Friday, June 13, 2008

The end of free accounts?

Yesterday evening, after two days not have logged in to Second Life®, I wanted to visit the grid once again. I got the normal message: "login failed". Nothing the matter, I thought. Just give it another try, and you will see, it was a malfunctioning of the server, or something, I thought to myself.Big was my surprise, that after trying several times, I suddenly received the message , shown below.

This means that from now on, all residents must pay directly to the Linden's or they will be banned in the future from the grid. At least, that is how I see it.
What will happen to all companies, who thought that this was interesting to start doing business in SL®? Again they must realize that all is up to the Linden's and nobody else. If they want no one on the grid, than nobody will be there.
I kept on trying and after a while, I succeeded. What should I think about that?

Is it becoming time to explore another virtual world? Is this the end for the free accounts on Second Life?

Did everyone experienced this, when trying to log in?
I am certain, that Second Life will not be the coolest place anymore, when only paying residents are allowed on the grid. Or we all are going to pay them, in order to stay here, just before the SL5B celebrations. They surely know how to draw our attention.;))
Interesting to know what will follow.


Anonymous said...

About your posting i have contradictory feelings. In one side i see the right for everybody to access to Second Life, in the other side i wonder what are the beneficts of being a Premium account (I'm one of that premium accounts).
I understand Linden Lab gives priority to the one who are paying them directly, with our account fee and with tier on Mainland.
Maybe is easy for me to say that because i'm one of that Premium.

Looker Lumet said...

well, as you could guess, Raul, I have a free account, but we will see what the future will bring us...;)
As you said, I don't know what advantages a premium account has at the moment, but if this message will continue to pop up, maybe I should think about a premium account.

Anonymous said...

Hi Looker,

Still here and reading ;)
This is what I think:

When L is doing the server maintenance they have to make sure that they can do a good job. Sooooooo the less people are logged in at that time the better. To avoid complete shotdown they try to solve it like this. The Premiums (who have ? business mostly) can get in. We on the other hand could stay yesterday evening, because we were already logged in. So i don’t think we should be getting worried about it.

Grtz and hugs


Zippora Zabelin said...

I am one of those premium account residents - btw Inex, many of my friends have a premium and only one of them is in SL for business - and my feelings about this issue are ambiguous.

I agree with Raul that it would make the benefits of a premium account more clear, but on the other hand I think it will be the end of SL on long term, if you can only join when you pay.

Besides that: I did see you log in yesterday Looker, and my (premium) partner and I were building at SL5B at that moment, and what a great experience that was - NOT! :( If that means "best possible" for LL... *sighs*

Wolf Hartnell said...

I believe that what happened to you was actually due to a change at residents request. It has been quite a while since we had an update that caused this many major problems to the servers, and whenever it happened previously they kicked everyone out while they fixed it. When it used to happen all the time there were a lot of requests from paying residents for Linden Lab to change their login "throttling" system to block free accounts first and then only paid accounts if they had to.

I didn't know they had actually done this, but the message you received seems to indicate that they have. My own opinion is that showing that message is likely to upset a lot of people, even though it should only happen when the servers are really struggling.

I don't think that there is any reason to worry that free accounts are going to be blocked. A large part of SL's economy is based on them now. I just think that when they are nearly at the point of having to throw everyone out of SL, like they used to, they block non-payiment accounts first, then any new logins, and then finally and only if they have to they will close SL while they fix the problem.

Hope this helps, and it is just my opinion, I do not know for certain.

Looker Lumet said...

Thank you all for sharing your opinion on this blog. It makes sense, Wolf, that in case of server problems, or whatever, LL keeps the free accounts temporarily out, but would it not be better to communicate it this way? To be properly informed is one of the basic requests of all residents. But on the other hand, better this information than totally nothing.;))

Wolf Hartnell said...

I agree completely Looker. I think that the message that you got is going to cause a lot of problems for people. I think it would be better if Linden Lab were more open and clear about many things!

If it had been me working at Linden Lab, and making the decision about these account, I would probably have just said that logins were being restricted and to please try later. There is no need to state why some accounts are blocked more than others for a while. If anyone realised what they were doing then they could explain why.

CeN said...

This is a tricky topic because I can see how if in circumstances that log in's have to be limited, it's only fair that those that pay for the experience should have priority. I guess the easiest way for them to judge who is paying is those with a premium account.

I used to have a premium account for months but I couldn't see what I was gaining from it. It didn't seem necessary to me so I cancelled it, but left my payment info on file. If they are going to set up a priority system for logins I hope they take that into consideration as well. Premium accounts, verified accounts, then the no info accounts.

Most of my friends don't have premium accounts either, and some don't even half payment info, so I would hate to see them not get in.

Wow, tricky, I guess as mentionned it's all in the communication.

Creag Emmons said...

the odd thing for me is that I logged in and fell right into a group discussion of the message you got... but I have a free account. So while you were getting the message that free accounts were blocked, I (and several of my fellow Aglaronders) had no trouble logging on with free accounts.

Yet another example of the maddening inconsistency that is Linden Lab.

Anonymous said...

Well, it seems to be also one more time a question about the lack of communication between Linden Lab and the Residents. Wolf is right, this was a request of some Residents some time ago but there was no an LL confirmation then.