Friday, March 22, 2013

Heed the Writing In The Sky…

~or An Important Announcement Regarding James315

After James315’s Post on Wed the 20th, I have no choice but to come to the conclusion that as deluded, egotistical and outrageous as he was, James315 was also fairly bright. Anyone who can read the writing in the sky is a leg up on many of the rest in my book, and J315 not only saw it and read it… he heeded it.

J315’s post “An Important Announcement Regarding the CSM” (which would be much more honestly titled” An Important Announcement Regarding James315”… is J315s official withdrawal from the race for CSM8... which, BTW, he never 'officially' entered.

If so then why is he calling it an announcement about the CSM? Because obfuscation, rhetoric and propaganda is and has been the only way he has communicated in the past and I have spent tedious and often somewhat revolting hours reading his crap. As Sun Tzu said, ‘know thy enemy’.
But, the important and most telling part is, “WHY” is James315 stepping down? Let us explore this latest diatribe and see if we can find the nugget of truth shall we?

J315 starts with a discussion of the CSM8 election process and the changes to that process CCP has made for this year’s election. He talks about the possible effects his election would have on his playstyle and is bloggin. He talks about the CCP required NDA… a lot. And then more about the NDA, and then even more… and how very wrong it all is.

He talks of how he has initiated and brought the debate “…on an issue of critical importance to EVE.” to the for front EvE politics and considering his ‘platform’ he plainly states that he means the age old argument about Hisec Safety and Risk/Reward Balancing… (you know, the same way Dan Quail Created the Internet) and how “I have a unique platform, but when I take my seat on the CSM, I will be required to put it aside.”

He talks of his belief that if he could but talk face-to-face he could convince CCP to change direction… and that possibility was worth giving up his platform. He talks about his critics and their ‘take ‘ on him and his politics and platform.

Tellingly he says, “…that I would spend my time on the CSM screaming in vain for nerfs to highsec. They say I'm ignorant of the possibility that CCP might simply dismiss me and move on to something else”. He then pats his own back for a little while on how smart he really is and how he gets all of that… etc. etc.

Next he talks about the changes to the CSM, voting system, STV, et al. but ends with “I don't have very strong opinions on the new voting system, other than my view that it wasn't very well thought out.”

Then he gets to the heart of it… the changes to how the "Iceland reps" are chosen. Before, the seven were chosen by the popular vote. The top seven vote-getters went to Iceland. Now the two highest vote-getters will have seats at the table but the remaining five will be selected by CCP alone.

Now… this is the change that makes a difference but we must all remember that this is NOT a government, this is NOT a ‘real’ political body. What this is however, is a group a people who play a very immersive GAME together and their job is to basically ‘lobby’ (as Mabrick put it so well) the game creators and owners, CCP, ‘for’ changes and developments the players want and ‘against’ the ones they don’t.

Some of what he says makes some sense in the world of RL politics… but the fact that we all call it a “Council of Stellar Management” is more role play than RL fact… and is actually somewhat misleading as to its real function. The CSM is not a governmental council, assembly or group of people who ‘manage’ anything… stellar or otherwise.

They are however a group of people who (hopefully) communicate and lobby (IE work to sway the opinions of) the Management and Devs of CCP so that the changes they do make to their for profit product MMO(RP)G “EVE Online”, are in such direction as will benefit or at least placate the majority of the current playerbase, or at least the most vocal and meta-interactive segment of said playerbase… (IE them as care enough to vote/post/forum rage & whine etc. etc. etc.)… but in truth that’s about it… a working realistic title would be something like the “EVE Players Lobby Group”.

This change does put CCP in the driver’s seat as regards who gets to ‘lobby’ them. Is this good or bad… Well, depends on which side of the table yer sittin on as is always the case. But let us remind ourselves once more of the one prime overriding factor, that the MMO(RP)G “EVE Online” is NOT the real world, it is a game and a for profit product wholly owned by CCP. And while they do want & need our subs, the relationship is quite different from a government and its sovereign peoples… we may take sov and hold sov and lose sov, but we aint sov… if you get mah drift.

Then James315 makes note of a very important point, “…high-quality representatives with fewer votes could be elevated over low-performing (but higher vote getting) reps.” (Parenthesis Mine) Which he believes undercuts the purpose of the CSM.

I disagree, as a lobby group no one ‘deserves’ a place at the table, CCP is a business and who gets to sit down and talk to them is UP to them. Once again, CCP/EVE is not a ‘government and a country’… it’s a ‘business and a product’. To think or act otherwise is foolish.

Now we get to the real heart of it… James315 discusses the value of the CSM and the "Iceland seat" and he says,

“Before, I would have been guaranteed a seat at the table in Iceland, receiving one of the top seven vote tallies (regardless of whether STV was used).”

This I did not know… how can he KNOW he was guaranteed a seat? I did worry he was in strong contention, but guaranteed? That’s either a very bold lie or really worrisome if somehow true… but OK, let’s go along with that for now, next he says,

“Now a new scenario presents itself, one in which CCP declines to include me--based on my platform, reputation, attitude or whatever--but in which I would still be under the NDA for a year or more.”
“…the CSM is increasingly viewed by CCP as obsolete…” or “…they view it as a pool from which they pick and choose the useful candidates and marginalize the rest.”

To him, in that case he, “…must adjust my cost-benefit analysis of giving up my platform in order to take a seat on the CSM.” Hmmm… one wonders why? I mean if he has a decent and worthwhile platform and his reasoning is sound and is, as he has said over and over and over again, is the correct direction for EVE Online to go in order to ‘save the game’ from the misguided and lack luster development and poor management that has led us to the sorry state of affairs he says we’re in today.

If what he says is true, if his Political Platform is the "Right Answer For Our Times"… then surely he is a shoe in for one of the coveted "Iceland seats"? Then why the adjustment? Is he saying he feels CCP will NOT give him a seat because of his platform? his reputation, his attitude... or whatever? Hmmm… He is probably counting on more of that lack luster management I guess huh?

And yes, I agree wholeheartedly that CCP would do anything other than pick James315 for an "Iceland seat"… CCP knows what the majority of the rest of us know, quite simply that…

Carebears cannot be ‘forced’ by any means into Losec and Nullsec, but they can be very easily ‘forced’ OUT of EVE altogether.

And, as far as 'Hisec Risk & Reward' and 'Carebear Creep'... The evidence I see proves to me that CCP is working very hard to ride the razors edge of balance for both the Carebear and the Griefer in hisec. To give both as much as they can of their separate desired playstyles while not favoring one or the other too much... and especially without changing the high risk nature of this amazing game.

No, there simply is no ‘carrot’ nor is there any ‘stick’ that will ever ‘draw’ or ‘force’ Carebears into areas of EvE they have no interest in playing in. It’s a GAME and they want to play it in a way that James315 and all of his drooling, mouth breathing, knuckle dragging sycophants will never understand or accept.

So now James315 asks the main question...

“Does a (non-Iceland?) seat on the CSM offer enough influence to justify going under the NDA, as opposed to having someone else on the CSM who shares my views but doesn't have a comparable platform to give up?”

His response…

“I am withdrawing from the CSM8 race.”

One can clearly determine, from the question and withdrawal, that his ANSWER was... No.

And for James315 to come to this conclusion means he knows CCP will not give him a "Iceland seat" and this to me is the "Nugget of Truth". Because he knows his views and platform are simply far too extreme, will fix nothing and would be, in fact, greatly damaging to EVE Online.

James315 understood this well and clearly enough to back out instead of going ahead and giving everyone a reason to forget The Mitanni as the most controversial character to come out of EvE… oh no, “IF” he had won a slot and an "Iceland seat", that place would be James315s after the very first Summit w/ CCP.

Because James315 would have to choose to either back down, step out of character and become reasonable in order to actually try and work with CCP and the rest of the CSM… in which case he would be shown as a complete fool and a troll and garner the ridicule of all his followers or... he would have to back up his rhetoric and make a absolute and complete fool out of himself by pounding the pulpit and spewing his nonsense in front of real live people…in which case... well, what is fun in the anonymous arena of the Internet is simply not workable, or even acceptable, in the Real World... just ask Mittens.

To actually win and go to Reykjavik would be nothing but a lose-lose for James315 and he knows it. And so James315 has backed down and now he can continue to stand high on his soapbox and make up all the rationalizations he wants and say anything he pleases without any RL consequences…

Except, I’m betting he loses quite a lot of the support he has had up until now. Oh some will stay on for the lulz and cause he’s somebody in Nulls alt or something… but his heyday is over…

Throwing in the towel before the first punch is thrown… man that’s just poor form, really poor form.

Plus… I cannot help but wonder if CCP took a good hard look at James315 and made those rule changes JUST so they did not have to actually sit in the same room with the likes of him… If so, then James315 himself was his own greatest enemy. Kinda give me a warm fuzzy inside… like the world is still… you know...  working as intended.   =] 

Fly Safe and see you in the Sky  =/|)=

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