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Should we pay for shapes?


Alexis Kiyori
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Interesting point me & a friend were discussing yesterday & it’s been playing on my mind ever since she brought it up lol.

I want you guys opinions-

Should merchants really charge 300-600L for a shape? The reason I ask is because she pointed out they can all be copied if we just copy the numbers. We can all create & mimick a shape for free that is being sold. What do you guys think? 

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My everyday shape was one I got as a group gift back in 2012 and I loved it so much I stuck with it.  Luckily when mesh and Bento happened, all I needed to do was tweak the eye size and boob size (big ones just don't do it for me) and over time I have shortened myself as SL heights have shrunk from where they were back then.  But I have bought oodles of shapes for my alts, because I suck at the whole "adjusting sliders and not ending up looking like Quasimodo" thing.  I have never liked how they always look better in the vendor pictures than on my alts, so I tend to copy over my "Jordan" body numbers and tweak the bought shape's facial ones.

That being said, shape makers do put time and effort into creating something and they should be compensated for it.  Not gonna get into arguing prices, as I have my own line in the sand as to where I won't pay, and everyone has theirs.

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1 hour ago, InventedSuicide said:

We can all create & mimick a shape for free that is being sold. What do you guys think? 

I think, if some people were serious about this and started a "Robin Hood" campaign to take from shape makers and give it away for free, we'd quite likely see a massive increase in no mod releases. And that's probably not something one should wish for...

Personally, I love playing with sliders and getting custom looks. I do find a lot of shapes overpriced and completely annoying when they fill up sale spots at events. But so what? I'm obviously not the audience they wish to get.

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1 hour ago, InventedSuicide said:

Should merchants really charge 300-600L for a shape?

Its a free market. Anyone can sell anything for whatever price and if they find someone who is willing to purchase it - good for them. If not, they need to adjust their price.

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The specific combination of numbers and the information on the style card requires time and work to produce. Spending $1-3 USD on a basic for your look doesn’t seem outrageous. Several people make L$99 shapes as their hobby and business and seem to like it. I don’t see an issue? I make my shapes because I like to but I’d buy one if I liked it a lot or wanted the style card. I also have a few friends who are very bad at shapes so they like to buy theirs. $500 seems to be where people set the cutoff for ‘more than that and it’s too expensive’ for a shape. 

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Making a good shape isn't that easy; while it's true that anyone can reproduce the numbers, given enough time, some people don't want to waste that much time, or they don't have a good eye for it. 

Personally, I wouldn't pay for a shape; I'm very fussy and given the amount of editing I would need to do to get it looking right for me, I may as well start with a fresh one of my own (which is what I did).

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People really like the "should" concept... I think it says something about a person's perception of the world and how they fit into it. Sort of ideology vs reality.

In a free market merchants are free to charge whatever they feel is right for them. People can then buy the product/service or not. If the price is too high, sales are few. If the price is too low, demand out paces production and others step in to compete and fill the demand or the merchant goes broke and moves on. Eventually some form of balance is achieved that fits the majority's desire. The product/service's worth to society is freely set by the people.

People vote with their dollars. It is the ultimate freedom of chaos and it works amazingly well by eliminating clueless bureaucrats/politicians and kibitzing busy bodies and do-gooders from the process. The free market is the most efficient allocation of resources as each person is involved in seeking what is best. 

Jamestown (founded 1607) is an excellent example of human behavior and what does and does not work in economics. I am surprised out how many people are unaware that America was started as an experiment in corporate controlled Communism... we didn't have the word 'Communism' but its definition certainly fits the corporate charters of Jamestown.

 

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5 hours ago, InventedSuicide said:

Should merchants really charge 300-600L for a shape? The reason I ask is because she pointed out they can all be copied if we just copy the numbers. We can all create & mimick a shape for free that is being sold. What do you guys think? 

It's up to the merchant really.

It does take work to make a shape but it's mostly the face that the seller has made a shape for, the body is secondary.  And, it does take work to make all those different faces for all the different heads like that.  

I personally would not pay that much unless it was something I really, really thought I could not do on my own and get a good result such as fantasy characters.  Even though my username is pronounced "Fair"...I still love Fairies and Elven princesses and other mythical characters quite a lot.  Some people are just better at making certain shapes than I am...so I might pay.  

Edited by FairreLilette
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I have a horrible time making my own shapes, especially for heads.  I thank god that people take the time to make them and I have no problem buying them.    I try to find a shape that looks somewhat what I want and demo it first.

I can't imagine all the time that gets put into making these shapes, why should they not be compensated?   Not all of us has the patience or talent to make our own shapes.  At least I don't!  

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On 4/26/2020 at 5:08 AM, InventedSuicide said:

Interesting point me & a friend were discussing yesterday & it’s been playing on my mind ever since she brought it up lol.

I want you guys opinions-

Should merchants really charge 300-600L for a shape? The reason I ask is because she pointed out they can all be copied if we just copy the numbers. We can all create & mimick a shape for free that is being sold. What do you guys think? 

For a long time I used a shape that a friend had made, for free and then I got my genus head, I switched the the shape that was included with it, did a few tweaks to it and that's what I use. I have never bought a shape but that's not to say I wouldn't if I found one I really liked. 

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I've been in SL for almost 11 years now and I've only paid for a shape once. This is mostly because I can make my own. Now there's lots of people out there that have no idea how, don't like the results etc and would rather support a creator. That's completely fine considering most creators make a living off of anything they can make in SL, including shapes. 

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I've bought shapes, particularly when I get sick and tired of the one I am wearing and can't be bothered making my own. I won't pay ridiculous prices for a shape but I don't mind paying someone a few hundred linden when I can't be bothered doing it myself, and I know of a couple of stores who consistently make good shapes at reasonable prices and market them well. I can get behind supporting those people.

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On 4/26/2020 at 11:13 AM, Nalates Urriah said:

Jamestown (founded 1607) is an excellent example of human behavior and what does and does not work in economics. I am surprised out how many people are unaware that America was started as an experiment in corporate controlled Communism... we didn't have the word 'Communism' but its definition certainly fits the corporate charters of Jamestown.

 

You seem to have forgotten that English settlement in what is now the United States of America began not at Jamestown but at Roanoke in what is now North Carolina. It's an interesting case study on the benefits of "Western civilization."

https://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Roanoke_Colonies_The

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Interesting conversation, as I just started to sell my own shapes, I had those exact thoughts. So, my point of view: there is a demand for shapes, not all people like to spend time to tweak the sliders, some want just some look without the time investment. Me, on the contrary, making cool looks is a major fun part of SL for me, I don't ever stick to any specific look. It's not only SL, I liked making pretty sims and always spent hours in character creator in all kinds of online games. So for me it's like a  hobby that may bring me some small profit....so I can buy stuff to make some more cool shapes, lol.

Also the shape is not only the numbers in shape editor, it's a character. The combination of hair, clothes, etc. brings some added value, I see a lot of great avatars in SL and I often wonder where did they get the cool stuff/skins that they are wearing.

And yes, about the profit. I do think that shapes are easier to make than other stuff, it doesn't require any tools or special skills, just a good eye, so I sell mine for only 99L.

Edited by Karina Leborski
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Now that I'm a seasoned SL veteran of 8 years (!), I wouldn't buy one as I have the confidence and skills to create my own shape and tailor it to my preference (and I enjoy the process too!). 

But back in my noob days when I first joined, they were a necessity as I had no clue. Personally, I don't think I'd pay more than around 200L for a shape? Others may disagree, that's just how I feel.

*shuts her purse so the moths don't escape* 🤭

Edited by PixieGirrrrl
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No. It's as simple as that. I don't know how your shape is going to look on my avatar, and chances are it's either out of proportion anyways or I will want to further tweak it myself. Whereas every other part of an avatar requires artistic skill to make, you can usually replicate a shape will little work. Long gone are the days when your shape was the second most important element of tour avatar. Now it's mesh bodies and heads, not an XML file of slider numbers.

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On 4/28/2020 at 7:04 AM, Theresa Tennyson said:

You seem to have forgotten that English settlement in what is now the United States of America began not at Jamestown but at Roanoke in what is now North Carolina. It's an interesting case study on the benefits of "Western civilization."

https://www.encyclopediavirginia.org/Roanoke_Colonies_The

no, we should not pay for shapes.we should also have a free upgrade on older shapes.And faces.

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22 minutes ago, BeautifulXu said:

no, we should not pay for shapes.we should also have a free upgrade on older shapes.And faces.

We already did - it was called Bento, which allowed easily modifiable mesh heads. Every new - and free - shape you make now has dozens of more "bones" than it did before.

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1 hour ago, BeautifulXu said:

no, we should not pay for shapes.we should also have a free upgrade on older shapes.And faces.

Again, who is going to compensate the creators? Should there be a Linden Labs subsidy out of our subscription fees and linden sales? (I would not be opposed to it, in principle.)

Most creators are making pennies for what they sell in SL. Some of the bigger brands are able to make SL a full time job, but most creators just manage to subsidize their own game. 

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