The Second Life Sky Is NOT Falling

As new paradigms like the meshverse evolve, there always  seems to be a group of people who see a significant change as potentially cataclysmic when it’s just a growing pain. For example:

If you were about to buy a server or sim of “land” in Second Life, stop in your tracks, and think hard.

Because any time from today to three years from now, that land will likely become completely devalued and possibly even inaccessible except for further expenditure. … It will happen because of a choice Linden Lab itself has already made, which is to open-source the server code and create the possibility for people to host their own virtual worlds.

… Are you still doubting about this and thinking this is a tinfoil hat? Please, spare me. Listen to what the man says: “There is a clearly stated intent to let people put up their own servers, the only way to scale, to have one million servers.” So they will be making it possible, through licensing or open-sourcing, for their so-far badly scaling world to scale further — and do this by devaluing our land.

Second Thoughts: The Liquidity Event

Oh the drama! Look, I also listened to Mitch Kapor’s interview and noted that he made it clear that the business model will have to evolve. Will some land get devalued? Yes – it happens everyday out here in the world of tangible atoms. It is also true that some land owners will be more profitable because they will provide things that Linden Labs can’t at a competitive price. The people who lose the most will be opportunists/speculators riding on the investment of others(both residents and Linden Labs) without adding much value that choose not to adapt. I should note that I’m not saying that the author Prokofy Neva is an opportunist because I don’t know Prokofy Neva. Nor do I see an inherent moral issue here – Linden Labs isn’t out to screw you. As with any other form of speculation the risks are higher. If you’re a speculator, you should be watching the market carefully and understanding that you will need to adjust your tactics.

I think it’s safe to say that location will remain a key component of the value equation for all involved with Second Life, though it  will become more complex over time. Linden Labs will not be able to profit from a meshverse where location has little significance. Today, that significance is pretty narrowly defined but location value will change over time and those who don’t adapt will virtually die off.


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