On July 28th, I received an e-mail from the Lab announcing that they are once again running their “limited-time” Premium membership offer. As with the previous promotions (run in 2011 and 2012), this offer comes with strings attached:
- The discount only applies to Quarterly membership billing plans
- Only the first quarter will be discounted; the rest of the year will be charged at the full Quarterly membership rate.
The offer will be running until 20:00 SLT (PST) on Sunday 11th August, 2013, and those wishing to take advantage of it can do so via the sign-up page.
It’s likely the offer will draw upset from some quarters, with people pointing to the Lab “failing” to address issues of high tier. Whether such complaints are valid is actually debatable; when it comes to tier, the Lab is very much between a rock and a hard place insofar as tier cuts are concerned, as any significant reduction in tier could actually hurt their revenue stream far more rapidly than attempting to weather the storm of declining in private region numbers (and perhaps trying to deal with matters through other means).
That said, there is a finger to be pointed at the Lab where Premium membership and land use is concerned, and that’s in regard to Linden Homes. These were originally intended as providing a means to “get people started” on the road of having a house and land in Second Life. However, this has never been the case. There are no time-limits on Linden Home occupation, no incentives to encourage people to move on elsewhere, etc. So people tend to stay, and the Linden Home regions grow, quite possible to the detriment of the land market as a whole – and I actually speak as a guilty party; I have a Linden Home and reduced all other land holdings to zero last year.
The problem here is what to do. The fact is that Linden Homes are one of the “better” perks of Premium membership, their age and (in some estate cases) their so-called “slum” looks notwithstanding. If they are taken away, or if people’s use of them is limited, it could lessen the value in having people go Premium. Plus, even if the time people can have a Linden Home is limited, it doesn’t automatically mean that once that time is up, they will simply move elsewhere and rent land; they might simply opt to go without.
Incentives are needed, and this again introduces problems: what should the incentives be, how should they be directed, and who should be involved? Some kind of co-operative venture between the Lab and rental estates might be possible; but again, which estates? And how would it be managed without the Lab being accused of “playing favourites” or damaging the market for the smaller rental operations or without the whole thing becoming too complicated to be easily managed by estates and / or the Lab?
My own thoughts remain that the entire Premium membership package needs a complete re-think; although I admit identifying how this could easily be achieved to the satisfaction of all isn’t as easy as it sounds. Back in 2011, Will Burns suggested one possible direction this might take:
Might I suggest that if the Premium Accounts were instead treated as Professional Accounts, changing the focus from casual consumer to producer, then the Gaming Toolbox options for experience creation would be an excellent (and genuinely new) Added Value to the Professional Account holder.
Since Premium/Professional Accounts require some sort of identification, this makes the Professional Account holder directly accountable for their actions using the professional toolbox systems.
The problem here is that not all current Premium members are content creators. So what happens to them if the focus is to “rebrand” Premium accounts as “Professional” rather than to introduce a new “Professional” membership category? That said, the introduction of such a “Professional” membership package, with access to a unique set of tools and capabilities, in addition to a re-vamp of the Premium membership package would appear to have merit on a number of fronts (even if it would be liable to generate its own controversy).
There are doubtless dozens of ideas which could be put forward on the subject of Premium accounts (and the future of Linden Homes). Whether the Lab would consider any of them, no matter how workable, is another matter. For now, however, the promotional offer is open. If you’re interested, I offered some thoughts on the matter a year ago, and which probably still holds true today and might be worth reading before making the jump.
18 thoughts on “LL re-run their premium membership discount offer”
“Oh, boy… another method of transportation as a gift! Now I can see all the abandoned land from the ground/air/sea/rails!”
Be careful when sight-seeing abandoned land from the air. There’s an awful lot of stuff your biplane might bump into ;-).
Being premium is the only way one can acquire mainland!
I know at least one user that updated her account to premium i order to do that!
leaving Linden homes allows to get 512m2 more without moving to a higher tier level, so any can be premium and buy 1024m2 of land in mainland!
What i would do if i was LL, i will increase the number of m2 allowed before moving to the next level!
Any that follows the prices on mainland will notice 2 things:
The insane prizes asked for regions that have direct acess to LL seas (be the 50 sailing sims on sansara or the ones that allow to travel form satori, nautilus or Corsica and gaeta to the Blake sea)
Same with Zindra continent and Bay city!
And there is no lack of buyers,but nobody can afford paying L 2.000.000,00 for 1024 m2 as some ask on nautilius or Bay city or Zindra!
Allowing premium members to buy more m2 before moving up on tier level, creating more regions owned by the lab that would allow for more enjoyment (every continent should be surrounded by at least 1 water sim owned by the lab! It is insane that on Zindra, LL placed a hub cutting the access to the rest of the river and not allowing to sail all of it!)
Quality pays, Bay city m2 prizes, as the ones nest to sailable regions, show it!
If Linden Homes aren’t going away, Things could be split into a choice.
Those joining Premium could either opt for 1024 sqm from the start, or instead get a 521 sq m Linden Home for a period of time (say 4 or 6 months). At the end of the initial period, those taking a Linden Home then have to move, but then get the 1024 sqm free tier.
This has the advantage of moving people through the Linden Homes (giving those who wish to try their hand at home onwership – and there are a good number who sign-up and go direct to Premium) before encouraging them “up the ladder”), while also offering those crossing over to Premium with a wider choice and, as you say, a larger initial parcel of land & make tiering-up a little more attractive. It could also help with all that abandoned land Crap points to as well.
I use my Linden home as a fall back when my mainland experience gets too awful. Having someone build a club next to you and putting flashing, spinning strobelights that cut through your house sucks as does the lag having 40 avatars on the land.
I sold my land and went back to my simple linden home before I re rented out a place on a private sim where no one will put a club next to my house. It’s like a little hiding place.
I was the same when I still had land on a private estate – my Linden Home was a bolt-hole for me when I needed a little peace and quiet.
Inara Pey, is saying what i where thinking. 512sqm free premium land is really silly. you cant do any nice thing on it. 1924sqm would make things way more intresting.
Mabby additional option is 1024sqm free preiumn water. maby with some rule to make it look nice to.
A simple set of rules that any that rents on Blake sea knows about:
Don’t build sky boxes under 450 m!
Your region must be always open access to all!
if using security devices ensure that still any will be able to sail around or fly across your region!
This set of rules,allows some privacy (just ensure that the box, avatars on other parcels can not see or speak is checked).
I do not wish to see this implemented on mainland, where one shall have the right to do whatever as long as it is TOS compliance but LL could do what RR suggested, 1024 m2 of premium water where any could build whatever over 450 m2 as long as the region was open to all, be on M or even a Adult zone (There as on Zindra, there isn o need to privacy as all are adult verified in order to access them!), leaving the ground level free to travel, be by boat (water sims that Ll could connect to the several continents, still make some profit and still allowing them to be usable by all!
The drama of mainland regions where some points that are the only ones that allow access to other areas, are closed due to security orbs or cause owners restrict the access to group members only would be avoided!
But for this to happen, griefing needs to be stoped, as many sadly know, most regions that are restricted to group only are by a good reason, griefing, some that LL still didnt manage to stop and to be honest, i doubt it can!
It comes down to choices. Some people will always be happy living in Linden Ticky-Tacky estates. Others just do not understand the advantages of a mainland plot; these people can be educated and encouraged. There are lots of people who do not understand the choices they have.
There has never been a better time to find a piece of land on the mainland. All abandoned land is L$1/sqM and there is plenty of it! LL will usually divide larger plots if you ask (although it will take a few days).
An investment of L$512 will get you your own plot, then you can build or buy a home to put on it.
*Cough* I live in a Linden “ticky-tacky” estate, and it’s actually quite nice ;-). I have a river at the bottom of the hill which I can canoe on or ride my Neuspa and a park close by. The houses are not *that* bad, the place is quiet, and I have 512 sqm with a house AND 117 land capacity for all my little bits.
I have to say I find it a lot more pleasant that much of the mainland I’ve seen (although granted, some of the other LH estates look completely hideous to me), and it’s also a better environment than some private estates I’ve seen.
That’s actually the problem with Linden Homes. People write them off as “tacky”, but if you’re prepared to hop around and bide your time, you can actually grab a nice place in a nice location. Once that happens, and unless you want oodles of stuff set out, there really is no incentive to “move on up the ladder”.
🙂 like I said, choices. But people do have to know what their choices really are.
LL is killing their own grid ….
I don’t just know the numbers, but the prim count for the actual building does make the Linden Home a bit more than the Mainland 512 sqm / 117 prims. Luckily I’m close to a rez-zone where I can rez a vehicle.
Doubling to 1024 sqm would be nice, but I would have to relocate to a new parcel. I don’t know how such a change would affect premium income, but it wouldn’t be hard for Linden Labs to work out.
LH prim counts vary wildly, even among buildings of a similar style. My Tahoe house is 76 LI, complete with patio (where I can rez a vehicle :)), while my neighbours are 80, 84, 107 and even 118 LI, with some of the higher LI houses offering less usable living space. But as you say, whatever the LI of the house, you still get the 117 LI of a 512 sqm parcel as yours to use.
At the risk of sounding like a broken record, the impression of larger usable living space can be enhanced by changing the default camera and focus offsets. But, as we both saw in that meeting, fat chance of that (the perceived risk of people going BAWWWWW).
Now, is 512 sq.m. enough for an avatar to live on? In terms of pure space, I’d say it’s more than enough, especially when using proper camera offsets and not LL’s antiquated ones. What makes it potentially inadequate is the prim count, although I must say I had a fully-furnished home on a 512 sq.m. parcel way back in 2006 (while on my first account), without really missing anything, and it was way before sculpts came along, way before PrimPossible offered complete 1LI living rooms, bedrooms etc, and – of course – way before convex hull physics came and allowed people to reduce their creations’ LI with careful building. And I still had prims to spare.
However, larger parcels would certainly be more than welcome. I would applaud a move on behalf of LL’s to give premium account holders a 768 sq.m. and a 1024 sq.m. Even better would be if LL proceeded to update the landscaping and architecture of these regions. More options would be really nice to have, and I can easily think of three architecture options: 1. Tropical paradise/Tiki (makes sense, practically everybody and their dog shape their virtual holdings that way). 2. Mediterranean (Italian/Spanish/South of France). 3. Aegean (think Santorini, Paros, Naxos, that sort of thing).
Might be nice for them to rebuild the areas with mesh houses. I’ve seen some nice ones in the size of the Linden homes for less than 20PE. That plus some nice landscaping and it would be fine.
My 1st mainland home was a 96 m2 on Satori, near a rezzing point!
Is sitll:) and i can still have 42 prims available to rezz a bike, a helicopter or more:)
One can do wonders in small spaces!
And there are always 2 things that count when i buy mainland:
Must be in front of LL roads or Sea!
Must have a rezzing zone just adjacent!
So all the land i own on mainland has those 2 conditions!
Most i did buy using abandoned land, a few i did manage to get a truly amazing price (one day on the auctions all land was sold at 0.1lL m2 and i did manage to get one spot with only my bid, 1340 m2 that i will never sold, on a crossroad,surrounded by municipal LL roads and just adjacent to a rezzing point!
And with a amazing view to the Corsica sea:)
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