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((OOC)) Microsoft makes offer for Linden Labs



Okay so it’s a rumor. But if my logic is correct (SL is under pressure to find a high valuation/exit for one or many of their investors), here’s my prediction: this is true, and we’ll hear an announcement that Microsoft will TAKE A STAKE in LL by the end of the month. More here.

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  1. Cyan Icewolf Cyan Icewolf October 2, 2010

    If this is true it could be a very very good thing or a horribly bad thing… or it could also mean SL on XBox.

  2. Victor1st Mornington Victor1st Mornington October 2, 2010

    They wouldnt go for an all out buy out.

    Theres one single major problem with the backbone of SL, it runs on BSD/Linux.  There is absolutley no chance that the SL system could be switched to a windows back end without gutting out the entire grid and hitting the big reset button.

    The second problem is the money exchanging that goes on.  If microsoft was to fully buy out SL they would do what they done to The Palace (a very old virtual world)…they would close it and then merge its technology into something Microsoft was making.  If that happened Microsoft could expect lawsuits from people like Anshe Chung who make SERIOUS money in SL.

    Mr C’s consideration of Microsoft taking a shareholder stake in SL…now thats something Micrsoft would probably do.  Become a major shareholder, guide Linden Labs and SL into what Microsoft want it to be, and slowly but surley try and inject the windows platform into it while at the same time clamping down on the more in your face copyright violations going on within world.  A long game of about 3 to 4 years to shift SL into a direction more akin to Blue Mars where you need to be licensed to build and EVERYTHING thats brought into the world is checked by a member of staff first…that i can see…


    …Microsoft is already heavilly involved with ReactionGrid, the OpenSim style grid that was opened up by the makers of the Greenies sim i think?

  3. Bianca Namori Bianca Namori October 2, 2010

    Anshe Chung  has a hand in everything, even IMVU has their name all over it. Though it would be nice to have another platform to access secondlife, they really need to get stable. In short, very glad the rumor is truly a rumor.

  4. Mr Tenk Mr Tenk October 2, 2010

    checks calendar… nope, its not april.

    i stopped using yahoo as my primary email shortly after msn took over. it just wasn’t the same.

  5. Zaida Gearbox Zaida Gearbox October 2, 2010

    If this is true I predict a very big run on In Worldz. 

    My human still uses Yahoo as her primary e-mail just because she’s had that address since late 1996, and some of her friends are incapable of learning new e-mail addresses.

  6. Gabriell Anatra Gabriell Anatra October 2, 2010

    If MS does pull a buyout InWorldz and OpenGrid will become more popular, true. I don’t see that happenening though. Like Victor said, a buyin is more likely. That way they could influence the other investors and try to make this an MS-only shop for the users, if not for the back end.

    Expect to see more concern for marketing studies and such. MS is much more influenced by marketing than LL has been so expect to see even more of M’s thinking here. I imagine they’ll want to go after gamers and the Facebook market though instead of education and business.

    MS is also a little more sensitive to that Middle American suburban mindset than LL has been. Zindra might see tough times ahead as well as any adult rated areas.

    This is apparently sourced to Woodbury though so who knows?

  7. Yang Moreau Yang Moreau October 6, 2010

    As a long standing SL mentor, there is one thing that we always refer to when hearing a rumor. If it’s real, it’s on the Linden Blog. I seriously doubt LL would outright sell entirely to Microsoft, maybe having a share in stocks is one thing, but this sounds like just another of the panic rumors of LL going under because they’re letting Lindens go. As far as I’ve seen, it’s not in the Linden Blog and even the article says “IF this person is to be believed”. A lot of people seem to jump on these rumors and spread them through articles just to make people go “OMG!” and read their blogs and news sites.

    Reading some posts from the blog discussion pages, I find no confirmation of it being true by any Linden and even stating the source of the rumor having been a tweet from someone who is connected to a banned group and is a known griefer. So I’d say that kind of wads up the rumor right there and tosses it right in the trash bin. Especially since there is no Linden posted blog on it at all.

  8. Yang Moreau Yang Moreau October 6, 2010

    As for Anshe Chung, I really couldn’t care less if her business went down like a lead balloon. In my book she’s a few choice expletives and an underhanded cheat with no respect at all for the hard work of the artisans she hires or for others around her as fellow human beings.

  9. Queer Hermit Queer Hermit October 6, 2010

    From what my typist has read in the IT journals, M$ did make offers and/or purchases to about a dozen companies worldwide.  Most of the offers were under 75 million.  M$ is being really quiet about it most likely they were looking for new technologies for mobile platforms since this seems to be where things are going in a global viewpoint.  *IF* my typist was a betting person,  my typist would think that M$ would be seeking a major buyin to SL as a gateway to the Xbox but *NOT* a majority position as SL does nothing to enhance their company. In any case, in my recent travels I have stopped at Inworldz.  It is very SL-like and they have reduced the price for land to $75 a month for a region.  They also state that they will grandfather that price for 12 months after they leave beta.  It’s nice but it needs to grow a bit.  It would be a great place to start a new steampunk land.  From the chatter I was overhearing it seems SL merchants are coming there in case SL goes in the toilet.  In any case if Xbox would access SL what would that do to Zindra?

    • Gabriell Anatra Gabriell Anatra October 6, 2010

      It wouldn’t do anything directly. It’s not really the tech that matters, it’s the licensing, patents, and business connections. There’s nothing in LL’s tech that MS couldn’t do a comparable version of themselves, but they most likely want the business more than the tech.

      At least if this rumor has any truth to it.

      As for Zindra, if they do position it for the gamer market they’ll want to neuter it as much as possible sexually in order to avoid the bad publicity stemming from the irate soccer mom effect. Well, except for the beer babes, hoochies, and prostitutes in the background, of course. Some things you just don’t touch.

  10. Zaida Gearbox Zaida Gearbox October 6, 2010

    Wait?  So, the grandfathering of the $75 a month tier in Inworldz is only for 12 months after they leave Beta?  A friend of mine just gave up her SL sim to go get a sim in Inworldz because she was under the impression it is permanent.  Boy, she’s gonna be upset…

    I have set up an account with Inworldz, but I haven’t actually gone…um… in world.  Maybe I should because goodness knows of Microsoft gets their hands on SL – I’m gone.

  11. Jonathon Spires Jonathon Spires October 6, 2010

    Microsoft can, and often does, build a quality product. Certainly they couldn’t do much worse than the quioxtic management of LL. But I don’t think they’d want to sully their hands with a platform that already has an extremely seedy public repution. (about a few degrees above Red Light District). They’d be far better designing their own virtual world, making it different, and most importantly, making it profitable. You could almost see MS management’s head’s spinning around at the thought of buying a company whose pain product’s client and serverside software was already open source. And I would agree with them.

    Not to mention, MS owns Havok. I’m not sure what development goodies they could really get out of obtaining LL.


  12. Zaida Gearbox Zaida Gearbox October 7, 2010

    I actually logged into Inworldz last night.  I didn’t go far.  I hung around just long enough to find a freebie child shape and some really ugly noob hair.  The interface is pretty identical to the old SL interface.  And judging by the looks of the mentors hanging around the first rezz-in spot, the graphics are about where SL back when I was a grown-up about three years ago.  Seriously, even the mentors – supposedly experienced avatars looked like SL noobs to me.  So, the brief experience kind of left me feeling like ICK!  I also couldn’t shake the feeling of:  I want my braids!  I want my urchin clothes!  I want my wool cap!  And I have the definite unpleasant feeling that I might not be able to get them Inworldz unless I figure out how to create/upload them myself.  I also had that horrible feeling of:  Someone get me off Noob Island!  But, I have to finish – you know like putting on clothes and stuff first.  Then, I think I’m going off in search of Victoriana.  Someone told me there are Steampunk sims there, but they may have been talking about Victoriana.

    What else – at least when buying land from Inworldz – you have to buy entire regions for $75 a month.  They don’t have little mainland parcels like SL does.  I believe the option to rent from region owners exists like it does in SL.

    • Gabriell Anatra Gabriell Anatra October 7, 2010

      That’s a problem with getting in on the ground floor, you’re in a better position to establish a presence, but you’re still the ground floor.

      There are some sims parceled up for rent, I think. At least I’ve heard so.

    • Cyan Icewolf Cyan Icewolf October 7, 2010

      That was my problem with it too. It’s SL a couple of years ago and I miss my cheetah and can’t find a way of legally copying him and pasting him into Inworldz. At the same time I don’t want to go and start spending more money on another virtual world that might not be there in a few years when I’m already invested in SL.

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