a single big breedable mall or yard has sions anymore.

Therefore I'm completely bewildered why LL has the little sion stall in Boardman as a Destination pick. Makes NO sense even if they are more popular, because it's just a little stall, not a place where you can hang out, and a place where no new content has been created in years. But they aren't popular.

I'm especially bewildered by the "hot" status. Every time I go to sion's stall, no one is there. Maybe lots of people come there but I have to wonder. For what? Few if any would buy start kits. The food is now ridiculously cheap. People tend not to get healers because they just delete them and start a new one. It's odd.

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ChinRey wrote:

Here's the list of Hot Destinations, straight from the Firestorm startup screen, 7th February 2017 00:53 AM

Now, taste matters of course. One of my personal all-time favorite sims is on the list and there are two places there I would strongly recommend any builders to visit and study. But I still can't shake this weird inexplicable feeling something's not quite right here. What do other people here think?

The glaringly obvious thing that is just not quite right is the fact they all have "0 people" listed directly under their thumbnail.  One of the things that new people grumble about the most is the feeling Second Life is a ghost town.  

And while visiting some stores is interesting, I think a lot of newbies want to first find their feet, get their bearings, make some friends, before having gadgets, gizmos, and things that cost thrust at them.

Maybe the Destination Guide destinations are just chosen by random. 

Disheartening not only to new residents.

 

 

 

 

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I'll have to agree. There's so many empty old sims listed in the "what's hot" category for some reason. I teleported to one of those places and met a new user who most likely teleported there from the destination guide just like I did. I befriended them ever since, which is a good outcome from the unfortunate wonkiness of the destination guide but I still hope they would make it better :)

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Lamont Rustamova wrote:

Been IN game for a while now...longer than I care to admit at times...When a destination is SUGGESTED (in the DESTINATIONS GUIDE) perhaps placing an entry that is ONLY for NEW PEOPLE, is not the best. 

London Town - go to see the shopping that LL wants me to go see...only to be met with a greeting device, that asks that I leave, as I am TOO OLD for the sim. It goes on to explain that the location, that LL suggests, is ONLY for new people into the game. 

 

Never got that preferential treatment all those years ago, when I joined...actually, it used to be that NEW people weren't allowed off WELCOME ISLAND until they passed some "tests". 

 

youuuuuuu whipersnappers! *shakes a fist in LLs general direction*

So rude of me not to welcome you to Second Life forums and to respond to your post - I replied to ChinRey's - but I was just so gobsmacked.

I've not been able to log in to world for longer than a couple of minutes because of hardware problems. This week, however, I borrowed a friend's computer and had a pop in. Its a different world somehow, not for the better, and what you say about oldbies not being welcome in some places, that just leaves me shaking my head in dismay.

I had a brand new avatar that I had not logged in with, and arrived in world at one of the Learning Islands. The initial orientation process for new residents is a lot of fun, but I kind of missed getting a torch stuck to my shoulder (!), and as the orientation only encouraged chatting to a parrot - if I wanted to - and did not encourage engaging in chat with other avatars on the sim, from the get go it makes Second Life seem quite a cold place. Then the next destination I was teleported to was full of a mix of lost souls and an opportunist who seemed to be laying in wait for a vulnerable-looking female (I was rather put off by the fact he was wearing a male appendage outside of his trousers when he said just "Hi" in IM).  Lecherous rather than friendly and welcoming I'd say.

 

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I swear, does LL care nothing for new user retention, or do no employees even understand what SL and how it works? have none of them ever been new in SL, wandering around in the emptiness alone?

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Amethyst Jetaime wrote:

I have no idea why places appear in the 'What's Hot NOW' section when there are zero people there for starters.

Yes. It would also be nice if the places actually existed, not all of them do. I don't know when the Hot Now category was last updated. I would guess it was 2007 or 2008 and certainly not later than 2010 - and no, that is neither a joke nor an exaggeration. The list does actually change a few times a day (right now it includes 13 Premium Sandboxes) but it's the same selection that has been repeated over and over again for years.

To be fair, the rest of the Destination Guide isn't quite that bad but it's still bad. Is anybody here old enough to remember Duran Duran btw? Pop band that had a few hits in the 1990s. The Destination Guide has a top level category dedicated to them - I wonder how many visitors those places get.

I do actually respect the guide editors. They are doing their job but with inadequate tools there are limits to how much they can do. Any hard core programmer must abide by four rules:

  1. Database programming is second rate programming. Do not spend more time than absolutely necessary on it!
  2. Web programming is third rate programming, if it can be called programming at all.
  3. Writing documentation is a waste of time.
  4. Anything called "design", such as web design, database design and UI design, is far below the dignity of a proper programmer.

With software created according to these principles there are limits to what the editors can do.

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Prokofy Neva wrote:

Therefore I'm completely bewildered why LL has the little sion stall in Boardman as a Destination pick.

Oh, is that for the Boardman stall? I didn't check, I just assumed it was to some previous larger store. It does still exist then but it does not actually meet the requirements for being listed in the Destination Guide at all.

Speaking of something completely different: is Sion's Chicken the breedable a former LL CEO had some serious financial interest in?

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Pamela Galli wrote:

I swear, does LL care nothing for new user retention, or do no employees even understand what SL and how it works? have none of them ever been new in SL, wandering around in the emptiness alone?

Very few, but then LL seem to have a very high turnover of staff, and I think these new ideas get shoved in by those with "new person enthusiasm", and while on the drawing board they might sound fabulous ideas, in practice, as we have all seen over many years, they just don't work.

The Learning Island sims where currently the newest created residents first land in world is ultra-modern and shiny, and therefore looks very professional, and parts were fun. I have to admit that I found the section where we had to practice jumping from platform to platform quite annoying, because I was out of practice and using a strange computer, and I ended up feeling very frustrated at the bottom of the pit looking for the steps back up, until I realised I was an oldbie and actually could fly! (Truly new people of course did not learn to fly until a couple of stages after that).

But as professional and shiny and low land impact and all of that these newest Learning Island sims are, they are also very cold and clinical, far from welcoming, and unless you are the type of person who encourages a real life friend to also create an avatar at the same day and time, its a very lonely experience and introduction to Second Life. And, even if someone does have a friend create an avatar at the same day and time, they are more than likely to arrive in world at a completely different Learning Island sim.  

I think by far the best idea Linden Lab had was those Greeter Island sims where avatars with the surname of Helper were visible and on hand to assist with newbies' problems, plus from what I remember, griefers were ejected very quickly, and they were very friendly sims.  And there was that help button feature for a while on the viewers that any resident could just press and choose the option to teleport to a Greeter Island for help. 

Not being behind the scenes at Linden Lab, of course I don't know how truly successful they were, and maybe LL did not consider them a good financial investment (they were only open 10am to 6pm SL time), but I do think that they must have helped with retention figures.

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ChinRey wrote:


Prokofy Neva wrote:

Therefore I'm completely bewildered why LL has the little sion stall in Boardman as a Destination pick.

Oh, is that for the Boardman stall? I didn't check, I just assumed it was to some previous larger store. It does still exist then but it does not actually meet the requirements for being listed in the Destination Guide at all.

Speaking of something completely different: is Sion's Chicken the breedable a former LL CEO had some serious financial interest in?

I think the breedables were always potentially very profitable, but they must have cost in l-a-a-a-g. Certainly in the early days of Sion chickens (and I loved Sion chickens so much that when we got overrun at Quincentival and decided to cull 90% of our 'boring' green ones), I felt really sad. I know (and knew) they weren't living and breathing creatures, but we'd given each one a name, and they all varied slightly in colour, but at that time they took up all our prims and kept falling off the platform and straying into the next sim somehow and dying at random, and it did used to cost a lot to feed them for so little in return. Addictive little blighters!

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As a helper at the Firestorm Gateway, I often suggest new residents check out the destination guide that shows there are actual people there. Not because they may interact but it makes SL: seem more used. A lot of new residents will hang out at the gateway for a few weeks before they venture out as we tell them that some places don't allow new residents that are less than 14 days old (true in some instances) and if they search for places to go to, to look for 'newcomer friendly' destinations. 

 

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Amalia Broome wrote:

As a helper at the Firestorm Gateway, I often suggest new residents check out the destination guide that shows there are actual people there. Not because they may interact but it makes SL: seem more used.

Ummmm... Not sure if I understand you right but are you saying you're essentially using newcomers as "traffic bots" to make unpopular places in SL look more crowded? If so, that sounds like an extremely bad idea to me. We want to show the newcomers the best places right away to fuel their interest.

I've started to send many newcomers to Union Passage recently. The theme is not everybody's cup of tea but it certainly shows SL from its very best side, it is guaranteed to fuel people's imagination, it's something they don't expect and they'll never ever see anywhere else and it's a memory for life. People who get there early tend to stay in SL for a while even though of course most of them move on to other experiences.

There are other such places too of course but the idea is to give them a high quality experience that is unique to SL.

 


Amalia Broome wrote:

A lot of new residents will hang out at the gateway for a few weeks...

That's a great way too. If they stay together in the same palce for long enough they get to know each other nad become friends, they are far more likely to enjoy SL and stay.

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ChinRey wrote:

I do actually respect the guide editors. They are doing their job but with inadequate tools there are limits to how much they can do. Any hard core programmer must abide by four rules:
  1. Database programming is second rate programming. Do not spend more time than absolutely necessary on it!
  2. Web programming is third rate programming, if it can be called programming at all.
  3. Writing documentation is a waste of time.
  4. Anything called "design", such as web design, database design and UI design, is far below the dignity of a proper programmer.

With software created according to these principles there are limits to what the editors can do.

5. There are no such thing as "bugs" there are only "un-documented features"

6. "Un-documented Features" that are especially annoying and hard to eraddicate are the fault of enemy Dev teams, making unconnected apps that have no impact on your app.

7. [MMO's & Virtual Worlds Only] A Dev's primary function is not to develop, but to stand around looking cool, wearing an "I'm a Dev" badge while making comments that show that despite logging in every day, they havn't actually USED the system for 10 years...

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Xtacky Haystack wrote:

I think by far the best idea Linden Lab had was those Greeter Island sims where avatars with the surname of Helper were visible and on hand to assist with newbies' problems, plus from what I remember, griefers were ejected very quickly, and they were very friendly sims.  And there was that help button feature for a while on the viewers that any resident could just press and choose the option to teleport to a Greeter Island for help. 

Not being behind the scenes at Linden Lab, of course I don't know how truly successful they were, and maybe LL did not consider them a good financial investment (they were only open 10am to 6pm SL time), but I do think that they must have helped with retention figures.

When I came to SL, way back, I ended up at a 'noob friendly place' via the destination guide, it wasnt my first port of call.

 

The first place that I ended up at via the guide was a titty bar, where male avi's were all greeted with

"Hello SIR noobprat98638 Resident, and welcome to TittyBar, please tip the girls generously andthey will tend to your every need..."

 

Being in a female avi, I was greeted with an offer of employment, where they would "Kindly" buy me an 8 grand avi, which I could repay in instalments from the tips I earned, and that said avi reqired RLV, and I should use the viewer of their choice (the one where you cant turn RLV off).

 

I smelt an indentured servitude scam right off and went to the next place on the guide.

 

Later, I met ex-employees from that place and learned I had been right, noobs tricked into using RLV without being told how to disable it, imprisoned on the sim untill they heard via rumor how to escape.

 

A typical noob girl would apparently generate 2k in tips a day for the owners, and last 14 days, 28k income, minus the 8k for initial setup costs, 10k L$ a week per girl, several girls per shift, several shifts per day.

 

200,000 L$ a week estimated PROFIT abusing new residents until they rage quit

 

The second place. had volunteer greeters trying to help people, and getting 25 L$ an hour from the sim owners for doing so.

Some old accounts on the middle management team tried to change that stating that they thought the 'guides' should be downgraded to greeters, and that guiding should be reserved for the 4 remaining members of the defunct "Adult Grid Mentors" group, while 'greeters' would simply be required to say hgello, and offer to show noobs around the Consortiums 18 sims and the approved vendors, a process that would mean leaving the sim where their employee timeclock was and thus losing 2/3rds of their pathetic wages.

 

The Mentors? They were utterly worthless, which is why their old scheme, had its support cut by LL in the first place.

 

Generally, in SL or RL, people who want to 'Mentor' tend to be selective in their Mentoring,

 

One of these "Adult Grid Mentors" for example, would basically ignore any female avi she saw unless it was obvious they didnt NEED mentoring, and were thus interesting enough to train up, but her real focus was male avis... 19 out of 20 she dismissed as hopeless cases, the 1 in 20 who caught her eyew some how, she would spend hours showingthem where to get cheap or free improvements to their avi, and coaching them, before sending them off to some FemDomme sim where she used to be a big noise with a letter of reccomendation.

 

This, is why, RL or SL most 'mentoring' schemes tend to fail, the organisers expect all volunteer staff, and refuse to pay for support-professionals, then wonder why 95% of the clients get no support from the part time date-hunting amateur social worker wannabes, who are off site with the lucky 'special client'.

 

So the funding gets pulled because the site doesn't work, and then nostalgia kicks in, "oh why did they close the Friendly Welcoming Place, that was such a good idea..."

 

There ARE volunteers who do a damn good job, but... They are the exception not the rule

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