Second Life’s cloud move could lower land prices, hurt OpenSim


London City region in Second Life. (Image courtesy David Kariuki.)

Second Life is moving its architecture to the cloud, Linden Lab announced last week, and that might help them offer lower land prices.

The reason? On-demand cloud-based regions would only be up and running if people are currently visiting them, similar to how the commercial Kitely grid works on the OpenSim platform, an open-source alternative.

Although Second Life did mention that moving to cloud will help them improve performance and could see them offer more products at cheaper prices, they did not release any details about upcoming land offers.

Kitely was in the cloud from the start, when it launched in 2011 and that allowed them to provide server resources only when they are needed, and thus reducing their hosting fees, Kitely CEO Ilan Tochner told Hypergrid Business.

The same could work for Second Life.

Ilan Tochner

“They will likely do so by offering people the option of paying lower tier in exchange for having their regions shut down when not in use,” he said. “They may also try to provide a pay-per-use option like Kitely used to offer, until we discontinued that option in 2015 when we decided that offering it was detrimental to our bottom line.”

Kitely now offers flat-rate packages starting at around $15 per month per region.

Changing the pricing model could also be a strategy to improve margins so that they are able to cover new salary and data center expenses for Sansar, a VR-friendly platform that is not currently bringing in revenues.

“It will be interesting to see how Linden Lab will balance using Second Life as a cash cow for funding their new platform, with offering additional pricing options that can affect their profit margins from second Life,” he said.

Will OpenSim users come back to Second Life?

Many current residents on OpenSim grids started out in Second Life, but moved to OpenSim for lower prices.

They were also drawn by other features, such as lower upload fees and currency exchange rates, larger regions, personal support, custom user management, and region and inventory backups.

“I still maintain that with the talent available within OpenSim grids that OpenSim has a very definite future,” Kea Nation grid owner Don Hayward said in a comment to a post.

But what happens if Second Life doesn’t just lower prices but also increase region sizes and allow exports? That could cause OpenSim users to jump right back, former Second Life creator since 2007 and Virtual Lisbon owner Carlos Loff told Hypergrid Business.

Carlos Loff

“Many will say — ‘no,’ and many will say, ‘ Second Life never again’,” he admitted. “But if you sit and relax and deeply think about it, the minute they seriously lowered their prices, increased land sizes and allowed OARs, I believe 90 percent of OpenSimers would dive back in Second Life right away.”

Loff has been a creator in Second Life since 2007 before moving to OpenSim but, like many OpenSim users, still has an account in Second Life and visits occasionally.

“For me, the main reason to leave Second Life, and I believe for many others, was the relation of land size verses land fees and OpenSim has a huge strong selling point — ten times more land with ten times less fees,” he said. “No matter which other aspects you bring to the equation, this is the determinant factor at the end of the day.”

Loff himself has three large projects currently underway in OpenSim.

“All this said, and with no offense to many wonderful OpenSim efforts, we must keep recognizing that OpenSim still has a bit of an refugee camp feeling,” he said.

Second Life has significantly more users, content, activities, and commerce, he said.

“They can — yes, they can — wipe out OpenSim in a few months,” he said.

Second Life, in addition to moving to cloud, says it will add features to the environment editor, introduce a grid-wide game experience, allow non-avatar objects to use more powerful and efficient animations, and introduce other creator tools.

Sansar not ready for prime time

Users in Sansar. (Image courtesy Linden Lab..)

Linden Lab’s new Sansar platform, designed around virtual reality from the ground up, was supposed to be the next-generation replacement for Second Life.

However, it’s been criticized for its steep learning curve, poor graphics and lack of collaboration tools.

High Fidelity, is another platform designed for virtual reality, created by Linden Lab founder Philip Rosedale.

In addition, High Fidelity is an improvement in that it has distributed architecture, is open source for both server and client and has better graphics with better shadows, said Lupus Furyo, who creates content for both platforms.

“Sansar was released in such a great rush, the only advantage it may have over High Fidelity is its shades,” he told Hypergrid Business. “The only advantage of Sansar could be, you can run it on a device with less demanding specs.”

Project Sansar. (Image courtesy Linden Lab.)

Sansar would be better with creator collaborator tools, one Second Life and OpenSim creator told Hypergrid Business.

“The quality of what we have seen in Sansar is amazing, but the tools to make it easy to create are not,” she said, requesting anonymity. “I understand it’s not supposed to be another Second Life, but I would like to see a few things change so we can collaborate because we enjoy working together.”


See Sansar creator preview video below:


Related Posts

David Kariuki

David Kariuki is a technology journalist who has a wide range of experience reporting about modern technology solutions. A graduate of Kenya's Moi University, he also writes for Cleanleap, and has previously worked for Resources Quarterly and Construction Review. Email him at [email protected].

59 Responses

  1.' Da Hayward says:

    One Big issue with SL is recently it has been plagued with “unscheduled maintenance” and in my opinion is becoming a very unstable grid.
    Cheaper land is only one of the issues in there. A few are now discouraged by the price of add on services like premium membership, upload fee’s and the cost of L$.
    Offering Cheaper land is not the answer…providing the service is

  2.' Jamie Wright says:

    If you’re a builder and you’re used to the OpenSim now, to go back to paying for texture uploads to a corporation that makes you agree to a TOS that states they “own” your uploads and content you create is ludicrous. I’m an occasional tourist in SL but I will do my creating in the OpenSim and continue to enjoy it’s freedoms. That’s just my opinion.

    •' Carlos Loff says:

      Hi, present conditions at SL does not make me think just for a bit about going back, that is not what my opinion was about, cheers

    •' James Fullerton says:

      A few thoughts on corporate trust.

      As an educator involved in Teen Second Life (remember that) in 2007, I was deeply disappointed when TSL was canceled and thrown onto the adult grid. I was present at a conference when our hero, Philip Rosedale, made a surprise appearance at our break-out session to drop the bomb on educators heads. Years of content creation and curriculum design gone is minutes.

      In reflection, I am still a little angry and disappointed – I feel a loss as well as to what-might-have-been.

      Now I pinch myself every time I start to fall in love with a corporation and think that they have my (the publics) best interest in mind. No more “Lindens” making surprise appearances and telling me how much I’m loved and appreciated.

      Remember this, corporations are psychopaths. They are designed as such. And as long as I’m aware of that fact, I can have a guarded relationship with corporations – yes, even Linden Labs/Second Life again – (maybe).

      Because this time I refuse to fall in love.

      P.S. I too, once or twice a year, still sign into SL and think, what-if. (And why is lag still an issue?)
      SL – Jaeger Vollmar, 2007

      •' John_Westra says:

        A ‘Corporation’ is merely one particular financial construct a business might adopt. Having owned, ran, been part of and been a shareholder within multiple corporations, as well as sole proprietorships, I have learned the structure of a company does not make it inherently wrong/evil or right/good. The one caveat to that would be my belief it is harder for Publicly Traded Corporations, which Linden Lab is not, to place customers needs above those of shareholders.

    •' Hal Jordan says:

      The ToS has changed.

      •' Han Held says:

        Yes it has, several times a year.
        In fact several people, including members of the SL arts scene left because of changes to the TOS.

        LL stuff? :

        2.1 Linden Lab owns Intellectual Property Rights in the Service and the Linden Marks.

        Linden Lab owns Intellectual Property Rights in and to the Service,
        including but not limited to the Linden Content, Software, the Servers,
        and the Websites related thereto, and in and to our trademarks, service
        marks, trade names, logos, domain names, taglines and trade dress
        (collectively, the “Linden Marks”). You acknowledge and agree that
        Linden Lab and its licensors own all right, title, and interest in and
        to the Service, including all Intellectual Property Rights therein,
        other than with respect to User Content.

        You understand and agree that without a written license agreement
        with Linden Lab, we do not authorize you to make any use of the Linden
        Marks, including but not limited to “LINDEN,” or “LINDEN LAB”. Use of
        the Linden Marks in whole or in part is subject to the guidelines and
        terms of any applicable license provided in our Trademark Guidelines.

        Except as expressly granted in this Agreement, all rights, title and
        interest in and to the Service, and in and to the Linden Marks are
        reserved by Linden Lab. Copyright, trademark and other laws of the
        United States and foreign countries protect the Service and the Linden

        But your stuff? :

        Except as otherwise described in any Additional Terms (such as a
        contest’s official rules) which will govern the submission of your User
        Content, you hereby grant to Linden Lab, and you agree to grant to
        Linden Lab, the non-exclusive, unrestricted, unconditional, unlimited,
        worldwide, irrevocable, perpetual, and cost-free right and license to
        use, copy, record, distribute, reproduce, disclose, modify, display,
        publicly perform, transmit, publish, broadcast, translate, make
        derivative works of, and sell, re-sell or sublicense (through multiple
        levels)(with respect to each Product or otherwise on the Service as
        permitted by you through your interactions with the Service), and
        otherwise exploit in any manner whatsoever, all or any portion of your
        User Content (and derivative works thereof), for any purpose whatsoever
        in all formats, on or through any media, software, formula, or medium
        now known or hereafter developed, and with any technology or devices now
        known or hereafter developed, and to advertise, market, and promote the
        same. You agree that the license includes the right to copy, analyze
        and use any of your Content as Linden Lab may deem necessary or
        desirable for purposes of debugging, testing, or providing support or
        development services in connection with the Service and future
        improvements to the Service. The license granted in this Section 2.3 is
        referred to as the “Service Content License.”

        TLDR; what’s ours is ours; and what’s yours is ours, too.

        •' Hal Jordan says:

          Well if you don’t give them permission to copy and reproduce your inworld creations then they can’t store them on their servers and display them to whoever wants to see them. Sometimes computers do seem complicated, but this is really basic information.

          TLDR; No one can see your stuff unless you let Linden Lab display it to them.

          •' noxluna says:

            Hi Hal, there’s a vast difference between merely letting them display it and them claiming complete ownership and taking the right to sell, re sell, distribute etc. Furthermore the only way one has of clearing ones inventory in the event one doesn’t agree with the TOS, is to agree TO the TOS.

          •' Hal Jordan says:

            Hello, noxluna. I believe this is a misreading of the ToS. From what I can tell, LL is not “claiming complete ownership” of user-created products or content. In fact, section 2.3 of the ToS states pretty clearly that “You retain any and all Intellectual Property Rights you already hold under applicable law in Content you upload, publish, and submit to or through the Servers, Websites, and other areas of the Service, subject to the rights, licenses, and other terms of this Agreement, including any underlying rights of other users or Linden Lab in Content that you may use or modify.”

            LL sells your product, sure…on their Marketplace. They take the money and give you back most of it while retaining a small service fee (I’m not a Marketplace user but that’s my understanding of how it works). From the complaints I’m hearing here, it sounds like people have seen LL selling other people’s creations and keeping all the money. Has that really happened, or is it just someone’s speculation that it could possibly take place?

  3.' noxluna says:

    Great article David, and I hope you don’t mind my putting my personal thoughts in here. For starters not all people who leave (and in fact the majority of people who have followed me out of SL are like me) SL do so due to costs. Many, and I mean MANY leave due to the poor service LL affords its greatest resource…its customers. They pulled all their talent but for a skeleton crew to handle SL over to sansar. As far as costs go, as almost all of opensim has shown..there’s no reason for the high prices LL has been charging people. Ebbe had said on several interviews that LL would “cannabalise” sl in order to support its sansar operations…Hello…. As far as the comment in the article about “rushing sansar”…they kept putting the date off. They were talking about sansar (well sl 2 it was called at first) way back in 2014. Its no surprise to many of us that sansar is lacking if only for the fact that LL is the one running it.

  4.' Da Hayward says:

    Just wanted to add one bit and by no means any disrespect to Carlos whom most of us who know him think he is one of the most pleasant blokes one could meet. the comment in the article.”we must keep recognizing that OpenSim still has a bit of an refugee camp feeling”
    I disagree with that since coming to open sim i have witnessed an excitement and passion from residents in building their “world” the way they want it. I do not see any “refugee’s”. It as if Open Sim does indeed have the “magic”which first drew us to SL, unfortunately over time through changes in the big grid that diminished there. I honestly believe the majority of people migrating to Open Sim is for the reason that they can have “real” freedom in creating and enjoying these virtual worlds.
    It is just a thought no intention of starting a “fight” over it.

    •' Carlos Loff says:

      Hi, I respect all your positions and even if they are contrary to.mine, because you are a constructive person, even when not agreeing

      As I said, HGB shortened my article and highlited some statements that just became out of context, I will post soon my whole long opinion sent to David, cheers and we will surely keep meeting at OS

  5.' Han Held says:

    >being in secondlife
    >owning your own grid on your own server–WjwZkoxI–/c_scale,f_auto,fl_progressive,q_80,w_800/1238895886504840879.jpg

    Secondlife is where the people are, opensim (when run by yourself, on your own grid) offers the top to bottom ownership.

    Who says you have to choose one or the other? That’s just dumb.

    •' Da Hayward says:


    •' Carlos Loff says:

      I agree on the features choice part, but whom ever has a huge land and events project, something that takes months to prepare or has some store to open, may not simply have the TIME to act and develop on both platforms, so having to focus on one may signify, after all, the need for a single choice

      •' Han Held says:

        There’s pros and cons and honestly, it depends on the nature of the project. Obviously something that is intended to generate revenue will benefit from secondlife’s larger population and it’s associated infrastructure (marketplace, etc), whereas something that requires multiple sims -perhaps for education, would be better done in opensim.

        If I was in a mad rush to get a product out the door, I would want to be able to lean on secondlife’s 14 years worth of stuff so that I wouldn’t have to make everything myself.

        For most people, though, I don’t believe there’s a need to pick one over the other; it depends on what you’re doing (and your intended audience) and it’s fine to use one for one project, the other for a different project.

        •' Carlos Loff says:

          I akso agree that right now theres is not that need, my opinion was IF and only IF SL dares to offer as much as OS and ate the same rates, they wont, but YES THEY CAN

    •' Semi says:

      Where do you find people in Second Life? Every single sim is deserted.

      It’s either ancient content or it’s professional content. You will sit ten minutes for a parcel to load textures and then it is not worth seeing and there is no one else around.

      There is no room for a mid level creator and hasn’t been for years. People import stolen content or steal from creators within Second Life. The game has multiple issues it has never fixed.

      •' Han Held says:

        Odd, I have no problems finding regions that have other people in them. Have you tried the destination guide?

        As far as the rest goes? I make my own stuff, but I’m a beginner. Since I think one of the advantages of SL (and opensim) in my mind is the way it levels the playing feild viz-a-viz content creation I’m afraid I can’t really share your concern or opinion.

        Stolen content? One could be forgiven for thinking all the stolen content is in opensim, judging by the endless threads on the topic on G+ and facebook…

        Have you tried or considered Sansar or High Fidelity? I doubt either has much in the way of stolen content.

      •' AJ says:

        The only ‘stolen content’ I’ve been made aware of was on Kitely. An SL creator told me recently that they’d gone to check out Kitely and were shocked to discover a whole swag of their SL creations had been stolen. That was enough to turn me off. I’ll stick with SL. I feel like it’s about it take an upward turn again anyway and gain new life.

        •' Ilan Tochner says:

          Hi AJ,

          If your friend found any unlicensed content on our grid or on our marketplace then they can easily report it and it will be removed.

          You can report unlicensed content using the report link that exists on all Kitely Market product listings.

          You can report unlicensed content in the Kitely grid using the report link that exists on all Kitely World Pages and using this online DMCA form:

          There really is no need to make unsubstantiated accusations. If you point out a particular instance where people used content they don’t have a right to use then let us know and we’ll handle it.

        •' Semi says:

          There has always been copybotting and imported stolen content in SL.

          New life? If you enjoy SL then I hope it will.

  6. For us, we can’t go back, we are using too many advanced opensim features and OSSL commands that is not available in Second Life or Sansar yet.

    •' Carlos Loff says:

      That is a very valid point of view but don’t you think the biggest crowd and content would compensate for that eventual loss ??? Or have you achieved functions that are so new and exceptional that SL could not provide on the idealistic scenario.I painted ???

      • Yes, I moved from SL because of some constraints that prevented the implementation of certain applications. Just my opinion of course. I ve always been ‘application first, experience next’ kind of designer so I haven’t found too much of SL content that satisfied this need, hence my adventure elsewhere.

  7.' Carlos Loff says:

    MY FULL article and opinion – In case qanyone wabts to deeply criticize or argument against my opinions, please aknowledge my exact complete statements so your critics can be really fair


    Even if many do.not recognize it, SL is an “unfinished business” to everyone – if not, why did anyone deleted their SL accounts ???

    I developed many projects in Second Life, since 2007, including whole Sims and Homesteads, creating many personal friendships and collaborations, quite a few friendships even migrated to my RL, and I still go there from time to time, as many Opensimers still do, soe

    I also met many great people on Opensim, starde ambitious projects (none of them dead, just waiting in the closet) and follow and comment many blogs and forums, so I believe my opinion, although not statistical, is based on a comprhensive perception of reality, from both platform users

    I believe we are all much more attached to Second Life than we might think, even those that don’t login there for many months – SL is the reason why we are all here on the first place and our accounts were not deleted – Why haven’t Opensimers deleted their SL accounts, have you all thought seriously about that ???

    My deep believe is that people still have to much at stake in inventory and friendships at SL and the main reasons why so many flocked to Opensim is not just because they thought it was better and SL did not matter any more. It is mainly, with due small exceptions, because they were not happy at all with Linden Lab and felt themselves somehow on a dead-end

    The main stream of Opensimers are world creators, project developers and product sellers and although we find some time to attend parties, classes and events, we are all mostly on the production side and not on the consumer one, witch means SL still holds a huge ammount of pure consumers for products and events – we buy from each other but the gross consumer crowd is not here yet at OS

    For me, the main reason to leave SL, and I believe for many others, was the relation Land Size VS Land Fees and Opensim has a huge strong selling point – 10 times more land per 10 times less fees – that is just determinant for the actual OS success, no matter which other aspects you bring to the equation, this is the determinant factor at the end of the day – Would you all be doing what you are doing now at OS at the same SL’s fees rate ???

    On SL we could not afford long term projects and many time had to polute them with stores rentals or other side business to be able to cope with “unforgiving” tiers, also bringing many stress and personal wars between tier paying partners because LL was fast and furious digging into everyone’s wallets – Yes, many wars were based on stress and stress was based on time VS fees, think about it, you will endup agreeing

    Opensim offered us more space, more prims and more time, free of stress, even causing me, and others, to have more land and goals than we could attend and making me downsize, but not because of fees, hell we can even offer whole Sims to our old SL friends if they dare to migrate

    What lacks more on Opensim, for me, is content, in diversity and quantity – few months ago I tried opening a resort on an SL rented Homestead, one last try at their business mode and just managed to create all the main builds and infinit small decors and details, with living creatures and interactive gadgets and vehicles, all in just 4 days – Just had to dig into my huge inventory and browse and by few stuff, and by using my old populated groups got back in contacts and visits right away – Well, I closed it down, almost crying, after 2 months of unforgiving tier prices, but I had already done concerts and had some regular visitors – I had to give myself and SL one last chance

    On OS I just can’t find an interactive free roaming dolphin, I would get stuck in many contents, right from the begining and of course most potential renters/residents are creators that already own huge lands and projects

    All this said, and with no ofence to many wonderfull OS efforts (Me included with 3 huge projects), we must keep recognizing that Opensim still has a bit of an refugee camp feeling, not per se, but when we compare it with SL population, content, activities and business transactions – SL is like that ex girlfriend/boyfriend, with whom many issues are still pendent and not solved at all

    What we need and all wish for at the Metaverse, our dream scenario, is – either Opensim becomes big, filled with users and content or either SL becomes much cheaper and flexible – The first scenario takes loads of time and personal efforts, as we all know and have been trying since the begining – The second scenario is at the distance of an LL business-meet and at the simple click of few buttons, they could do it almost overnight, if not strategically they at least can technically

    Yes, yes, Opensim has some distinctive advantages – Megaregions, OARs and NPCs, just to name a few – But do you all think, if they really wanted, LL could not achieve all of that in one month work from their team ???

    Many will say – No – and many will say – SL never again – but if you seat and relax and deeply think about what you still hold on your SL account and legacy, the minute they seriously lowered their prices, increased land sizes and allowed OARs, I believe 90% of Opensimers woul dive back in SL right away, overnight, although emotionally most will not agree right away, without a deep reflection period

    So, I do not believe Linden Lab, with their huge mistery announcement, will bring the necessary revolution, at all, because they always prefered 1 pigeon at hand than 3 flying around, but… BUT – If they really do bring a Revolution, forced by Sansar faillure (yes – total faillure) and motivated by new techs, they can, yes they can, whipe out Opensim on a few months !!!

    •' James Fullerton says:

      I would agree with just about all of your opinions. And my money is on LL taking the low-risk conservative road. That’s where it’s history has been built – keep the cash flow going. I’ve listened to years worth of conversations and postings from SLers about what-if.

      I hate you LL (but I love you too).

      •' Carlos Loff says:

        I prefere to think SL is gone, but I will keep being honest enough to myself and recognise if SL did the dozens of miracles that they wont do but yet they can do, I would go back

      •' Carlos Loff says:

        The minute people could check SL website and saw – For only 25$ per month, buy a 4X4 megaregion, full server capacity, 40K prims, free textures and OARs uploads and downloads and bring your NPCs – please, let’s be honest – much much.much more than 10% would dive headfirst, even if it was just to see how it had really changed – 10% after reading that on the buy land section ? You know I’m right, lol

      •' Semi says:

        LL has always done as little as possible, apart from protecting LL (not users) legally.

        It is almost as if SL is a huge social experiment. 😉

    •' Arielle says:

      I didn’t delete my S/L account because it costs me nothing to leave it active. If I would have had to pay even $25 a year to keep it accessible, it would have been trashed years ago. When I do log in there I quickly realize how fortunate we are to have Opensim. No matter how cheap S/L becomes, it can never compete with me having the ability to run my own servers at home.
      The 90% who you believe would jump right back to s/l are perhaps those who have or could have potential commercial interests there, but that is only a small percentage of the existing Opensim userbase, so I would venture to estimate under the conditions you cite, only a small handful would leave Opensim. Probably less then 10%.

      •' Carlos Loff says:

        The minute people could check SL website and saw – For only 25$ per month, buy a 4X4 megaregion, full server capacity, 40K prims, free textures and OARs uploads and downloads and bring your NPCs – please, let’s be honest – much much.much more than 10% would dive headfirst, even if it was just for a land test, to see how it had really changed – 10% after reading that on the buy land section ? With all our friends and inventoriy and market smilling again ??? I can go dow to 70% but no less, think about it

      •' Carlos Loff says:

        The minute people could check SL website and saw – For only 25$ per month, buy a 4X4 megaregion, full server capacity, 40K prims, free textures and OARs uploads and downloads and bring your NPCs – please, let’s be honest – much much.much more than 10% would dive headfirst, even if it was just to see how it had really changed – 10% after reading that on the buy land section ? With all our friends and inventoriy and market smilling at us again ??? I can go dow to 70% but no less, think about it

        •' Dadiella Nightwing says:

          They would have to allow the Hypergrid, drastically improve their uptime, introduce NPC’s, and completely rewrite the marketplace for me to even be slightly tempted. After being spoiled by the service and quality I get from Kitely, and the great friends I have met in Opensim, and the freedom, SL gets less and less attractive.

      •' Semi says:

        A very small percentage.

        Once professional content creators moved in, the spirit of the original Second Life was destroyed, anyway. It was meant to be by and for the people within Second Life, not turn the masses into lookalike consumers of possibly stolen graphics.

        replying to “those who have or could have potential commercial interests there, but that is only a small percentage”

    •' JozeeTungsten says:

      I have deleted my Second Life accounts twice. I am a firm believer in not only burning but dynamiting my bridges.

      I keep a Second Life account now because Second Life is fun. It is full of life, people and shiny things. The platform works exceedingly well, especially compared to Opensim.

      However, it will never provide Opensim’s capability to just tinker with stuff for free. There are two different pastimes evident here: one as a passive consumer of things in Second Life; the other somebody making their own stuff, and learning about all sorts of different tools in Opensim.

      •' Semi says:

        Where are you finding life and people? No shortage of “shiny things,” although there’s a good chance some are stolen from creators who don’t even know SL exists.

        Every sim I’ve tried, when I sporadically check in on SL again, is barren of movement, except for my avatar boomeranging through the lag.

  8. David says:

    Point clearly explained. Thank you.

  9.' mikelorrey says:

    The minute SL allows people to export OARs there will be an exodus out of SL like we saw in East Germany just prior to the Iron Curtain falling. Peoples inventories are the only tool for LL to keep people hostage in SL. A slightly cheaper prison is still a prison.

    •' lmpierce says:

      Whoa! Aside from the implied overstating of the misery of people in SL compared to those who lived in East Germany, people are not actually trapped in SL. People joined of their own free will, and more importantly they can leave any time. Yes, some people have huge inventories that cost a lot of money, but at what point did anyone not know that 1) Those investments could not be taken with them and 2) it was an expense relative to free? It’s one thing to critique Linden Lab and choose not to be their customer, it’s absurd to imagine that people using Second Life are comparable to East Germans during the Cold War …and again, it’s the non-choice aspect of prison I’m referring to. There have been much milder ‘walled-garden’ arguments against Second Life, but when did that transform into being a ‘hostage’ and being in ‘prison’!

      •' mikelorrey says:

        Every user is a hostage to their inventories, which they cannot take with them. I was once one of the top 25 developers in SL. Linden Lab, the owner of SL, stole everything from me, a loss of a half million dollars, leading to a years long lawsuit. They are thieves, criminals, and slavers. Oh, and I happen to know that they purposely sabotaged their own economy with the casino ban, banking ban and advertising ban at the behest of one of their largest contracts, which was also one of their biggest investors (Accel Partners and the agency behind that firm), which was to study the intersection of social networks and financial networks, first to study how sleeper cells hide in normal society, and the collapse was to study how a financial collapse impacted an economy, before the 2008 debt crisis hit the real world. I know these facts because I was on the inside.

    •' Carlos Loff says:

      SL OARs can be limited to SL Code only, so people could only deal with their own OARs on their own lands, is feasable – otherwise yes, you are completely right and my millionare SL inventory would be the first to travel to OS rightaway, but that is even contrary to content creation laws

    •' 1derworld says:

      Prison is not SL only a good business model

  10.' Susannah Avonside says:

    I read this article with some interest, and whilst I knew that LL are moving to cloud hosting I would suspect that in the end they’ll go back to the current hosting method on conventional servers, at least for the mainland as I very much doubt that residents will be very happy with the inevitable delays involved in teleporting, waiting for regions to fire up so they can arrive there. For private sims I think it could be a great idea, as there must be a lot of land in SL that gets little traffic, and being up 24/7 is just a waste of resources.

    I am more concerned however, with the rather sensationalist aspect of the article, with the included FUD with all the ‘what if’ SL speculation. It’s highly unlikely that any of the suggested scenarios will come to pass, as I doubt very much whether LL give so much as a damn about OpenSim. SL is a bit of an obsession for some in OpenSim, not the other way around. LL will remain a company operating to make as much profit as it can, and that is probably more the reason they are moving to cloud than anything else. Cloud hosting will reduce their overheads, and whilst they might pass on some of the savings, I’m pretty sure the reason behind the move is more profit due to lower overheads.

    The hyperbole, (for there is no other word for it) about SL being the demise of OpenSim, really takes the biscuit! Most of us are here because of what OpenSim offers that SL is unlikely ever to offer. Freedom. SL isn’t free in any sense of the word. Firstly to ‘own’ any land in SL costs money, quite a lot of money, and though there might be a reduction in costs, I doubt that it will be as cost effective as OpenSim can be. I run my own regions running on a machine here at home. It costs me the electricity to run it, and I can run vast areas of land on it, I occasionally run my 1024 standalone, as well as a 2560 standalone and four 1024 vars on OSrid – that’s equivalent to 180 sims. Though this is perhaps an extreme example, I doubt I could ever afford to have that amount of land in SL no matter how low their tier charges are. There is also the speculation that exportation of builds could be allowed, but I think most of the fractious creator community in SL might have something to say about that – an OAR would amount to little more than a terrain map! Secondly, we are free to create, and be rest assured that we exclusively own the content we create, and don’t have to, on any terms, share it with a corporation that has an eye on potentially profiting from the creations of others. I’m not too surprised to see that LL included that kind of clause in their ToS, after all, they were only being uncharacteristically honest in telling us how it is with capitalism. If we arbitrarily did what they do, it’d be called content theft!

    If it was a hands down case of competition between OpenSim and Second Life, then commercially there is little doubt that Second Life could trounce Opensim, but there is no competition really. True, some of the commercially oriented OpenSim grids might be threatened, but it may be that there is more to it than just the cost of the land. But as it is, it’s largely I think, a case of comparing apples with oranges.

    As someone recently said to me, even if all development on OpenSim were to come to a halt tomorrow, OpenSim would still continue as long as there were people using it, and reports of OpenSim’s demise are wildly exaggerated.

    So, can we please stop having all this apocalyptic and dramatic sensationalism?

  11.' Cryptid says:

    Great Canadian Grid
    131,072m2 region $17 USD/month

    Second Life
    65,536m2 region $195 USD/month

    •' Michael Bradley says:

      Even better I have unlimited m2 for $Zero thanks to Hypergrid. Staring your own grid is ludicrously easy thanks to Ferd at OutWorldz. His DIY opensim grid installation kit has worked flawlessly for me. All it takes is opening a few ports on your router and installing a simple loopback network adapter. Ferd has a step by step ‘how to’ and that’s saying something since I am a Mac user since day one now running Windows 10 in Boot Camp (so new to it) and I was able to follow easily.

  12.' Helena O says:

    I will never understand people! You go away from SL because of the spirit (read = business) and then you feel that SL is better because of… xxx, xx, and “commerce”? oh my! Confusing, huh?

  13.' Dadiella Nightwing says:

    I get 16 regions in Kitely for $39.95. I used to get one private sim for $300 bucks a month on SL. Divide 39.95/16=2.49. So, SL would have to go from $300 a sim to 3 bucks a sim to compete price with Kitely, who is one of the more expensive opensim vendors. I did the math, and even if SL cut their prices by two thirds, they still cost too much.

  14.' Samantha Atkins says:

    Seems a bit speculative and over inflated. An announcement they are going to put servers on the cloud and that it “may” lower some prices is a long shot from being all that competitive with OpenSim. It may mean cheaper land but I see no reason to think it will give anywhere near the flexibility of OpenSim. And it is future plans, not something imminent.

  15.' Dadiella Nightwing says:

    So I am not entitled to have an opinion because I haven’t taken down my old, neglected marketplace store? I haven’t posted a new item there in years, lol.

  16.' Semi says:

    Nope! They screwed the pooch. They never fixed lag and they never cracked down on theft. Those were the 2 main reasons most people left Second Life. People will always pay for what they think is worth paying for. The high prices were a distant reason. They didn’t help, but if Second Life fixed lag and some other functional issues and theft issues players complained of for years, it would still be popular.

  17.' Semi says:

    I don’t think LL ever intended to profit. I think its own past actions show it is, rather, an open ended social experiment. They supply the basic foundation and see what people will do with it in ensuing years. If they did intend to profit, releasing their code was idiotic. What capitalist enables its own competitors?

  18.' mbug90 says:

    The real question is “Are they going to go through with it?”