[SLED] Ha ha ha

Owen Kelly owen.kelly at arcada.fi
Sat Oct 9 09:57:43 PDT 2010


You are not wrong. I could indeed ask Linden Labs what payment options 
are available. But why would I?

Let me tell you a true story.

We got our first private island in SL in 2005. We expanded this to 9 
sims. We did this enthusiastically as money became available.

Once we had done this I asked Linden Labs on numerous occasions to 
consolidate our payments so that we had a single renewal date for all 
nine sims. I explained to them how this would make my life much easier, 
how it would help me get the whole deal through the finance people, and 
how this would help them. I even offered to renew some sims early one 
year and let them pocket the difference. Anything to get the whole nine 
sims to have one renewal date.

They told me that it couldn't be done. They told me that this was not 
their policy.

A customer asks to have his/her bill consolidated and offers to take a 
loss on the process of consolidating it, and Linden Labs says that it is 
not possible. Fine: perhaps I explained badly or they misunderstood. So 
I asked again, phrasing it differently. And again. Over several years.

It is still not possible. We now have 6 sims, having sold three to a 
nearby (in RL) university for joint research. We have 4 different 
payment dates.

You ask me why I am not asking the kind of questions that you think I 
ought to be asking. Experience of asking questions is the answer. Yes 
(as I said in another thread) we can see the Lab as Bertie Woosters - 
nice but dim - and we can make excuses for them at every turn, but that 
is not actually the case.

I have asked them for something very reasonable since 2006 or 2007 - 
something that would cost them nothing and would help both of us -  and 
they have basically told me to stop bothering them.

You get them to consolidate my renewal dates and I promise that I will 
"ask Linden Lab what payment options are available and to tell them that 
coming up with 1.5 to 2 years of tier when the budgets haven't been 
decided is unreasonable"

I have to say though that "If LL hasn't thought about that" then the 
people running the business shouldn't be running the business.


On 09/10/2010 19:33, Orange Planer wrote:
> Owen, I'm surprised you haven't thought of it.  The obvious question 
> is to ask Linden Lab what payment options are available and to tell 
> them that coming up with 1.5 to 2 years of tier when the budgets 
> haven't been decided is unreasonable.    If LL hasn't thought about 
> that, then this is their opportunity to do so.  LL isn't all about the 
> cash.  They're all about providing the best technology they can, which 
> they are HOPING will get them the cash.  But without the technology 
> they are nothing, and all of us know it.  Sure, they need money.  They 
> have infrastructure costs.  Just for the three T1's my company has we 
> pay $1,000 a month.  And that's NOTHING compared to what LL 
> requires.   They need power, cooling, facilities, and other people 
> have compared these prices to what's available for cloud-based 
> resources and found LL's pricing favorable.  The timing of the 
> announcement is horrible, yes.  However, as you can see in the email 
> below they are listening to the complaints and suggestions and have 
> modified their position.
> It can't hurt to ask.  Why are people not ASKING them these questions?
> I would think that after working so hard and long on the programs and 
> projects that people would contact LL and start probing for solutions, 
> telling them their institutions can't come up with 18 months or 24 
> months of tier up front, asking for options.  Come on, don't just roll 
> over.
> Will everything you have in SL work in other grids?  If not, what will 
> it take to make that happen?  Can you say "reinvent the wheel"?  How 
> much will it cost to do that?  Compare that to price increases that 
> will EVENTUALLY (but not immediately because you can renew your 
> contracts for a period of time up to 24 months and PAYMENT OPTIONS 
> HAVE YET TO BE DETERMINED) come about.  Do the algebra.
> Certainly it's reasonable to explore other options and even extend 
> one's efforts into those options to see where the pitfalls (if there 
> are any) lie.  But it doesn't make any sense to throw away all the 
> blood, sweat, and tears everyone has put into this without 
> investigating options.
> *From:* educators-bounces at lists.secondlife.com 
> [mailto:educators-bounces at lists.secondlife.com] *On Behalf Of *Owen Kelly
> *Sent:* Saturday, October 09, 2010 7:59 AM
> *To:* SL Educators (The SLED List)
> *Subject:* Re: [SLED] Ha ha ha
> Hmmm,
> No it doesn't say you have to have the cash upfront - except that is 
> what renewing has always implied at Linden Labs, Readers Digest, or 
> anywhere else I can think of.
> I subscribe to the London Review of Books. I have subscribed for 
> years. They do special deals. If I subscribe foofr 1 year it is 
> cheaper than six months. If I subscribe for two years it is even 
> cheaper. Sometimes there is a flat-out bargain three year 
> subscription. And each time they want the whole amount upfront (which 
> is why they are offering the bargains: cash now = increased financial 
> security).
> So what precisely should I ask before I ASSUME?
> On 09/10/2010 14:47, Orange Planer wrote:
> Hoo boy.
> Kneejerk reactions all around, let's have some more.
> It doesn't say there that you need to have the cash UP FRONT.
> Ask before you ASSUME.
> *From:* educators-bounces at lists.secondlife.com 
> <mailto:educators-bounces at lists.secondlife.com> 
> [mailto:educators-bounces at lists.secondlife.com] *On Behalf Of *Owen Kelly
> *Sent:* Friday, October 08, 2010 1:59 PM
> *To:* educators at lists.secondlife.com 
> <mailto:educators at lists.secondlife.com>
> *Subject:* [SLED] Ha ha ha
> I just received an email from the Linden Labs Land Team, clarifying 
> the move to end educational discounts. Among other things it said:
> "An educational or not-for-profit institution that is currently under 
> contract with us will be able to renew early (or purchase additional 
> regions) and continue to receive the current 50% discount on land 
> maintenance provided that the renewal takes place prior to the 
> December 31, 2010. You will be able to select contract renewal options 
> of 6, 12, 18 or 24 months under these terms. If your organization 
> renews and enters into a contract no later than December 31, 2010, it 
> can lock in the current discounted rate for up to 24 additional months."
> In the speculation about the "real reasons" for the new policy I don't 
> think it occured to any of us that it might be a way to engineer a 
> massive cash injection.
> Imagine: as many educators as possible, currently on 6 month or 12 
> month contracts, work as hard as possible to convince admin to inject 
> 24 months worth of fees RIGHT HERE RIGHT NOW to keep things going at 
> the discounted rate.
> Result: sudden large influx of cash to LL at no effort at all.
> No thanks :)
> Owen
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