Written 27 August, 2010
Does Second Life Have a Mole Problem?
Yesterday I read on Lou Netizen's blog that she had discovered new Linden Mole activity on the mainland. Specifically, the moles have in-progress builds on three sims: Celebes, Bohol, and Baltic in the newly-renamed Sea of Fables. Celebes and Bohol, which until recently were empty of everything except trees, have what looks to be a Greek village.
Lou, who is not a member of what my friend Melissa Yeuxdoux calls Second Life's landed gentry, has a history with Celebes and Boloh. Read here for her excellent blog post about that history.
Lou, sleuth that she is, discovered the prims she was unable to account for on Baltic had been used for a sim-wide underwater labyrinth.
The above link will take you to the ocean floor just a few meters from an opening that will drop you to the start of the labyrinth. If you fly above the water and set draw distance to 200 meters, you'll see the Greek Village-- or you can just fly north from the opening.
Lou wonders about the purpose of these little houses--
... and why the doors are the wrong shape.
The labyrinth is extensive, with few features to break its monotony-- but it's a challenge to walk. It makes for a fun outing. Pack a lunch.
Photo: This unfortunate avatar neglected to pack a lunch and died from malnupixeltrition before she could reach the end of the labyrinth.
Lou notes many other locations with new mole activity.
The obvious question here is why are the moles active in the Sea of Fables and elsewhere?
As Lou points out, the moles-- who are contracted by Linden Lab to create content-- were used to make such things as Bay City and Nautilus and the new (and immediately obsolete) welcome areas. They also build M.'s infamous Linden homes. But why are they creating a Greek village, and why a clearly recreational build like the labyrinth?
It's obviously of importance for Linden Lab to have SOME content in the world, but their activity impacts Second Life real estate. Land prices took a dive with the introduction of Linden Homes, and still haven't recovered. Yesterday I found the Jessgate sim, where I have a small property, nearly empty, with some parcels abandoned and some for sale for prices that would have seemed impossibly low only a year ago.
It's my opinion that the Lab will best serve it's interests by keeping its hands off of Second Life and letting the grid be what the grid will be. That means no Nautiluses, no Bay Cities, no Linden homes, no acquisitions of XStreet and Avatars United. The world is filled with dedicated and skilled creators and landowners who make better content and entrepreneurs who make that content work. A lot of the lab's decisions serve only to kick the content creators in the teeth. And competing with them by making second-rate Linden content-- that's just wrong.