When Microsoft first announced the two tiers of membership in its Xbox Live service for the Xbox 360, representatives said that occasional free weekends of online play, usually available only to paying Gold members, would be given to the free-membership Silver subscribers as a means of driving more of them to sign up for the higher level of service.
Initial information posted earlier today on the official Xbox Live Calendar at Xbox.com had indicated the first such event for North America, sponsored by Verizon, to be occuring from April 1st through 3rd, according to a number of online sources.
However, a Microsoft employee statement
on the company's Gamerscore Blog indicated that "The Xbox.com team pulled it down, because the dates were tentative, and details of the promotion still haven’t been finalized. We'll share details as soon as we can."
However, it's clear that such a weekend will be scheduled for the near future. Silver membership, free to all Xbox 360 owners with a broadband connection, allows users to browse the Xbox Live Marketplace and have their accomplishments and high scores recorded through virtual Gamercards. Only the Gold membership, available for a monthly subscription fee, lets users play online matches in supporting games.