So, my brain has had a crazy new idea again that might help SL hold on to those new users as retention still seems to be a problem.
Many people join SL but after a short while give up or lose interest and leave again.
The community gateway is a new initiative, a very good one, but here is another sort of idea, that I mentioned before a bit, but I had another think about it;
How about every (yes every) new user to Second Life gets their own little piece of land?
I know sounds expensive and a huge hassle right?
Hear me out
When you join SL you arrive on a bit of land, 512 square meters for instance, could be smaller.
It can be on mainland (plenty of available land) it could even be a skybox.
This is your land, it is just a room, maybe just a field.
On it you find a basic tutorial, a few signs and perhaps videos explain how SL works, a bit like a small version of the community gateways and general starting places.
Besides being smaller, it also is very private.
You get to learn SL on your own, no grievers, no advanced avatars who perhaps intimidate with loud voice chats or rude gestures and also quite important; a lot less lag.
After all, it is just you in your skybox.
At the end of the tutorial you know how to rez and build but also that this plot of land is now yours to with as you please for one month.
You are asked to push a button that will let you claim the land or to discard it.
After all, those of us who aren’t really new to SL but just there as an alt or are about to be teleported by an experienced SL friend to a sim, don’t need the land.
If you discard it or teleport out without claiming it, the land is reset and given to the next new SL resident.
If you claim the land, the tutorial prims will all be removed and the empty land is now yours, for a month.
On your own, in peace, without being bothered or distracted, you can experiment with building something, rez a house you bought, have a nice private place to change your clothes, personalise your avatar or bring your friends to.
Not only will you have a safe, private place to get used to SL, you’ll also avoid those truly horrific encounters many of us had; finding yourself as a noob amongst scary, weird and often loud and rude chaotic crowds of avatars.
After a month or so, you’ll be reminded that your time is up, you’ll have to go out into the world and find a new place to live.
Maybe this is where LL brings up the offer of becoming a premium member, meaning you’ll get a new piece of land or maybe get to stay on the land you’ve been using for free.
Once you leave, the land is reset, the tutorial rezzed and it will be fresh and smelling of daisies for the new user.
This will of course have to be automated, we can’t expect a whole bunch of people to take care of the noob parcels and clean up after them.
There used to be something similar in SL, years ago, called the first land programme.
But that land you had to buy and it was also land you could keep for ever and even sell on, opening the scheme up to abuse.
Just another crazy idea, what do you think?
Drutim Bates said:
Fantastic idea! 🙂
I think this an awesome idea!! I wish they would have had it when I joined. I spent lots of time looking for sandboxes where I could figure things out. It would have been a lot easier if I could have just settled somewhere.
The idea is not so bad. But at the current pace of work at Linden Lab, they would need between three to five years to develop such a program. Most of the Lab’s energy is consumed for Sansar in the near future.
Well, Cloudparty had exactly that. Though you had to earn your free land first by completing a tutorial. I wouldn’t drop new users on an empty plot of land, because SL is also about Social and meeting other noobs and possibly resident or professional helpers is more important than building stuff. But then, once the basics are tought and the first people are met, give a small plot of land on a new continent to get them hooked. I really believe this is a way to increase user retention, because that is how it worked for me and almost everybody I know in SL. I was basically just fooling around in SL and more or less griefing people, I was a troll. But once I got my first 512sqm and built my first little building, I got addicted and quickly got more and more land until I eventually had my own sim. It is hard to abandon your own property. It is a reason to come back online again and again. So Linden Lab, if you are reading this, please throw some land at the next 1000 noobs and do some AB testing. Let them keep the 512sqm as long as they log in frequently.
Cathartes Aura said:
It’s a good idea. Free Land for noobs. After first month on safe land is over and they know how things work give them the option of using a free plot on mainland for another month. Plenty of it lying around abandoned. Might eventually get LL some tier off land that isn’t producing anything atm.
Halsted M. Bernard said:
This is a brilliant idea. I think land ownership would help new residents become more invested in the world and how it works.
My first comment disappeared, so let me try again:
I think this is a great idea. My thinking was that a Mainland area could be set up almost like a small subdivision, with streets, a clubhouse, and small parcels set a little ways apart so that residents won’t be elbowing each other.
I’m not so sure about giving the parcel to the noob at the end of the month, that kind of a system could easily be gamed. Also I think the idea of “we’re all new here together” might establish a sense of community. We could give out “I survived Camp Nooby” to anyone who is still there at the end of the month….
While people are there; however, I think while the new residents are there whoever wants to help with this should try to be available to answer questions and help if requested. I’m thinking the clubhouse should offer notecards or classes with information on things like “How to deal with griefers” or “How to buy land” or “How to find people with your same interests.”
I’m trying to set up a small “Tourist Information Center” in Cecropia. My first impulse was simply to set up landmark dispensers to direct newcomers to destinations I thought they might find interesting, but I have come to realize that each newcomer has come for a different reason: Some of them just need the directions to Zindra. The rest of them might want to find out how to build, how to listen to music, how to make or view art, how to find friends or helping groups, how to become a part of a community – the list is endless (I’m trying to figure out how to design a ‘placement test’ :)).
Has anyone done a survey to find out what long-term residents have in common?
Has anyone here ever played any of the Harvest Moon games? In most of them you get something like a starter home and a package of turnip seeds. I’m thinking that a noob package could include a small freeby house, building tools, notecards with landmarks to places like the Ivory Tower and the Texture Tutorials, etc….
If this project takes off I would like to offer to help, although I confess that real life responsibilities and a “Mr. Toad” personality defect make me undependable.
LikeLiked by 1 person
Pingback: Crazy idea; Free land for every new user in Second Life — Jo Yardley’s Second Life | ZZ Bottom misadventures in Virtual Worlds!
Any that joins as premium already has it (the LL homes can be changed by 1024m2 of land in mainland).
So if my understanding is correct, this would be for non premium members?
If so, how would LL promote the premium accounts?
Jo Yardley said:
Yes, it would be for every account.
The idea is to give new people, who are most likely to leave SL again in a short time, a place to call home, where they can learn the basics in peace and privacy and somewhere where they can build and experiment.
The difference is that they have to give the land back after a month or so.
So when their noob-time is over, their land is taken away and they have to go into the big world.
LL would promote premium accounts with the fact that you can keep the land as long as you’re a premium member.
And of course you also get live chat support and premium sandbox use.
I am a premium member, haven’t used my free land in years.
LikeLiked by 1 person
Me neither, at least on the 1st Year, till i moved to Open Sim, OSG grid, circa Jan 2011. After 5 months of learning how to host a region from my computer, then 4, then to build them all from scratch, terrain, scripts, sculpts, all you can imagine and have them running smoothless, we decided to come back (we never left Sl for good, we still keep at that time our Homestead – rented since August 2010 till today) to check a thing that i never heard about and my soul mate was littloe knowledge at the time, Sansara’s Bay city.
That was when we found out about mainland!
After a few trips by bike on Sansara, we went to other continents and found out thje connection between LL waters and the blake sea regions.
And so we did leave OSG for good, although i kept the regions running for more 3 Years, i never returned for good, but instead started to buy mainland on auctions and discovered that i could change my ll house that i didnt use for 1024 m2 of mainland.
After that, my soul mate become premium as well, just to get more land and Today we have houses on every LL continent and we can make a trip by bike, boat or whatever, for hours on a row, without passing by the same sim, once.
All this to say, the reason we are on SL and spent a lot monthly to do so, instead of being on a grid that is free for all and where i can teleport to hundreds of other grids like it (Hypergrid travel, do you know it exists?!) is just one.
Mainland and private regions that connect with it,
Not yours Berlin 1920 for sure.
In fact yours project would fit much better Open sim then Sl but it is your choice to be where you want to.
Not for sure the so called Sansar, where the idea of spending 4 hours in a row sailing without passing by the same region once, without the need to teleport, is utterly dismissed as not going to happen (sure they say one can host a experience of the size of 25 full sl regions, lol, today on Osg there is a var region of the size of 4000 full Sl tegions, where one can move without crosing sim borders).
Mainland is the only reason that makes a few (lot?) Sl users still being in there.
Your idea, is more then welcome, it is needed to make sure users, be new or old, understand that mainland is not a empty place of ugly builds but instead The core of Sl and that any project that thinks that it can be dismissed, is doomed from start.
Phillip kingi-lockley said:
Love the idea 😀