Something which seemed to have passed my attention was the change to the registration scheme which happened last Tuesday. I actually was wondering why I didn’t got asked for my credit card when signing up an alt for my filming stuff.
So here’s the details:
– No billing information is required anymore for signup, just the basic information
– No start money of L$250,- anymore
– No weekly stipend of L$50 anymore (ok, this was changed earlier)
As dwell will also be away in 2 days (IIRC) there’s probably nothing to worry about anymore regarding massive creation of alts in order to create money (except maybe to get listed in the Favorite Places listing which I actually never looked at anymore).
So what does this mean to new users? On the one hand it’s easier to signup now. Many people I told about Second Life were actually driven away by the fact that they need to give that information (and in Germany there’s was no other way to signup when I was doing it). So for these people there’s now one burden less to join which is cool.
OTOH they won’t have any money when they arrive. Thus a big part of the SL world can not be experienced by them at first (for the consuming kind it’s shopping and for the creative kind it might be texture uploads etc.). Of course they can exchange some money but then they need to give billing information and at the beginning some people might hesitate to pay for it before they tried it more (but I am not sure on this as there are many games where you have to pay from the beginning on). I also wonder if it shouldn’t be mandatory to visit Help Island in order to meet at least some mentor before going to the real world. They can then tell new people about how to earn money etc. But as I am not too much into the mentor community it’s just a thought.
In any case, it might be interesting to see how much the user base will grow from that change, esp. the active user base.
(And if you’re reading this and never wanted to give your CC information before joining, it’s now the time to do so! 🙂