Tutorial: creating Second Life Place Pages

The Holly Kai Park Place Page banner
Introduced in 2017, Place Pages are a means to allow region and parcel owners to create a web browsable page (hosted by the Lab) for their location(s) in-world. These pages can then be shared through blogs, websites, Twitter, Facebook, etc., offering a means to promote those places to a broader audience, advertise events, etc so on. Table of Contents

In addition, all published Place Pages can be searched via the Place Page home page, or browsed as thumbnails.

There is an official Knowledge Base article providing information on creating and using Place Pages, but I thought I’d offer a step-by-step guide to setting-up one or more Place Pages.

Place Page Features

A Place Page showing the use of images, descriptive text and the inclusion of an events calendar. Click for full size

By default, every region and parcel in Second Life has a Place Page associated with it, derived from information in the parcel’s existing profile. These are provided in a default format, complete with place holder image. Each page comprises a number of features:

A banner “hero” image, together with additional images which can rotate as the page is refreshed or as a slide show; descriptive text; options for:

  • Listing a calendar of events.
  • Showing a region’s covenant – useful for residential rental regions).
  • Showing items for sale.
  • Adding a YouTube video.

Buttons to allow visitors to the page to launch their viewer and teleport directly to the location (assuming they are Second Life users – if not, they’ll be taken to the SL sign-up page).

In addition, a region’s Place Page can include a list of surfaced parcel Place Pages, and parcel Place Pages will include a link back to their “parent” region’s Place Page.

Prerequisites for Managing Place Pages

In order for you to be able to use the Place Pages to promote your in-world locations, certain criteria must be met:

  • You must own the parcel / region in question OR you must be assigned a the group ability to Toggle ‘Show Place in Search’ And Set Category within the group owning the land
  • For a parcel’s Place Page to be public, About Land > Show Place in Search for the parcel must be checked (incurring a weekly fee of L$30).

Managing Your Place Pages

Setting-Up a Place Page

  • Visit the Place Pages dashboard and log in using your Second Life credentials.
  • Access your available place pages either by clicking your name in the top right corner of the page and selecting My Places, or by clicking on My Places just below the banner.
Accessing your available Place Pages
  • Depending on your land holdings (e.g. the number of regions, the number of parcels on those regions), your list of available Place Pages might be short or long. Each Place Page item provides a summary and a default image.
  • Note:the Is Viewable? column in the list determines whether or not a Place Page is viewable or not.
    • True indicates the page is publicly viewable.
    • Not Viewable indicates the Place Page cannot be publicly viewed, either because you as the owner have set it that way, or because it relates to a parcel which does not have Show Place in Search checked within its About Land floater.
Sample Place Pages listing – note the region / parcel differentiator

When you have located the Place Page you wish to edit, click Edit on the right of the listing to open the Page in default / edit view. This comprises a number of easy-to-understand sections, complete with explanatory text.

  • Details: this section allows you to determine if the Place Page is publicly viewable, and define the information it displays.
    • Disable This Place Page: prevents the page being publicly displayed.
    • Show Covenant: displays the covenant associated with the land (if provided).
    • Items for Sale: item must be set to Show in Search on the General tab of the object editor window, and will be listed with price, description and a teleport button. Note that items not for sale will also be listed, but will appear at the end of the list with Not Available in the price column.
    • Show Calendar: displays a calendar of events for the region / parcel. Event must be created via the  Events section of your Second Life dashboard at secondlife.com.
    • Title: the title for the Place Page – shown overlaying the banner image.
    • Tag line: 150-charcter tagline for the Place Page, shown overlaying the banner image.
    • Description Editor: for entering formatted descriptive text to be displayed on the Place Page.
  • Optional: this section provides you with the ability to set the page, font, and link colours used on the page. There is also a space to provide a YouTube URL.
    • Note that at the time of writing the link colour only applies to the links in the Parcel Information section of your page; it does not apply to any links you may include in the description section of your page or any events listed with a calendar (if present). That can create visibility problems with these links, depending on the page background colour selected.
  • Images: Section for uploading at banner / Hero image and additional images that are displayed in rotation on the finished page.
  • Stats: general information on the region / parcel automatically displayed on the finished page as Parcel Information.

At the foot of the page are buttons to Update the page with any changes you have made, or Cancel them. Note that clicking Update will refresh the page and display your changes.

Including Parcels in a Region Place Page

If you have more than one parcel in a region, you can automatically include all of your visible parcel Place Pages in the region’s Place Page. Note, again, parcels must have how Place in Search set within their About Land floater (incurring a weekly L$30 fee) in order for them to appear on their “parent” region’s Place Page.

Parcels in a region can be listed in the region’s Place Page

Continue reading “Tutorial: creating Second Life Place Pages”

Linden Lab announces Second Life Places available

Second Life Places

On Thursday, March 29th, Linden Lab announced the official launch of Second Life Places, making the programme available to land holders in-world.

First announced in a beta programme in January 2017 (see here for more), Places  essentially allows region and parcel owners to create a web browsable page (hosted by the Lab) for their location(s) in-world. These pages can then be shared through blogs, websites, etc.

Included with each page are buttons to allow visitors to the page to launch their viewer and teleport directly to the location (assuming they are Second Life users – if not, they’ll have to sign-up  via the provided link to the main sign-up process).

In order for you to be able to use the Places pages to promote your in-world locations, certain criteria must be met:

  • You must own the parcel / region in question OR you must be assigned a the group ability to Toggle ‘Show Place in Search’ And Set Category within the group owning the land
  • About Land > Show Place in Search must be checked (recurring fee of L$30 a week).

Essential links for finding more information on Places pages are:

Note you may have to log-in to Places when you open the page.

Options on the page are controlled via a menu towards the top right corner, which can be seen when you are logged-in ( highlighted in red, below) – providing you have land which meets the requirements to have one or more Places pages.

The menu options – available to those who have locations in-world which meet the criteria for setting-up Associated Places

The options are pretty self-explanatory:

  • My Places – will take you to a list of locations (regions and parcel in-world) for which you can set-up Places pages.  Clicking it will take you to a listing of the pages, and those you can edit will have the Edit option enabled
  • Upload Spherical – allows you to upload the ZIP file from a 360-degree snapshot you have taken of the location with the Lab’s 360-degree snapshot viewer – of which more below
  • Logout – logs you out of Places.
A Places listing with the Edit option highlighted

I’ve not had a chance to drive things in detail, but one minor issue I noted was that this listing  appears to list Holly Kai Park as Adult, when it is in fact Moderate – which is correctly reporting in the actual page for the region.

The Edit option opens a basic page layout for a Place to which you can add details – text, images, video, etc. Again, see the Knowledge Base article for more details.

As noted above, the Upload Spherical option allows you to upload a 360-degree snapshot of a location captured using the 360-snapshot viewer. However, with this, and at this point in time, it is important to note that:

  • The 360-snapshot viewer is currently only a project viewer, and is awaiting significant update. You can find it on the Second Life Alternate Viewers listing page.
  • I have an overview of the 360-degree snapshot viewer available, but please note that it refers to the initial release (the release prior to the one available at the time of writing this article), and functionality in the viewer may have changed. I’ve also not had an opportunity to test the Upload Spherical capability with the current 360-snapshot project viewer, and so offer no guarantee the capability works.

I’ll have a more in-depth look at Places and setting them up in due course, hopefully including the updated 360-snapshot viewer, once it is available.

Places: a new gateway to your activities in Second Life

Second Life Places Beta Page
Second Life Places Beta Page

On January 11th, 2017, the Lab announced a new beta programme – Second Life Places.

In essence this allows region and parcel owners to create a web browsable page for their location(s) in-world where they can be shared through blogs, websites, etc. Included with each page are buttons to allow visitors to the page to launch their viewer and teleport directly to your location (assuming they are Second Life users – if not, they’ll have to sign-up  via the provided link to the main sign-up process).

In order for people to be able to use the Places pages to promote their own locations, certain criteria must be met:

  • You must own the parcel / region in question OR you must be assigned a the group ability to Toggle ‘Show Place in Search’ And Set Category within the group owning the land
  • About Land > Show Place in Search must be checked (recurring fee of L$30 a week).

The announcement itself was – frankly – vague. Whilst explaining the purpose of Places, and the fact it is beta, the blog post itself doesn’t actually provide information on where to find detailed information on the new pages – such as how to get started or even how to view the new pages. While there is a link to a forum post, it also isn’t that much more informative on where to find information for those unsure of how to proceed. This being the case, here are the key links:

A part of the Places page set-up by the Lab for the Innsmouth role-play community
A part of the Places page set-up by the Lab for the Innsmouth role-play community – click image to visit the page

As a quick run-down of the basics, providing you meet the criteria for establishing public Places page(s) for your parcel(s) / region(s) as defined above, you can get started by:

  • Visiting the Places home page – note you may have to log-in to it.
  • Hovering the mouse pointer over your name (top right of the page) and selecting My Places from the displayed drop down  – this will list all of your parcels and regions. You can then select those you wish to edit, and follow the instructions in the Knowledge Base article.
  • Note that A Places page for a parcel can also be “hidden” at any time by unchecking Show Place in Search in the About Land window, while all Places pages for a region, regardless of parcel settings, can be hidden by checking World > Region/Estate > Region >  Block Land Show in Search.

Within the pages are options to embed image slide shows, machinima videos and include social media buttons to Facebook, Twitter, Google+ for those wishing to use them, as well as basic information on the location itself. There is also the ability to include a 360-snaphot banner / hero image, and to include links to the Places pages for locations  / venues within the current location. For example, Loki Eliot’s Escapades Places page includes links to the Places pages for venues with his Escapades island, as shown below.

If you have a location with multiple venues / places to visit, you can create a Places page for it, and then link to the Places pages for each of the venues / places within it - as Loki Eliot has done with Escapades Island (click to go to the Escapades Place page)
If you have a location with multiple venues / places to visit, you can create a Places page for it, and then link to the Places pages for each of the venues / places within it – as Loki Eliot has done with Escapades Island (click to go to the Escapades Place page)

All of which make the pages somewhat flexible. And while they are fairly basic at present, they could evolve into exceptionally useful items and make the L$30 a week search listing fee more than worthwhile.

Note, however that as a beta, capabilities are both limited and subject to bugs. The Lab is welcoming ideas and feature requests, and asks that specific bugs (the linking to places described above is buggy, for example), are reported via JIRA. General feedback and observations should be given via the official forum thread,

I’m not sure how many actually have access to the beta programme, or whether this initial deployment is restricted to those who actually OWN regions. However, I’ve been unable to access those parcels / regions where I have the required group rights as an Estate Manager and the land is listed in Search. Others in a similar position to myself have also reported they cannot view the Places pages for  their regions.  This being the case, and in addition to the screen shots above, here are some Places pages links for those wanting a closer look at things: