The Lindens have a survey out about Linden Homes that apparently has been sent to Premium members, or maybe just all Linden Home members. I have one that I converted to a site in the SL Public Land Preserve -- the wizard's castle. I like the Linden Homes concept and builds and all, it's just an unfair competition to inworld rentals businesses like mine, especially those that cater more to the low-end market and newbies. It's also competition to prefab builders for newbie lots, as the homes come with them.
The competition issue with these Lindens Homes (Coconut calls them "Linden Assisted Living" -- although she claims I called them that first) -- has been hashed to death and debated on all the forums and nobody seems to have been able to make a dent in what the Lindens are doing with it. On the face of it, I think anything that gets people easily inworld and owning land and thinking about their property with a sense of pride and privacy, which leads them to "settle in" and make the world more stable with friends and activities, and make the economy better with purchases, is all a good thing.
The Lindens seemed to get thousands and thousands of signups -- was it 50,000 or more? -- or at least get a lot of existing customers to use their free 512 with the premium up on a Linden Home, like me, or else buy the premium just to get the home -- and of course the free gifts and the nice, clean low-lag premium sandboxes.
Some people have bitched about the house selection or lack of control, but really, the house selection is about as good as it gets, for what it is, and you get more prims than you would owning a 512 outright due to the Lindens' easement plans and building strategies rooting the builds elsewhere to give you double prims.
So now the question on the surveys is this: what else do you want? I'm nervous about them a) tinkering with a good thing that seems to work (unless sales are off) and b) tinkering with it to become even MORE competitive with the rentals market, but there really is no pathway to expressing this dissent anymore. Unless I missed the memo, I don't think there is a "community" Linden for the Mainland anymore. That is, I realize that there is some kind of Linden now who I think deals with Nautilus but I haven't heard of inworld meetings or seen a blog. Maybe "those who know, know". I wrote to a few of those new community Lindens about the infohubs and never heard back except to get some boilerplate emails to apply to be in Destination, which wasn't exactly my point, since some but not all are already in Destination.
The questions on the survey ran like this -- would you like to have more control over your parcel? (what would that mean, exactly/)? Would you like to be able to remove the house and place your own? Would you like larger lots? More prims? Would you like social get-togethers?
I found myself saying "no" to all the suggestions about removing houses and making bigger lots so that at least some dissenting vote goes in to their plan to compete even more with the rentals business. One has to defend one's interests. Whatever happened to the idea that they were going to have land owners have advertising in the Linden Homes common areas for people ready to graduate up? I don't think anything like that was ever done. On the splash page for the land buying on the secondlife.com site, there are suggestions that you can buy a sim or rent an island but not rent mainland. That's often what happens. Because the Lindens don't really get anything out of people renting out mainland, especially, except one less person abandoning land. Kind of a negative. (BTW, if you think that everybody is "fleeing to the open sims," I just read somewhere that Open Sim is deleting 50 percent of their regions for non-use. We continue to keep finding out that virtuality is an acquired taste.)
I did check off "yes" to the proposition that the Lindens should hold more social occasions. I don't know why I think that's a good thing, but I think it is. There really isn't anybody in the Linden Homes set that can convene those sorts of neighbourhood barbecues, it doesn't look like any "Linden Homes Owners" groups ever got started, the way they did in Nautilus or Bayside (socialism kills civil society). While the prospect of hovering on an overcrowded sim of fellow elf-home lovers may seem a bit dismal, why not? It could be fun. The Lindens should have premium gift-givers that only go with Linden Homes, too, to sweet that pot.
The last premium gift was a bust for me because it came in mesh, so it was like some big giant blob. I did like the ones before that by Coleen Desmoulins, there was a nice bowl and lamp I put in my home -- not my Linden Home but my *real* home, so to speak, in Refugio.
Just because the Lindens do a survey doesn't mean they're actually going to do anything or change anything, but I do think somehow we should raise with them the issue again of the pathway from the Linden Homes to island rentals. Shouldn't they care about that, too?