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Yay for paid features

I made myself a new icon (well, I put nmalfoy's quote on top of delicatinelity's icon, really). I'm enjoying it immensely.

I also made poll about sponsored communities in a comm of people who are pretty pissed about them. Feel free to wander over and register your opinion.


( Read 9 comments — Leave a comment )
Oct. 1st, 2006 01:39 pm (UTC)
May I borrow your icon?? bcuz it RULz!! ;)
Oct. 1st, 2006 02:07 pm (UTC)
Definitely, but make sure you credit it to the right people.
Oct. 1st, 2006 11:04 pm (UTC)
So how should I credit it? Icon by brentdax,
words by nmalfoy, base by delicanitely
Oct. 2nd, 2006 12:31 am (UTC)
That's alright, but I'm not really that fussed about being credited myself.
Oct. 2nd, 2006 01:47 am (UTC)
Now if only I could spell that D person's name correctly :)
Oct. 1st, 2006 07:34 pm (UTC)
> I also made poll about sponsored communities in a comm of people who are pretty pissed about them.

Perhaps I'm just being hopelessly dense, but I don't think I understand what the big deal is. Like, I can't figure it out enough to even form an opinion whether I'd agree or not. Could someone explain in, say, a paragraph or two what the fuss is about?
Oct. 2nd, 2006 12:27 am (UTC)
There are three aspects that are causing a fuss.

First of all, Six Apart is breaking some of LiveJournal's social norms. Sponsored Features (which were announced at the same time) mean that some new features will show ads to free users, when Six Apart said that only users who specifically opted in to ads would see them. Worse, Sponsored Communities are shown even to paid users, and are a (somewhat more mild) form of advertising themselves. Finally, the change wasn't discussed with the userbase at all; it was presented as a fait accompli. A lot of users think that sponsored communities aren't labeled clearly enough; they want to be able to tell at a glance, without even clicking on the community, whether it's sponsored or not—but Six Apart hasn't even done that.

Not only did the users not get any input, they also were condescended to when the feature was first presented to them. Go read the original post (it's total marketroid language) and then read the edit to that post, where the poster described the overwhelmingly venomous reaction as users being "confused". They weren't confused—they were furious. There's a bit of a difference. brad posted a little later and treated the users like adults, but the damage had been done.

Finally, the financial and social implications of letting corporations into LJ are very worrisome—sponsors are likely to be more lucrative than individual users, and that could shift the balance of power in dangerous ways. For example, what happens when Warner Brothers offers Six Apart $3 million for the right to create a sponsored Harry Potter community—and then they start making demands? What if they want to post a comment in every journal with "Harry Potter" listed as an interest encouraging us to join their community? What if they want my (copyright-violating) Potter icons deleted? What if they want (copyright-violating) fanfic communities taken down? What if they start astroturfing? What if they want to call their community harry_potter, even though there's already an account with that name? What if they want anti_hpmovies deleted? What if they want me banned from LJ because I criticized these actions in my journal?

What if they tell Six Apart to do these things or lose the sponsorship money?

When the financial pressure is overwhelmingly in favor of curtailing ordinary users' activities, will Six Apart stand strong against sponsors' demands? Perhaps so, but they haven't built enough trust from the community for us to be sure.
Oct. 2nd, 2006 12:30 am (UTC)
Er, that was more than a paragraph or two. Sorry.
Oct. 2nd, 2006 02:11 am (UTC)
It was, but it answered my question awesomely. Thanks for doing that. =)
( Read 9 comments — Leave a comment )