Pay Per View

Image Source: www.psdgraphics.com
Image Source: http://www.psdgraphics.com

I’ve received several show invites/announcements over the last couple of months that are charging admission and/or requiring reservations.

Is this a growing trend in SL?

Paying to view dance shows?

I’m wondering what other trends are here or on the way.

Reserved seating for VIP’s?

Audience numbers limited to combat lag?

Script limits enforced?

I’m not necessarily against any of these practices, just curious that they seem to be cropping up.

I can certainly see limiting scripts and/or limiting the number of audience members in order to combat lag.

There are some shows that are very resource-heavy, and limiting some factors would help ensure audience members get the best performance possible.

As for paying admission, I’m curious how many venues are actually charging admission.

For large-scale, one-off performances, I can see how admission might be necessary.

But for other shows?

Along with paying admission, several venues have reserved seating.

I’ve even seen reserved seating at some venues for sponsors.

In SL, reserved seating seems like an easy perk to offer, since generally seating doesn’t affect your view of a performance.

In RL, you can get stuck behind a pole and have your view of the stage ruined.

In SL, you can simply move your camera around to get the perfect viewing angle.

I still maintain, however, the biggest thing you can do to ensure good viewing of a performance is to arrive early.

Yes, it might be a pain, since you can tp in at the last second.

However, your computer still needs time to rezz and cache everything, and venues are doing that pre-show priming BEFORE the show starts. 😀

So if you arrive early (15-30 minutes), you can find a seat, park your avi, go take care of RL business (drinks, bathroom, whatever) for that time, and when the show starts, you will (hopefully) see everything as the performers intended.

As we all know, however, nothing in SL is guaranteed. 😛

Are you willing to pay admission for a performance?

Would you pay for reserved seating?

Would it make a difference if you got to choose your reserved seat?

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12 thoughts on “Pay Per View

  1. I’ve seen the VIP, reserved seating notices, arrive early, etc. Haven’t seen anything on paying to go. if you pay to go does that mean you don’t feel obliged to tip the dancers and/or venue? I still find it funny people arrive 5 mins before a show or 5 mins into the show and expect to see everything clearly AND find a seat near the stage! tsk tsk. Seems like real life doesn’t it! 😀

    1. I’m not sure about tipping vs admission – I suppose it would depend on the price of admission? I always find it funny that people arrive last minute or late and then complain about rezz issues. There are just some things you have to accept, and rezz time is one of them. 🙂

  2. The reservation thing is fine in my mind, since “they” decide what the optimum number of avatars for the audience will be, based on their knowledge of the sim and the number of performers in the show. Of course I hope the reservees don’t forget to go!

    Paying for admission is different and it’s not quite clear what “they” have in mind with this. Is it instead of tipping? Is it a payment for the venue, with tipping of the performers expected as well? I think you might find that paying for admission in SL will be equated to going to a RL performance. I paid for the ticket and that’s all I’m need to pay. Someone already said to me about a payment for admission in SL, “That’s OK, that’s what I tip anyway.” In her mind, if she paid for admission, then that’s it.

    1. I agree, having reservations and/or limiting seating is (I hope!) being done to ensure optimum performance for audience members.
      As for paying admission, I’m not sure what the thinking is behind it. Perhaps to ensure reservees show up, since they have paid? I think many people would think as your friend does, that paying admission (something unusual for SL), means they won’t be tipping.
      It will be interesting to see if the trend continues. 🙂

  3. I have to say that I understand the seat reservation policy if it’s done due to limitations in avatar count (either caused by the sim limitations or the performers’ desire to control the lag). In that sense it’s not unlike setting script limits.
    The admission thing, however, is kind of fishy. Do these people usually get such low tips that they want to ensure they get at least something? Or what’s the motive here? Wouldn’t a person who has paid the admission then be eligible to demand a refund if the show is not what was initially advertised? Or if they crash mid-show? Or if they just can’t make it to the show because SL and their internet connection did not like each other that day? After all, tips are optional and the tipper has usually seen the performance (or at least parts of it) when they decide to tip.
    Of course if a performer etc. has a reputation of being consistently AMAZING, some people might think it’s worth to pay for in advance. But that seems to be pretty rare in SL. Only a few musicians come to mind – but then again, they’re pretty much RL acts that are merely using SL as a medium so the “SL factors” are minimal.

    1. A good point – I’ve not seen anything that addresses a possible ‘refund’ scenario, but I can certainly see it happening.
      Say, for example, someone pays the admission, then arrives last minute, and demands a refund due to rezz issues. And how could you know whether the issues were true or not?
      I’m all for reservations – I like knowing I have a guaranteed seat. I’m not a big fan of having to arrive 1 1/2 to 2 hours early in order to claim that reserved seat, however. :/

  4. When I got my netbook back and upgraded I was going to go to a few shows again. I think the only ones I actually attended was 2 MJ’s shows. The ‘arrive 1 hour early’ thing appeared in 4 shows I visited on the trot at non UK times. I am busy when logged in at the moment, and I have better things to do than blow 2-3 hours on a 1 hour virtual show.

    On pre reserving seats, not something I ever did because I am forgetful, forget to go to shows 90% of the time, or plain forget to log into SL when shows are on. I do feel that would be acting like a twat reserving seats that could otherwise be filled with paying patrons when I never remember to arrive.

    1. I don’t mind arriving a few minutes early to allow things to cache/rezz, but I agree – 2 hours early is just inconvenient. If I make a reservation, I try to put it on my calendar, so I get a reminder. But, as always, if RL interferes, it interferes.
      I’m all for doing things that make for a better experience. It depends on what the venue owner and/or audience members want.
      I will say, though, I have skipped going to shows that required a reservation, even though I wanted to see them. 🙂

  5. I agree with reservation and an admission fee. I do think there is only one condition that warrants a refund though, and that’s if the show does not go on. Perhaps they can have a cancellation policy where if you cancel 24 hours before the show you can receive a large portion of your Linden’s back because the thing is, even RL restaurants (high end) are going to a policy that if you make a reservation and don’t show they keep a deposit of your money because if you think about it, they prepped and ordered food with the thought your group would be there. I think the admission fee is to defray the cost of the venue (its expensive to own the electron dirt and keep the lights on) and to pay the ‘actors’ a small salary, so tipping a gratuity is still a nice gesture if you enjoy the show because face it, there is no employed position within Second Life that pays all that much (that I know of) and if you get paid pennies for an hour or two of work, who in their right mind would show up night after night to perform if they feel under-valued? Just my thoughts anyway. Great topic! 🙂

    1. I think it’s a given in the dance community that most dancers dance for the enjoyment, not the L$. 😀 Same for most venues. And if charging admission and/or having reservations works for them, great. As with everything in SL, there are always lots of choices. 🙂

      1. There sure are, totally agree! I was thinking more along the things like the recent play “Paradise Lost” where there were actors and also some live music venues. I have to admit I haven’t been “dancing” since, lol, lawdy, 2009 maybe? I don’t get out much being a sort of a recluse

        1. I can certainly see large-scale, limited productions like ‘Paradise Lost’ charging admission – especially when part of the proceeds were going to charity.
          Recently I have seen smaller venues charging admission and/or asking for reservations. It will be interesting to see if the trend continues. 🙂

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