Friday, March 30, 2012

A blog you say?

Well, what an interesting time to start an EVE blog. 

The last couple of weeks I've wondered "What do I blog about?" I know the words and thoughts are in there but it's always so much easier to talk than write (as those who know me will attest to). So I worked on laying out the blog and learning (kind of) the mechanics of the site you see around these words.

No, really. What to do with a blog? It's really a lot harder than it sounds even for an opinionated and talkative guy like me.

Should I be self-serving and promote the Lost in EVE pod casts? (By the way, I'm the new co-host with Jade over at so check that out!) What about my alliance or corporation? (By the way, I'm in Against ALL Authorities in Blackwater, USA. o/ BUSA!) That would probably be a boring use of a blog and frankly I have more to talk about than these things.

I've never been shy of confidence and once I start writing I tend to create walls of text. People at work will attest to the fact that I don't write lots of emails but when I do they usually grab lunch or go the bathroom before sitting down. Did I want to try to build on that? Or go for a more "twitter" approach with lots of small messages? I struggle with 140 characters so perhaps wall of text it will be.

Damn it. What am I going to write? News? Riverini I am not. Game mechanics? Maybe. Well, sure. Ok. But every blog? And the first one? No way.

Fanfest was wonderful, even if over free EVE-TV. I was kinda there! It really jazzed me up. I was so excited and the energy at the fanfest spilled over into my gaming world. Sure, lets start there!

But first a podcast. Jade and I had the same view - share the excitement. Share our fanboi zeal about the game. Be part of the EVE universe and promote the game we love! We want to help CCP (and David Reid) in making EVE the largest game universe! As I've already written to a few CCP people: How can we help?

In the first session we talked for over 4 hours, recording around 3 of those for the podcast. Life was good. EVE was good. So F'n excited to be part of the EVE community! I was tired as it was 6am and we called it a wrap. I went to bed with a thousand things to still talk about. Then I woke up and checked twitter.


Read some blogs. Do some research. Watch videos. Talk with Jade. Well, guess we have only 1 thing to talk about now. I had plans that evening so it was going to be another late call to do a recording. Topic was obvious and singular. I did as much research a I could do before going out. When I returned I dropped into Skype to find Jade and a couple guests already an hour into discussion! 3 hours later we wrapped up after the topic had been thoroughly dissected. Even at that time I wanted to move on and I even directed the conversation and our guest (thanks Seleene!) to discuss Fanfest. 

Jade published our 8hr+ show and I went back to thinking "What am I going to write about?" There was already so much said about this situation EVE was in that I just didn't feel I wanted to add to it. So, fine. I won't. The next day I went to the podcast forums where there were a number of comments about our latest show, especially concerning some of the opinions found in the podcast.

There was a particular comment in the forum that called into question the position Jade took that asked about blame being directed towards CCP. In the comment it seemed Jade was singled out for the "conspiracy theor(ies)" that were tossed around the show. Jade defended himself but I felt I had had to also reply as I had been thinking about this for a couple days now.

The question we were all dancing around was "who's responsible?"

I'll step up and say that I also threw around some "ultimate troll" theories as well concerning the mocked player. I even said something was a bit fishy or a bit off (or close to that). The whole thing was just, well, odd. Let me expand on this over what I said in our forum. When faced with the potential of a loss (anywhere from 1 to 20+ Mackinaws based upon various reports, which is a 100M to 2.0B ISK hit) I'm certain most EVE players would say almost anything at this point to prevent a loss. It's not out of the realm given these conditions to assume anything said under these conditions is false (i.e. a troll). One of the main rules of this game is "Scam or be Scammed." That element is celebrated in this game! 

However, as I ALSO said, Alex/The Mittani crossed a line. Even in that kind of forum and this kind of game a line was crossed. I also went on to say that for ME he apologized and made amends. Done.

While I didn't jump to the same "CCP has fault" conclusion right away I do support Jade in his conclusions. Here's why:

1) They have a ZERO tolerance policy for suicide based statements. Even in jest they will report statements about suicide to the authorities. At least according to this post by a GM:
the GM department has a strict policy of informing local and international law enforcement agencies of any suicide threats issued NO MATTER THE CONTEXT. In other words, do NOT joke about that. When a RL life is threatened we do not take any risks, ever.
2) The slides were vetted prior to display. In a single line the player states:
Since my divorce all I want to do is die, and I have been doing that allot in this game.
This should have been a HUGE RED FLAG to the CCP employee doing the review. They should have just removed that slide and investigated as PER #1 above.

Where I give CCP a tiny bit leeway in ownership is due to: 

3) The slide went by without concern. It was the Q&A section that caused the biggest issue. How was the CCP person to know what he was going to say. But still, see #1 and #2. The slide should have never happened and then the question would have never happened and the answer would have never happened. 

But I do toss it back upon CCP for the following:

4) The feeds were LIVE! No buffering, no delay. At a alcohol fuelled session where HTFU was going to be the battle cry and a big steaming cup of GO FUCK YOURSELF player X, Y and Z who fell prey to our ass kicking was going to be the bulk of presentations. That was not a good decision on the part of CCP. Do all the sessions need some sort of monitoring? No. Had they needed it in the past? Probably. I don't know the decision process behind this so I can't even guess why it wasn't part of this fanfest. I just know it wasn't.

I do applaud Alex (and his persona's) for standing up and taking responsibility. That speaks volumes for me. 

CCP should do the same. They should also do an internal review and take appropriate action and steps for the future.

I too am sad about the outcome of the last few days. If you listen to the show we were SO exited about the fanfest. Like two kids let loose in a candy store. Then the fall out. A significant change in our emotions. Let me be clear about one thing. I want to be an ambassador for this game. I want to be more involved. I have even stated that I along with Jade would like to do the Fanfest hosting (along with other podcasters). Despite my fanboy feelings and man-love for CCP, I must still say they have some ownership in this and must acknowledge it in some fashion.

I don't want this to change EVE. I like it the way it is. I do want it to be a hard, difficult and unyielding gaming universe. I want everyone to HTFU. I don't want the instant gratification WOW players to be welcome here in their current form. They need to evolve and grow and flourish in EVE.

I just feel like that dream might have died last week.

What an interesting time to start an EVE blog.

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