Bad behaviour

There was an interesting article published the other day about some of the ugliness in the EVE Online Community.

http://www.mmorpg.com/gamelist.cfm/game/14/feature/10820/Chronicles-of-a-New-Eden-Beauty-Ugliness-in-Community.html

It finished with the line:

“We should figure out how to do something about that.”

A throwaway line maybe, but how complicated is that one sentence?

I was writing a long post about my experiences in EVE, in other games, and with social media generally over the last 25 years.  I just couldn’t get it to all flow nicely.  My conclusion was that I am not sure EVE is especially worse than other competitive games where players directly interact, and that the problem of people not respecting others is a much wider social issue.  It would have been a very convincing post, my best ever.  You will just have to take my word for it.

9 thoughts on “Bad behaviour

    • That’s a powerful video. I’ve seen a number of variations done on the same sort of theme.

      In earlier times you would just assume such comments were the domain of the mentally sick or especially juvenile. Now they can come from men or women, as normal and respectable as you might like. People with such a huge sense of self entitlement that they feel justified in attacking anyone who holds a different opinion. If they had any doubt, they are buoyed and supported by the echo chamber that tends to be their social media feeds.

      Sadly I suspect a growing proportion of people writing such things would have no issue saying it direct to their targets face.

      Why should we expect EVE to maintain a level of maturity and respect that most people fail to do on their on Facebook feeds.

  1. I actually find Eve to be one of the better games. We do bad things, sure. But it’s usually in the spirit of the game and Eve’s playerbase is usually old enough to except that. It’s rare for me to come across someone who just acts like a total jack***. In game. Out of game…. There’s a reason I have never been to /eve.

    Replying to you real fast about the echo chamber. It’s the same as it’s always been. A few months ago I picked up Sarah Vowel’s book Radio On: A Listener’s Diary. For all of 1996 she kept a diary of everything she heard on the radio and odd thoughts which came from it. People say the exact same things they say now. To an eerie degree. My brain just didn’t remember how bad it was 20 years ago, it remembered the good parts and chucked the rest.

  2. I found Messner’s article very puzzling. When he says “EVE Online can be beautiful, but it can also be intensely ugly too. We should figure out how to do something about that,” I believe the ‘we’ he refers to consists of players only. This interpretation certainly makes if you read the sentence before the declaration (*emphasis* mine), “All of that starts with people opening up and sharing, and *it requires CCP to stop being a caretaker of the image it wishes EVE Online had* because it’s not the one it really has.”

    Hmmmm. I think Mr. Messner may want to contact CCP before demanding they hand control of their image over to him. It’s the polite thing to do.

    • I wonder if CCP actively try to hide bad behaviour, or aggressively try to control their image. I’d have thought in todays world it would be difficult to do. You couldn’t blame them for making some effort – given most businesses would do the same.

      I’ve known a few players who have said something offensive in the EVE game client, been reported for it, and received bans. CCP does seem to respond to formal complaints in game.

      When larger incidents that occur out of game become common knowledge, they can also respond, although they can seem to be slow to react and hide behind the no comment / can’t discuss line. I wonder where their jurisdiction lies, and if people expect too much of them.

  3. As long as your real name/persona are detached on the internet you will have this. People are people, parts ugly and parts divine… and given anonymity, the ugly rises. it has always been this way. Plus those who are really ugly, really that part of the community who are the worst of us… I’ll bet every ISK I’ve ever made they don’t go to fanfest or engage in any of the social aspects… except within their own groups and to a degree Reddit and other forums, again, where they can be anonymous.

    You want a real world example? Look at balaclava clad terrorists making hate filled videos… Look at the KKK. Being able t cloak oneself in Anonymity and how it affects interactions with others is the issue. Not EVE or CoD or WoW…

    • Interesting point about people who show their ugly side not being as likely to attend such things as Fanfest.

      I am not sure people hide behind anonymity as much now. I see plenty examples of the uglier side of the Australian Animal Liberation movement in their active campaign against Duck hunting. They commonly wish death, rape, suffering on hunters – and more often than not, their families. It crosses over to the Politicians who make the decisions to allow a hunting season. This is done seemingly by people posting under their real names using real profile photos. More often than not they are women, and they get cheered and likes for what they say. I expect they would have no problem saying it to their targets face – if they felt they had support behind them.

      I have friends who post, share, like, support with comments very militant views on anyone who happens to have a non-politically correct view. I suspect their outrage and palpable disgust would cross over into the real world, again if they felt they had support behind them.

      I see this sort of thing as being much worse on something like Facebook – with people mostly posting under their own names, than in a game like EVE. Say something so offensive within the game client and they can and do get banned.

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