You may have been following the JIRA Feature Request to being last names back. See SVC-7125 – Bring Back Last Name Options!
This JIRA had 2,139 votes and 696 watches. That is probably some sort of record. It certainly shows that the most residents do not know the importance of clicking Watch.
There is a stream of new comments added to the JIRA item just about every day.
The lack of last names seems to have created a form of racism. New SL users with the last name Resident are claiming discrimination. The only way to know is create a new Alt and walk a mile in their shoes.
I know that I am treated differently when using my every day dark skinned Asian looking avatar than when using my lighter colored Anglo avatar. I haven’t had her out in a long time.
I’m also treated differently when I use my male avatar, which is an odd experience. No matter how dumb a technical statement he may make, it seems to be more easily accepted. Since I write a more technical blog I probably should have used a male.
Its also interesting to see how females treat males. Dang, there are some tough women out there… well… I suppose they are women. I think I can tell when some female avatars are RL guys by using bad lines women would never go for. But, that may be wishful thinking.
Interestingly enough the length of a skirt and the cut of a top changes how one is treated too.
So, I’m not surprised that the last name Resident has brought out the discriminatory behavior. People seem to like to discriminate.
I’ve also found that people not getting their way tend to claim or blame discrimination.
Whatever the real case, discrimination is hard to discuss without emotional involvement. That problem prevents serious, intelligent debate.
Why the Change?
Since the last name thing was omitted to improve signup rates and we have had a definite uptrend in sign ups since the change, I figured getting last names back was unlikely. I wrote in another article that I doubted stats could prove or even show what part of the sign up process was responsible for the change. I thought that made the possibility of last names coming back very unlikely. But, since it now seems sign up rates are pitted against player retention rates, we apparently are going to see a change.
Nice! May be discrimination has done something of which we are in favor.