Indifference? Disengagement? Whatever

If you haven’t read about Linden Lab’s JIRA “upgrade” then I suggest starting with Inara Pey’s post and great commentary. Also, Mr Crap’s post rips into it but includes links to some sources of news & views.

I’ve only engaged on JIRA a couple times and gave up on it. However, I know SL residents who are actively engaged and they see the upgrade as evidence the Lab’s board is no longer interested in engagement with the users of Second Life, its flagship product.

I looked at the composition of the Linden Lab board today. Philip Rosedale is listed as “Founder” but  not Chairman. Since Rod Humble is not on the board, I assume Rosedale is defacto Chairman. The board includes technology visionary Will Wright (creator of The Sims), notable technologist Mitch Kapor (creator of Lotus 1-2-3) and three venture capital firm board members.

Linden Lab list from company website:
http://lindenlab.com/about/management
As of September 7, 2012

I’ve heard other long-term SL Residents wonder about Second Life’s future. I’ve heard from many who feel the Lab’s board is indifferent to what happens to SL. When I look at the board and the management, it causes me to wonder what level of influance management has with the board.

Just to be clear, I don’t fault Lab employess for anything. I know they work hard to make SL work and it seems clear that the Board is doing what it thinks is best.

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About Yordie

I'm an avatar in Second Life where I star as the heroine of a virtual fantasy life. In the real world, I'm writing my debut sci-fi novel.
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4 Responses to Indifference? Disengagement? Whatever

  1. Wait? When did YOU become the pessimist and ME become the “ignorance is bliss”-imist?

    This post, Becky’s iRez post about region closings… truly DO seem like bad signs. Yet just for myself, when I stopped critiquing, indeed stopped paying attention to LL/SL politics altogether… I’ve had a better experience and — so far — the world is still standing.

    The lab has long been a paragon of opacity, yet for all the talk about openness and transparency, both governments and many corporations hate and fear it. You don’t think Julian Assange is holed up in the Ecuadorian embassy in London because Obama actually respects and supports “whistle blowers” the way he claimed he did when he ran for office 4 years ago, do you?

    OMG did I just segue from LL to Wikileaks? hahaha, actually maybe there’s a connection. Obama promised transparency – didn’t happen (he’s actually signed MORE of those creepy, secret National Security Letters than Bush did!)

    and Ironyca’s story about the user input for EVE Online is amazing… but perhaps the exception. After all, Game Developers are just “grown up” Game Players who want it all their way, right? So, for that matter, is Donald Trump.

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  2. Yordie says:

    I got kinda swept up in the wave of upsets I was reading about. I find it hard to believe that this Second Life that I really enjoy is looked upon so thoughlessly by the owers. I don’t like feeling this kind of feeling, but every once in awhile I seem to float a zinger.

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  3. Bear Silvershade says:

    I tend to agree with Vaneesa and not worry about LL policies too much.
    This one caught me by surprise and though I thought a lot of the blogs were going overboard, it still seemed a bad decision by LL.
    That is, until I thought about it and realized two things. First, that few software companies have interactive bug reporting. If you report a bug to adobe, they don’t put it up for everyone to vote on. Second, the SL Jira is often misused – my experience with it is there are more “I don’t like the viewer” or I dont like the way this works type entries than actual bugs.
    But the idea that because the bug reports are no longer interactive, I don’t think LL will ignore real problems and let SL implode.

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    • Yordie says:

      I agree with you in that the Lab won’t let SL implode. And I can acknowledge your post about Jira activity being abused because one of the reasons I stopped was it seemed to be a quagmire.

      Otoh, Linden Lab continues to treat the user base as beta testers with software they really cannot test adequately in a test environment. It just would take too much effort I think. I’ve been involved in rollouts where our entire company participated in testing, including sales people, everything, and still the user community found defects we couldn’t (there are just too many OS/hardware configs). So, even now, even nine years into SL we are more connected to the software development process than the vast majority of users are to other software applications.

      Perhaps the Lab is hoping for something more like a WoW, Aion or other game platform. But as long as one of SL’s primary features is the ability to build, script, create textures and animation then they will always have power users who need to interact directly with the dev team. I don’t think SL fits very well into the clearly defined nitches, and as the Lab closes the curtains even more, it feels like they are increasing their level of abstraction and also the degree of indifference.

      (I keep hearing Botgirl’s vid, “What of Rod Were One of Us” these days)

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