You may have read the official announcement that AvaCon is not organizing a Second Life Community Convention this year. This post is not an official anything, it’s just one person’s opinion and personal perspective. I knew how I felt about organizing another SLCC after last year, but I remained silent on the question about this year to give the other organizers an opportunity to communicate whatever they ultimately decided to do. Now that they’ve done so, I feel some obligation to address the questions from people who want to know what happened.
To be clear, this is purely my own opinion / interpretation / understanding of events and doesn’t represent the position or opinion of AvaCon or the Board or any other organization or person I work with. I didn’t run this post by them or Linden Lab, and I hope I don’t get sued or something, but considering the nature of SLCC as a user-led community event, I think the Second Life userbase has an important interest in hearing fair comments and criticism from one former organizer of SLCC about what she thinks happened.
The tl;dr short answer of why there is no SLCC this year is because Linden Lab opted not to sponsor one.
I can’t say I was completely surprised considering the meeting we had with Linden Lab at their offices after SLCC last year. Instead of being treated like valuable customers who had just volunteered months of our lives working for no pay to organize a fan event for their product, we basically got chewed out for not producing the equivalent of BlizzCon. Seriously, that’s what they said. (Note to Linden Lab, if you want BlizzCon, you have to pay for it – BlizzCon had a budget in the millions.)
I’m sure it was easier for them to blame us than to face what I think is the reality of the situation: Second Life isn’t the draw it once was. The fact is, the number of people willing to pay to fly to a real world location to discuss it has dwindled over the years. As the number got smaller, the costs went up, which meant fewer people could afford to come, which.. the very definition of a vicious cycle.
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