There has been so much negative press about the problems we face with what residents feel Second Life has become – Some say it’s a corporation no longer the slightest bit interested in its customers, what they want, what they need or don’t need.
Many old-timers say that SL was a paradise of creative inspiration, regardless of how good the graphics quality or tools were. It used to be that there was telephone-based customer support and those who owned sims had a direct line to Concierge where they received swift service. It used to be that there were A LOT more residents with whom to interact, sell to, buy from and otherwise bump into on the pixel highway of our Second Lives…used to be…until now?
We’ve all heard the news, Rod Humble’s gone, Ebbe Altberg has moved in as the new CEO. We’ve all seen FABULOUS reporting on the subject, all over the net from very reputable bloggers, INCLUDING a wonderful report on a meeting Ebbe and Pete Linden had with a few select members of the SL press almost immediately after Ebbe put on his pixel boots…uh, robot feet! But, what has happened since he’s taken the helm? Were they the equivalent of campaign promises we’re so used to being made but not kept? Or … dare we dream … is he serious and true to his word?
Well, let’s just make a short-list from the full transcript to try to keep “mega-focused” and see …
LONG TERM GOALS:
- Making SL appealing to a much broader audience
- Get to a massive scale of users that enjoy what we do.
- Raising the bar in LL’s productivity, focus and dedication.
- Create a clear vision and mission for everyone to understand and work toward.
SHORT TERM GOALS:
- Understanding his team, their abilities, talents and how they work together, to figure out if they are focused and productive and if not, make it so.
- Looking at the organization and understanding how it interacts with their users and partners.
- Figuring out if they have a clear path with which everyone is aligned.
- Figuring out if they have the best ways of getting the best ideas and then being able to implement those great ideas.
- Understanding what sort of organization LL is and figuring out how to bring it to the status of “world-class” (wash and repeat swiftly).
EBBE’S INITIAL FEELINGS AFTER HIS FIRST LOOK UNDER THE HOOD?
In regards to how Linden Labs operates and how they should operate … disappointment!
THE HOT TOPICS DISCUSSED AT THE MEETING:
- The New User Experience and improving User Retention
- Involving Users, new & old in improving the New User Experience/Retention
- The Stigma Attached to Second Life
- Attracting Business and Educational Users
- A “lightweight” viewer/client
- Linden Lab’s Other Products
- Oculus Rift and Other Technologies
- SL and the Younger Audience
- The Potential of “Blank Canvas” Creative Spaces for Younger People
“SO WHAT HAVE YOU DONE LATELY?” Oh how impatient we have all become. It’s been maybe two weeks since this meeting and already we’re looking for results.
WELL … is there a surprise for us all … Ebbe appears to be a man of his word! In this very short time, he’s opened JIRA back up (Jira.SecondLife.com), much to the praise and gratitude of many relieved residents. For our readers who may have joined after the JIRA was closed, it is a ticket-based bug-tracking system online, through which we have a direct line to LL to report issues and bugs and in some instances, thoughts and ideas. The JIRA is a place where our voices can be heard, where we can help guide the technical side of our SL experience and help the company to more swiftly find, troubleshoot and fix those pesky insects that can seriously ruin our SL days.
Search @EbbeAltberg on Twitter and you will see an explosion of responses to his work and interactions such as, “thank you for listening to open the JIRA back up. So far, your decisions have made the SL Community regain trust in @LindenLab” (by @neddings), and “Could it be? Mr. Altberg’s promises of transparency are real? JIRA is open again! If pattern continues, SL may be back on track” (by @michilumin). These are just two of many similar comments and we invite you to find him on Twitter (@EbbeAltberg) and take a look.
Ebbe himself invites all “comers” to interact with him on Twitter directly! As a matter of fact, his twitter page is chock full of his responses to resident’s technical issues and questions and proof of his actually reading things through, seeking out answers internally, reporting issues and responding as though he were a tech support guy. When’s the last time you ever saw any corporate CEO do that? Wow, how refreshing!
There’s just one @EbbeAltberg Twitter post that does not show up retweeted on his feed, to which we are still waiting on a response, “@EbbeAltberg exciting to see customers mattering to #SecondLife again! Thanks Ebbe! You Rock! So, plans on addressing the huge TOS debate?”
It would seem that there are some things Ebbe has not yet had a chance to lay his magic upon just yet. Here’s hoping its temporary and that when the time is right it will change. We did find it interesting though, that our new CEO appears very open in his statements regarding the problems between LL and its customers: @tishcoronet, @LaskyaClaren @rivenhomewood And we are underserving consumers now. Balance is off a bit. Not easy enough.
In the meantime, I think it’s important to note here, that those of us who are not in the corporate food chain will never know everything that is going on behind closed doors. It is very likely that there are some huge plans in the works that, until they are ready or the timing is appropriate, will not be made public but that may just be in everyone’s best interests … only time will tell!
Keep up the magnificent work Mr. Altberg, all of us are grateful, hopeful and watching with eagerly expectant pixel eyes, lifting them up to look upon the light at the end of the tunnel and chant the praises “all hail Ebbe.”
We’ll just end on an extremely up-beat and positive note by sharing a few of our favorite posts from Twitter starting with … Linden’s in SL will come too?: