It would appear that Linden Lab has contracted with an external consulting firm to interview Sansar users. Someone on the official Sansar Discord server mentioned that they had received an email and wanted to know if it was legitimate or a scam.
I was curious and I did a little digging around in my email inbox, and lo and behold, there was this email message from three days ago:
The agency checks out; here is Twofivesix’s website. They appear to be a gaming consulting firm, with a focus on videogames, esports, and virtual reality. Shortly afterward, Derrick Linden posted an official announcement to Discord:
Some of you have already reached out about this, but as a general heads up: we’re working with an outside firm at the moment to help gather and distill user feedback—all part of a broader research effort. If you have received an email from TwoFiveSix that mentions a survey, do not be alarmed – you are NOT being phished! This is a REAL opportunity to share what you think. Big thanks to those of you who’ve gotten in touch, and those of you who’ve already taken the survey! Feel free to drop us a line with any questions you have.
So I decided to fill out Twofivesix’s application form. They are operating on a very tight timeline; they basically want to complete all their hourlong user interviews between January 15th and 22nd! So please go check your email inbox for a message from them, and fill out the application if you wish to be considered for an interview and a US$50 AMEX gift card. What have you got to lose?
I do find it rather reassuring that Linden Lab has hired a professional consulting firm to get more feedback about how people feel about Sansar and what they would like to see happen on the platform. Involving a neutral third party which anonymizes answers might make it easier for negative comments and feedback to be submitted to, and heard by, the company.
It’s no secret that this is a do-or-die, make-or-break period for Linden Lab’s Sansar, especially given the rather lacklustre response to the platform’s launch on Steam so far. They’ve now got to pull out all the stops when it comes to figuring out what factors will make Sansar a success, and what things will drive people away.
As I have said before: Fasten your seatbelts, it’s going to be a bumpy night!