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When you cash Lindens out of Second Life using the Linden Exchange, you have the choice between a “Market Sell” and a “Limit Sell”. Although I’ve never done a Market sell, I can see that I get considerably more dollars using the Limit Sell, but apparently the Market Sell is much faster. I’m not sure how much faster! I’ve never used it!

I work hard for my lindens and I wish to optimize the amount of dollars I receive for them.

When you do a Limit Sell on the Linden Exchange, you are trading your lindens for other residents dollars. So when you sign up to perform a Limit Sell, you are put in a queue that will match up your lindens with other residents dollars when its your turn to exchange. And quite likely your exchange will happen in chunks when its your turn – not all at once.

Unless you are planning on cashing out and processing credit of USD $10,000 or more, OR PayPal will not permit payments to your country, you will need to set up a PayPal account first (see here). I’ve had one for years, I used to send money from PayPal to my bank, but now I use the PayPal debit card.

Your cash outs from Linden Dollars to US Dollars proceed in 2 steps: first to your US Dollar Balance that belongs to your Second Life account (which you can use to pay tier to LL or for premium fees), then to your PayPal account. Each step takes a few days, the whole process usually takes 7 days for me from initiating the Market Sell to the money in my PayPal account. On a first time limit sell it took 11 days to complete for a friend of mine.

In order to keep from stressing myself out, I start the cash-out process at least two weeks before I need the money.

Exchanging Lindens for US Dollars via Limit Sell

So once you have a PayPal account set up, you can begin the process. First you will need to turn on your advanced settings. On the left hand side of your Second Life Dashboard, under Linden Exchange click on “Manage” and then in the list that appears underneath click on “L$ Exchange Settings”. My list may be longer than yours because I already had my advanced settings on.

01 L$ Exchange settings

This will take you to a page where you can select basic or advanced settings, tick the advanced button and click submit.

002 Linden dollar exchange settingsNow you will be able to see many more functions that are denied to basic display users! I always have to click Manage to show the rest of the choices below. Then click on “Sell L$”

03 Sell LThe next page that appears will show you a bunch of information and choices. Here is where you can make a Limit Sell. First you need to select the Exchange Rate to use. I always choose the one with the most volume (which may not be the top value). In this case the most volume is trading at L$247 / US$1.00.  If there is a tranche selling just above that rate for L$248 / US$1.00, you could use 248 as your exchange rate and your Limit Sell should sell faster than if you chose 247. But I always give myself plenty of time and pick the higher volume amount.

You CAN try to get even more US dollars for attempting to exchange at a better rate, say L$245 or L$246 per US$1.00, but my attempts to sell at any rate better than the prevailing rate never sold in the month I was willing to wait and see.

You can also perform a Market Sell, which will net you significantly less US dollars.  I like to compare the estimated proceeds of Market Sells and Limit Sells just so I can see how much more money I am getting out of a Limit Sell.

So once you are done exploring, enter the number of Lindens you wish to exchange, and the exchange rate you wish to use – in this example it would be L$247 / US$1.00. You will see numbers appear Estimated Value (before fees) and the Estimated Proceeds (after LL takes their 3.5% cut).

04 Limit Sell

Once you click on the “Offer to Sell” button you will be directed to re-enter your SL login information again, and then will be taken to a confirmation page. You should also get an email stating that a Limit Sell order was placed from Second Life. Now you just wait. Probably about 4-5 days.

You will notice that the amount of Lindens that you offered to sell have been taken from your Linden Balance. This is because it has been pulled into the exchange queue, waiting for buyers, And it would not do if you spent the Lindens on a spaceship, lemur avatar or nifty new skin with scales in the meantime. But never fear! You can always check to see how things are proceeding by going under the Linden Exchange (left side of your Dashboard) > Manage > Transaction History. Your Open (pending) orders will show up, relieving your fears that your Lindens have somehow escaped to the ether. You can also check your closed orders in the last 30 days on this page.

05 check your order

So just be patient until that magical day comes that you receive an email telling you that your Limit Sell has been filled!

Once it has been filled, the US dollars REMAIN in your Second Life account. This enables you to pay tier, premium fees or even shop on marketplace with US dollars! (Don’t you DARE shop on Market Place with US Dollars!). Linden Labs will use this US Dollar balance first for any money owed to them, before they attempt to collect from your payment information on record.

Processing Credit

Now for the second step – Process Credit. If you wish to transfer some or all of these US Dollars to your PayPal account, now is the time. Go to your Account Summary on your Dashboard, and you will see a US Dollar balance with a “process Credit” link next to it. Click that!

06 Process Credit

Then next page shows that the Process Credit has changed (for now) and you are given a link to the knowledge base if you care to read more about it. You will need to select a Payout Method, so click the Payout Method plus button .

BE VERY SURE THE  EMAIL ADDRESS YOU GIVE THEM  IS CORRECT, BECAUSE THE FUNDS WILL GO TO WHATEVER EMAIL YOU ENTER!!

You should only need to do this part once, unless of course LL changes things again.

07 select a payout method

Clicking on the plus button will take you to this dialogue for Change Payment Method. If you need to add a payment method, click the link to add a payment method.

If you have processed credit to PayPal in the past, you will be able to tick a box next to PayPal Address that shows the email you use to process PayPal payments.  Tick the button and click continue.

08 change payment method

Now you will see the PayPal logo and the email you use for PayPal under payout method.  BE VERY SURE THIS EMAIL ADDRESS IS CORRECT, BECAUSE THE FUNDS WILL GO TO WHATEVER EMAIL YOU ENTER!!

Then click the Request Process credit button

09 Payout Method

You will again be asked to enter your SL login information, and then you will be directed to a page showing the Transaction Details of your Process Credit Request.

10 Transaction details

Now you will wait  – again – for about 3 days, (could be 6 days if its your first time). Then you will get an email from PayPal saying that your money is available in your PayPal account. It usually takes me a week from initiating a limit sell to seeing the money in my PayPal account if I go to process credit as soon as I get the email that my Limit Sell was filled, but your first time may take longer.

And that’s how you optimize your cash out from Second Life to real money!

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I make builders supplies in Second Life – sculpts and textures. The raw materials of content creation. Most of my stuff is for land and sea and sky. Tigger Genira and I set ourselves to figure out how to make plant sculpts because I wanted some very badly, and we adore figuring out HOW to do things.

I wanted to landscape my little gardens just so. Then I realized I needed textures, plant textures. I had found some nice ones, but too many were icky blobby ones with white halos and blocky alpha clash.

So I started to make plant textures, from photos I took of plants in my garden, plants at work, anything that struck my fancy. And with the help of Miriam Donogal, I slowly learned to work in Gimp.

At first I was going to sell made plants in Second Life – you know, copy / mod or mod/ trans plants already made for people to landscape their homes  with. And I did for a while. But then people started asking to buy the sculpts and textures, and almost all my friends are builders  – so I totally understood why people wanted the builders bits and not the already made things. That is what I, as a consumer wanted as well.

Well and two confessions:

1) I am not a great builder – I love to build, don’t get me wrong, I’m just not that good at it. I get distracted easily if there’s more than a few prims involved, I wander off if I get to a tricky bit. I am constantly astonished by what people make with my stuff – its much better than what I would have come up with.

2) I am a lazy, lazy otter. To me, making a texture or sculpts is a relaxing solution to a  defined purpose or a perceived need. And when a texture or sculpt is done, its done! There is no “will this door script work right for all my customers?”, “will this skirt fit on all avatar shapes?” or “do I have enough bling in these shoes?” (kidding! kidding!).

So I am spoiled – my customers for the most part are builders, and builders are awesome folk. They understand the vagaries and limitations of Second Life, and they are usually patient with the typical merchant mistakes – say incorrect perms, or forgetting to pack an example. Because they will probably turn around and be selling their builds, so they know what all goes into the process.

My customers who are mostly builders also help me by defining a perceived need. One of my customers bullied me into making sunbeam sculpts, noting that the sculpt form wasn’t all that different from my plant forms. Most of my plant sculpts are from very specific builders requests that were just plain good ideas.

My friends all make things  – be it music or buildings, clothes or jewelry, and of course, sculpts and textures. And we actually all work well together – offering ideas, setting up in each others shops. Lots of us collaborate, and they put up with me leaving them little presents 😀 I hope to drag some of them into this crazy blog idea that I am percolating.

Yesterday I had a customer tell me that they wished they “were artistic too”. I was a bit taken aback by this. Like when my husband bought me a drawing tablet “because I was an artist”. I don’t think of myself like that – I don’t have an artistic vision, I don’t have an aesthetic like some of my friends do that can take your breath away.  I see myself more as a facilitator – I make useful bits so that people can make their artistic vision come to life. To me, that’s what makes Second Life so much fun – all of us creating together. Like we did in the Second Life 8th birthday exhibition:

Magical Illogica group build for SL8B

Magical Illogica group build for SL8B

Five of us collaborated in that build. Tigger made the atrium build, with the tunnel entrances and tubes that went through the underwater bit, and a lovely little tree and garden patch inside.  Beautiful Shamen made the amazing tree islands and waterfall that flowed into it. Thane Woodford made the dancing Pan sculpts, and decided that we needed all 4 elements present – earth, water, fire and air. The animals made by Thane and I were strewn about, and I put in a couple little  meadows. Miriam Donogal made some amazing stained glass textures, and the slate seen on the floor of the atrium.

See? The sum is greater than the parts!

This month hunts are:

29th July – 31st August 2011 –  Nature’s Hunt: Tropical Nights which is also listed in the SL Destination Guide.

For this hunt I made a cute leetle shack on a floating island with plants and a pond.  It can go into the sky or into the water and is sized to fit perfectly on a standard 512 sq meter lot (16 x 32 meters). It is packed into a rezzer box for easy set up, and is copy mod so you can tear it apart and use or mod the bits as you like.

DBS sign for Island & Shack

August 15 – August 30, 2011 – Full Perm Hunt  – a mini hunt for builders!

For this hunt I have  a set of terrain & ground cover textures:  sands, dirt, rock, grass and a flowery ground cover

<waves>

Halloo all. I have decided that I am in need of a blog. Because I’m sure that the world is eagerly awaiting a blog by someone who is usually a sarcastic tiny otter in Second Life ™.

I am Sea Warcliffe, owner of Deep Blue Sea designs.  I make builders supplies, textures and sculpts and stuff.    Let me figure out how this works and then maybe I will be able to organize my thoughts coherently, but don’t count on it!

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