On Thursday 21st November Linden Lab posted a blog post on the return of last names. Last Names is now the most requested feature apparently on the lab to do list. The lab are now “furiously” going to make Last Names available by the end of January 2020. Last Names will be picked from a list and users can help Linden Lab curate the list.
Name Changes will be exclusively for Premium members at an additional fee (to be confirmed). Changing either First or Last Name will be available as a single transaction (US dollars TBC). For anyone signing up to Second Life in 2020 they will continue to have “resident” attached to their name unless they opt to Premium.
Linden Lab are holding a Last Names competition starting 16th December 2019 for all Second Life users (Basic and Premium users) to suggest suitable last names to the pool of last name options. The lab will pick five lucky residents will be able to change their names free of charge. The contest ends on 15th January 2020.
Participation details will be announced shortly!
There is now a big demand for Last Names in Second Life and it’s good to see the lab finally pushing ahead with a possible release sometime in the first few months or so of 2020. It’s more likely to happen in 2020 from the sounds of things.
Other announcement updates this week…
The Marketplace product listing enhancement fees will be reduced by 10% – effective 2nd December 2019
Improvements to the Events pages are now going ahead for 2020
A new membership level Premium Plus will be introduced in 2020
On 24th September 2019 Linden Lab posted a tiny bit on the return of Last Names almost hidden away in the middle of the blog post. The latest new status is now “Stay tuned for updates on when to expect the return of Last Names“.
Here is the only section relating to Last Names..
More to come!
There’s more in the works, too! Stay tuned for updates on when to expect the return of Last Names, availability of a new mobile app beta, changes to Premium options, improvements to Events, Search, the Destination Guide, and much more.
It’s good the lab are still thinking about returning Last Names but giving no projected time estimations on when that will happen is just not good enough sadly. During the past year including the recent Second Life birthday celebrations the lab have been saying “it’s still being worked on” and there are still complications associated with this process.
It would be nice if the lab could let the Second Life community know in-depth on the progress it’s making. I’m guessing we may hear something before the end of 2019 or early 2020 at the latest. It could possibly be rolled out before then. Linden Lab should of never got rid of Last Names in the first place I think.
On 25th June at the SL16B Meet the Lindens event Oz Linden talked about Last Names in Second Life. The latest news is that the lab are still working on it by knocking it down one system at a time. Oz Linden did not mention any estimated time frames on it. Oz said “we are getting there” and “making progress”. It will be done in the future.
The lab are still moving forward with the idea but it is disappointing to hear it may take much longer to roll out now. April Linden said this is a very hard problem to solve. I do believe it may be apart of the new super premium package coming out later this year.
Why is it taking so long ?
It’s because all of the Second Life services were built to assume last names would never change. All of these have to be found on the system and altered in the right way = one by one for changing last names to work correctly.
When Last Names finally rolls out there will be the ability to pick from a list of names which will change from time to time
The lab will not be reusing previous last names like before
The lab are still working out if there should be costs involved (possible cost L$25-L$50 per change) and if there should be any limits for changing it often
Apparently new residents will continue to get the default “Resident” as their last name
If a friend changes their name the lab may include notifications for this
At 28 minutes & 20 seconds the discussion starts on Last Names.
Other interesting updates from the session..
Bakes on Mesh & EEP
The lab are still working on Bakes on Mesh and it should make life more simpler
Firestorm bringing out EEP version very soon
New environment effects and new settings
There has been work on the backwards compatibility side
Web Based Viewer
A web based viewer for Second Life is possible
The move to the cloud is making progress
The new Cloud servers are way more faster
The 360 viewer is coming back
No plans for large region sizes in the cloud
Mobile Viewer Development
Early alpha version coming soon
Basic functions will include logging in and chatting in first version
Don’t expect it to be a full viewer for some time
There was a final question at the end on how many Lindens there are at Linden Lab?. Oz, April and Patch did not answer this question. I would imagine at least 300 – could be less or more than this number.
Ebbe Altberg who is the CEO of Linden Lab will be live at SL16B Auditorium today from 2pm SLT. I’m sure we will hear more about whats coming soon for Second Life and all the latest developments. There will be mentions of Sansar and much more.
Arrive early and there will be live stream of this event via YouTube.
Last week I ran a poll for 24 hours on Twitter asking everyone if they would like to see Last Names back on the Second Life sign up page. The poll received 57 votes and 93% say YES they want to see Last Names return again.
I think there is high demand out there from the Second Life community and most have been waiting for ages for this to happen however progress has been slow. As many know already when new residents that join Second Life today they end up having “Resident” after the first name and not a second name from a drop down menu like before.
7. The return of Last Names – You’ve asked for it (a lot!), so we will provide a way to customize your last name in Second Life! More details will be available later this year.
The last update I heard was back in September 2018 during a town hall gathering when Ebbe Altberg said that the return of last names to Second Life was still being implemented and work may not be completed before the end of 2018. It’s now April 2019 and still no announcements as such.
On 14th April 2019 I posted a photo of the new Second Life signup page via Twitter which is now live. Ebbe Altberg tweeted on 15th April saying “We definitely have higher priorities right now” so I’m thinking from this that Last Names probably won’t happen until 2020 or even later.
There should be a option to change the name after signing up to Second Life which could be a possible solution with a small fee. It’s probably going to work better as a premium benefit.
This week Linden Lab announced fifteen reasons to celebrate Second Life 15th birthday which takes place in mid June 2018. On the list there was mention about the return of last names which is expected to go live in late 2018. Before then there are many things that have to be fixed on the back-end before last names can return again.
Apparently the plan is to allow people to change their first and last name whenever they want to. Users will be able to select their last name from a pre-set list of available names like the old system before
Unicode will not be supported when entering a first name
Once a name is used it cannot ever be reused again
The first and last name will not replace Display Names
The pre-set list with last names will regularly be changed to keep the fresh and the lab are thinking about last name suggestions from the Second Life community later this year.
There will be a cost to change your name if you wish to do that. The fee costs have not been confirmed yet