Sunday, February 26, 2012

Labyrinthian SL

The Labyrinth of Time

Lately, many have been highlighting the apparent state of disarray LL is in. From seemingly random purchases to pseudo mystery projects (i.e. products), from perpetually unsolved inworld issues to enraged comments by former employees, from the upheaval created by the request for bloggers to the eternal wars with 3rd party viewers, all seems to be pointing towards a catastrophic outcome. Between the voices of doom and the LL groupies, it is difficult for an outsider of sorts to draw her own conclusions. As a content creator, both in the format of inworld products and blog material, I am a tad apprehensive, I must admit. The original plan for my second-life, when I joined SL five years ago, was simply to have fun. Being the goal-oriented person that I am, it soon became boring to jump from event to event every day and it was clear that I needed a purpose. That came in the shape of a job; first as an event moderator, then as staff coordinator, and finally, when my second-life unexpectedly ended upside-down and after wandering and wondering for a while, the job gave place to co-owning a store. The plan was still to have fun, but now the responsibilities were a bit different, especially because the inworld group grew to several hundred people, and the store committed itself to taking part in events such as hunts where dozens of people were working in the organization (hunt organizers, store owners, managers, etc.) and hundreds of hunters were participating. Numbers do bring a slightly different weight to it all. So, why not make something positive in SL that would boil over to RL? Why not take that SL business and turn it into a first life business? Well, the real question is would you? Considering everything that has been coming out lately, would you invest real money in a virtual world and take it up one notch turning your fun-to-have business, where your main concern is having high quality products and the best customer service, into a profitable mainstream store for the masses? I have seen many making that option. They may even make some money, true. But, do they have a future? And I don’t mean a playtime-type of future. I mean an investment-type of future. Well, I seriously doubt it. Continuing as it is, SL will drag itself throughout the years becoming a vintage sort of thing, where the resilient old-timers will linger on and the newcomers will pop in shortly just to leave and go back to the virtual worlds they came from initially. 
I want to believe in the future of SL, but it is getting harder and harder to maneuver in this labyrinth.

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