Short and Sweet, here’s the Plan

Here’s the plan:

  • Add 4 more iHosts (Servers) to bring the world up to capacity.
  • Turn “On” subscriptions, which will allow anyone who is willing to subscribe to get in.
  • Let Dust Settle.
  • SamSyn will put the numbers of the various iHosts in a hat. Every 12 hours or so, he will pull a number, and “Pick Up” all the PAZs on that iHost (the dreaded, but long discussed, “Pazoclypse”

Then, we’ll start working on other things, like getting Developer back online, Peer Reviews, Hood, etc, etc.

IMPORANT
If you’re under 18, this is it. If you are under 18, and subscribe and enter the world, we will catch you. Here is what will happen:

  • You will be banned for life.
  • Your household and computer will be banned for life.
  • You will lose all of your possessions, T$, houses, hoods, zones.
  • Your avatar will be destroyed, and the name freed up for future use. Here’s a video of that process:

If you don’t try and sneak in, then your avatar and possessions will be waiting for you when you turn 18.

IMPORANT

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  1. #1 by drfire on 2011.12.29 - 2:51 am

    fine…i’ll wait untill i’m 18. i’m 13 now….just a few more years…..

    i’ll be watching videos.

  2. #2 by Abby on 2011.12.17 - 10:28 am

    18+ is just ignorant. Let’s just say someone is 13. There is reopening, but they can’t play now, because it’s 18+ only. Between the time of 5 years, There will either close down again, there will be a new game out there that everyone is crazy for, or by that time they will not be interested in There.com anymore. Just face it. You’d make more money all together with people under the age of 18 and over 18, and you probably would end up saving more money. There would be so much more people. And, since there.com closed, the majority of people 18+ have spent their time and money on something more worth while in REAL life like college, etc., so they probably won’t be coming back. Plus, most people that are actually interested in this type of entertainment are under the age of 18. But, I may be wrong. But, then again, the reason I would think that is because my dad or mom is actually working so hard they don’t really have time for something like this…So, probably most of the people over 18+ here have no job, or they are retired, or they just work here. The people that have no job are probably the ones that live in the basements.

  3. #3 by Achenar on 2011.12.13 - 10:35 pm

    While we are on the subject: What about gift subs?

  4. #4 by Seracila on 2011.12.13 - 11:21 am

    I have a question, what if we are under 18 and we use There now, but we stop using it? Will our account be banned if you somehow stumble upon them? :I The only reason I’m using it now is to get in contact with some of my friends who used to play there’

  5. #5 by WizardK on 2011.12.13 - 9:59 am

    β€’Turn β€œOn” subscriptions, which will allow anyone who is willing to subscribe to get in

    wear is this link i want to pay now try to help out as much as i can

    • #6 by CardSharkRay on 2011.12.13 - 11:48 am

      KEEP THERE FREE YA GET ENOUGH FROM BUYING TBUXS

      • #7 by Michael Wilson on 2011.12.13 - 11:59 am

        NO WE DON’T.

      • #8 by NathanAvis on 2011.12.13 - 1:32 pm

        Permission to laugh? I’ll do it anyway!

        LOL!

      • #9 by Hugsie on 2011.12.13 - 1:49 pm

        SL seems to be able to do that.

      • #10 by Michael Wilson on 2011.12.13 - 1:52 pm

        You’re right! Would you like the URL?

      • #11 by Aaron Moe on 2011.12.17 - 12:02 am

        GUYS, if you don’t like the way how There.com is then just GTFO and don’t play!

        Does MW have to reply every DUMB comment on his blog?

  6. #12 by Hugsie on 2011.12.13 - 9:22 am

    Micheal, I don’t understand how it’s “cheaper” to run this service 18+ only. Wouldn’t it be cheaper to just let <18 year olds in? Seems more time and money is spent on reading reports about underaged users, banning them, and then going though a verifying age/IDs process with the DMV or other public records (assuming they have access). Plus it opens up an avenue of abuse by people who want to "grief" users by simply claiming someone is underage.

    Linden Labs (SL) totally abandoned their age verification process they had in "beta" for like 3+ years likely because it cost to much, and depending on what country you live it's ILLEGAL to send your personal information over the internet for verification like this; ESPECIALLY if you are a minor. Yet they have way more "hard core" adult material that ought to be out of reach for minors, but there's nothing stopping them from seeing it. Heck not like you have to show proof of age to see boobs on Google image search.

  7. #13 by SaltySilver on 2011.12.13 - 9:01 am

    Will you be selling tickets to the dipping of avies?

    • #14 by Michael Wilson on 2011.12.13 - 10:46 am

      At the rate it’s going, it looks like it’s going to be pretty much a 24X7 event :-).

    • #15 by mimi06 on 2011.12.13 - 11:01 am

      ROFL……………… No Comment from me, it just get’s me in trouble. But I can handle front row seats πŸ™‚

    • #16 by Hugsie on 2011.12.13 - 1:49 pm

      Except for that 1hr downtime for maintenance.

  8. #17 by SwimGood on 2011.12.11 - 12:30 pm

    I’m the age of 19, and have been asked to provide the appropriated ID in order to login. I have done all that is asked and still haven’t received any feedback? (Its been 4 days). MW, can you provide me with any advice on how to correct this situation?

    I would love to login and continue my future endeavors.

    • #18 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.11 - 2:55 pm

      Patience is a virtue. If you sent information by snail mail, it could take several days simply to reach Makena’s offices; if sent by e-mail, there might still be some delay while (for instance) a driver’s license is verified with the DMV in the issuing state (to be sure, for instance, that the name on file matches the one showing on a scanned image).

      • #19 by jimony on 2011.12.13 - 5:39 am

        Good point, ImageMaker (You’re presenting a pretty good Image of yourself). I think they are also too busy trying to get the world open to paying customers to take the time needed right now to do that verification. I bet that will be one of their first priorities as soon as There is open.

  9. #20 by Kayleigh Lace on 2011.12.11 - 8:35 am

    I was wondering if available houses were available for renting or will there still be a period of ‘reclaim’ for prior owners…

    For those who know me as the nomad that I typically am,be shocked! I’m rather eager to put down some roots and wanted to rent a house, as that’s the one thing I haven’t yet done in the years I’ve played here. And I know where I want to rent and want to set up house as soon as I could… πŸ˜€

    Just wondering if anything was the plan for that – I do remember seeing posts about it in the past – I did some perusal but nothing shouted at me…

    Thanks πŸ™‚

    • #21 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.11 - 3:00 pm

      Houses that were vacant when There closed can be rented now (I’ve already done it, given one up due to lack of Tbucks to pay rent before ThereBanker opened, and rented a different one since ThereBanker came online). Houses that were rented when There closed are being held for their previous renter for some time (a period that hasn’t yet, AFAIK, been officially given a value), but won’t be held permanently (though it appears the only way to tell a house is available to rent vs. held for a previous renter is to click the “Rent” button). If you wanted a house bigger than a tent in Rogue or Incognito, you might well be stuck, but I found a nice cottage in Eagle’s Bluff, and there are lots of vacant birdhouses and horned domes in Tyr (unfortunately, all houses in Tyr are round, which makes them, um, interesting to decorate).

      • #22 by Kayleigh Lace on 2011.12.12 - 8:53 am

        I tried to rent the house I was interested in and did see that message – but then I went and broke a toe and forgot about checking here to update what I had found until today.

        But I do thank you for the information – it’s what I ended up surmising. I’m going to have to pay attention for any announcements about them being availble once again! πŸ™‚

    • #23 by Melody_Chase on 2011.12.12 - 5:04 am

      Something I noticed…..i think some of the houses are scrambled. I noticed some houses with the address of Paradise appearing in-between houses with other addresses. When I was first house hunting the addresses seemed to have some kind of order to them. Not sure what that’s about tho. And Image is right about the rental thing. I managed to find and reclaim my house but didn’t decorate yet cuz I wasn’t sure if when they do the wipe before opening(pazoclypse) if the registration for the houses would be affected. Anyway happy house hunting! πŸ˜€

      • #24 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.12 - 1:01 pm

        Melody, did you have houses sorted by price? If so, in my experience, they also get some sort of semi-random blending of locations. I suspect it’s their order in the rental database. What I find less comprehensible is that at least a couple ordinary looking houses in Rogue are apparently designated as “clubhouses” — meaning that you must be a club leader to rent them, even if they’re available.

        There hasn’t been anything said that I take to mean house rentals would be affected by the Pazocalypse — the wholesale picking up is intended to allow a reasonably fair “homestead race” (like when the Oklahoma panhandle was opened to homesteaders), because there just isn’t any reasonable way to put them all back where they were before closing (even if there weren’t still a significant number of unrecovered avies). And even if you were to “lose” the house at that time, a saved layout will still load just fine in the same house or any other with the same floor plan. I got started redecorating mine (once I had a rectangular one) by recovering a saved layout from four or five years ago, the last time I rented a house…

  10. #25 by Tassader on 2011.12.10 - 11:36 pm

    Mr Wilson/Dan

    When the hoods are finalized will they take priority over already dropped portazones? I am dreading a situation where paz owners will be constantly forced to move to make way for new hoods if that is the case.

    • #26 by Dan Samuel on 2011.12.11 - 2:10 pm

      First we will give all the old Hood landlords the opportunity to reclaim their old hoods in their old hood locations, and those *will* get priority over any pazes in the area.

      After that, I think you can sort of predict where future hoods are *likely* to go (all those little islands around aurora, for example), but there is at present no master plan for ‘new hood locations’ so we’ll take that one day at a time.

    • #27 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.11 - 3:03 pm

      That’s the way I recall Michael or Samsyn saying it would be. If you’re a PAZ owner, it might be sensible to avoid dropping in locations where you know there were neighborhoods before — say, all those little islands around Comet and Aurora — since it’s likely there will be neighborhoods on those locations again. OTOH, I’m rather hoping some of the user-dropped ‘hoods (like, say, the one in Tabu that was also set as a no-drive and pretty completely blocked flying or driving up and down the canyon) don’t wind up back where they were…

  11. #28 by Tassader on 2011.12.10 - 11:24 pm

    ‘Yay. I met Samsyn in world. How so cool!!

  12. #29 by Wiz on 2011.12.10 - 6:36 pm

    Hello, i was wondering how much longer its gonna take to get my email for my avy named Wiz i emailed mackie once and it was a misunderstanding, they thought i wasnt able to get my char retrieved and didnt know how and said if u need help with the sec Q and pw contact back and thats what i was needing. its been a few weeks 😦

    • #30 by martin71a on 2011.12.10 - 11:50 pm

      i have the same problem too with my alt avi still no joy tho mw please help us its christmas πŸ™‚

    • #31 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.11 - 7:19 am

      If you’re trying to retrieve an avatar for which you don’t have the password, don’t have a secret question set up, and don’t have access to the original e-mail (so as to be able to receive the link to reset your password), you’ll probably have to wait until the world is open; until then, staff time at Makena is pretty completely dedicated to getting to the point of collecting income in the form of subscriptions. From what we’ve been reading, subscription day isn’t far off now, and once that’s done, Mackie will be able to dedicate more time to working on helping people in your situation (of which, it appears, there may be a bunch, so it still might take considerable time to get around to a particular one). Remember, that kind of research is going to cost something, to pay for the staff time involved, and will surely require you to prove you are who you say you are…

  13. #32 by daniel on 2011.12.10 - 6:07 pm

    i know that people are complaining about the world being full but personally. i would rather get that. then the horrible, dreadful…

    sorry, the world is closed right now, please try again later.

    silver sucks.

    • #33 by Silver on 2011.12.11 - 5:40 am

      Hey !! lol

    • #34 by Juli on 2011.12.11 - 12:21 pm

      If you are silver but own a hood….can silver not suck? LOL!

      • #35 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.12 - 1:02 pm

        Doesn’t matter if you’re bronze; hood dropping will be sometime after everyone who’s past 18 and able to subscribe is able to log in.

  14. #36 by Rick on 2011.12.10 - 5:51 pm

    Ok im done, im defenitly 18 older, and i just got banned today cause some ass reported me is this forreal? youre just going to lose money from doing this , but alright youve just lost a member, i dont believe how you can ban people when we havnt done **** and are legal to play.. like seriosly.

    • #37 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.11 - 7:45 am

      I think it’s safe to say that you weren’t banned for no reason at all. If you were reported as under age, and you’re not, you should have been given an opportunity to prove you’re a legal adult (sending a copy of a driver’s license, for instance, or something similar); if you were banned for behavior outside the TOS, I’d hope you’d at least get some statement of the reason — but if it’s a permanent ban, I wouldn’t expect There to spend a lot of staff time on it beyond saying what the offense was and that they’ve investigated it and found the complaint to be substantiated; they’re pretty busy right now getting the world open. A polite e-mail to feedback@thereinc.com, and a bunch of patience, would be the only things I can suggest — and polite would be a bit more carefully worded than the post I’m responding to.

      For whatever it’s worth, I’m pretty sure Michael et al consider it a net gain to remove people from world who might cause others to quietly exit due to a bad experience; if they save two memberships by banning one member, they’re ahead — and they can almost certainly point to a forest of examples to show that those who do something bannable are highly likely to repeat the behavior, making them no loss to There. Now, if that’s not you, you should be able (eventually) to negotiate with There to get your status back (assuming you weren’t banned for one of the big, bad things like hate speech, spamming, copyright violation, etc.) — but that’ll work only if you approach it courteously, reasonably, and above all, patiently.

      BTW, it’d probably also help to get someone to proofread your communications with There; poor spelling, grammar, punctuation, and capitalization just serve to make you appear ignorant (whether you actually are or not).

    • #38 by SwimGood on 2011.12.11 - 2:35 pm

      I am experiencing the same situation and it makes me very angry. I try to be patient but to know that I’ve been falsely accused of breaking terms is outrageous. To make the situation even worse, submissions of proof of age are not even reviewed until the re-opening of There, and I have no idea when that is since no date has been released.

      I would like to suggest when someone is reported of being underage you also include the claims / proof against the user, in the email. I have no idea where someone would even get the urge to assume I am underage when I can easily prove I am not. Because of this, I am locked out of the world, lost contact with all my friends and currently losing out on purchasing and selling my items through auctions.

      This whole thing has me in the pits 😦 I love There too much to easily give up; and I want to continue to show my support in There by being a participating member, but its hard to do so when you encounter such problems and receive little communication from those who can solve the matter.

      Please don’t take this negatively, I’m just trying to open up a perspective from another point of view. (I’m also trying to blow off steam…)

      • #39 by Michael Wilson on 2011.12.11 - 3:34 pm

        We know that people are having fun in world, but the reason it’s open is for testing.

        I think a lot of people have this confused with us being “Open”, or “A Paid Service”.

        As of now, we lose every day we’re in operation, and we actually lose more by having more servers to accomodate more people. We know that’s not the optimum situation from your point of view, but that’s the reality of the situation.

  15. #40 by David on 2011.12.10 - 2:12 pm

    MW, you didn’t catch people younger than 13 in the old There. What makes you think you will susceed now? Kids are alot more mature than they used to be. Banning a person till they turn a certain age is one thing, deleting they’re possesions is something else. It’s on a whole new level.

    • #41 by Michael Wilson on 2011.12.10 - 9:37 pm

      It’s working quite well so far. We’ve caught underage folks AND people falsely reporting them.

      • #42 by HiddenTalent on 2011.12.10 - 11:38 pm

        Someone reported me for being underage and i’m well above 18 years old no idea who reported me for being underage. I read the email it says to submit a USA drivers license what do people do that dont live in USA?

    • #43 by soledadnegativa on 2011.12.12 - 5:30 am

      @ David

      Michael wilson explained this since day 1. The rules are simple, if you are under the age of 18 and follow them the opportunity to be back in world is your reward. If you are not under 18 and you try to get in world you will loose it all.

  16. #44 by GreenAngel on 2011.12.10 - 11:30 am

    Hi everyone, I want to say Thank you MW and Samsyn for all the hard work with There, I am so happy to be home, SpaceSerenity is up and running, to check out SpaceSerenity go to Phoenix and you will find two blue quest boxes, one for GreenAngel’s ChristmasLand and the other is for SpaceSerenity. Enjoy and welcome home Thereians

  17. #45 by Henrik0303 on 2011.12.10 - 11:06 am

    Will the Paz’es drop time be refilled when the world opens? Just asking…

    • #46 by Michael Wilson on 2011.12.10 - 12:16 pm

      Sorry, but no.

      • #47 by NathanAvis on 2011.12.11 - 8:00 am

        We were gracefully given 30 days on a lot of our old Pazes already. If you used those up that was your decision.

      • #48 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.11 - 3:09 pm

        Actually, Nathan, what we were given was whatever those PAZ had when new — which happened, I believe, because the “migration” process actually bought the new avatar a new example of each item in the old avatar’s inventory. Thus, a PAZ that originally came with 30 days would have gotten 30 days when your avatar was recovered, but one that originally came with an hour (like most of mine) got only an hour.

        I have no idea how much time was on my PAZ at closing, but I didn’t generally keep a lot of time on them, just to minimize the loss if I forgot to retrieve one and couldn’t get back in world for a few days. I’m sure there are a lot of folks who “lost” days or weeks of time, but an equal number who gained considerably (I’ve got at least two PAZ I didn’t have before, obtained with Golden Tickets or just gifted to my avie during recovery — one of which came with 30 days).

      • #49 by NathanAvis on 2011.12.11 - 5:58 pm

        Hi Image. I’m aware the Pazes we got are new ones (which was most fortunate in my case!), I was just trying to keep it brief by saying we already got free refills in one sense or another and really shouldn’t be asking for seconds.

      • #50 by NathanAvis on 2011.12.11 - 6:03 pm

        PSS. I’m also aware not everyone benefitted (owners of older paz types for one). πŸ˜€

    • #51 by Kayleigh Lace on 2011.12.11 - 8:16 am

      I was tickled pink to see drinks had been refilled! (Yay Beta mug :D)

      • #52 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.11 - 3:10 pm

        Yep, all my drinks were full when I first logged in. It’ll take me a while to kill all those coffees, hot chocolates, and such…

      • #53 by Kayleigh Lace on 2011.12.16 - 9:53 am

        Plan on lots of bathroom trips! πŸ˜›

  18. #54 by okalnix on 2011.12.10 - 4:23 am

    Great news.
    Good work guy’s

  19. #55 by maverickfred on 2011.12.09 - 9:18 pm

    great new mw let there people be happy yaaaaaaaaaaaaaa we are open bring on the noobys lol

  20. #56 by Mike on 2011.12.09 - 8:14 pm

    Thank you MW and team. Looking forward to the world and no drama. okay looking forward to There reopening!

  21. #57 by Jordan on 2011.12.09 - 4:07 pm

    Lol Michael! Glad everything’s going along smoothly.

  22. #58 by zonereport on 2011.12.09 - 3:20 pm

    So, i can try to log in and one time it says full…next time closed…next time full….Is it still always full? My wife and I have never been able to get in, trying different times of days and everything. How do we know if our There Client is working or not.

    MW will you eventually tell us when there is officially open, so if our client isn’t working we can try to figure out why?

    Thank you

    • #59 by Dan Samuel on 2011.12.09 - 3:48 pm

      The “full” message means we are at the login limit (we’re only letting a couple hundred avatars at a time into the world while we are running on a small number of servers”

      The “closed” message generally means your avatar doesn’t have the “beta test privilege” which more or less means “doesn’t have a gold funpass” (though not that EXACTLY)

      That’s also a temporary restriction

      • #60 by Juli on 2011.12.10 - 8:46 am

        Hello Dan! Will we get our Silver fun pass avatars in world BEFORE the subscriptions start?

      • #61 by Michael Wilson on 2011.12.10 - 9:20 am

        No. Sorry.

    • #62 by Dan Samuel on 2011.12.11 - 2:18 pm

      Another interesting factoid. At present the world is ‘full’ less than half the day, with plenty of room the rest of the day. People just all have the same leisure time window, I guess πŸ™‚

      But to repeat what has been repeated before (and which is now in the “Please Read This” on the login screen, belatedly) “If you see ‘the world is closed’ when you KNOW it isn’t, it means your avatar doesn’t have the ‘beta test privilege.’ This privilege was given to Gold and Platinum funpass avatars in old There.” We will lift that restriction once the subscriptions start.

  23. #63 by Escape on 2011.12.09 - 1:48 pm

    I would like to hear more about “Peer Reviews”……’wave

    • #64 by Dan Samuel on 2011.12.09 - 4:01 pm

      In “Old There” when you submitted a design, you had to wait for one of our in-house approvers to look it over and approve it. In “New There” the plan is to use peer review instead (with a minimum of in-house oversight).

      The details have NOT been worked out, but it will be SOMETHING like:

      * you register somewhere as a ‘reviewer’
      * you are then invited to review submissions as they come in
      * you look them over per some nice set of rules
      * you give a thumbs up or down
      * your review is ‘recorded’
      * when enough ‘review points’ have been obtained, the design is either accepted or rejected (‘automatically’)

      And, of course, your full review history is maintained, so as you do a good job of reviewing, you gain some sort of status in the reviewer skill or something πŸ™‚ (Likewise, if your reviews are generally way out of whack relative to other reviewers, you might lose status on the reviewer skill ladder)

      With the idea being that a design could require a large number of thumbs ups from ‘newbie’ reviewers, but maybe only one or two from ‘veteran’ reviewers.

      And probably some other rules like “you can’t review your own stuff”

      But however it turns out, the goals are:

      * keep costs down (so we can stay in business)
      * prevent nasty/stolen stuff from making it into the world (and then needing to be removed after the fact, which is harder)
      * actually get stuff in world *faster* (if we can sort of jump over sord, as it were)

      And who knows, maybe it can be a cottage industry in itself…

      To this end, it could turn out that “Previewer” became a multi-use tool, acting as:

      * final product integration designer
      * product submission client
      * product review client

      • #65 by DavyRocket on 2011.12.09 - 5:25 pm

        I hope I am wrong about my statement here, what if so and so does not like me, and therefore will reject any, and everything I submit? Then what? That just sounds like another great way to grief. Again I hope I am reading it wrong.

      • #66 by Michael Wilson on 2011.12.09 - 5:43 pm

        We would design a selection algorithm to prevent this.

        Note that NOTHING is set even in jello yet on peer-reviews, so don’t worry.

      • #67 by Namron Therian on 2011.12.09 - 10:27 pm

        Perhaps the selection algorithm would reject reviews submitted (good or bad) by anyone on a developers’ ignore list. That would give a developer some recourse about a rejection (hopefully a developer has a good repore with their critics) but still discourage over-use of the ignore.

      • #68 by YankeeintheSouth on 2011.12.10 - 2:48 am

        A good way to prevent what Davy said is to only show the design and not the designers name?

      • #69 by Michael Wilson on 2011.12.10 - 9:21 am

        I’m sure it won’t show the designer’s name. πŸ™‚

      • #70 by Andrew Almeida on 2011.12.10 - 5:42 am

        So how will peer review work for preventing copyrighted material? Also if a peer review group approved a t shirt that said something like “Eat a dick up” or anything vulgar would it later be pulled? I’m just curious how that all will work.

      • #71 by Dan Samuel on 2011.12.10 - 1:27 pm

        Presumably any individual submission rejection is challengable (as it was before, with its own negative feedback mechanism to minimize abuse of THAT)

        But that’s a good idea about hiding the developer’s name during the review. I suppose it adds some uncertainty to the IP violation aspect though. (“Hey, he’s using Bill’s texture!” when it turns out it IS Bill). In general, though, it sounds wise.

        We have to accept that some things will be accepted erroneously on occasion, even with a perfect review system, so we will still need a mechanism to ‘remove something from the universe’ (which presumably includes taking back all copies issued so far, which is its own can of worms).

        But focussing on the positive, and operating on the assumption that most people will use the reviewer system responsibly and might even find it entertaining/rewarding, we just need this ‘review of reviewer” feedback to limit grief opportunities.

        The other grief opportunity, of course, is to have a ‘gang’ of avatars under your control, so that you effectively get more than one vote. But that would cost you a monthly subsciption each, and your griefer-rejection could still be overturned, so I don’t think there is a lot of incentive to do that.

        But I’m sure the vast majority of developers just want to create honest and good new products (and make some money), and the vast majority of reviewers just want to take part in helping cool new stuff get into world as quickly as possible. So the focus should be on facilitating that, with the nicest tools possible.

      • #72 by IMAKOS on 2011.12.10 - 6:26 pm

        @Yankeeinthesouth, GREAT !! IDEA !!! I love It!!!

      • #73 by 0ne1 on 2011.12.10 - 11:00 pm

        What about some type of “expert designer status/rating” that can be obtained by designers after they get a certain amount of approved designs in a row without moderation or errors? So when a designer reaches the “expert” status their submissions can require less scrutiny, less review, less votes/thumbs in order to be approved? Kind of like a “trusted designer” status?

      • #74 by YankeeintheSouth on 2011.12.11 - 3:01 am

        I love the idea of a new skill and people having a part in what comes in world. ‘tu Thank you MW for not showing the designers name, I agree with Davy on that. This whole idea will get designs through faster. I was a bit concerned before how long it would take with a handful of people. I’m impressed with all that has happened with a short amount of people behind the scenes and wanted to say Thank you….. πŸ™‚

      • #75 by MrScrooge on 2011.12.11 - 7:06 am

        That actually sounds like fun. Can’t wait to read more on this.

      • #76 by Meret on 2011.12.11 - 12:07 pm

        I also commented on Thumdar’s site, but anonymous review is silly. Just give reviewers’s a ‘skip’ option since it’s neutral on why they skipped it. I may not have time to spend looking at the textures on some things but could quickly review a few simple models.

        Knowing who made it can speed the process up a lot. I may not like Davy’s stuff (just using you as an example Davy), but I over time I know their history for using or not using copyrighted materials, etc. I want to know it’s a new or recent developer since those are the ones that will take the most time to evaluate.

        Personally, I’m not sure this is going to work out as well as desired, but you should ensure you have an easy tool to live remove items from in-world and inventories, as I suspect you will need it very early.

      • #77 by Dan Samuel on 2011.12.11 - 2:35 pm

        Reviewing should be something you do when you feel like it, but there should be a pool of a zillion reviewers, so no design should languish for want of review. And I think reviewers should be able to easily ‘specialize’ in something they enjoy reviewing (i.e. you might enjoy reviewing clothing, while someone else enjoys reviewing buggies). Whether that is via some weird formal mechanism, or just done by offering a list of reviewables and letting them pick one they are interested in… (and the list they are offered, just wouldn’t include any designs we might feel are inappropriate for them to review)

        And, speaking of Previewer, it would be great if it could get even more intimate with ‘lab zones’ (imagine a world where you pushed a button in Previewer and your design-in-progress was jammed automatically into your labzone for in-world, private, inspection.) Or not. Just sayin’ πŸ™‚

      • #78 by Greenie on 2011.12.12 - 2:31 pm

        I’m concerned about having members with little or no actual developer experience reviewing submissions.

        A texture painter will not have the skill set required to sufficiently check 3d models with texture effects, animations, interactive options and collision effects and props.

        Please consider having at least two separate categories for review and have non-developers excluded from the review pool outside of clothing and avatar accessories found in our Change Me?

      • #79 by Ltbigdog There on 2011.12.13 - 2:00 am

        I think this would be a interesting idea.

        Greenie said “Please consider having at least two separate categories for review and have non-developers excluded from the review pool outside of clothing and avatar accessories found in our Change Me?”

        I think it should be narrowed down even more, ex. cloths, buggys, bikes, boats, builder items, and so on.
        Because if someone that paints buggys and is a major collector of them may be able to spot everything but give them clothing item and they might not be sure of whats ok.

      • #80 by jimony on 2011.12.13 - 6:03 am

        Maybe a prospective reviewer can be allowed to “vote” without his vote counting until his voting record can be approved by a committee of designers and veteran reviewers? Of course the system would have to be in place for a while before there are any veteran reviewers. Maybe Greenie’s idea about only designers reviewing would be a good way to start.

      • #81 by Mercuria on 2011.12.13 - 6:06 am

        I almost cried when I read this.

        My experience is with IMVU Peer Review.
        It is seriously flawed.
        Users vote on what they like, or don’t like, rather than what the rules are. We have a Virtual Goods Policy that is sadly neglected.
        Bots run votes through to pass items willy nilly (thus enabling misrated content and porn and copyrighted items).
        Fails are done on innocuous items for ridiculous reasons.
        IMVUs Peer Review gives me nightmares.

        I dread There taking this route.

        If Peers are doing the reviewing, will There start accepting DMCA notices on copyrighted material? If someone steals my texture, the reviewer won’t know it’s mine, so it might be approved. I want to know that there will be a counter measure to theft.

        I know I have more to say on the topic but for now I can only say that this could be a terrible idea unless you have proper documentation and education.
        I’d rather not see this come to be.

  24. #82 by Joe_R203 on 2011.12.09 - 12:53 pm

    Anyone else experiencing horrible lag/rubberbanding after the last 2 client updates?

    • #83 by Achenar on 2011.12.09 - 4:37 pm

      Yep, I can hardly complete a lap in my buggy without getting hauled back and getting thrown off the side of a ramp! – enjoy!! πŸ™‚

    • #84 by ARTIE on 2011.12.12 - 3:53 pm

      More people in world on the same amount of testing servers = more LAG and rubberbanding. It is just that simple. It has been said multiple times. The world is not yet open for play, it is open for testing. Yes, testing buggy lapping is important, so perhaps testing at 4 a.m PST might be more advisable, than after the world fills up with testors.

      Actually it is geting hard finding new bugs to report.

  25. #85 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.09 - 12:53 pm

    Oh, that’s cute — and entirely reasonable, if (at the moment) mildly annoying…

    I just got logged out for being idle too long because, silly me, I remembered to come here and read the blog comments after I was logged into the world…

    …and now “the world is full”, when I haven’t seen that message in almost a week. Am I being temporarily kept out because I went AFK? Can’t say for certain, but it seems possible. If so, I don’t see it as unreasonable — but it would be nice to know that’s the case, so as to keep a closer eye on my avie…

    • #86 by Dan Samuel on 2011.12.09 - 4:02 pm

      No, there is no ‘hysteresis.’ If you get afk logged out, it does NOT hold that against you for your next login.

      • #87 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.10 - 8:34 am

        Okay, just a coincidence, then — I got the “full” message for a couple hours immediately following the AFK logout; yes, it was Friday, but the logout was at around 4:45 PM EST, when I’d expect most Americans to still be at work, hence making me wonder. No problem later on, other than a good bit of rubber banding and lag teleports, despite the client’s performance meter reporting zero packet loss, and numerous instances of the “popular spot” teleport refusal for places that reasonably ought to have been nearly empty — *69, for instance, or the roof of my house on Eagle’s Bluff (a teleport to within the house literally seconds later went through).

        BTW, I’d like to point out that the AFK logout period seems to be set just about right — it’s long enough for me to go start a pot of coffee (and with a grind-and-brew machine, cleaning and setting up the machine takes most of ten minutes), but not so long as to allow abusive AFK skilling or similar.

    • #88 by Dan Samuel on 2011.12.11 - 2:41 pm

      I might have lied a little. Your home avman tends to hold on to your login record for a bit after you log out (on the off chance that maybe you didn’t intend to log out and are coming right back and it can deal with you more promptly if it remembers a bit about you). So if you were to log back in within a couple minutes of being logged out, it might remember a little about you.

      I don’t THINK it would remember your afk status across that boundary, but it strikes me as maybe a little more possible than my previous answer stated. If that were the case, however, it would not say “world full” it would just log you out instantly.

      • #89 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.12 - 3:43 pm

        Okay, so this is the same effect that puts me back in my buggy if I crash, or close the client when a crash is imminent, and immediately log back in — the server “remembering” my avatar’s state for a minute or two following a logout or disconnect. That certainly isn’t what happened the other night; first, it kept going for a couple hours, and second, it was definitely a “world full” rather than an instant logout.

        In any case, two minutes, or even five, wouldn’t bother me (especially now that I know this could cause an instant logout). If it were going to be a couple hours, I’d log out before doing anything likely to take longer than a pit stop.

  26. #90 by acemastter on 2011.12.09 - 12:32 pm

    Hi MW

    I have one quick question about the Developer Program and clear up a rumor that is going around there.com ever one is saying that when you open the Developer Program that us Developer’s will have to pay to Re-Submit items that we submit’d in the past or will we just get these items back at no extra cost i know a lot of Developers has submit’d a loot of items over the years and cant cut the cost of having to front the cost of paying to Re-Submit all the items they ever submit’d to game i know i for one cant with what little i had in world .

    Thanks for you’r time hope to hear from u on this matter πŸ™‚

    • #91 by Ant1977 on 2011.12.09 - 5:36 pm

      From past readings in this blog, I’ve understood it to be that all previous items that have been submitted will only need to be relisted if the designer wishes. Only new items that have not been submitted will have to go through the submission process.

      • #92 by Michael Wilson on 2011.12.10 - 9:20 am

        Developers will NOT be required to resubmit already-approved items.

      • #93 by Dan Samuel on 2011.12.10 - 1:41 pm

        The nature of the work that needs to be done *might* mean we have to resurrect the system first for new submissions, before we will know exactly the best way to automatically pull back in the old submissions. But it is certainly our goal that any returning developer avatar should have access to their old submitted products as seamlessly as possible.

        Now, will you be able to ‘claim a designer’ (for example, you used an alt as your developer avatar, but you don’t want to bring back that avatar and would like to be able to ‘transfer’ developer assets to a *different* avatar)? Well, maybe not. Offhand that sounds nightmare-difficult to do properly. So we definitely will NOT start out being able to do that, and can’t make any sort of commitment that we would ever be able to do that.

        But “old developer Bill” -> “new developer Bill” having access to all of Bill’s old submitted designs?… that’s ‘on the list’.

  27. #94 by acemastter on 2011.12.09 - 12:22 pm

    Hi MW

  28. #95 by Simon on 2011.12.09 - 11:44 am

    MW

    Would you be able to do something about the claiming possessions? My problem is that I re-claimed both of my avatars when there re-opened however now because I did that I cant claim the possessions off of one of them because it says that the avatar has already been claimed. Could you sort this out or even open the world to other lower pass holders so we can pass over our items ect? This would really help. Thank you MW

  29. #96 by knighthawk101 on 2011.12.09 - 4:05 am

    MW. Just throwing this out there, Is it possible that perhaps at some point I could pay for a subscription by sending a money order or something like that? Heck I’d even be willing to pay a little more for that option.

    • #97 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.09 - 12:48 pm

      People who haven’t worked in the banking industry and/or owned a business may not be aware of it, but banks actually charge businesses a fee to make deposits — and the fee is larger for “items” (checks, travelers’ checks, money orders, etc.) than for cash, while that fee is lumped into the existing charges for credit card or PayPal transactions. What it boils down to is that, counting staff salaries for the handling time, it would probably cost There 20% more to receive payments by check, money order, etc. (and that’s assuming that absolutely none of them bounce) than to receive payments via PayPal. I don’t know that anyone has said it will be PayPal only, forever — but until There is running at a profit, it’s likely to stay “cheapest option only”, since surcharges by payment method tend to run afoul of various Federal agencies.

    • #98 by CardSharkRay on 2011.12.09 - 12:55 pm

      buy a visa pre paid card at any store

      • #99 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.10 - 8:38 am

        To expand on Ray’s answer — that will allow you to pay via PayPal without actually having a PayPal account (though that may only work if the card is denominated in US dollars — which may be a moot point, since I don’t think prepaid cards have the volume in other countries that they have in the USA). Of course, virtually all of those have either monthly fees (for the long term refillable variety) or “inactivity fees” if funds remain on the card after some period of time. Still a better option than a bank account, for some, but many banks still offer accounts without monthly fees if you meet some basic requirements (like a direct deposit at least once a month, a very common one).

      • #100 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.10 - 1:39 pm

        Oh, just in case someone missed it in replies to a previous update — there’s a problem with accepting PayPal payments from users without PayPal accounts: chargebacks. Bottom line is, according to Michael, only a Verified PayPal account (regardless of funding source) will be able to pay a There subscription or buy Therebucks — as this is effectively the only way There can accept PayPal because of past chargeback problems. So those prepaid cards won’t work unless you ALSO have a verified account (though that can be done without a bank account or credit card, by having PayPal send you a letter by USPS which contains a code you then enter on their site). Once you have a verified account, you’ll be able to put funds into PayPal from a Moneypak (I believe that’s from Green Dot, and available most places where you’d buy prepaid cards) — so even the “unbanked” will have the ability to pay for There, with a little effort.

        How this will work for folks outside the US, I’m not certain; I’d guess that PayPal’s verification methods might vary from country to country.

      • #101 by Puter_Head on 2011.12.10 - 2:33 pm

        You still have to have a pay pal account regardless! Trust me… I have tried. Prepaid or real charge cards… you are still required to give out your personal info to them… which I will not do again.

      • #102 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.11 - 7:23 am

        Well, Puter Head, I guess you’d better enjoy the world while you can, then. For at least the foreseeable future, it appears There will be limited to only PayPal users, possibly only those with a linked credit card.

        I may have to decide whether to apply for a credit card to use just for this — annual fees, even if not interest (by paying the full balance every month), and the risk of being tempted into debt; hard decision whether that’s worth it…

    • #103 by Andrew Almeida on 2011.12.11 - 1:43 am

      imagemaker a debit card will work just fine for verifying your account as it says so on the PayPal help section. There’s nothing about a credit card that makes it any better of a source to identify you are really you. Both have your name and are linked to your social security number, and both are linked to your home address. As for them sending you a code by mail, I am not able to find this option anywhere on their website.

      • #104 by Puter_Head on 2011.12.12 - 2:20 pm

        Sure… debit cards will work just fine… IF YOU CARE to leave all of your other information in paypals hands also. There is no option to verify by mail. I called and asked them.

      • #105 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.12 - 3:48 pm

        It’s not verifying the account — my account’s been verified for coming on ten years (I made my first eBay purchase with PayPal in 2002, and I’d had the account for a while before then). What concerns me is wording in PayPal’s online description of the subscription or recurring payment feature, that seems to imply I must have a *credit card* linked to the account. I can see their side of it — a credit card is far less likely to deny a transaction due to lack of funds than a checking account; however, I have good reasons not to want to open credit card accounts (short version: I don’t earn enough to be willing to pay some of it for interest, if I have a choice, and the temptation is too great to use the card for an “emergency” that I’d have handled without it otherwise, and wind up in debt it’ll take me months or years to pay off), and I really don’t know if There is important enough to me to make me change my mind (and I’d rather not have to find out).

  30. #106 by 0ne1 on 2011.12.09 - 2:39 am

    MW, will you be setting up any service that allows people to prove they are over 18 BEFORE any greifers try to file a false report? I’d hate for there to be some mix up, and or go out of town for a week only to come back and find someone falsely reported me, and I didn’t reply to a confirmation e-mail within a specific time period, and had my account and all my possessions destroyed in a vat full of turpentine, acetone, and benzene.

  31. #107 by NoBioN on 2011.12.08 - 10:49 pm

    When does the paz picking 12 hour cycle begin?

    • #108 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.09 - 12:49 pm

      After we’re required to subscribe, plus some time for the dust to settle.

  32. #109 by therian fan on 2011.12.08 - 10:18 pm

    I have a few questions in regards with PayPal.

    1. Is there any way to inform us a few days before hand for each month when your about to take money out of our PayPal account for an example a 3 days notice, so that way we can prep ourselves for the next payment?
    2. Also, If we want to cancel or postpone our membership but we still want to have our accounts, is there a way you can put our accounts on hold?
    3. When it comes to our alts to pay for, can we use our PayPal account that we already created for our main account to pay for our other alts or do we need to make separate PayPal accounts?

    Thank you for your time in answering my questions.

    • #110 by Dan Samuel on 2011.12.09 - 4:07 pm

      The monthly There.com avatar subscriptions are handled via PayPal “Recurring Payments” (not by There.com directly, I mean). I’m not sure what sort of notification emails paypal is willing to send you.

      I do know that PayPal says it will try to collect recurring payments on the same day of each month (first payment being on the day you started the subscription). Unless that day doesn’t exist (like Feb 29 in a non-leap year), in which case they will nudge the date down until it does fit (Feb 28, say).

      • #111 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.10 - 8:43 am

        With a little care relative to original subscription date, this will allow those who get paid once or twice a month to manage their recurring payments nicely — having the payment go out on, say, the 2nd or 17th of the month (for those who get paid the 1st and 16th) will work nicely. For those of us who get paid every other week (which is, at a guess, about 80% of hourly workers, the remainder on weekly pay, mandated by Federal requirements limiting pay holdback), there’s simply no way to manage recurring payments based on a calendar date to ensure they don’t happen, for instance, two days before payday.

        We still haven’t had an answer on whether stopping the automatic subscription will result in the avatar being “frozen” or “shredded” — though I don’t know that There would gain anything by shredding inactive avatars, other than to alienate those whose pay schedule and budget don’t match well with automatic payments on a day-of-month schedule…

      • #112 by therian fan on 2011.12.10 - 8:53 am

        Thank you for the reply Dan. I wasn’t sure how PayPal does it. If we want to postpone our membership because we don’t have this month money or we need some time off from There, is there a way we can email you and ask you, after our last day of our membership can you hold our avatar(s)?

      • #113 by Dan Samuel on 2011.12.11 - 2:48 pm

        It’s super hard for us to ‘delete avatars’ so no one should rush to think that would be our response to *anything.” Should your subscription get into arrears enough for us to be unhappy, the likely result is just that you could no longer log in (until you were back on the subscription bandwagon), not that we would delete your avatar or beat you up in a dark alley.

        Now, a well lit alley, with maybe some comfortable couches… that’s a different story.

      • #114 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.12 - 3:50 pm

        Thanks, that’s what several of us have been trying to confirm: avies will not go into the Avincinerator or the barrel of dip if we cancel our subscription for a month or two during hard times. ‘tu

      • #115 by McKensy on 2011.12.13 - 7:56 am

        As for the “Recurring Payments” I can’t seem to find any info on paypal regarding “my side” of the process – only info about how to set it up as a business against clients. Do you, Dan, or anyone else have a link for the relevant info on paypal?
        The more info we can get on this subscription process ahead of activation the better, right? I’m sure most of us want’s to have it all set up and ready for when you “push the button” πŸ™‚

      • #116 by Michael Wilson on 2011.12.13 - 8:35 am

        You can’t subscribe before we turn it on, or set it up, unfortunately.

  33. #117 by mattbm2001 on 2011.12.08 - 9:04 pm

    I must be over looking something, how in the world do I subscribe? Or am I missing something

    • #118 by Dan Samuel on 2011.12.09 - 4:09 pm

      When we turn on subscriptions, you will see a challenge when you go to login. Until you see that challenge, there is no way for you to set up a subscription.

      If you want to get a head start with your PayPal relationship, you might consider buying a few ThereBucks just to see that you’re all hooked up with PayPal. (for example, that your address has been verified).

      • #119 by mattbm2001 on 2011.12.09 - 11:09 pm

        I did that, thank you for the info.

      • #120 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.10 - 8:45 am

        ‘tu

        I bought $20 worth of Tbucks the first day ThereBanker was open. I’ve now stashed $10 ahead for subscriptions, and hopefully I can stay at least that far ahead (to avoid problems with subscription conflicting with bi-weekly pay). I’ve been using PayPal regularly for about ten years, so there was no question — but I needed Tbucks, and I’m sure There can find something to do with the money… πŸ˜‰

  34. #121 by Bronnieb There on 2011.12.08 - 6:59 pm

    Ummm when you put them in the vat can I ask one thing? …….can you like….hmmm…. put them in at one time not slowly like the video! Such a nasty way to go! Also btw, thanks for the update πŸ™‚

    • #122 by Aaron Moe on 2011.12.09 - 5:02 am

      lmfao MW!

      I liked the way how you warned kids from sneeking in. πŸ˜€

    • #123 by softNdark on 2011.12.09 - 8:30 am

      When he put that ‘black glove’ on, it scared the chit out of me.
      LMAO

  35. #124 by David H on 2011.12.08 - 6:21 pm

    Awesome, so close.
    I just found out what the fun pass ticket things are for (I know, I’ve been a member since, like, Jan 2004 and I didn’t know πŸ™‚ ), you can apparently get given items with the tickets. Very cool.

    • #125 by Aaron Moe on 2011.12.09 - 5:24 am

      MW, I wonder..

      IF a user reports an underaged user and that’s a true report, would that person get something like.. prize? gift? thank? lol.

      Don’t really care but, into knowing much more about There2. πŸ˜€

      • #126 by Life is not always free on 2011.12.09 - 10:03 am

        Aaron, lol you just slammed poorboy for asking for Sh*t, and now your asking for a reward for reporting underage players, the reward is that an event does not happen in game that involves and underage player that is so detrimental to the operation of There.com, that it would have to shut down. Therefore reporting any underage player, and keeping the chance for something to NOT happen, and There staying open is our reward……

      • #127 by mimi06 on 2011.12.09 - 2:43 pm

        prize?? you are kidding right? So nice to meet you Aaron ..

      • #128 by Jordan on 2011.12.09 - 4:09 pm

        More than likely not…? o_o

  36. #129 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.08 - 5:50 pm

    Ugh.

    I very, very strongly dislike automatic deductions. My PayPal is funded only by my checking account (I have, by choice, no credit cards as alternatives), and if I forget to deduct an automatic transaction (as already happens from time to time with another account that gives the choice only of automatic deduction, or prepaying a year at a time — which last, at around $100, is beyond my budget), I can get slammed with a virtually unlimited number of $35 overdraft fees — which takes a correspondingly big bite out of my grocery budget. I don’t understand what’s difficult about having an automated system (i.e. no staff salary) send me a monthly bill (for services in advance, just like my cable company, auto insurer, and cell phone provider) and then giving me a reasonable period (say, at least two weeks, in case I’ve forgotten and the reminder arrives just after payday) to pay before the billing cutoff that would suspend my access.

    Alternately, please consider allowing pay-ahead in small increments — if I could pay a single month ahead, or two, in order to avoid automatic payment, it wouldn’t be a big deal (especially if there were an automatic reminder when I have less than a month remaining), because I could control the timing of the payment and thus ensure I have money when it’s presented. Please understand, it’s not the ten bucks a month — it’s losing control of the timing and not getting a reminder far enough ahead to ensure there’s money left after payday. If automatic payment (via PayPal or any other way) is the only way to pay, I’ll have to seriously consider whether I can subscribe at all (and with the world working the way it should with my hardware upgrades since closing, that’s a hard decision).

    While I understand and agree with the need to control costs at There, I also wonder if this isn’t a case of forgetting who your market is, as nearly occurred when PAZ refills were (briefly) changed to a one month minimum shortly before the debut of neighborhoods. Some of us who’d happily pay $10 a month may find it impossible to live with automatic payment, just as some who don’t mind paying the per-hour cost of a PAZ, might none the less find it hard to shell out tens of thousands of Tbux at a time compared to a few hundred for a day. Michael, it’s obvious from your photographs that you’re pretty well off, given the amount of travel you apparently do (and the fact you were able to buy up There some time ago); please don’t forget that many — dare I say, most? — of your customers aren’t that well off.

    • #130 by toufovou on 2011.12.09 - 10:11 am

      Paypal gives you the option to allow it to pay automatically every month. If you want that, all you need to do is tick the box. If you don’t want that, then just don’t tick it. Whatever the case, you would be getting an email of your transaction so that way you will know what is going on.

      • #131 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.09 - 12:26 pm

        Getting an e-mail after the transaction has been processed isn’t much help if I’ve already paid my bills and bought my groceries. As for PayPal giving me the option, the way I read the above blog post is that we’ll be required to allow monthly automatic payment to subscribe for There. That’ll work fine for me as long as I remember to put the money into my PayPal account in time (a few days ahead of the payment date to allow for the ACH transfer) or account for the withdrawal from my checking account on the prior payday — it’s the inevitable month when I forget and, as usual, am down to my last dollar, that worries me.

      • #132 by toufovou on 2011.12.09 - 9:44 pm

        Yes, makes sense image! From what you have written I guess you won’t be using a credit card to add money to your paypal account. If you did, it would be charged automatically. One thing you can do to NOT forget is just add a monthly reminder on your cell phone or something a week before pay day!!!!!
        As for that “down to my last dollar”, yes I totally understand what you mean. I’m sure you will figure it out in the end! πŸ™‚

      • #133 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.10 - 8:52 am

        Well, you see, the problem is that I get paid every other Friday. That’s bad enough for paying bills that are due the same dates (give or take a weekend) every month; the last two months, for instance, I’ve had to send my cell phone payment before even seeing the bill, because the bill doesn’t cycle until after payday, but would be overdue by next payday (at which time I have to pay rent, so won’t have bill money anyway).

        The only way I can see to avoid a potential problem is to try to always keep at least $10 in my PayPal balance — but since that’s not a long standing habit yet, it’s subject to being forgotten, with potentially catastrophic consequences.

        Bottom line, I have very good reasons (including ten years working in customer service for a large bank, having to explain to customers how they got overdrawn) for disliking payee-controlled automatic payments. They’re very convenient for those who always have money; they’re potential rent-busters for those who live paycheck to paycheck.

      • #134 by Andrew Almeida on 2011.12.11 - 1:51 am

        “potentially catastrophic consequences.” What’s the worse that could happen? You forget one month so they shut your account off. Then you run and add 10 to your account and bam, you’re right back in. Cause that’s how it will be lol, They won’t destroy avatars who lapse in payments.

      • #135 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.11 - 3:24 pm

        Andrew, if a charge goes through on my PayPal that can’t be paid from PayPal balance, it will automatically charge my “primary funding source” — which is my checking account. Now, even though I’ve declined “overdraft services” for my debit card, the PayPal payments come through as preauthorized automatic (ACH) transactions; they’ll either be processed in overdraft (if I don’t have enough money in my balance), rejected and reprocessed by PayPal on my “backup funding source”, which they require, but which is the debit card on the same checking (resulting in TWO insufficient funds charges, a few days apart), or it will pay and cause something else to be processed as an OD or NSF. Each time this occurs, I get charged $35 (to a maximum of, I think, $175 *per day*). Worse, I sometimes pay my rent by check instead of using my bill paying service (because of timing too close for bill payer); if this occurs while I have a rent check outstanding, it could cause my rent check to be returned to my landlord, resulting in, at minimum, a $50 late payment charge from the landlord on top of any NSF fees (they could potentially charge me that figure plus up to $100 return check handling fee).

        In the above situation, it’d be two weeks until the next payday when I’d have money to even cover the overdraft balance at the bank, and the fees would result in multiple bills being paid late, incurring still more fees; it would probably take me four or five months to completely catch up from forgetting to deduct or fund my monthly There subscription. I call that “catastrophic results”.

        Come to think of it, that financial adviser on CNN or HLN who tells people whether they can or can’t afford some luxury purchase would probably tell me I can’t afford to spend $10 a month on There until I have a few hundred dollars in savings — but I’m not willing to wait years in hopes I’ll eventually get that far ahead; I’m past fifty, overweight and out of shape, with mild high blood pressure and technically diabetic, and neither insurance nor money for medical care; I could be dead in two years. I’m going to enjoy life while I can.

  37. #136 by tomixcomics on 2011.12.08 - 5:41 pm

    Somebody’s been watching Nostalgia Critic… πŸ™‚

  38. #137 by PoobyBoy on 2011.12.08 - 5:18 pm

    With the subsciption will we earn tbucks once a month?

    • #138 by Michael Wilson on 2011.12.08 - 5:37 pm

      No.

      • #139 by JasonMK on 2011.12.09 - 6:55 am

        I think PoobyBoy was simply asking a valid question since this has been discussed and has been an option before, but as MW said, this will not be the case as There2 launches.

      • #140 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.09 - 12:31 pm

        Jason, this has also been answered a number of times previously. It’s a very simple decision: people will spend more if they have to buy Therebucks separately from their monthly subscription, which improves the likelihood of There turning a profit. Honestly, getting Therebucks isn’t that big a deal, in my opinion; you can do virtually anything in There (except building, if you don’t already have a big stash of stuff) with zero Therebucks — borrow a buggy to race in, borrow a hoverboat if you want to fly, and I have no doubt that the “loaner” zones will return once There is open. If not, feel free to ask me, (avatar name same as the one I post under), I’ve got several buggies, boards, boats, bikes, and hoverpacks I’d be happy to lend for reasonable time frames (not the monster stashes some folks have, but I’ve got buggies I’m not sure I’ve ever driven).

    • #141 by Aaron Moe on 2011.12.09 - 5:00 am

      PoobyBoy, if you went to a resturant for a meal when you pay the fees, can you ask them to give you a reward for paying them the meal’s price? No.

      Same with There.com, and instead of asking for rewards for your payment you should be glad that you’re going to join There.

      Just saying. πŸ˜€

    • #142 by softNdark on 2011.12.09 - 8:33 am

      Laughinggggggggg

  39. #143 by daniel on 2011.12.08 - 5:15 pm

    hey so this may have been answered but.. how do i subscribe…i cant see anything like that on there central dsafasd

    • #144 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.09 - 12:32 pm

      Subscriptions aren’t open yet; when they are, you’ll know it (most likely login attempts will be redirected to a subscription page if subscriptions are required and you haven’t paid yet).

  40. #145 by Moonlighttides on 2011.12.08 - 5:10 pm

    So you say that if someone is under eighteen they WILL be caught. Aside from people reporting them, say they go unnoticed ad ureported for awhile, whats the process of discovering and rooting out those under eighteen and proving they are indeed underage. If you can’t divulge that information I understand. Don’t worry I’m twenty-two and could prove it, I was just curious of how the whole thing would work. I’m a stickler for learning new things. πŸ™‚

    • #146 by Andrew Almeida on 2011.12.09 - 3:18 am

      They won’t go unnoticed, and the ones that may do probably deserve to. Cause there are signs that almost always show evidently that a person is a minor. I can point one out, well two at least that posts right here in this very blog as an adult. The process would probably go something like this :1) they get reported. or 2) a software upgrade to There dealing with the chat logs could be designed like the government designs the way cell phones are all recorded but only certain words or catch phrases are zoomed in on and flagged when heeded. Then they would probably moderate the user, ask them for their documents….probably a driver’s license and or birth certificate(which you can blot out personal info like your actual driver’s license # of course. They may and likely will have a different system in place to work with, this is just how I’d do it.

    • #148 by Dan Samuel on 2011.12.09 - 4:14 pm

      We have contracted with a firm (as seen in the movie “Paycheck”) who will be handling the “brain erasures” of all there-memories obtained while under 18

  41. #149 by Sassybeme There on 2011.12.08 - 4:58 pm

    Sure glad I got my paypal back up and running a while back. Y’all are just moving right along so quickly. Way cool!
    btw… love Roger Rabbit. Best informative movie on how to reprogram or manage a toon. πŸ™‚

  42. #150 by DanQue on 2011.12.08 - 4:52 pm

    Is this correct?
    1) THERE is still is a testing phase, it is not offically open yet.
    2) When THERE opens, I will have to setup a PayPal account for my avatar.
    3) I will not be able to login to THERE till my PayPal account has paid THERE. (i am currently able to login to the testing THERE)

    Thanks
    DanQue

    • #151 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.08 - 6:01 pm

      That matches the way I read it — with the strong added implication from above that The Plan is a very short term one (it doesn’t, apparently take them long to add additional iHosts to There’s cloud), and with ThereBanker up and working, turning on subscriptions is likely to be just a matter of flipping a software switch. To clarify, you don’t need a PayPal account *for your avatar*, you need one *in your own name*, which can (if you have alts you wish to subscribe for) be used to pay for multiple avatar subscriptions. For that matter, I don’t know any reason it has to be *your* PayPal account, as long as payment is applied to the correct avatar — if you have a friend or family member with PayPal, as far as I know it would be okay for them to pay for your subscription (presumably you’d recompense them directly, of course). One possible complication with this scenario, however, is that if one PayPal is used to pay for multiple accounts, there may be a tendency to assume they’re all alts for one person, so if your friend (whose PayPal is used to pay for you avatar) gets banned, you might find yourself locked out as well…

      • #152 by Andrew Almeida on 2011.12.09 - 3:23 am

        They can tell if the different avatars are logging in from the same pc or not.

      • #153 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.09 - 12:36 pm

        Yes, they can, Andrew, but (for instance) I’ve got three computers in this house that are used routinely, and one more that might still be able to run There (it’s Win98, but There client used to run in that OS, and the hardware is barely adequate). And I’m not anything like rich, I’ve just kept old computers when upgrading at various times (the Win98 machine is seven or eight years old, but I ran There on it when I first joined).

  43. #154 by Robert Ricci on 2011.12.08 - 4:52 pm

    MW…it’s Thursday night ( 9 pm est )….12/8/11….never had hopes of being able to log in…you know the ” realm is full message “…but tonight I decided to give it a try…and to my surprise…” poof “….logged right in…..( thumbs up )….

  44. #155 by Daniel Thereian on 2011.12.08 - 4:21 pm

    Thank God Patience is a virtue, and He gave that to me!!!!! * *
    U

  45. #156 by NathanAvis on 2011.12.08 - 4:14 pm

    Woohoooooo!

  46. #157 by Rick on 2011.12.08 - 3:29 pm

    if someone tries buying the subscription with a banned account will they be unbanned and allowed back in or ???

  47. #159 by 2pegasus on 2011.12.08 - 3:15 pm

    I am so ready to get back into there, but I am not sure how to do that? Where do I subscribe?
    Thanks,
    2Pegasus

  48. #160 by Yozh VisualDelights on 2011.12.08 - 2:46 pm

    Oh yeah, short and sweet, that’s all we need! ‘tu
    Cheerio all fine Thereians, have a Wonderful Day,
    and I see you in There, anytime, anywhere! β€’β™ͺβ™«β€’*Β¨*β€’.ΒΈΒΈβ˜…β˜Ό

    Yozh

  49. #161 by Juls Tessmer on 2011.12.08 - 2:32 pm

    Ohhhh big party! great news guys! Hugs jamt :)))) handstand, heyhey, twist!

  50. #162 by Punkster OfThere on 2011.12.08 - 2:13 pm

    yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€ πŸ˜€

  51. #163 by MysteriousYouth on 2011.12.08 - 2:07 pm

    “Turn β€œOn” subscriptions, which will allow anyone who is willing to subscribe to get in.”

    Does this mean any account with any funpass will be able to get in?

    • #164 by Michael Wilson on 2011.12.08 - 2:15 pm

      If they are over 18 and subscribe, yes.

      • #165 by MysteriousYouth on 2011.12.09 - 1:09 am

        Thats good πŸ™‚ When will all this be in effect?

      • #166 by SwimGood on 2011.12.11 - 12:35 pm

        I am the age of 19, and have been asked to provide the appropriate ID in order to continue my There membership. I have done all that is asked, though email and haven’t received any feedback since. (4 days) Can you provide me with any advice on how to resolve this situation?

        I would love to continue my future endeavors.

      • #167 by Michael Wilson on 2011.12.11 - 12:54 pm

        We won’t be processing proof of age until we re-open, and subscription will be required.

    • #168 by SwimGood on 2011.12.11 - 2:06 pm

      I understand. Please don’t make me wait too long 😦

  52. #169 by Rick on 2011.12.08 - 1:48 pm

    will there be subscription options like , 30 day, 60 day and etc?

    • #170 by Michael Wilson on 2011.12.08 - 2:15 pm

      You just subscribe and PayPal will transfer the money each month automatically. There’s no “term”.

      • #171 by Juli on 2011.12.08 - 3:58 pm

        Do I have this correct?
        1) Automatic monthly withdrawal from your paypal account which is funded by your bank account or a credit card.
        2) You can have as many subscriptions (avies) as you want?
        3) Are your subscriptions linked together under one Main account? (For example if you want 2 avatars, one is the Main) You are just one person of course with multiple avatars!
        4) Is this example correct? You subscribe to 4 avatars for one month to get organized and move items between them and THEN decide how many you want to continue to pay for monthly THEN you want to close 2 of the avatars and continue to subscribe for the other 2?
        5) Can you give notice anytime during the month of subscription that you will not be renewing a subscription?

        These are things I would like to know since I am a CLAIMED legacy account but cannot get in since I am silver fun pass.
        I unknowingly claimed this account and one other silver pass account so NOW MY third account which is Platinum pass account CANNOT “reclaim possessions” from these 2 silver pass accounts. I guess I will have to wait and subscribe for all three to move my possessions and get organized and decide if I want all 3 accounts.

        Thanks for any information on how to handle all of this!

      • #172 by Michael Wilson on 2011.12.08 - 4:06 pm

        1) Automatic monthly withdrawal from your paypal account which is funded by your bank account or a credit card.

        Or however you get the money to Paypal.

        2) You can have as many subscriptions (avies) as you want?

        Yes

        3) Are your subscriptions linked together under one Main account? (For example if you want 2 avatars, one is the Main) You are just one person of course with multiple avatars!

        No. There is currently one avatar per account.

        4) Is this example correct? You subscribe to 4 avatars for one month to get organized and move items between them and THEN decide how many you want to continue to pay for monthly THEN you want to close 2 of the avatars and continue to subscribe for the other 2?

        Yes, but you will pay 4 X $10 for 4 avatars, and will have to CANCEL the subscriptions for the other two.

        5) Can you give notice anytime during the month of subscription that you will not be renewing a subscription?

        Yes. I need to make sure we don’t cancel you until the end of the month.

  53. #173 by Suzy on 2011.12.08 - 1:36 pm

    So… There is no free trial or anything?? Most online games, mmo’s, etc, offer that.

    • #174 by Michael Wilson on 2011.12.08 - 2:16 pm

      No, there is not at this time.

      • #175 by Andrew Almeida on 2011.12.09 - 3:34 am

        For future references since it’s been said you cannot delete an avatar from the server. If and when you decide to go with the free trial idea for \new users, once you decide how many free trials may be used at any general time and find a way to prevent repeated trials…..you can create a specific number of trial accounts such as “TrialUser1, TrialUser2 and so on”. Then assign one to a person for their trial that way you limit the number of trials going on at once and prevent a million free trial accounts from starting and abandoning the world.

      • #176 by Aaron Moe on 2011.12.09 - 5:15 am

        No trial version of There.com?

        Well let’s just create a little story..

        -A man opened his Internet Browser and searched virtual worlds and they decided to choose There.com, then he found subscription is for cash, why would he spend his money on something that he isn’t sure if he’d like it or not? “maybe he don’t like the game and feel ripped off lol.”

        Don’t missunderstand me Mr.Wilson, I just want to learn :D.

      • #177 by Michael Wilson on 2011.12.09 - 7:47 am

        Here’s another story: “A man logs onto There, and creates all kind of havoc with threats, racial invective, and re-distributing There’s copyrighted content. There bans him, so he creates another free trial and does the same thing. There bans him, so he creates another free trial and does the same thing. There bans him, so he creates another free trial and does the same thing. There bans him, so he creates another free trial and does the same thing. There bans him, so he creates another free trial and does the same thing. There bans him, so he creates another free trial and does the same thing. There bans him, so he creates another free trial and does the same thing. There bans him, so he creates another free trial and does the same thing. There bans him, so he creates another free trial and does the same thing. …”

        Get the idea? That’s what used to happen.

      • #178 by softNdark on 2011.12.09 - 8:47 am

        Makes good sence to me…..

      • #179 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.09 - 12:42 pm

        Aaron, unlike many of the MMORPGs out there, that man is only risking $10 for a single month’s subscription to try There. If he were signing up for any of a huge number of online games, he’d have had to pay top video game dollar just to get the client, before he could log in at all — so call it $30 to $60 just to see if he likes it. Honestly, if it isn’t worth ten bucks to see if you like something that’s going to cost you ten bucks a month, you’re probably on an even worse budget than I am and should consider downgrading your internet service or cell phone service to save some money (I saved $30/mo on my cell phone service recently, just by going into the company store and asking if they could help me reduce my bill — though an attempt to do the same with my cable failed).

      • #180 by therian fan on 2011.12.10 - 9:04 am

        The best way is to create an online demo where no one but just that person is able to see a small replica of the world. It would have just one vehicle, some clothes to change, and some demo areas where the members can walk around and watch videos about the virtual world. That way, you don’t need to worry about the need of banning people or any greifing and it also gives them a small opportunity to see the world.

      • #181 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.11 - 7:34 am

        Thereian fan, the problem with doing that is that it would cost There significant money; it would require the resources of a world server, more or less, and (like anything else on the Internet that’s free) would be running 24/7, so it would cost as much to operate as one of the main world servers, with zero direct return (and no reliable way to even tell if it’s bringing in new subscriptions). Beyond that, vehicles and the world aren’t the primary attraction to There, it’s being able to use that stuff socially, either in competition or teamwork, for things like races, games, groups like BABS and Hairier Squadron, etc.; without that stuff, There is just a video game (and as such, wouldn’t have lasted seven years, much less been popular enough to be resurrected on a new business model a year and more after closing).

        To be useful, a free trial would pretty well have to be in the same world as paying avatars — but to avoid being just a drain on resources, it also has to be provably profitable: bringing in new accounts in a verifiable, traceable manner, while not costing more in administration and moderation than it produces. Given it only costs $10 to sign up for a month, I don’t think the subscription cost is a huge bar to entry — certainly not as big as the requirement to have PayPal, which itself isn’t a big problem for the vast majority of potential users.

      • #182 by Reo on 2011.12.11 - 10:20 am

        > Here’s another story: β€œA man logs onto There, and creates all kind of havoc with threats, racial invective, and re-distributing There’s copyrighted content. There bans him, so he creates another free trial and does the same thing.

        I don’t understand this. Wouldn’t an IP ban work to fix this problem? If the person is willing to go through proxy after proxy to get into There, then surely he’s willing to pay 10 dollars. It just seems like the price (removing any way for people to try There for free) is way too high for what you gain (keeping out repeat offenders).

      • #183 by ImageMaker on 2011.12.11 - 3:36 pm

        Reo, I guess that depends on what the repeat offenders cost There. I’m guessing it’s a lot more than free trials can be shown to bring in.

      • #184 by therian fan on 2011.12.12 - 10:39 am

        Which way do you want it ImageMaker? Do you want people to test the world to get more people in? Or spend a little money to make money? Isn’t that how the world is today? Don’t you need to spend money to make money? That’s what I thought in the business world. It wouldn’t cost a lot of money. No need for any moderation. All of it would be on there website. No connection with the world. Think of it as the blockits with no one but just themselves. Of course it wouldn’t have those nice features. It gives the members an opportunity to get a small feel of the world. Think of it as Unity has it. Have a look at what they did: http://unity3d.com/gallery/demos/live-demos They created a live demo for people to test it. Couldn’t There create something like this? Of course there wouldn’t be a lot in it. Just a walk around and have them watch video clips of the world. I mean it may need some resource but it will definitely reduce the amount of griefers and drama that tries to enter.

      • #185 by Michael Wilson on 2011.12.12 - 10:49 am

        Interesting. The Blockskit “beta” came out looong before there was ever a CCMetro, or even a 2D Coca Cola world. Anyone who got it after the Beta would have to have downloaded it illegally.

  54. #186 by soede on 2011.12.08 - 1:25 pm

    Cant wait to get my dev portfolio back and hear the details of those Peer reviews and/or debate regarding it!!!
    Well I suppose I can, but I’m bouncing in my seat!!!

  55. #187 by SaltySilver on 2011.12.08 - 12:21 pm

    awesome…..

  56. #188 by CardSharkRay on 2011.12.08 - 11:54 am

    NOW WHO ARE THE EARLY BETA DAY PEOPLE WHAT MONTH TO MONTH LIKE JAN 2003 TO DEC 24 2003 ARE THOUSE GOING TO BE FREE TO GET IN I REMEMBER ABOUT HOW YA SAID THE EARLY BETA PEOPLE …

    • #189 by Michael Wilson on 2011.12.08 - 11:57 am

      We have already set the Priv bits for those folks. They will find that they don’t need a subscription to get it.

      It’s not ALL 2003 people. It’s only the ones who signed up for the “Lifetime Membership” (or whatever it was called).

      • #190 by CardSharkRay on 2011.12.08 - 12:05 pm

        ok MW just wondering becouse in dec 2003 24th i paid 49.95 for lifetime was just wondering …

      • #191 by Orielle Thereian on 2011.12.08 - 3:04 pm

        CardSharkRay, sounds more like you bought the Charter membership deal that offered 50% off the list price of membership. Beta ended in October 2003 and the offer for the Lifetime Beta membership ended October 12,2003. Not all 2003 accounts are beta accounts, and not all beta accounts had beta lifetime memberships, just those who purchased it in October 2003 when it was offered.

        Beta Lifetime Membership Deal
        Charter Membership Deal

        Gotta love the Wayback Machine. πŸ˜‰

      • #192 by Aaron Moe on 2011.12.09 - 5:20 am

        CardSharkRay,

        There2 is for 18+

        There2 requires users to pay 10$ for monthly for subscription.

        And MW already said that people who will be asking for old There.com (Lifetime Membership) their comments would be ignored and that’s all. (if that’s what you trying to do..)

        So, deal with it.

    • #193 by Rebecca McArthur (Marcy_D) on 2011.12.09 - 10:54 am

      If you aren’t sure what kind of membership you have… go look at your profile. It will tell you.

  57. #194 by LeeLee on 2011.12.08 - 11:49 am

    Thank you for the awesome update!!!

    • #195 by cardsharkray on 2011.12.08 - 9:13 pm

      thanks for the info Orielle i will still sign up but its going to be a differnt name and again thanks for the info and have a happy hoilday

  58. #196 by Liam on 2011.12.08 - 11:43 am

    Fantastic, well i’m 18 next year! I’m glad I finally have the answer about my avie being saved until I turn 18 πŸ™‚ See you all next year!

  59. #197 by Christy Clendenen on 2011.12.08 - 11:33 am

    YAY!!!

  60. #198 by soledadnegativa on 2011.12.08 - 11:15 am

    Amazing work eam Phoenix, thanks for the update.

  61. #199 by Jimmy Kluding (@LegionNinja) on 2011.12.08 - 11:13 am

    I remember that movie. Isn’t that “Who Framed Rodger Rabbit?”

  62. #200 by toufovou on 2011.12.08 - 11:09 am

    Super!!!!

  63. #201 by Elaur on 2011.12.08 - 10:51 am

    Yay! So exciting! Can’t wait for the dev submissions! I need more exclamation points!

  64. #202 by kelayna on 2011.12.08 - 10:50 am

    Yay!! Go Dream Team Phoenix!!

  65. #203 by Puddlefish on 2011.12.08 - 10:50 am

    It’s getting close!!!!! Yeah!

  66. #204 by Striker194 on 2011.12.08 - 10:46 am

    Awesome! Glad to hear that things are going smoothly! πŸ™‚

  67. #205 by chipfrodo on 2011.12.08 - 10:44 am

    Great work can’t wait for there to open for all to enjoy

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