Spare The Rod? (o.o)

I remain optimistic… Not even cautiously.  “Rod gets it!” still rings true.  The SL client has improved in leaps and bounds (At least on ~my~ computer) the servers are behaving with less and less hiccups.  We’re seeing fun little advances slide their way into the grid with each update with a continuously firm promise that Mesh will arrive near the end of summer. (^_^)

That’s pretty good. (^_^)

Communications are a mixed bag, though.  Community managers like Blondin left the lab for more or less unknown reasons.  So customer communities have found themselves breaking in new Labbies in order to get their support channels back.  Inworld Labbie presence seem to have reduced.  Though, any time I have asked for support, things have gone well.  My experience with the Labbies tends to be more positive than most anyway. (O.o)

Now, on to Rodvik.  He’s “Out there”.  This is a good thing.  He’s keeping an eye on Twitter, the forums, and various messaging outlets that the Lab’s customers are using.  He has provided direct contact for people with relatively extreme situations if he found they voiced their problems publicly enough.  He’s going quite out of his way to provide support beyond the regular channels available in SL. (^_^)

But, that’s the problem.  He’s tugging the line so far, given the volume of incidents popping up.  But, the SL grid has a lot of people.  Just yesterday he has responded to Ina Centaur’s pleas on Twitter.  This is good.  But, how soon will he have to draw a line?  And, where does the line get drawn?  It’s wonderful that he’s contributing to providing a positive support experience for the Lab’s customers, but, why should he have to be doing this in the first place?  (O.o)

It is quite telling of Linden Lab support channels, though.  Given we’ve observed a general history of the lab giving paying customers the shaft over petty billing issues while ‘free’ accounts get a free ride with most whatever they can do.  If he were around when Aley had issues with billing over Privateer Space, would it have worked out? (o.O)

Long story short.  Rod getting involved in customer support cases is a bad solution for a problem which shouldn’t ever come up.  He’s just one person and he has a company to run.  While the volume is low, this will be okay.  But, what about when he gets ten support claims per day on Twitter?  What if people catch on and go to him before addressing customer service in the first place?  How long until his inworld profile has to read like Torley’s? (=_=)

At the moment, I can suggest that customer service as a whole receives some attention.  Find methods to make it more efficient.  Provide support and be informative as soon as a ticket passes triage.  Even if it’s simply an update in availability and progress.  People like progress bars for long running software functions.  They don’t need to provide a percentage or anything of the sort… Just enough evidence that something is actually being done.  This way, people lose their doubts.  Without doubts, the customer base will be less likely to reach to the top of the ladder to get anything done.  (=_=)

I like to see support.  But, I fear that Rodvik’s approach may backfire soon.  I hope he has already seen this and is making move in the lab to maximize customer interactions come time to provide a solution.  Linden Lab support has been a generally laughable subject.  It’s fun to have a subject to laugh at.  But, it’s preferable to have a support department that doesn’t rely on escalation to higher rungs in the ladder. (>_<)

About Imnotgoing Sideways

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7 Responses to Spare The Rod? (o.o)

  1. I agree, even though Rod stepped in to assist my own problem/glitch. A CEOs job is not to need to deal with all the granularity.

    On the other hand, myself as well as many see this as SUCH a positive sign that he is actually doing what a CEO should be – getting understanding of matters of history and community. The fact that he does so visibly and in a hands-on situation is tremendously admirable.

    I am hoping these engagements of his give him a deep understanding of the situation he has walked into and assist him in getting a team together to handle the granular. Now he knows what issues are important; where people have been frustrated by long-term Lab neglect or ignoring and where the tangles are between customer and company.

    And now he needs to locate the people inside the Lab who will work with his level of care and commitment so they can take the day-to-day stuff in hand and he can trust them to do so. That is a great CEOs job and I have nothing but praise for Rod’s efforts and mojo in these last few months.

  2. brinda Allen says:

    Well stated, both of you.
    Makes me wonder why it’s necessary for the CEO to be forced to handle “details”.
    Yes, if they were my “details” I’d be thrilled, but he is just one guy.

    ya kno, I read somewhere once that there were lines of code in the 1 code viewers {cant speak to spewer 2} that no one currently at the Lab could remember exactly what they did.

    Is it possible that he’s in a position of….. he can’t fire some butts ’cause they know how some stuff works… and no one else does?

    Just askin’

    • Ashiri says:

      I believe that.. Meadhbh (formerly Infinity) made a comment about some of the v1 code that she’d been responsible for… and my interpretation was that no-one was left at LL that knew what it did.

  3. If I were in Ina’s prim shoes and the CEO *didn’t* talk to me, I might be lighting the rag on the Molotov cocktail.

    • Imnotgoing Sideways says:

      While understandable, my point is more along the lines of that it shouldn’t have gone this far. I’m sure the Labbies had chance after chance to find a resolution and missed each one…. All the way to the CEO. As I said, it’s great that he’s doing it, but isn’t this what he has customer support employees for? (O.o)

  4. Storm Clarence says:

    I am well out of my league here, but I agree. I’m also glad you chose to publicize it as such.
    Rod gets it.

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