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Alexxis DeCuir

Cashout Fees To Rise to 5%

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50 minutes ago, Elvina Ewing said:

haha ok, if you think so.

The reason Blueberry and Truth are so huge and famous is because their work is brilliant. If there were others that can match their skills, they would have already been big and famous themselves. There are, too, but not many. If Truth decides to quit tomorrow do you think there will be others to replace her? Magicka and others like it are already there, and the new Truth will not come out of nowhere. Simply because it is not attractive anymore to create for SL for 3D artists with Truth's skills, as i already said up above. So, the result: SL ends up be a poorer place because Truth (and others like her) left, and no one new and equally good have come by.

everybody, really everybody is replacable.
And yes, somebody with the same skills will stand up.
This discussion is done before, you'r convinced nobody is better than current, and i think it can be replaced with new blood.
Have a look how many left after past struggles, or said to leave but still are here and swallowed their hurted pride... there's really nothing missing in SL, nothing.

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1 hour ago, Mollymews said:

its all good what you decide to do. And its all good what other merchants choose to do for themselves also

i just wanted you to know that there are people like me who are not going to be deterred by 10-15% increases in prices of stuff we like and want

the majority of people will be deterred though, i have seen many complain about mesh head and body prices already, some even complain if you set a gift to 1L instead of 0L

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Posted (edited)

you are missing the point. There will be no new blood because it's not attractive anymore.

It has absolutely nothing to do with pride. It's just business. People will leave when they can't pay their bills anymore. If they said they would but haven't yet, it only means they have found a way to come by, that time. They might now, still. Some, others already left, a few more will probably leave now. But each time LL do this, there are less and less that are still left, and less new blood is coming by because it's now even less attractive, so if you do the math it will eventually run dry. It already is and it's a fact. But ignorance is bliss, so yeah whatever. I'm done repeating myself

Edited by Elvina Ewing
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1 minute ago, Jeny Howlett said:

the majority of people will be deterred though, i have seen many complain about mesh head and body prices already, some even complain if you set a gift to 1L instead of 0L

a majority of people are always unhappy when prices go up. A lot of these also complain. Some of these people complain really really loudly. But even while we are complaining, we do also accept the reason why a SL merchant might in this case increase their prices. 

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5 hours ago, Mollymews said:

a majority of people are always unhappy when prices go up. A lot of these also complain. Some of these people complain really really loudly. But even while we are complaining, we do also accept the reason why a SL merchant might in this case increase their prices. 

As someone who has attempted a price change from the last increase, customers will go elsewhere for something cheaper. There will be those few customers that will understand and are loyal to a fault but that is not everyone. I will most likely eat that doubled processing fee to A:  keep my customers happy as it is NOT their fault LL decided to increase fees B: To be competitive as possible. 

I get some of it because servers are expensive but damn it still hurts for small businesses that don't care about profit primarily as that is NOT what drives them -, they do what they do  because they love their customers, they love SL, and love what they do regardless...it's that passion for what they do that drives them, not the profit at the end of the day BUT as someone who is that small business owner, my expenses cost real money to be able to provide the services that we do and that 3.5% for selling L$ then another 5% will addup and make it hard for us to just keep our services inworld. I don't want to have to raise my prices & lose customers in the process and I don't want to have to remove my business from SL because it cost to much to maintain my business with the fees and I wouldn't be able to simply pay at the very least the expenses that is required to be in  business : Servers, paying my staff members, billing system, software upgrades, software itself to run shoutcast servers,  so on and so forth.

Hell,  I can only imagine the impact this will take upon designers inworld as they have upload fees, marketplace fees, paying their staff if they have them, paying for their land as lot of those designers have a lot of land to be able to hold all their works of art,  and etc.  It just all adds up.

At the end of the day though, I'll just suck it up, obviously, and eat that increase so I can keep my amazing customers happy and work on other ways to help balance that increased fee out.

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10 hours ago, Elvina Ewing said:

are you suggesting that i have to increase the prices on my items to offset the 5% cashout fee? No can do. I can't afford losing even more sales. I see lots of people here on the forum shout "go raise your prices merchants, we the customers understand, we will still support you". The truth is: this is only your own opinion. You can only speak for yourself. To see if the majority of my customers agrees with you i will have to make a poll or just go ahead and try it out, and if you prove to be wrong and most people will not like the raise so much that they go elsewhere to shop then i will lose even more sales and valued customers. In the current dire position i cannot afford to lose customers/sales. So thanks, but no thanks, i decided to absorb the losses. Again.

No one can tell a merchant what to do. What everyone is really doing is stating their opinions. All of this can go about in many different ways and depending on your target market it'll differ on how well any change you do will go with them. Heck you could discontinue a product, release something a bit like the discontinued item but much better and not offer upgrades on it. Some will be upset and others will go ahead and buy the new product as they understand. Everything is pretty much 50/50 on how people take it. That's the way of the world. Every merchant is going to handle this increase differently as well.

 

9 hours ago, Elvina Ewing said:

haha ok, if you think so.

The reason Blueberry and Truth are so huge and famous is because their work is brilliant. If there were others that can match their skills, they would have already been big and famous themselves. There are, too, but not many. If Truth decides to quit tomorrow do you think there will be others to replace her? Magicka and others like it are already there, and the new Truth will not come out of nowhere. Simply because it is not attractive anymore to create for SL for 3D artists with Truth's skills, as i already said up above. So, the result: SL ends up be a poorer place because Truth (and others like her) left, and no one new and equally good have come by.

I disagree a little bit here. SL will be a poorer place due to how little they expand our platform, fix what's already broken and advertise their own system. I don't hear much from Linden Labs on secondlife on the web. I see blogs from other people and all which is great but if they really want to bring in more people then they'll need to advertise, maybe even in the magazines and t.v. commercials. I have to explain what Second Life is to many people when they ask me what I do for fun and after awhile you just end up saying "I play on a virtual world, it's pretty fun". The problem here is that there are a lot of virtual worlds out there with a bit more coverage and those are the ones that they'll think of.

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8 hours ago, Jeny Howlett said:

the majority of people will be deterred though, i have seen many complain about mesh head and body prices already, some even complain if you set a gift to 1L instead of 0L

Well mesh body parts already start off around 1,000L$ and above, many aren't in love with it to want to spend that at once plus they'll need a whole new wardrobe. It's a lot to swallow.

8 hours ago, Elvina Ewing said:

you are missing the point. There will be no new blood because it's not attractive anymore.

It has absolutely nothing to do with pride. It's just business. People will leave when they can't pay their bills anymore. If they said they would but haven't yet, it only means they have found a way to come by, that time. They might now, still. Some, others already left, a few more will probably leave now. But each time LL do this, there are less and less that are still left, and less new blood is coming by because it's now even less attractive, so if you do the math it will eventually run dry. It already is and it's a fact. But ignorance is bliss, so yeah whatever. I'm done repeating myself

Well the problem here is the fact that Linden Labs doesn't have to offer us the option of cashing anything out. They can also get rid of that option whenever they please or even shut down their service. For those reasons, second life should never be anyone's main source of income as it's not always grantee that it will be around in another 5 or so years. Hell even a very popular and only good mobile app has been pulled from the third party viewers site as well as google's play store as the creator of it has been MIA for awhile and it's not supported. 

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Posted (edited)
12 hours ago, Elvina Ewing said:

 

and where do you think those others will come from?

Merchants competing from third world countries, that's who.

On the subject of increased cashout fees, we just have to pass it onto the consumer. If no longer able to make a profit, then take the business elsewhere.

Edited by entity0x
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11 hours ago, drusilladarkwillow said:

Everything is pretty much 50/50 on how people take it.

not everything. I can't see how not raising the prices will displease anyone. It seems to me it should please all customers, and the only losing part will be me. Or, as LustyLexxi said here above, i might even be a bit of a winning part too, if many other merchants raise their prices and i won't.

11 hours ago, drusilladarkwillow said:

SL will be a poorer place due to how little they expand our platform, fix what's already broken and advertise their own system. I don't hear much from Linden Labs on secondlife on the web. I see blogs from other people and all which is great but if they really want to bring in more people then they'll need to advertise, maybe even in the magazines and t.v. commercials. I have to explain what Second Life is to many people when they ask me what I do for fun and after awhile you just end up saying "I play on a virtual world, it's pretty fun". The problem here is that there are a lot of virtual worlds out there with a bit more coverage and those are the ones that they'll think of.

exactly, so you are only confirming that there won't be much new fresh blood to expect.

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11 hours ago, drusilladarkwillow said:

Well the problem here is the fact that Linden Labs doesn't have to offer us the option of cashing anything out. They can also get rid of that option whenever they please or even shut down their service. For those reasons, second life should never be anyone's main source of income as it's not always grantee that it will be around in another 5 or so years. Hell even a very popular and only good mobile app has been pulled from the third party viewers site as well as google's play store as the creator of it has been MIA for awhile and it's not supported.

exactly!! I have always considered myself extremely lucky to have gotten this chance thanks to LL! And i have always known the luck will end sooner than later, and i am genuinely surprised that my SL shop has lasted for almost 12 years. It is certainly not what i could have even dreamed of starting out back in 2007!! I have always been saying this and i will be eternally thankful to LL for this unbelievable opportunity. But everything comes to an end, and starting from now sadly i can say that the end is in sight. Not the end of SL as a whole but the end of times that you could live off your income from SL. I, as many others, were able to do that for 12 years now. It's starting to look like not possible any longer.

And what you are saying here is again proving my point: Since it is not possible to make a living out of SL any longer it is no longer attractive for talented 3D artist to waste their time on SL. They are now better off elsewhere. Which will mean that the quality of new content in SL will go down. The old rumour has been out there in the internets about how you can make loads in SL, and that's why new 3D artist came to see if they can make it work. It will very soon be replaced with the new rumour of massive SL fees, and they will no longer be interested. This also applies to the 3D artists from third world countries, because even there people still want to make more money, and they can make more elsewhere with their talent.

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12 hours ago, drusilladarkwillow said:

Well the problem here is the fact that Linden Labs doesn't have to offer us the option of cashing anything out. They can also get rid of that option whenever they please or even shut down their service.

No cash out -> no merchants -> no quality items -> the end of SL. The only reason it has survived is because of the profit incentive driving designers to produce their very best. Take that away and.....nobody works so hard for years and years just because they love it.

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The end-to-end costs are not doubling. Remember we are already double-dipped on a cashout to RL funds, once with the lindex sale charge and again with the fee to process credit. Prior to these upcoming increases the end to end cost on converting lindens to real-world currency that you could use for non-SL stuff was 5.9% (3.5% on the lindex sale, 2.5% on processing the credit - you get 96.5% of your lindens value into your tilia account and then 97.5% of that into an account where you can spend it outside SL - 0.965*0.975 = 0.940875, 1-0.940875, rounded to a single decimal place = a 5.9% fee) Substituting a 5% charge on processing a credit that figure becomes an 8.4% end-to-end fee, "only" a 42% increase in our costs, not the 100% folks have been quoting. Now, I'm not saying this is a nice or good thing but lets not hammer the lab with wrong numbers.

Most of my $L income comes from performing - about 50% in tips and 50% from paid bookings. Now, tips will remain constant - folks aren't going to start tipping 103 lindens instead of 100 - so if I'm to defray the additional costs I'd need to raise my booking rates by about 6%, probably not worth it unless/until the lab pull sufficient increases that I'd have to jack up my prices by 10% or more. However, I am tracking it and if it passes that threshold I will push the button on a rate increase. If that then causes me to lose bookings to the point that my SL no longer pays for itself, then I'm gone. Its a market, and if you can't compete in a market staying in it is a mugs game. As it is, an hour playing on a street corner pays me more than an hour playing to a SL audience. I keep doing it because I'm part of a community here and it is still self-sustaining. If that ceases to be the case, I cease being an avatar.

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Posted (edited)
36 minutes ago, Da5id Weatherwax said:

The end-to-end costs are not doubling.

Most people are aware the total costs are not doubling, but that the cashout fee has doubled -- going from 2.5% to 5%. I am wondering if the cashout fee will double yet again to 10% in a year, and then up to 20% the next year.

Edited by Luna Bliss
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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Rya Nitely said:

No cash out -> no merchants -> no quality items -> the end of SL. The only reason it has survived is because of the profit incentive driving designers to produce their very best. Take that away and.....nobody works so hard for years and years just because they love it.

I hear you there...while I may work hard to create content I am putting my creations out for sale less and less, as the latter takes almost as long, is tedious, and increasingly not worth it (all the boxing up, note card instructions, graphics for boxes, placing on the MP/into store vendors, advertising, and more).

However, I'm not sure less cashout means the end of SL, as in so many cases stolen mesh is shoveled in from 3d websites . I'm not sure we're needed anymore is the issue, sadly...those who live and work within SL and value it for all it's varied aspects in addition to the money it brings.  At least this is true in so many cases.

Edited by Luna Bliss

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Posted (edited)

I could argue that Steam takes a 30% cut on sales.

Excepted that would be a poor comparison because they also take 0% on sales you make without their store, even if it's still using their platform.

(It just shows how steam is confident that you are better off selling through them, even with a 30% cut, they will offer you the platform for free.)

 

I wish LL could be this confident in their service but they haven't given le that impression since the original team left and it has been aspiring to be a big biz instead of a crack team of visionnaires.

Edited by Kyrah Abattoir
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40 minutes ago, Kyrah Abattoir said:

I could argue that Steam takes a 30% cut on sales.

Excepted that would be a poor comparison because they also take 0% on sales you make without their store, even if it's still using their platform.

I might be more amenable to a greater cashout cut if LL did something about the thievery here...

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41 minutes ago, Luna Bliss said:

I might be more amenable to a greater cashout cut if LL did something about the thievery here...

They can't. The moment they do they loose DMCA protections.

Original IP holders must file an actual DMCA complaint with LL.

Of course this all falls down when multiple merchants upload something they bought off the shelf in another application / library .. and may not even have rights to resell it here.

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Posted (edited)
On ‎6‎/‎1‎/‎2019 at 9:28 AM, Luna Bliss said:

Most people are aware the total costs are not doubling, but that the cashout fee has doubled -- going from 2.5% to 5%. I am wondering if the cashout fee will double yet again to 10% in a year, and then up to 20% the next year.

This is my concern and a point I think many have missed.  100% increase in the cash out fee in a single year.  So, suppose they again double the increase next year, to take 10%, and the next year to take 20%, or even more.  At what point does creating and selling in SL become unprofitable for most creators?  When LL is keeping 50% of your sales $, or 80%?

I know that even at the current conversion and cash out rates, I am not making minimum wages when I look at the amount of time involved in maintaining an SL shop and paying all of the associated fees.  Sales are definitely down this year -- I am bringing in quite literally a tenth of the sales volume I had a year ago at this time in SL.  But I enjoyed creating and continued adding and offering new content. 

The fee increases have led me to stop creating and uploading new content.  It's simply hit a tipping point for me already, where it is more costly to create, upload and add new products than any profits I might see as a result.  Cutting the profits of those who create content for this virtual world is not the way to encourage growth. Encouraging new, fresh content creation and enabling and supporting creativity & imagination is the way to grow a virtual world.  Discouraging the upload of original, new content (via 100% annual increases in associated cash-out costs) is going down a pathway to slowly milk Second Life to death, imho.

Edited by Lizllynn
correction
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1 hour ago, Lizllynn said:

This is my concern and a point I think many have missed.  100% increase in the cash out fee in a single year.  So, suppose they again double the increase next year, to take 10%, and the next year to take 20%, or even more.  At what point does creating and selling in SL become unprofitable for most creators?  When LL is keeping 50% of your sales $, or 80%?

You cannot plan the future on events of the past. How about you wait and see? As for "at what point..." - only you can decide that for yourself and your tolerance level will be very different from most other people.

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On 6/1/2019 at 4:41 AM, Elvina Ewing said:

I can't see how not raising the prices will displease anyone.

If a creator that I love refuses to raise their prices in order to counter increases in fees, etc., and ultimately goes out of business due to that stubbornness, yes, it displeases me that they wouldn't trust enough in me as a customer (or, perhaps, in the quality of their work) to think they could survive a small price increase.

As a matter of fact, Linden Lab creates a product that I adore, and I'm perfectly willing to pay this increased premium price in order to keep them in business so I can keep getting this product I love.

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41 minutes ago, Beth Macbain said:

If a creator that I love refuses to raise their prices in order to counter increases in fees, etc., and ultimately goes out of business due to that stubbornness, yes, it displeases me that they wouldn't trust enough in me as a customer (or, perhaps, in the quality of their work) to think they could survive a small price increase.

In 13 years here, I've yet to meet an SL creator that is making literally everything from scratch and isn't living on the poverty line, battling burn out and or depression.

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30 minutes ago, CoffeeDujour said:

In 13 years here, I've yet to meet an SL creator that is making literally everything from scratch and isn't living on the poverty line, battling burn out and or depression.

Okay, but what does that have to do with what I said?

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Raising prices isn't a simple decision, it's a existential crisis where the safer option is to not do anything. Failure to make enough from essentially a full time job, reflects back. "If I make my products better" .. so they do, busting their guts and sinking hundreds of hours into each .. and they don't sell because people wont pay more than a buck.

 

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2 minutes ago, CoffeeDujour said:

Raising prices isn't a simple decision, it's a existential crisis where the safer option is to not do anything. Failure to make enough from essentially a full time job, reflects back. "If I make my products better" .. so they do, busting their guts and sinking hundreds of hours into each .. and they don't sell because people wont pay more than a buck.

Isn't that the risk every small business owner faces, though? 

If an item doesn't sell, that sucks for the creator. If an item sells, but they're selling it below whatever their cost is to make it, that also sucks. 

If a creator raises their prices and things don't sell, they always have the option of marking them back down.

If a creator keeps prices the same as their costs rise, they're just screwed because they aren't even testing the waters to see what the market will bear. 

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38 minutes ago, Beth Macbain said:

testing the waters to see what the market will bear. 

Beth, numerous creators who have years of experience have been telling you that the market will not bear a price increase.

There is only one thing that's going to happen here for merchants financially....  as cashout fees increase they will earn less. Some will carry on, some will get discouraged and leave.

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