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Well, 
It looks like Linden Labs finally made good on the 2009 traffic policy.   If you look at the traffic numbers in search today, its seems like they finally stopped counting idle dwell time from traffic "bots" or afk accounts that are clearly logged in just to count on the traffic numbers. 

Bunch of discussion today in world in various groups, but overall I think this is a good move Despite what 'you' might do , the traffic number is clearly a useful thing for a new user to find sims with active traffic, and this was also, clearly being 'gamed'  by using afk accounts.  Lets see if they stick to this or if its just a fluke. 

 

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2 hours ago, Jubilynn Lane said:

Well, 
It looks like Linden Labs finally made good on the 2009 traffic policy.   If you look at the traffic numbers in search today, its seems like they finally stopped counting idle dwell time from traffic "bots" or afk accounts that are clearly logged in just to count on the traffic numbers. 

Bunch of discussion today in world in various groups, but overall I think this is a good move Despite what 'you' might do , the traffic number is clearly a useful thing for a new user to find sims with active traffic, and this was also, clearly being 'gamed'  by using afk accounts.  Lets see if they stick to this or if its just a fluke. 

 

It might actually be an issue and not a fix as some people who don't use bots are seeing reduced numbers as well.

 

 

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5 minutes ago, Chic Aeon said:

So my land count from yesterday says 158.   It HAS been saying around 3000 or so all month (Advent Calendars :D)  so there appears to be an issue. No bots.  

 

 

No bots here either.   Also did you notice the acquired date - is that new/or have I missed it for years and years.  Apparently I acquired my land back in 2004!

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My friends and i started a new sim, and had slowly had some traffic.  But it just dropped from near 3000 down to 175.  

I put "Sex" into search to get lots of hits.  It looks like lots of traffic has dropped but one of those silly AFK places is still on top, so if it is meant to stop idle dwell time its not working. A lot of the visitors here have been getting shown around so it shouldn't show up as idle time. 

I'd love to know how Linden know if someone is idle, do they monitor chat? movement? what?

 

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2 hours ago, Jubilynn Lane said:

Well, 
It looks like Linden Labs finally made good on the 2009 traffic policy.   If you look at the traffic numbers in search today, its seems like they finally stopped counting idle dwell time from traffic "bots" or afk accounts that are clearly logged in just to count on the traffic numbers. 

Bunch of discussion today in world in various groups, but overall I think this is a good move Despite what 'you' might do , the traffic number is clearly a useful thing for a new user to find sims with active traffic, and this was also, clearly being 'gamed'  by using afk accounts.  Lets see if they stick to this or if its just a fluke. 

 

 

I know looking at my vendor metrics - I had over 1400 unique visitors to my region in the last 24 hours and my land number says 528 (Saturday Sale is busy this week).   I am wondering if they have changed it (on purpose or by error) to just count unique numbers and not inclusive of taking into account of "how long" somebody is on the region - which would make sense to me.   I just also searched on another merchant who I know gets high unique visitor traffic and their number is 207.

I don't advertise inworld or worry about search so it doesn't affect me either way - but interesting to see whether this was planned/or something went wonky from yesterday.

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5 minutes ago, Charlotte Bartlett said:

 

I know looking at my vendor metrics - I had over 1400 unique visitors to my region in the last 24 hours and my land number says 528 (Saturday Sale is busy this week).   I am wondering if they have changed it (on purpose or by error) to just count unique numbers and not inclusive of taking into account of "how long" somebody is on the region - which would make sense to me.   I just also searched on another merchant who I know gets high unique visitor traffic and their number is 207.

I don't advertise inworld or worry about search so it doesn't affect me either way - but interesting to see whether this was planned/or something went wonky from yesterday.

That might be right, but it makes for a search as flawed as the last one.   If a roleplay community had 40 regular people, they would be a very healthy and popular sim.  But they will show terribly comparing unique visitors, to stores and pickup places, or hubs where ejected people with no homes stack up. 

 

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Well i can't agree with the OP.

The AFK places are topping the searches, and what is an "AFK account " there is no such thing. 

Any ( and i'd suggest everyone ) is AFK at some point.

How can they tell someone dancing on a pole and chatting in IM from someone  parked on a pole and someone parked in a seat?

How can they tell if three people are paragraph role playing or simply parked there?

 

 

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1 hour ago, sallymayye said:

That might be right, but it makes for a search as flawed as the last one.   If a roleplay community had 40 regular people, they would be a very healthy and popular sim.  But they will show terribly comparing unique visitors, to stores and pickup places, or hubs where ejected people with no homes stack up. 

 

Search will always be flawed in SL as whatever algorithm is used, people look to game it.    

I still am on the side this traffic was not an intended change, but something wonky - in 24 hours we will know once traffic updates.  It seemed to time with the land store reopening....

 

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My immediate reaction was "Heck yeah, finally!" but we'll see how this pans out.

 

2 hours ago, sallymayye said:

How can they tell someone dancing on a pole and chatting in IM from someone  parked on a pole and someone parked in a seat?

How can they tell if three people are paragraph role playing or simply parked there?

Well, since everything is happening on LL's servers, LL has perfect information. If people are sitting on furniture (that includes twirling around a pole) while talking in IMs, LL will see that and could account for that.

2 hours ago, sallymayye said:

The AFK places are topping the searches, and what is an "AFK account " there is no such thing. 

Any ( and i'd suggest everyone ) is AFK at some point.

"AFK accounts" are almost the same thing as traffic bots. They are accounts used primarily to occupy those "AFK spots" for money. It can be done by the owner of the place or by independent people. The fact that "everyone will be AFK at some point" is not the same thing at all and that's not what's being talked about.

 

2 hours ago, Charlotte Bartlett said:

I know looking at my vendor metrics - I had over 1400 unique visitors to my region in the last 24 hours and my land number says 528 (Saturday Sale is busy this week).   I am wondering if they have changed it (on purpose or by error) to just count unique numbers and not inclusive of taking into account of "how long" somebody is on the region - which would make sense to me.   I just also searched on another merchant who I know gets high unique visitor traffic and their number is 207.

Traffic is only calculated (1 minute = 1 traffic) from people who have stayed in the sim for a while, I think 5 or 10 minutes? If they leave before that, you won't get an increase in traffic. That could maybe affect things, of course assuming that LL hasn't made any more significant changes. It's also possible that all traffic was "reset" to zero when they made the new change, not giving enough time in the day for the numbers to climb back up before traffic was updated for the day.

Edited by Wulfie Reanimator
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1 hour ago, Wulfie Reanimator said:

Traffic is only calculated (1 minute = 1 traffic) from people who have stayed in the sim for a while, I think 5 or 10 minutes? If they leave before that, you won't get an increase in traffic. That could maybe affect things, of course assuming that LL hasn't made any more significant changes. It's also possible that all traffic was "reset" to zero when they made the new change, not giving enough time in the day for the numbers to climb back up before traffic was updated for the day.

Is there somewhere that SAYS that officially?  1 minute = 1 traffic?   

 I can't believe that those 4,000 plus traffic numbers at the beginning of the month were folks standing around as no one BOUGHT anything LOL (not complaining -- that wasn't the point).  And those numbers dipped to 3,000 a day as the month went on (for one thing you don't have to come to the calendar every day -- and then there is simply attrition :D).   I haven't been around the sim as much either.   

 

I get the resetting thing and maybe that is it. There have certainly been plenty of times in the past that the count didn't move for a week. I have a feeling that this isn't anything PLANNED at all.  I guess we'll see tomorrow or Monday or whenever.  Not an issue for me; just interesting. 

 

 

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6 minutes ago, Chic Aeon said:

Is there somewhere that SAYS that officially?  1 minute = 1 traffic?   

 I can't believe that those 4,000 plus traffic numbers at the beginning of the month were folks standing around as no one BOUGHT anything LOL (not complaining -- that wasn't the point).  And those numbers dipped to 3,000 a day as the month went on (for one thing you don't have to come to the calendar every day -- and then there is simply attrition :D).   I haven't been around the sim as much either.   

 

I get the resetting thing and maybe that is it. There have certainly been plenty of times in the past that the count didn't move for a week. I have a feeling that this isn't anything PLANNED at all.  I guess we'll see tomorrow or Monday or whenever.  Not an issue for me; just interesting. 

 

 

the only link I could find for the official traffic info was via https://community.secondlife.com/knowledgebase/english/guidelines-for-creating-search-listings-r235/Section_.5.6#Section__5_6

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33 minutes ago, Chic Aeon said:

Is there somewhere that SAYS that officially?  1 minute = 1 traffic?   

Hard to find direct links to stuff said 15 years ago, so I'm going off this: http://wiki.secondlife.com/wiki/About_Traffic

Quote
  • In 2006 traffic was changed to be a minute an avatar spends in a parcel[2] but only for avatars that do not move to another parcel (for at least five minutes) within the 24 hour data-collection period. Otherwise, it still works largely according to the pre-2006 model according to the Lab as of May 2008.
  • If you want to start another tedious argument about whether this wiki page or the knowledge base or any other source of information including various Linden Lab employees is right please review this thread and particularly this post[3] which conclusively proved, again, that traffic is one point per avatar per minute (barring some small questions about the timing of the mechanism that tracks the minutes)

Pre-post edit (if that's a thing): Charlotte's link confirms this.

Quote

This score can be summarized as the cumulative minutes spent on the parcel by all visitors to the parcel within the previous day. [...] It is calculated by taking the total seconds spent on the parcel, dividing by 60, and rounding to the nearest whole minute. For example, if your parcel has a cumulative seconds total of 121s over the course of a day, the traffic score is 2.

 

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Well I have to hope it is some sort of error since my home sim always gave a traffic figure of about 350-400... only myself and my SL partner use the place.  Today the traffic figure is 7!

How that can be calculated is beyond me.

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1 hour ago, Wulfie Reanimator said:

Hard to find direct links to stuff said 15 years ago, so I'm going off this: http://wiki.secondlife.com/wiki/About_Traffic

As I suspected :D. It is well known for close to a decade that LL doesn't release HOW they count traffic.   

But this still seems very much like an OOPS.  I can't see any way that my traffic could legitimately go from 3000 to what was it less than 200? In a day. Even if they decided not to count ME, there were obviously tons of folks there still getting advent gifts.  Makes no sense. 

 

and to @Charlotte Bartlett  my land date seems to be correct. 

image.png.73b4be5b776fccd53ac1ee0e30c697df.png

Edited by Chic Aeon
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Summarizing comments:  

1. I agree, time will tell if the was intentional or not. 

2. Looking at my home sim, and across multiple other sims, it seems today's (12/19) traffic (yesterdays actual traffic) only included times unique avatars were not idle.  Under the already posted by LL's :  http://wiki.secondlife.com/wiki/About_Traffic 

That seemed to work out, for those places we could account for idle avatars vs active avatars using 'back of napkin' math. 

We shall see how it works out going forward.  But LLs may have a motivation for discouraging bot traffic avatars, beyond the in world 'quality of product' issue: Money. The move to Amazon cloud changed their cost model a bit, it was one thing when these bot accounts were considered 'sunk cost' and were using bandwidth and cpu time that was 'excess' and LLs already owned the capacity on.  Now that they are on Amazon Cloud services, LL is paying a cost on these logged in avi's ( all the server side render metadata, asset server and scripting calls ect)  on accounts that have zero income to LL's.    Its an interesting take, that these ghost accounts are a '1000 paper cuts' for LLs with the move to the cloud.  

 

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17 minutes ago, Jubilynn Lane said:

We shall see how it works out going forward.  But LLs may have a motivation for discouraging bot traffic avatars, beyond the in world 'quality of product' issue: Money. The move to Amazon cloud changed their cost model a bit, it was one thing when these bot accounts were considered 'sunk cost' and were using bandwidth and cpu time that was 'excess' and LLs already owned the capacity on.  Now that they are on Amazon Cloud services, LL is paying a cost on these logged in avi's ( all the server side render metadata, asset server and scripting calls ect)  on accounts that have zero income to LL's.    Its an interesting take, that these ghost accounts are a '1000 paper cuts' for LLs with the move to the cloud.

Unless Amazon has made some special deal, it wouldn't make sense that LL is paying Amazon based on LL's own traffic numbers.

"Our traffic went down 80% so we'll pay based on that remaining 20%."

Amazon charges based on how much CPU time is spent on their servers. Whether or not an avatar is a real person, a bot, or simply AFK shouldn't affect how much their existence in the sim (Amazon's server) costs them.

22 minutes ago, Chic Aeon said:

As I suspected :D. It is well known for close to a decade that LL doesn't release HOW they count traffic.

They do, though. The official Knowledge Base article lays out the exact algorithm, I even quoted and highlighted it. I just didn't know where to look.

Edited by Wulfie Reanimator
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5 hours ago, sallymayye said:

It looks like lots of traffic has dropped but one of those silly AFK places is still on top, so if it is meant to stop idle dwell time its not working

I'm sure if you went to one of those afk spots, you'd find their traffic has also dropped but since they have ridiculously high numbers to start with,  it only makes sense they would still be high. it sounds more reasonable that its something wrong and not something intended by LL.

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6 minutes ago, Wulfie Reanimator said:

Unless Amazon has made some special deal, it wouldn't make sense that LL is paying Amazon based on LL's own traffic numbers.

"Our traffic went down 80% so we'll pay based on that remaining 20%."

Amazon charges based on how much CPU time is spent on their servers. Whether or not an avatar is a real person, a bot, or simply AFK shouldn't affect how much their existence in the sim (Amazon's server) costs them.

They do, though. The official Knowledge Base article lays out the exact algorithm, I even quoted and highlighted it. I just didn't know where to look.

You miss the point entirely, those Avatars , on sims, use CPU time and band with,  On Amazon Cloud, which LL pays for. 

Those Avatars are 'ghosts' they are free accounts that conduct no commerce on SL or Marketplace. They are ONLY a lability for LL.   

Their only purpose from users is to 'game' the traffic number. if you can't do that anymore they serve no purpose,  their use will discontinue, and all that CPU and Bandwidth LL pays Amazon for , goes away.   

Thus, LL clearly pays for 'traffic' though Amazon, the less time avatars are being rendered on the server less CPU time and Bandwidth LL pays Amazon for. 

 

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1 hour ago, Jubilynn Lane said:

You miss the point entirely, those Avatars , on sims, use CPU time and band with,  On Amazon Cloud, which LL pays for. 

Those Avatars are 'ghosts' they are free accounts that conduct no commerce on SL or Marketplace. They are ONLY a lability for LL.   

Their only purpose from users is to 'game' the traffic number. if you can't do that anymore they serve no purpose,  their use will discontinue, and all that CPU and Bandwidth LL pays Amazon for , goes away.   

Thus, LL clearly pays for 'traffic' though Amazon, the less time avatars are being rendered on the server less CPU time and Bandwidth LL pays Amazon for. 

Maybe I misinterpreted something but I agree completely. Traffic bots = bad. Less AFK accounts = good. I literally hunt them as a hobby and I wish LL did the same.

But as things are now, it doesn't seem like the amount of AFK accounts has dropped, only the traffic numbers.

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Since we're discussing traffic bots and afk places, I've always wondered what the point was.  So you have a bunch of people on your region.  Looks like your popular so more people come to check it out.  What exactly is gained by that besides a top spot in search?  If the place isn't selling anything, why would it matter to them where they were in search?  All it seems to accomplish for them is people show up, see no one and leave.

If not being sarcastic in any way.  I just always wondered about the motivation behind it for places that don't sell anything.  Like sleeping beauty afk sex.  Why have a ton of afk avatars there?  They don't sell anything and if I were looking for a place to advertise my own business, I'd go take a look and see the place first.  Oh, just afk people and no one paying attention to my ad/vendor...pass.

 

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25 minutes ago, RowanMinx said:

Since we're discussing traffic bots and afk places, I've always wondered what the point was.  So you have a bunch of people on your region.  Looks like your popular so more people come to check it out.  What exactly is gained by that besides a top spot in search?  If the place isn't selling anything, why would it matter to them where they were in search?  All it seems to accomplish for them is people show up, see no one and leave.

If not being sarcastic in any way.  I just always wondered about the motivation behind it for places that don't sell anything.  Like sleeping beauty afk sex.  Why have a ton of afk avatars there?  They don't sell anything and if I were looking for a place to advertise my own business, I'd go take a look and see the place first.  Oh, just afk people and no one paying attention to my ad/vendor...pass.

The idea is that people pay (tip) the AFK people for passive income. Some places outright ban visitors who don't pay for their 'services.' It ties closely with somnophilia.

Some of the AFK places (at least the furry ones) also double as hangout spots, which isn't that surprising since most furry hangout spots don't differ much from AFK spots besides the fact that some avatars will have an even lower barrier to sex. Compare "The Ark" / "Knotty Beach" against "Just Poseball" / "Lemme Smash" for example.

That said, I doubt most (if any) AFK places make sustainable income. The ones that are almost entirely filled with the owner's bots might have a slim chance, but I don't think there's enough real traffic to profit off it.

Edited by Wulfie Reanimator
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15 minutes ago, Wulfie Reanimator said:

The idea is that people pay (tip) the AFK people for passive income. Some places outright ban visitors who don't pay for their 'services.' It ties closely with somnophilia.

Some of the AFK places (at least the furry ones) also double as hangout spots, which isn't that surprising since most furry hangout spots don't differ much from AFK spots besides the fact that some avatars will have an even lower barrier to sex. Compare "The Ark" / "Knotty Beach" against "Just Poseball" / "Lemme Smash" for example.

I understand the afk sex thing.  I don't understand using afk avatars or bots to increase traffic if you don't sell a product.  What is the incentive?  What does a place that doesn't have anything but say, a beach, gain by sticking a platform full of bots somewhere?  People may come but they won't stay.  Anyone looking to rent a space or ad board could plainly see it's not actual traffic.  What's the motivation behind any avatars used for traffic?

An inquiring mind wants to know.

Edited by RowanMinx
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27 minutes ago, RowanMinx said:

Since we're discussing traffic bots and afk places, I've always wondered what the point was.  So you have a bunch of people on your region.  Looks like your popular so more people come to check it out.  What exactly is gained by that besides a top spot in search?  If the place isn't selling anything, why would it matter to them where they were in search?  All it seems to accomplish for them is people show up, see no one and leave.

If not being sarcastic in any way.  I just always wondered about the motivation behind it for places that don't sell anything.  Like sleeping beauty afk sex.  Why have a ton of afk avatars there?  They don't sell anything and if I were looking for a place to advertise my own business, I'd go take a look and see the place first.  Oh, just afk people and no one paying attention to my ad/vendor...pass.

 

The point is to drive new user traffic to your sim.  The stat places you higher in the search. 

It clearly works btw.  We've tested it many times. 

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