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Town Hall 7/18/06

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Forum Link: Transcript Post

Town Hall with Lawrence Linden
Topic: Economics
07/18/2006
9 AM PDT




Jeska Linden: Hello all, thank you for joining us for the economic Town Hall with Lawrence Linden. Lawrence will be joining us shortly.
Jeska Linden: As a reminder, today's Town Hall will be focused on the recent economic changes announced in Philip's Blog yesterday (read here: http://secondlife.blogs.com/philip/ )
Jeska Linden: w then, before we start a few tips for best enjoyment of this Town Hall. We'll be starting with a basic introduction about the new economic changes. Then Lawrence will be taking some questions.
Jeska Linden: If you'd like to ask a question, please join the group Linden Town Hall Questions and ask in there - this is where we'll be pulling questions from. :)
Jeska Linden: Questions will be answered, as time permits, in the order they appear in the IM channel.
Jeska Linden: Please submit on-topic questions - we're discussing the economy today! Please don't submit your technical support questions, as they will be skipped over. Also, please try to keep your questions as concise as possible to allow the best conversation flow.
Jeska Linden: Also, if you've joined us here in Pooley, please try to keep your IMs and offers of friendships till the end :)
Jeska Linden: Lawrence, take it away!

Lawrence Linden: welcome everyone, thank you for attending this townhall
Lawrence Linden: Yesterday we announced three things; a stipend change for new Premium accounts, the commencement of L$ sales by Linden Lab, and some additional, public LindeX "circuit breakers"
Lawrence Linden: I'll summarize these and talk a bit more about the longer term.
Lawrence Linden: For new Premium accounts the weekly stipend is reduced from L$500/week to L$400/week. Existing Premium accounts continue to receive L$500/week.
Lawrence Linden: We will begin selling L$s on LindeX. Until otherwise announced we will be using an account that is at the Currency Trader 2 tier, and restricting our sales to less than 5% of LindeX volume for the preceding 30 days. Other restrictions will apply
Lawrence Linden: to the trading, please see the announcement for more details.
Lawrence Linden: We are also adding automated market halts. Should the market move too much in one 12 hour period the market will automatically shutdown until it is restarted. The halts begin at a 10% market move and a suggested one hour cool down. Larger market
Lawrence Linden: moves will result in longer cool down periods or other reprocussions.
Lawrence Linden: You can find more detail in the announcement.
Lawrence Linden: The primary motivator behind these changes is to get to a point where the L$ sources are dynamic instead of having a fixed ratio to the number of residents. This will make it easier to balance the mark
Lawrence Linden: -et input and output and we hope will have a beneficial effect upon exchange rate stability.
Lawrence Linden: That wraps up my summary.
Lawrence Linden: Let's move on to questions.

Jeska Linden: If you've got questions, please submit them to the Linden Town Hall Questions group IM
Jeska Linden: First question:

Jeska Linden: LupineFox Paz: My question concerns the future of casinos. Recent legislation limits credit card use and many people use credit cards for SL and do some gambling and LL facilitates the conversion of Lindens back to real dollars...
Lawrence Linden: L$ are not money. Beyond that I'm not qualified to offer legal advice, please feel free to submit your concenrs to the Second Life Answers forum, we'll answer what we can,
Lawrence Linden: and for other thing suggest you seek legal counsel.

Jeska Linden: Just a reminder everyone: please use the group Linden Town Hall questions to get your question in the queue :)
Jeska Linden: Stroker Serpentine: Why isnt direct buying of $L by Linden Labs as well as selling being considered as an option to stabilize $L value...considering that there could be profitable margins involved as with any trading?
Lawrence Linden: direct buying has been considered as an option. At this time the costs out weigh the benefits. Perhaps someday the situation will be reversed.

Jeska Linden: LordJason Kiesler: When the news about LindeX was quite new, many people were concerned with the possibility for abuse by Linden Lab. Please explain the intent, and meaning of these two statement:.
Jeska Linden: "Linden Lab will not be partipating in this market as a buyer or seller, and Linden Lab will not be creating currency to support this market."-Philip Linden
Jeska Linden: "I think the market (when it is large enough) is indifferent, which is good - it values everyone equally. And does so more objectively than people."-Philip Linden.</Q>
Lawrence Linden: When we announce things that aren't typically intended to represent permanent policy. As conditions change, as we learn how to better Second Life, we have to make adjustments to policy. What Philips said represented the best policy for the
Lawrence Linden: conditions at that time. The market has grown substantial, as has the community, with that we've seen the need to make changes to how new L$ and injected into the system.
Lawrence Linden: As such we're pre-announcing our policy changes and striving to be as open about the changes as possible.
Lawrence Linden: When we have opportunity to better SEcond Life, we're going to go for it. We're not going to be too proud to adjust course. The changes we're announce represent our
Lawrence Linden: best take on what will benefit Second Life at this time. Someday we'll change again to adapt to some future conditions.

Jeska Linden: Caye Curry: If you intend to phase out the stipend system slowly, whats the future of accounts looking like? Will there just be "one" type account w/ al la carte add ons (such as land)?
Lawrence Linden: Awesome, glad someone asked
Lawrence Linden: What you suggest is one of the options we're strongly considering. There are two main options we're considering: 1) adding value to the Premium account with new capabilities and 2) offering various things completely a la carte. We're still too early in
Lawrence Linden: the design process to say which way we'll go. Resident input on this matter is certainly valued.

Jeska Linden: Greggy Trilam: Does LL Foresee any Growth in Thrid Party Exchanges like Sl exchange when a Circuuit Breaker shuts the lindex down?
Lawrence Linden: In that situation it would be reasonable to expect that Residents might turn to other markets while LindeX is halted. However I don't anticipate seeing market halts on any sort of regular basis.

Jeska Linden: Roger Thunders: With the new changes to the SL economy, does this mean the balance of SL will shift more towards business and less towards a social environment?
Lawrence Linden: I don't see these changes precipitating such a shift. Having a more stable exchange rate benefits businesses and socially oriented REsidents alike.
Lawrence Linden: many residents purchase fashion and other items to enhance their social interactions, having a stable exchange rate helps in-world pricing stay more stable and competitive as well.

Jeska Linden: Ben Holt: Philip talks about creating jobs in SL. I've done research and cannot find what constitutes a reasonable salary. I know the market will ultimately determine this, but does LL have any guidelines for what consitutes a "reasonable wage"?
Lawrence Linden: No, at this time we're not offering any guidance on wages. As you mention, they will be determined by the market.

Jeska Linden: Kalo Division: For disciplinary actions, does payment status factor into the decision? Would someone with no payment info on file be more likely to be punished than someone with info?
Lawrence Linden: No, payment status does not factor in.

Jeska Linden: Conrad Kong: from what i understand is that there is a limit in buying lindens L$ trough a credit card of 150 $ a month, will that stay this way?
Lawrence Linden: currently the US$150/30 days buying limit is for residents that are less than 45 days old. We're working on a project right now to revamp the LindeX tiers,
Lawrence Linden: I expect the US$150 limit to stay in place but Some of the other tiers are likely to see adjustment. We're creating the ability to have tier limits not just in terms of US$, but
Lawrence Linden: also in terms of % of market. I'll post an announcement on the forums as we get closer to rolling out changes.

Jeska Linden: Sammi Moore: Is there any plans too change the ammount of money paid too instructors so there in line with stipend (500l$ too 400l$)?
Lawrence Linden: I'm not aware of any plans to change that. On a related note we are looking at ways to improve the instructor system

Jeska Linden: Nolligan Nino: What new capabilities are you thinking of offering to Premium Accounts?
Lawrence Linden: It's really too early to talk about some of the ideas, but there's been a large focus on how we can add additional value. REsident input on new capabilities is always needed.

Jeska Linden: Ok everyone, we're almost done with our hour, here's the last question:
Jeska Linden: LordJason Kiesler: Regarding statements about LL market-policy, should the 'we' just consider everything as, "not intended to represent permanent policy", or could this be made clear when such a statment is made? ...
Jeska Linden: What way should we inturpate the statements being made here?
Lawrence Linden: You should consider that the policies will last as long as they're the best practice available to us to address some portion of Second Life. You should expect us to pre-announce any major policy changes. You should expect to be open about why changes
Lawrence Linden: are being made.

Lawrence Linden: Thank you all for attending this townhall!
Jeska Linden: We'll be posting the transcript to today's Town Hall, along with yesterdays (which is already up) in the Sl Forums :)
Lawrence Linden: "us to be"
Jeska Linden: Thanks again to everyone for joining us today!
Pathfinder Linden: thanks folks

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