Linden Lab: We Don’t Need No Education

by Pixeleen Mistral on 05/10/10 at 11:35 am

Discounted Second Life virtual land will be phased out for non-profit organizations and the education sector as of January 1, 2011 according to this announcement by Nelson Linden. Reaction was predictably negative from those whose budget cycles do easily accommodate costs doubling with three months notice – in other words, essentially all non-profits and education. Meanwhile, customers already paying full rates were promised no increases in land costs for calendar 2011.


Apparently Linden lab has written off the non-profit sector to concentrate on entertainment in Philip Linden’s walled garden of cyber delights. Look for Linden Lab’s move to accelerate the flight from Second Life to alternatives to such as OpenSim for those who remain committed to virtual environments in education, or hope for more control of their online experience and assets than the Lab is willing to provide.

inspiration for new pricing policies?

33 Responses to “Linden Lab: We Don’t Need No Education”

  1. Orion

    Oct 5th, 2010

    Talk about screwy! First they start with this whole half assed idea of merging their teen grid with the main grid – which is literally sending their adult players running off in fear. All under the guise of making life easier for educators. And now they’re driving off the educators by making the whole damned thing unaffordable? What in the hell are these guys smoking?

  2. AM Oderngrl

    Oct 5th, 2010

    Pathfinder might have understood the budget cycles, at least.

  3. Pappy Enoch

    Oct 5th, 2010

    I gots me an edumakashum. Maybe them eggheads can come squat wif Pap until the whole fake world goes down.

    I reckon they kin bring them coed gals along for some hoo-whee fun.

  4. Bubblesort Triskaidekaphobia

    Oct 5th, 2010

    I have a crazy conspiracy theory about this:

    Linden Labs knows it’s going bankrupt. In fact, it knew it was going bankrupt back in 2007. Back then somebody looked at the books and said “we’re going out of business somewhere in Q2 of 2011 and there is nothing we can do to fix it.”

    So Linden Labs just wants to go bankrupt quietly, without getting sued by well funded legal departments like large corporations and educational institutions tend to have, so they needed to get rid of them.

    First they drove out the corporations using horrible customer service. They hoped this would send the academics running for the hills as well, but they underestimated the lousy customer service experience that is the modern educational system. Academics give each other worse customer service than Linden Labs gives it’s customers, so that didn’t work at all (seriously, you ever talk to a bursar or financial aid department, or god forbid, a professor? They’re all sadists!).

    Then they tried targeting the academics by killing the academic SL wiki and booting Woodbury over dirty politics while continuing to increase pressure with horrible customer service while claiming the JIRA and knowledge base are being “upgraded” periodically. That got at least half of them out, but academics are a tenacious lot.

    Then SL took out the big guns. They decided to kill the teen grid, which should kill at least some of the academics, right? That didn’t get rid of enough of them. They still have some large schools with scary legal departments in SL, and they need to leave quick before SL files chapter 11.

    In desperation, LL decided to double the price of academic sims in 3 months. Now they’ll be rid of almost all of them, they hope. Now they can go bankrupt in peace.

    And then I found five dollars.

  5. Pappy Enoch

    Oct 5th, 2010

    Bubblesort, you am brilliant. I’m a gonna send your theory to an egghead feller who loves bein’ kicked by LL. I reckon he’ll run it in his blob. Just don’t expect no money cause he’s tighter’n Miss Petunia Courtney Amaryllis Taliaferro’s cornhole.

  6. Darien Caldwell

    Oct 5th, 2010

    they already killed off education when they closed the Teen Grid. That’s where most of it was. So this announcement is no surprise.

  7. We

    Oct 5th, 2010

    Sounds like a good thing to me that they’re refocusing their attentions on the core base of SL. I’ve seen a lot of educational sims in SL, almost all of them perpetually empty and unused.

  8. Hylee

    Oct 5th, 2010

    Hmmm….. perhaps these are not decissions made by the game gods at all. Could it be someone else is really calling the shots?
    LindenSoft or MicroLabs….. ;)

  9. Alyx Stoklitsky

    Oct 5th, 2010

    University sims are all a joke anyway.

    Yeah, I just said that.

  10. zyngo

    Oct 5th, 2010

    Can we blame zyngo?

  11. Cai Pirinha

    Oct 5th, 2010

    Move along, nothing to see here

    Educators that don’t need SL’s servers are going to Open Sims anyways sooner or later, if they are not yet there anyways.

    Those that need SL or want to rely on it will continue to use it and pay the new prices.

    Any loss from the ones that may fall in between will be more than offset by the rise in revenue from the ones that stay.

    In the end, education is simply not important enough for LL to care about one way or the other

  12. Kinoko

    Oct 5th, 2010


    Yus This could all be true, I mean LL Should lower all the costs on Tier down to $195 a month, or $150 a month for all Regions, No more Homesteads, $150 a Month gets you a full region, with a $300 setup fee. All Homesteads as of now, or open spaces are upgraded for free if the person wishes to keep them, and a locked rate that the price will not increase, or decrease. I should not be having to sit here and listen to omg my GrandFathered Tier may go up because LL Decides it will next year and such…

    Provide SL as a service as is. There is no way to stop content theft, and there never will be as long as LL is in control, I have recently found new exploits as well, that wont be getting fixed for sure, because they really can’t be, and even if they did I could find more ways past it. Instead LL needs to get rid of all these idiots like they did with Emerald & Get rid of Skills from this grid. Once this is done, and the service is provided as is no Data Mining systems allowed period I am sure more people will come to SL, but until LL sits back on their asses, and does nothing about the privacy violations, and can’t control content theft which really isn’t theft anyways there is nothing anyone can do.

    Also all the content theft networks I have been monitoring have increased over 100% In size in less than 2 months,and half the peole sharing stolen content are actually legit customers… Yes that is rite… So basically they clone themselves and stick it on the net for free download for others.

    So damn right LL is going bankrupt… They need to advertise this service as is, remove the ability to illegally datamine residents, ban those people who refuse to delete all data without permission, and require all scripted objects, and land media to ask consent before relaying any info including IP, and such to SL just as it asks permission to take money, this way a person can decline stuff they don’t trust that uses any type of network connections if they want.

    This means that users without the use of illegal tools can ban content thievs, or do anything they please, however LL does not get involved anymore in anything except basic management of rules like No chat spamming im’s no harassment im’s, and dealing with general griefing or crashing of sims thats is it.

    Anything else like Racism, Nigg** cussing or such on a private sim, or in im the user would simply deal with it and mute, or ban from lands, and use their own scruity that is not IP logging, or a banlink like CDS. No more saying what people can’t and cant do like they did with woodbury.

  13. Aminom Marvin

    Oct 5th, 2010

    Hahaha. More social experimentation, and the theatre of such, as given to us at LINDEN LAB.

    Haven’t enough of you fools realized that the entire development process of Second Life is staged, and that the entire program is the world’s biggest psychological experiment? It is all an ACT, all the residents are rats in a maze, with the maze purposefully tossed and turned chaotically to see how the blind nice run.

    Second Life is and was memetically engineered; the residents within it ARE MEMETICALLY ENGINEERED.

    Manipulated by the mathematic application of game theory and abstract algebra to the synthetic production of memeory genes.

    I _won all of second life._ Qarl Linden taught me perceptual topological representational algebra, and I used all my encyclopedic knowledge to apply MATHEMATICS TO MY OWN DOME. I am now a hypomanic, tripolar superhuman and the mathematical master of the magical manipulation of the memetic manipulators! I am a MEME MIME MIMICK BITCHES.


  14. General Drama

    Oct 6th, 2010

    Aminom, you so crazy….

    There is so much insane shit been happening at the lab the last few years, there’s only to rational explanations for it:

    a) there are people high up in management who are being paid by the competition to purposely destroy the company.

    b) as Aminom says, its all a huge social experiment studying how to destroy economies through increasing “government” (assuming LL is the de facto state in the world of SL) regulation. Perhaps as part of the contract that LL has with the CIA. You may recall the CIA owns a venture capital firm which is one of the major investors in Linden Lab. It may not be an accident that each phase of economic destruction in Second Life initiated by the Lab preceded by 6-12 months similar economic destruction in the US economy…

  15. Gundel Gaukelei

    Oct 6th, 2010

    c) plain old incompetence

  16. Aminom Marvin

    Oct 6th, 2010



    the correct answer is all of the above

    General Drama’s two answers, and Gundel’s answers. Folls are incredible mines of fool’s gold, which is troll’s food. the more a troll is fed, the more the troll knows about trolling.

    If you understand the philosophy, mathematics, and _WHOLE THEORY_ of “trolling (IE, narrative questioning to get a response) you learn THE SHIT.

    I just became the overlord of all second life, BTW. I have been memetically engineered to be the ultimate metagame player.

    I am Am I Nom. I nomnom memes to mime memes. I BOMB memes to mine memes. I mine memes to see dreams.

    I just turned into the world’s greatest supervilliain, the greatest troll of all time, and through innate, accidental memetic breeding I have built an entire empire around me IRL I am taking the _wheel_ of.

    Welcome, meme mime minions, to My Magical Memetic Empire.

    SEE: my page. Lern 2 be a MATH GOD.
    Of course, if you want to cross over the bridge I have, you’ll have to pay the _troll toll._

    Ask me about: how I memetically seeded /b/ and thus MOMMED ANON.

    Not my personal army. My memetic army of mimicks!

  17. Father Jones

    Oct 6th, 2010

    SL is going down. Simple as that. Linden Lab deserves it since they kept supporting illegal gambling even though they officially claimed it was banned. The crooks are eating each other now. Taegan Linden was fired because she served and supported a resident that got many residents accounts banned in his own favour and for no hard proof: Aargle Zymurgy, the programmer from Texas. Indeed, that is the creator of Zyngo, the most widespread gambling device in SL. They all deserve to get down and the signs are there for months.

  18. Mariko Nightfire

    Oct 6th, 2010

  19. Little Lost Linden

    Oct 6th, 2010

    “Look for Linden Lab’s move to accelerate the flight from Second Life to alternatives to such as OpenSim for those who remain committed to virtual environments in education.”

    Don’t forget Planet Michael…

  20. Aminom Marvin

    Oct 6th, 2010

    Also, traditional “education” is a dinosaur that must be killed; all that is left are ignorant old men who don’t know shit and are still clinging to their degrees. Dusty old mummies trying to impregnate Hot Bitches like us, when we know how to FUCK.

    we all have PHD’s in 1) Internets 2) Video Games 3) Porn. that is the best possible education ever. Science has increased exponentially in synch with sechnology; video games made entire generations of innate scientists, and now new sciences have been found and have been applied even before recognized or described.

    We eat, fuck, and shit science. we find new sciences every day on the internet, think “LOL COOL TOOL” and use it without thinking. What’s happening now is that the supreme sages are beginning to look back and go, “WTF mate?”

    WTF indeed.

  21. Pappy Enoch

    Oct 6th, 2010

    “Dusty old mummies trying to impregnate Hot Bitches like us”

    Hoo whee. I knowed I shood o’ stayed in skool. I could o’ bekum one o’ them profusser rascals and got me sum hot action.

    I wood not be some mummy but I wood be askin’ gals, “tell me hoo am yo’ DADDY!”

    I do gots a PHD: Piled Higher an’ Deeper.

  22. Aminom Marvin

    Oct 6th, 2010

    Mariko Nightfire: A shitty build with textures slapped on you can find 3489344382 pictures of on the Internet.

    It’s LOL IRONY that you using a Christian example as well. Churchstainanality is a religion of slaves, with its beliefs quazi-held even by many self-professed atheists and monists!

    Churchstainanity will be destroyed and is being destroyed; replacing it is the religion of the will to power and magic; the religion of instantcalamity.

    The -branch- of the linden is leafy and green indeed!
    Second Life: School of the Ubermensch.
    We are the bunch.
    The uber bunch.
    Munch a bunch.

    Pappy Enoch

    Oct 6th, 2010

    “Dusty old mummies trying to impregnate Hot Bitches like us”

    Hoo whee. I knowed I shood o’ stayed in skool. I could o’ bekum one o’ them profusser rascals and got me sum hot action.”

    Hell naw. Being The Icyhot Stuntaz is where it is at. I’m such a PIMP that I turned my own bitch out, and FLIPPED MY OWN BITCH.

    “I do gots a PHD: Piled Higher an’ Deeper.”

    My PHD is this: Put Hand on Dick.
    My education has been nothing but masturbation, and mucho procrastination.

  23. hobo kelly

    Oct 6th, 2010

    “We don’t get no Salmon Dinners… (dum da dum)…

    “We don’t get no Tender Cuts… (dum da dum)…

    “No Chunk Dark Tuna in the Cat Bowl… (dum da dum)…

    “Neva… feed… your… cats… at home…

    “Hey! Neva! Feed your cats at home…

    “All in all it’s just a… ‘nother FIC in the Stall…

    “All in all another FIC ate it all…

  24. General Drama

    Oct 7th, 2010

    I see Aminom’s ego hasn’t suffered at all in the recent downturn. Keep it up, there is no limit to the number of morons you can impress if your bullshit is self consistent like Aminom’s is.

  25. At0m0 Beerbaum

    Oct 7th, 2010

    Education in SL was a joke anyway.

    The only educational campus worth visiting was woodbury.

    Yes I did learn things there, such as how it feels to be subjected to tyrannical rule (Linden Labs) and to fear that you’ll lose everything on a whim.

    LL wasnt making shit from schools, or rather, as much as they wished for.

    Most bean counters will notice the increase and be like “wait we were paying for that? wow didnt notice!” and yank the funding and the sims go bye bye.

    LL just killed another stable revenue stream. good.

  26. Bubblesort Triskaidekaphobia

    Oct 7th, 2010

    I ran into somebody yesterday who had a flip title thingy saying he was protesting the academic price hikes. I couldn’t help it, I laughed at him.

    I didn’t laugh because I disagree with his message, just with the medium he chose to express it with. I have more to loose from this than most people. I’ve spent 4 years building and running Whitmyre Island, which is the most trafficked RL university sim in SecondLife (we’ve held that spot for about 3 years now). I’m at least as mad about it as this guy was.

    I just thought it was ridiculous to protest in world. LL has taught us time and time again that talking to them is like screaming at a deaf person. It does nothing but make you look stupid.

    If we really wanted to seriously protest we would have to take a page from the Liverpool Football Club.

    Liverpool FC club owners Tom Hicks and George Gillet are driving their team into the ground and are now running out of money, so they are trying to get financing to avoid bankruptcy (sound familiar?). The Liverpool fans have these two guys doxed and under surveilance. Every bank they walk into or call gets spammed with millions of angry emails and letters from Liverpool fans begging the bank to not do business with this guy. The idea is that if they can’t get financing they will be forced to sell the team.

    Here’s an article about the pressure they put on bankers to not deal with Hicks or Gillet:

    How long do you think Rosedale would continue his insanity under pressure like this? How quickly could SL residents kill whatever takeover Tizzers was talking about if we really cared? (assuming Tizzers was right)

    Want to see a video of how angry the Liverpool fans are?

    I’m as mad at LL as these fans are at the Liverpool owners. I’ve spent 4 years building an academic presence in SL, cheer leading and pitching SL to RL profs, administrators and students who don’t see any value in it, getting no help at all from the Lab other than the price cut and now LL cuts me off. It’s not like I didn’t do anything for the lab in return for that discount. I had to keep the sim PG and non-commercial in order to keep it. Do you know how difficult it is to keep a big sandbox PG and non-commercial when your traffic is getting as high as 25k sometimes? That discount was not free. I darn well earned that 50% discount, and in doing so I brought more avatars into SL than any of the scheming, sleazy land barons (who are still getting Atlas perks) and got them good press in major regional news papers when Wired wouldn’t acknowledge their existence. This is the thanks I get.

    Anyway, I’m off to open sim where I hope I’ll find a technology that deserves my attention and care. I’m sure I’ll be seeing the rest of you there in a few months.

  27. Darien Caldwell

    Oct 7th, 2010

    “we find new sciences every day on the internet, think “LOL COOL TOOL” and use it without thinking.”

    It’s the not thinking part that is the problem. A generation of doers with no thought given to what they are doing, and the consequences it will bring.

    The rational mind does equal parts of doing and thinking.

  28. Judge Joker

    Oct 7th, 2010

    @Bubblesort Triskaidekaphobia

    Use Twitter, it’s been remarkably useful to get 140 characters of anger directed at each one of them, It totally by passes all the ignored tickets and bullshit by employees with no interest in helping you plead your case.

    Worked for #EmeraldGate, & works for everything else.

  29. Axel Oakleaf

    Oct 7th, 2010

    @:We, I know what you mean. One sim i to go to has a university i went to IRL i keep telling them they need to rent ad banners at various places to get more people to the place,but they never listen.

  30. AG

    Oct 8th, 2010

    @Bubblesort – you have a odd way of treating new friends Bubblesnot. Your SL and sim work may be impressive, but your character is not. I hope you don’t treat everyone who is kind to you that way, you are in for a bumpy ride.

  31. Bubblesort Triskaidekaphobia

    Oct 8th, 2010

    @ AG: What are you talking about? Do I know you?

  32. Dave Bell

    Oct 10th, 2010

    The key question is what Linden Lab have to sell the educational market. What makes them better than just setting up a computer and running a few regions with OpenSim software?

    Start with running the server software. There’s some specific sysadmin skill needed. But is the service side of SL good enough to sell?

    And then there’s the huge amount of user-created content. Which they don’t want to see copied. (I think I’d better check the terms of service, before I try to distribute any of my creations on OpenSim.) But so much of it is potentially embarrassing to the education market.

    This might be an opportunity for somebody to set up a specialised Grid Service for education. It would block out so much of SL which could be a problem.

  33. archie

    Oct 17th, 2010

    Its those buggers that give SL some semblance of street cred.

    Way to shoot yourselves in the bloody foot guys

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