Swap to Direct Delivery, merchants urged

Merchants still using Magic Boxes are in the process of receiving an e-mail from the Commerce Team urging them to swap to Direct Delivery.

The e-mail reads:

Dear Marketplace Merchant,

You are receiving this email because you have at least one listing on the Second Life Marketplace that still uses an outdated delivery process, known as Magic Boxes.

 Why should you update to Direct Delivery?

Linden Lab has already started to phase out support for Magic Boxes. In order to ensure uninterrupted service to you and your customers in the future, we strongly encourage you to migrate as soon as possible. It’s easy to do – and worth it for both you and your customers.

 Uploading to Direct Delivery is easy

We’ve made it easy for you to update your older listings to Direct Delivery. Many of our top merchants have already migrated and found the process relatively painless. For more information, please check out this Knowledge Base Article or watch these tutorial videos covering the Direct Delivery Basics, andMigration to Direct Delivery.

 What are the benefits of Direct Delivery?

    • Deliveries are TWICE AS FAST compared to Magic Boxes
    • Direct Delivery purchases are successfully delivered more often (2.5% greater success rate than Magic Boxes)
    • Direct Delivery supports “test delivery” for safe and commission-free “test run” distribution of your products
    • You can now see everything that is included, at a glance, on the Contents Tab

 Support for a dedicated “Received Items” folder where your customers can quickly and easily find all of their Marketplace purchases.

    • and much more!

NOTE: Limited quantity items (items that a Merchant cannot copy) are not yet supported by Direct Delivery. If you have problems migrating, please contact customer support with questions or issues.


The Second Life Marketplace Team

I assume this is more of the “upping the tempo” Rod Humble recently promised vis-a-vis Commerce Team communications. If so, fair enough. However…

The e-mail does tend to overlook the fact that for many merchants, Direct Delivery is at least as unreliable as Magic Boxes, and prone to more-or-less the same failures. This is something I pointed out in my last post on the matter, wherein I made mention of the fact that the core issues within the Marketplace are occurring regardless of whether someone is using Direct Delivery or Magic Boxes.

WEB-4441 is a case in point which is related to problems Merchants are encountering regardless as to whether they are using Magic Boxes OR Dirrect Delivery (yet it is still at times used by Commerce Team members as evidence that problems they may be experiencing with Magic Boxes are effectively “their own fault” for not having migrated).

Direct Delivery stats: irrelevant for those experiencing the ongoing Marketplace failures – such as not being able to use Direct Delivery, or facing mechanisms within the Marketplace which are broken regardless of whether or not Direct Delivery is used. (Also: spot the missing line in the comparison)

Frankly, until these issue are resolved, it would appear that there is actually little benefit for those merchants who haven’t yet migrated from doing so. Certainly, a “2.5% faster” delivery time is of little benefit if the reasons why delivery fail remain the same regardless of the mechanism used (Magic Boxes or Direct Delivery).

At the end of the day, it’s up to individual merchants as to whether they migrate. Some are remaining adamant that they won’t until issues are resolved or are at least shown to be improving. While I’ve not had any issues (so far as I’m aware) since converting to DD, I nevertheless can’t say I blame them; they have much more at stake than I.

In the meantime, it appears the cut-off date for Magic Box migration remains “on hold”; there has been no update on this since the (now removed comment from the Merchants forum), nor, except in the most generic of feedback, has there been any real update as to resolving the myriad of issued the Commerce Team have been dealing with for the better part of a year (or more).

Which really brings me back to the comment I used to end my last post on this topic:

It’s not just the tempo, Rod, it’s the quality of the information supplied.

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3 thoughts on “Swap to Direct Delivery, merchants urged

  1. Neither my sis or I have had one single delivery failure since moving to DD. I move quite a small amount of stock, maybe 5 – 10 items a day, she probably does more like 50 – 100.
    Anecdotal, I know, but worth mentioning.


    1. Yup,

      It’s true that for some, DD doesn’t pose any problems; but then again, nor did Magic Boxes. I’ve personally had no issues with my sales via DD. However, the problem here is the presentation that DD is “better” or “more reliable” than Magic Boxes. For many, it clearly isn’t, nor does it escape the fact that regardless of whether one uses Direct Delivery or Magic Boxes, the risk of experiencing issues with the Marketplace remain the same – because many of the core problems (again, such was WEB-4441 and the other JIRA the Commerce Team folded-in to it) occur for both Magic Boxes and Direct Delivery.

      It matters little if DD delivers “2.5 times faster” than Magic Boxes if the problem is items fail to deliver or payment fail to process correctly for both DD and Magic Boxes. Hence the degree of – well, cynicism – that is evident in my view when the Commerce Team attempt to extol the virtues of Direct Delivery in a manner akin to glossing over the cracks.


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