Reprinted here from a discussion from Linked-In on whether Second Life should/can connect with Facebook.
"From the beginning of my involvement with Second Life I have said that Linden Lab had a "build it and they will come" idea that was mystical and naive because it didn't take into account anything for people to do once they came or to understand why they would want to return or stay. Just looking at nice builds is mighty boring.
Linden Lab now seems hot to connect Second Life to Facebook and I have to laugh because they have failed to understand the ways that SL IS a social media. If they did so they would have priorized increasing SL groups before now, perhaps creating two sorts of groups, 1 for land management/perms and another type that is only for social events, arts, community communications. We know SL dating is a big thing, whether it is just to have a date to go SL dancing/clubbing or a way to meet someone as a potential RL spouse. Why did Linden Lab not think of an SL version of OK Cupid. I bet there are a few avatars that would drop a few Lindens to discover their virtual matches and/or SL businesses that would pay to advertise on such a guaranteed popular site.
I was invited to a meeting with some Linden marketing people more than a year ago as part of a group of music venue owners. The questions that we were met with betrayed an abysmal ignorance of the music business in general and more surprisingly the music business in SL. Live music is a huge draw. I send out about 2,000 notices to avatars inviting them inworld to attend events through my own list and group, and up to 8,000 more through other relevant groups. I twitter and facebook about events I host, all free publicity for SL. Linden Lab seemed to assume that we were making money on our venues. The fact is that we were all struggling to break even and our motivations for running music series was quite idealistic, personal, or linked to other external motivations. These days I see venue after venue closing, musicians drifting away from SL. My series continues although with slightly reduced audience and levels of support from the audience. The biggest hit for my series was the cuts to educational and non-profit subsidies. A lot of the audience members for classical and jazz performances were in SL as teachers, students or non-profit volunteers. The spin-offs of the reduced participation by that sector are only now being felt and will be felt more so in September.
What could LL have done to encourage us?
I've had several thoughts on this. First public quad sims for music events that different arts promoters could apply to use for large draw events. Submit a proposal X weeks in advance and get the sim for a few days. Start a Linden Arts Foundation making a competitive arts granting process available with meaningful levels of funding that would make an actual arts project possible in SL $10,000 to $25,000 would be my guess at the range needed to allow people to actually give up some of their RL income and invest time and effort in an SL arts initiative. Additionally to help existing series access support through other foundations. To do this, Linden staffers would actually have to be informed about SL arts practice. It has been infuriating to many of us over time when we see someone listed as the "best" whatever, when in fact they are far from the "best" but have recently bought a sim and made a big self-promotional noise. I remember a venue being listed as the "best classical venue in SL" when they had never hosted a classical event at anytime. Just as artists gravitate to cities that support the arts and those artists enrich tourism and the life of the cities, so artists will gravitate to the virtual worlds that support them.
Getting it Right: Consulting Projects
2 years ago