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How the Covid-19 work from home situation could help SL...


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Yeah so I'm sure everyone is starting to get fed up of hearing about Covid-19 by now. But I like to consider the positives in situations, and I think there is a positive here for SL. We all know how great SL is, or we wouldn't be inworld, but it's getting the message out there just how versatile it is, all the different things you can use it for (as discussed in another thread on the forum about marketing).

With the number of workplaces now resorting to work from home policies, it could be a good opportunity for SL to market to companies. I read in the past that some companies did use SL for conferencing and online communication, as an alternative to traditional online conferencing software which are text or voice only, but I don't know how much this is done now - my guess is not very much.  SL can provide a setting which feels more 'natural' i.e.  like people are together in a meeting because of the visual aspect - seeing avatars together in an office or whatever environment the company requires does have an impact on how people feel and react (and my computing communications course books I have from years back are in the loft...so haven't got any quotes/resources right now... ).

So wouldn't now be a good time to promote this more heavily? Not in terms of the coronovirus, of course. That wouldn't be right. Just in terms of a useful tool for distance working communications. The current situation has increased the need for work from home, and this may very well cause companies long term to revise their traditional beliefs of people having to come into an office. So coupled with the fact that remote working has slowly becoming more available over the years (depending on the industry of course), I really feel it would be a great time for Second Life to look at marketing to this sector more.

There are some challenges, of course. For example, I don't think that sending staff from companies to current help islands and places as they are may help (judging by some comments about griefing I have seen over time - correct me if I'm wrong). So perhaps a dedicated Island could be set up specifically for companies for this purpose, geared more towards the general needs that this type of SL involvement may require.

I admit, I haven't thought through all the nitty gritty of this 100% lol. I'm not in marketing, nor work for SL, nor know absolutely everything there is to know about SL so I may be overloooking something. Or maybe there are awesome face-to-face software that SL just couldn't compete with that companies are more likely to get onboard with now and in the future.

But I do know that there have been/are companies and organisations that do use SL, for example for simulation and learning scenarios. And others have used it for talks and events. So why not promote that it can be used day to day for meetings, communicating with colleagues etc. I don't mean just a quick 'Hi do you have that file ready', more when people need to get together to discuss something, brainstorm, have a meeting or whatever. Or they could just say 'Hi do you have that file ready' ... (who am I to dictate how they use it lol)

And I'm biased too lol - I know having a meeting online in SL in a job would make me so much happier than just text/voice conferencing!:)

Thoughts?

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42 minutes ago, Tarina Sewell said:

But what happens if LL decides it needs to shut down on account of all its employees are at risk?

Or have been exposed?

I personally would like to hear how they will handle that situation.

 

They will work from home like most of them already do.

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8 hours ago, Evangeline Arcadia said:

But I do know that there have been/are companies and organisations that do use SL, for example for simulation and learning scenarios. And others have used it for talks and events. So why not promote that it can be used day to day for meetings, communicating with colleagues etc. I don't mean just a quick 'Hi do you have that file ready', more when people need to get together to discuss something, brainstorm, have a meeting or whatever. Or they could just say 'Hi do you have that file ready' ... (who am I to dictate how they use it lol)

And I'm biased too lol - I know having a meeting online in SL in a job would make me so much happier than just text/voice conferencing!:)

Thoughts?

Some companies thought SL might be used in this way, back about twelve or thirteen years ago.  But they discovered that no communication in SL was "company private".  LL logs all text chat and IMs (at the time, we didn't have Voice).   So they went back to text, voice, and video conferencing for remote meetings.

Too bad.  I think a bunch of wacky SL avatars all sitting around a conference table would be really amusing. 

conferencetable.thumb.jpg.360fa1a3266861f517239bc1809421d9.jpg

Or maybe your company has a dress code, so your meetings would look like a conference at MIB Headquarters.

th?id=OIP.KU90eAsfE_Vx_0aW6xY19wHaEo%26p

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Not sure about the rest of you, but sounds like a lot of big companies (including my own) are now on a "if you can work from home, you're working from home" basis.

Gonna be lots of extra potential people on during times they're not used to being on!

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I just got the notice to work from home! Happy to not ride public transit in such dangerous times but I'll miss the fast internet access. There are too many hurdles to use SL for business meetings. Corporations need easy to use and sterile environments. Maybe an art company or a young staff would try it. 

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7 hours ago, Tolya Ugajin said:

Not sure about the rest of you, but sounds like a lot of big companies (including my own) are now on a "if you can work from home, you're working from home" basis.

Gonna be lots of extra potential people on during times they're not used to being on!

I received my automated phone call a few hours ago.  Someone in our office was in direct contact with someone that has test positive, so the office is closed to all but essential personnel.  The rest of us are to work from home if we can, for at least the next 2 weeks.

I can work from home and actually do so quite often, thus I won't be one of those that might be logging in during non-normal hours.

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this would be a great use. now all the Lab would need would be some method to guide the mass of new corporate requests. i'm not too sure how the Lab's current setup could be adapted to handle serious business requirements. short of devoting a high level management team to direct this lucrative venture, an office distinct from the bug crushers and rabble, the opportunity has meh written all over it. ever since their failure to capitalize on the influx of mass market appeal, way back in 2006, i'm sure some big head's have some revolutionary ideas they'd like impleneted in the quiet dark corners of their minds. if anyone needs a lead, i'm available at the right price.

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On 3/13/2020 at 7:57 AM, Evangeline Arcadia said:

Yeah so I'm sure everyone is starting to get fed up of hearing about Covid-19 by now.

Better stop being fed up with it, because it doesn't take a psychic to predict that COVID-19 will dominate the news, your life and possibly, but hopefully not, your health, for months to come.

 

Edited by Arduenn Schwartzman
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6 hours ago, lucagrabacr said:

Gotta say I love the presentation on the SL for remote work portal's "about" page, much better than how they presented the idea more than a decade ago imo ...

a Wix style About page does not a portal make.

as a prospective customer of the service, reading the linked Learn More or FAQ wiki page's (>Second Life Work/FAQs) history page doesn't give me confidence they are seriously looking at providing New & Improved enterprise services. seems that removing the ancient attempt for newby help/guidance the Solution Providers Program (2010) hinted at was the only edit bringing the whole sale to present time.

it's an exploitation of current events. good on em. unfortunately, it points to services they've had for ages which are too expensive and proven to be too complicated. what is needed is a new look at being simple, effective, and affordable. instead of luring the mark to purchasing land, they should be looking at providing secure and privately accessed spaces with the least amount of cost and hassle.

sounds like the ideal solution would be for private residences to build this trusted resource. anybody have a reputable business geared to providing services which is based upon Linden Lab's hands off business approach?

i haven't viewed the Brett Linden's Lab Gab announcement but from what Rosie Helendale had to say on her YouTube channel's Second Life News Flash there's a WAY CHEAP solution for Educators and Non-Profits to get in on the fun. not sure where that's being reported so i'll hunt it down and report back laterz maybe.

LL Blog on Educational & Non-Profit Discounts

oh, btw Brett Linden is THE MAN in this situation. well done!!!!!!! God Speed Son.

Edited by EnCore Mayne
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Most companies won't allow you to install games on company hardware, and Second Life will be considered a game (at least it was in my job). It is an IT departments nightmare. I work from home all days and do meetings and contacts with clients via Skype and Whatsapp and while I love Second Life, I would not consider using it for professional use at all.

Edited by Caitlin Tobias
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I'll access the Forums and Marketplace from my work laptop, but if I actually wanted to log in for some reason during the work day, I'd flip the switch to swap the peripherals back over to my computer and log in from there.  

Even if I thought I could get away with loading SL on the laptop, which is highly unlikely, the laptop doesn't have enough juice to actually run the viewer - even if I'm not running anything else on it at the time.  

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1 hour ago, Caitlin Tobias said:

Most companies won't allow you to install games on company hardware, and Second Life will be considered a game ...

this is the reason why a new business model would need to be created. i'm not sure the Lab's up to the task. really, if anyone's serious about capitalizing on competing and dominating this work from home sector, the game aspect and repute of the wild and crazy SL has to live separate and apart from any serious offering. 

i submit that it would require a different viewer and possibly a new grid. i'm sure someone could cobble together a version of the viewer that holds only features and menu options that are focussed for the specific target market. it's a big deal/dream. something that is perfectly doable with proper coordination, skills, and motivation.

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16 hours ago, EnCore Mayne said:

this is the reason why a new business model would need to be created. i'm not sure the Lab's up to the task. really, if anyone's serious about capitalizing on competing and dominating this work from home sector, the game aspect and repute of the wild and crazy SL has to live separate and apart from any serious offering. 

i submit that it would require a different viewer and possibly a new grid. i'm sure someone could cobble together a version of the viewer that holds only features and menu options that are focussed for the specific target market. it's a big deal/dream. something that is perfectly doable with proper coordination, skills, and motivation.

I would agree that perhaps a different grid at least would be better, or at least some more 'contained' environment so that the 'wild' and 'crazy' of SL doesn't perhaps tarnish any first impression or impinge on a 'business' environment. So no teleporting to hubs!

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SL has always been a very poor platform for remote working/team working etc. other than for a few niche areas where like minded individuals have made it work.

For most people, remote working comprises either VPN or VDI such that they can connect to and access corporate resources and then perform all their usual functions, such as Office 365 for documents, or utilise other web based SaaS applications.

For video conferencing, multiple choices available from Skype, MS Teams, Webex, Zoom etc. all of which need nothing more than a web browser at minimum. I manage my team like this who are spread throughout EMEA, it's run of the mill for us each and every day, not just in times such as this.

SL client, being a full fat client, requires specific hardware, IT involvement to install or approve and all to what end?  So that we can sit around a pretend virtual conference room in default avatars, because I wouldn't want my team spending time going shopping just to pimp their avatar!

If people want a pretend office workspace, there are other much more flexible, remote working specific, pretend office environments, Second Life is definitely not it.

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58 minutes ago, Evangeline Arcadia said:

I would agree that perhaps a different grid at least would be better, or at least some more 'contained' environment so that the 'wild' and 'crazy' of SL doesn't perhaps tarnish any first impression or impinge on a 'business' environment. So no teleporting to hubs!

They tried selling "SL behind the firewall", I forget what that was called but that was when the CEO at the time (forgotten his name) thought that the money was in business, completely ignored the consumer playing base and tried to market SL to corporates.  That didn't end well.

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4 minutes ago, Bradford Mint said:

They tried selling "SL behind the firewall", I forget what that was called but that was when the CEO at the time (forgotten his name) thought that the money was in business, completely ignored the consumer playing base and tried to market SL to corporates.  That didn't end well.

Mark Kingdon, and "Second Life Enterprise." Rosedale's High Fidelity also targeted the same market -- with much the same success.

Any sort of business- or institution-oriented solution needs to be much stripped down, have a much simpler learning curve and interface, and look a lot less like a game. I think it's doable, but it would take work, and money. It also would require a different mindset: less "hey, look at this cool thing we can do!," and more "how can we make this work easily and well for people who wouldn't know which end is up on a game controller."

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On 3/13/2020 at 3:49 PM, Tolya Ugajin said:

Not sure about the rest of you, but sounds like a lot of big companies (including my own) are now on a "if you can work from home, you're working from home" basis.

Gonna be lots of extra potential people on during times they're not used to being on!

My husband’s company has advised that people need to be prepared to work from home in case they close his site.

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1 minute ago, Scylla Rhiadra said:

Mark Kingdon, and "Second Life Enterprise." Rosedale's High Fidelity also targeted the same market -- with much the same success.

Thank you!  That's the one, I forgot which "King" Linden it was at the time, I left SL quite a long time ago now.  It really needs to be accessible in a web browser, very limited in scope and frankly, by the time you've done all that and made it conference ready, it's just NOT SL at all.

Without any method to share content, I mean REALLY share content, even something as basic for business as a powerpoint or a screen share, then it's a non starter and please nobody suggest media on a prim, i'm talking about native integrated support.  Remote meetings typically need so much more than just to look at a pretend person when I can actually see the real person.  Far more fun is to turn on FaceRig and become an animated rigged avatar as a virtual camera feed to Webex but even so, it's a distraction and only suits internal meetings for holiday times.  Nobody really wants to see me as a female bartender holding jugs of beer as their line manager :)

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The entire San Francisco Bay Area has now been directed to 'shelter in place' until April 7th - not a full lock down, but pretty much a 'stay at home except for absolute essential stuff'.  So that is approx. 6.7 million folks that someone could try to entice into SL as they try to figure out how to occupy themselves at home all that time.

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16 minutes ago, LittleMe Jewell said:

The entire San Francisco Bay Area has now been directed to 'shelter in place' until April 7th - not a full lock down, but pretty much a 'stay at home except for absolute essential stuff'.  So that is approx. 6.7 million folks that someone could try to entice into SL as they try to figure out how to occupy themselves at home all that time.

Can you imagine 6.7 noobs wandering around with freenises screaming "U DO SEXY??" to everyone they see?!

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