LL say, “celebrate SL10B and win a laptop (but only if you’re a US resident)”

SL10BThe Lab has launched the latest step in their campaign to celebrate SL’s tenth anniversary – and it is an offer certain to delight and frustrate.

“Celebrate SL10B With a Chance to Win a New Alienware 14 Laptop!” reads the headline of a new blog post, which goes on to read in part:

To help celebrate Second Life’s tenth birthday, we’re running a co-promotion with Alienware , the pioneer in specialty high-performance PC gaming systems!

From now until July 17, 2013, Second Life users can enter to win a brand new Alienware 14 laptop! For contest details and to enter today, visit here.

The Alienware 14 has some impressive specs: Intel i7QM processor, 8 or 16Gb of memory, either an NVIDIA® GeForce® GT 750M with 1GB GDDR5 or NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 765M with 2GB GDDR5, Windows 7 or 8 64-bit, etc. Exactly which model is up for grabs as a prize is unclear from the promotion, but I’d suspect the entry-level model might be a safe bet.

alienware

HOWEVER, before you start rubbing your hands in glee at the prospect of winning a new laptop, be advised that if you’re outside the US, you’re stuffed. You’re not eligible to enter.

There are potentially some very good reasons why the offer is limited to US residents only. For one thing, running a truly international competition with such an attractive prize with a third-party is going to be something of a logistical load to carry, even allowing for any legal / technical issues involved. It’s also likely that Alienware / Dell themselves limited the scope of the competition so that they are not hit with and headache in running it (and lets face it, “country specific” competitions aren’t actually that unusual for multi-nationals to run). But, the fact remains that in going this route, rather than attempting to develop a competition which is inclusive of all their users, the Lab is again going to be perceived as thumbing its nose at its overseas users.

Even so, the fact remains that, with the number of recent “US-only” promotions the Lab has run in recent months (and remembering that ant “US-only” limitations placed on them may not be LL’s fault, but rather stipulations placed on the offers due to technical or other reasons), it would be nice to see if the Lab could come up with opportunities to win “valuable” prizes and participate promotional offers which are both reflective of and inclusive of their international user base.

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Linden Lab issue press release celebrating 10 years of SL

LL logoThursday June 20th. Linden Lab has issued a press release ahead of the official 10th Anniversary of Second Life (June 23rd, 2013).

The press release, which is accompanied by a large-format infographic, opens:

Since Second Life first opened to the public in 2003, users have spent the equivalent of more than 217,266 years in the virtual world, which has seen nearly 36 million registrations to date. To mark the tenth anniversary, Linden Lab has published an infographic highlighting these and other facts about Second Life’s history and the current state of the virtual world which is available here: http://lindenlab.com/releases/infographic-10-years-of-second-life. [see below]

Throughout the month of June, Linden Lab has been celebrating Second Life’s tenth ‘birthday’ (SL10B) with special surprises for the virtual world’s users, including limited-edition virtual gifts, contests, and inworld activities. Second Life users are also organizing a number of special events themselves, including a community celebration featuring art exhibitions, parties, and more. Users are urged to keep an eye on the official Second Life blog and the SL10B category of the Destination Guide, which highlights more than 2,400 locations and events in total for Second Life users to explore.

The piece goes on to include a quote from Rod Humble and to highlight the fact that he recently appeared on Draxtor Despres’ The Drax Files, complete with a link to the episode.

The infographic highlights some of the significant “high level” numbers relating to the platform’s first decade of use, which should hopefully make eyebrow-raising reading for the uninitiated among the press and (one would hope) those who have long since considered Second Life to have either “failed” or “dead”.

SL10B_Infographic

For those of us who use Second Life daily, some of the figure may appear to be light on substance (how many of the 400,000 monthly sign-ups are new users who become retained users, for example/). Given this, it is likely that some / all of the figures will be questioned, mulled-over, debated and questioned by users – and rightly so.

However as a tool for reaching out to the press at large and reminding them that Second Life is very much at the centre of the Lab’s thinking and is still alive, kicking and vibrant (why else would we all be here otherwise?), the infographic will hopefully act as a firm dig-in-the-ribs for those in the media who are otherwise quick to dismiss the platform as being little more than history long past.

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With thanks to Pete Linden, Linden Lab.

SL10BCC: My picks of the day – Thursday 20th June

SL10BCC is well underway, with lots to see and do. Given the size of the event, trying to review everything on offer simply isn’t feasible, and some hardware issues at my end mean that I’m not in a position to do the kind of “region round-ups” I did last year.

So instead, I’m offering some personal picks from what’s on display by way of suggestions as possible stop-off points in your explorations.

Main Installations – The Lake Stage

The Lake Stage
The Lake Stage

Kazuhiro Aridian’s mesh creation for the Lake stage has to be seen to be appreciated. A work of art unto itself, it’s a fabulous build; one which reminds me, probably due to the mushroom stage and spreading canopies of leaves above, of the equally remarkable Lake Stage from SL9B in 2012. In some respects I don’t think this is entirely coincidental – Kaz Aridian was responsible for the SL9B Lake Stage as well. So, if the echoes are intentional (and not a product of my dotty little mind), I’d say it’s a very subtle and creative way of reflecting the “looking back” part of this year’s theme.

The Lake Stage
The Lake Stage

And even if the similarity is down to my imagination working overtime, no matter. This is not one to be missed, so make sure you do stop-off on your rounds and take a good look – it’s well worth the time.

Boudicca Amat – Thank you Second Life

We all have a story to tell about our life and times in Second Life – what brought us here, what we discovered, the friends we made, the discoveries shared, why we keep logging back in (some of us daily!), and so on.

Thank You Second Life
Thank You Second Life

In this piece, Boudicca Amat tells her own story – and in doing so, looks back over SL’s past in a very personal way. It’s an intimate piece, presented in a very simple format which is perfectly suited to what she has to say and present. Work your way around the framed texts downstairs and upstairs, interspersed with pictures and some wonderful models and follow Boudica on her voyage of discovery and involvement in SL creativity and business. Her tale will be familiar to many who have been in-world for any length of time, which only increases the intimacy of her sharing it.

Serafin Galli – Safe Waters Foundation

I actually included Serafin Galli’s Safe Waters Foundation in my coverage of SL9B in 2012. Her piece then made full use of the space available both above and below the water to provide a lovely exhibit piece which admirably promoted her merfolk community without simply being a blatant ad.

Safe Waters Foundation
Safe Waters Foundation

She’s done the same this year as well. What’s more, she’s done so in a fresh and inviting way – which is why I point to her piece as worth visiting. Serafin demonstrates that with 12 months in which to plan and build, it is possible to avoid pulling out the same pieces over again, complete with the same message, and come up with something original which is going to appeal to visitors old and new.

Just don’t forget to dive in and take a look underwater as well!

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