Back in January 2012 the Lab ran a “New Year, New You” makeover photo competition with some L$5000 on offer to the first prize winner, and which I reported on at the time (and if they ran it again in 2013, I missed it!).
This year, they’re doing it again, as a blog post on Thursday January 2nd announces.
On offer this time around is a “Grand prize” of L$10,000, together with a “First prize” of L$5,000, and L$3,000 and L$1,000 going to the second and third prizes respectively, and the deadline for entries is 10:00 SLT February 10, 2014.
However, there is something of a controversial twist this year: people must log-in via a Facebook account in order to enter.
Possibly in light of the issues surrounding the 2012 competition, which saw people have problems trying to upload their photos to the competition pages, the 2014 event is being hosted over at Votigo, (and is visible from within Facebook). However, if you want to do more than just look at the entries and read the competition rules either via Votigo or via Facebook, you’ll have to log-in via Facebook. Additionally, those entering the competition are also required to “Like” the Second Life Facebook page if they have not already done so.
Whether the Facebook log-in requirement will extend to voting as well, remains to be seen (voting has yet to open), although I suspect it may.
Given Facebook’s past record vis-a-vis the use of avatar accounts, etc., within their pages, and the general apathy of SL users towards Facebook as a whole, this is liable to be seen as something of a controversial step by the Lab. It has already lead to some criticism on my.secondlife.com, where questions have also been raised on LL’s ability to police the voting process to ensure fair play.
For my part, while I can perhaps see something of a promotional value involved in leveraging Facebook as the vehicle for the competition, I can’t help but feel disappointment that the Lab are (again) running a competition which would appear to be exclusive (in the bad sense of the word), rather than being more inclusive of its broader user base.
In the meantime, and for those not put-off by the Facebook element and who opt to enter, I can only say: good luck!