Thursday, August 28, 2008

When will they ever learn?

Today many of you might have seen what looked to be like a bright and well thought-out Blog Posting by Robin Harper of Linden Lab fame.

Ms. Harper was espousing the up and coming changes to the Second Life Blog system, whereby Blog Postings will be categorized, and comments will tie into the Forums, and new Blog Comment overlords will be present for all of us to cheer and jeer.

What Ms. Harper fails to mention was that her Blog Posting was a direct reply to an email written by yours truly, where I once again assailed Linden Lab's ability to practice "Open and Transparent" communication, as recent Blog Postings were once again closed to comments, mainly because many of the Blog Readers have no other outlet to voice their opinions concerning Linden Lab and Second Life.

Today, after Ms. Harper's eloquent Blog Posting explaining all that is good and wonderful at Linden Lab, I pointed out to her in an email that Linden Lab might once again be walking down a path that ends in peril.

You see, while Linden Lab says it wants to practice "Open and Transparent" Communication, they also say they listen to their Users (Customers) feedback, emails, office hours, etc., before they act on anything. Perhaps I was on vacation, or maybe I just missed the email that asked me if I thought the Blog Postings/Comments should be changed and if so how. Oh wait, I didn't miss it, it doesn't exist!

It seems that Linden Lab is incapable of doing what they say their own goals are : "Just as the Residents of Second Life rely on individual and collective resourcefulness to achieve their goals in a complex, vast and ever-shifting virtual terrain, so the Tao of Linden helps us achieve ours".

In my email today to Ms. Harper, I asked some simple questions, and perhsps she would like to reply to those here as I shall list them:
  1. How many individual Customers did you get feedback from before changing the Blogging Software?
  2. How many individual Customers did you contact and request feedback from before changing the Blogging Software?
  3. What is the User Base Population Number you are using when making certain you have covered at least 7% of the Customer Base?
  4. How many individual feedback did you receive from Customer's through other channels?
Since Linden Lab practices the "Tao of Linden Lab", then it will be interesting to see just how many Customer's were asked to provide feedback concerning the Blog Changes. An interesting side-point is the User-Base (Customer Base) population number is and what the Sample Size is of the Feed-Back number. For you Statistics degenerates reading this, perhaps you can remind everyone just what is considered the proper percentage of the Customer Base you need to achieve before announcing you are "confident" in the number of "Feedbacks" you have received while making your decisions.

Oh, one last thing I've been waiting on from Grant Linden, that sort of ties in with this same thread, just how many different feedbacks did you receive, through all different channels, concerning the New UI changes.

Quite frankly, I expect to receive absolutely no response to these questions, as while the employee's at Linden Lab, while saying they live by the "Tao of Linden Lab", they've been showing quite the opposite. I wonder if this is one more thing that Uncle Philip can blame on Cory?

Friday, August 8, 2008

California Non-Compete clauses ruled invalid by courts

Today, it was announced that the Non-Compete clause in California is NOT valid and those with non-compete clauses can be hired by firms in the same position they once held with another firm.

While this would normally be just another news story, let me remind you that Cory was probably under one of those non-compete clauses when he was fired from Linden Lab.

This ruling allows Cory to be hired from any firm that is in direct competition with Linden Lab's Second Life.

For the everyday Resident of Second Life this is very good news, for Linden Lab this is probably their worst nightmare coming true. Cory can now join a firm that has the resources and staff to build another 3D Virtual World, and do it better then Linden Lab.

It should be interesting to see just how Linden Lab will change their attitude and service once they realize they have real competition to deal with.

Here's to Linden Lab, I for one hope Linden Lab takes off their Rose-Colored glasses and starts addressing the real problems in Second Life. Otherwise, a company with the resources and staff like Google, might update their current "Chat Program" into a fully fleshed out Second Life type world, if that happens Linden Lab will be behind the 8 ball, and I doubt they can win a head on fight with Google.

I personally would hope that this little news story would cause Linden Lab to change things. it would be a shame to lose Second Life. I thoroughly enjoy Second Life, the people in it, and even some of the Lindens; it would be too bad if Linden Lab did not recognize what they are facing. Now's not the time to stay on the "bleeding edge" but to make the Grid stable, to fix the Asset server, and practice REAL Customer Service.

Just what do you think? Share you feelings here, unlike Linden Lab I will not moderate your comments, so tell me what you think!