Community and Management

There is a copy of a Facebook post on Reddit, attributed to ex-CCP Leeloo. She was one of the more recognisable CCP staff members to have recently been retrenched. She was part of the now decimated Community Team.

The original post on Facebook no longer seems accessible, but a copy of it was made available:

First and foremost – if accurate – I hope there are people there directly supporting her. I’m not sure how best to say it, but I got the impression it was a cry for help.

There was a lot in it that I found interesting.

I wasn’t always a fan of CCP Leeloo. There were a number of her interactions with the CSM and on the forums that I did not like. I could however see in the message her clear zeal for the game. How amazing is it to have had a job you are truly passionate about! Little wonder – even if expected – the loss of it hits so hard. Her words remind of the human impact of this event – sometimes forgotten in the player’s perennial “EVE is dying, no its not, yes, it is” debate.

She questions – rightly I feel – the removal of most of the EVE Community Team. “..throwing out the whole EVE Community Team might be the single biggest mistake this company has ever made.. If you talk to any EVE player, they will probably agree with me on the fact that no feature in this game has kept them going like the community”

Even though I am an EVE Hermit – who by nature and play style eschews community, I know I owe thanks to that very same community for the game. EVE doesn’t continue to exist because of players like me. We can contribute and give flavour in our own way, but it is the communities that have sprung up throughout the game that give it life, transcending the code that CCP writes.

I remarked in a comment last week that CCP might have targeted the Community Team because they did not value it, or maybe it had failed to achieve new player or revenue growth targets, or maybe it was an easy choice for accountants as there were no measurable and tangible results, or maybe they wanted to refresh the team with new ideas and a different sort of enthusiasm.

Ex-CCP Leeloo remarked on why she felt they were retrenched.

“I understand that we are the easiest to let go, I always knew we are disposable.. It’s a part of the job to be a meat shield.. Something hard needs to be said, when things don’t work out, when players need someone to shout at. It’s the risk we all knew and accepted and lived with”

One of her next quotes touched on one of my own fears.

“Seeing CCP completely give up on the community just breaks my heart”

Mindful these quotes come from someone (justifiably) upset and apprehensive, I have still had the impression for some time now that some sections of CCP management do not like the EVE community. Given the tirade of abuse they receive I can’t say I blame them, but some of their decisions and the vibe I get from their communication (or lack of) leaves me feeling like there is a level of ill will there.

Speaking of management, there is this parting shot.

“There is a reason why this happens every three years, it’s easy to turn to a blank page but it’s very hard to change how your handwriting looks”

I’ve not heard that analogy before. It was a good one.

As it is with such situations, ex-CCP Leeloo’s words have been swept up and taken from her. They are owned now by the EVE Nerds, dissected and misquoted for ever more. (Like now.) But they do highlight one of the bigger questions I had with this latest round of CCP sackings.

Where does the relationship between the EVE Community and CCP management sit right now?

Meanwhile in game

Approximately 5% of the required mining done.

2 thoughts on “Community and Management

  1. While I can understand her frustration the way she vented is quite unprofessional. You don’t burn bridges like that, especially when you are looking for a new job (as a community manager). Complaining about your old employer in public, regardless of the reasons, is not the best thing to do on Facebook.

    • I agree it wasn’t ideal as far as career prospects go.

      Having said that – I did not really view it as a frustrated vent. More anguish, particularly given her passion for EVE Online. I cut her a bit of slack in that regard.

      Also – there would be a better phase for it – but I am mindful of the notion of something like complicit silence.

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