Failing In So Many Ways


Liang Nuren – Failing In So Many Ways

A Modest Proposal for the CSM

Tonight I listened to Eve Radio where the CSM spoke about The Mittani Scandal and then The Mittani and Nyphur talked about the consequences and fallout of associating real life name with overly sensationalist terms. The conversation was much less dramatic than I expected and I’m very thankful that Nyphur was so willing to work with The Mittani. Eventually they even made up and almost e-hugged. How cute.

However, there’s an important take away to be had here: what could have been a story about a drunk mostly anonymous asshole making an exceptionally stupid comment at Fanfest became so much more because of the use of a real name. The news elements fed off of each other with all making various untrue allegations towards not The Mittani – but the player behind The Mittani. And really, this is hardly the first time that someone’s real life name has come up in terms of their actions on the CSM – for instance there are several people who have been accused (but not “convicted”) of breaking the NDA and now their real life is similarly affected. So effectively: the use of a real name takes things to the next level. And this is going to be true any time someone’s real life name is used – whether that person is The Mittani, Jade Constantine, Liang Nuren, or yours.

At any rate, at the end of the show, someone posted The Mittani’s real life address and someone else said they were headed that way to rape The Mittani’s wife. This isn’t the first time I’ve seen something like this said, but I’ve learned a lot about the way CCP handles it since the last time I saw it so directly. And just to be clear: CCP takes these threats very seriously and I wouldn’t be surprised if someone’s received a visit from their local law enforcement tonight.

So with all of this in mind, I believe that the CSM white paper should be amended in such a way that the CSM candidates (and eventual CSM members) real names and countries of origin are not given to the player base as a whole – but strictly to CCP. The real life information of current CSM members is already available, but that’s no reason for future members to potentially be put in similar real life situations.

We as a player community have proven that we are not responsible enough, not mature enough, and not sane enough to be trusted with this information and this proposal is meant to help our upcoming CSM candidates – those whose real names aren’t known yet. Maybe even people like you.

If you agree, please drop by my Assembly Hall Thread [eve-o] and give your support.


Filed under: Eve, Gaming, , ,

14 Responses

  1. Ugleb says:

    I generally agree with the need for caution, but I do have one issue with this, and it might even be the reason why CCP chose to publish names in the first place, I dunno.

    If the real names off applicants are removed from the process, doesn’t that increase the chance of a player with a poor reputation using an alt to run for the CSM?

    There may be players who would not vote for a certain candidate because of a past action (say The Mittani) or because of a poltical association (a certain alliance etc) but who would vote for his publicly unknown alt that is ‘untainted’ by a colourful past.

    While revealing a real world identity could be abused, it also helps to identify individual players from largely anonymous character identities that can be legitimately bought or sold.

    If real names were removed from the process, there should be another means of identifying players beyond the character name they choose to compete with.

    An alt of The Mittani would still benefit from the channelled support of Goonswarm, but be freed of much of the current controversy now on his shoulders. Is that right?

    • There’s the rub of the situation. Right now it’s been publicly bragged about by many people that they’re running rampant abusing reporting features over every minor thing because they’re upset their great leader got in trouble. Now they’ve found an angle where they can twist reality to make him into the victim rather than a drunken fool who stuck his foot in his mouth. I doubt it’ll be the last attempt either.

      Furthermore, this happened at fanfest. Exactly how does your magical ‘hide everyone’s identity’ plan work when you’re standing in front of cameras being broadcast to the world? Will all fanfest attendees be required to wear masks with voice changers?

      • Liang Nuren says:

        This is not merely about The Mittani, and I tried to make that clear. This is about future CSM candidates and future CSM members. Their wives, their kids, their dogs should be safe from personal and physical assault even though the CSM memver’s in game reputation is dragged through the mud via meta gaming and in game defamation.

        The Mittani and the threats to his wife are just a few recent examples where we as players have taken things WAY WAY too far. We have no need of this real life personal information and have proven we cannot be trusted with it.

      • Tippis says:

        Standing in front of a camera doesn’t suddenly make your real name public. In fact, what you just said just proves that the real name isn’t needed since there is no way to hide behind alts — the face of the person will remain the same.

        The real name is at no point needed for anyone except CCP, and if they choose to, they could completely nullify any worries about alts at that point: if someone tries to run for a position under an alt name because the old character has been “sullied”, then they just add an “aka Mr X” at the end, and the connection is revealed then, rather than when the cameras go live.

    • Liang Nuren says:

      I have no way to know who most of the CSM candidates are, and frankly me having access to their real life names does not make any difference. They could still be alts – and it’s not like the current CSM candidates are required to tell us every alt they’ve ever had anyway.

      Providing us with real life names is unnecessary and has proven that it could be dangerous.

  2. Why would CCP get involved with whatever happened on EVE Radio? Where was this information posted? If not on a CCP owned site, then I doubt CCP is going to get involved.

    • Liang Nuren says:

      It was in the in game channel, not on the radio. If it had been on the radio I’m sure that there would be other far more serious things to consider.

    • Trinkets friend says:

      Why would CCP get involved in an ad-hoc after-panel discussion by Alliance heads, one of which extorts people to go find a character in game and hound him – potentially causing a suicide? Why, you are totally right, it is impossible to connect threats made on EVE Radio to rape a CSM member’s wife, with stuff said sotto voce in Fanfest without CCP’s permissions!

      Really, dude? Why wouldnt CCP get invovled? They allowed TheMittani to take a position as an advisor on a committee which is intimately associated with the production of an MMO, and they are supposed to wash their hands of responsibility for it when they link EVE Radio on CCP’s website, and in essence condone EVE Radio and its content? They invite The Mittani to Iceland, I expect paying some pecuniary costs associated with being part of the CSM, and they have no responsibility towards the man and hiw wife, when in-game drama gets taken out of game?

      I totally disagree. If CCP is worried about the headline “mouthbreathing fat nerd necks himself because of internet jerk on EVE Online” they’d be much, much more worried about the headline “CSM member’s wife raped by internet nerd after threats made on EVE Radio”.

  3. John Carter McKnight says:

    I like it. One other thing the proposal does is focus on in-game credentials while eliminating resume-bragging. I don’t know that it’s been an issue in CSM elections, but I’ve seen it in other spaces, and it’s tedious.

    What matters the CSM election should be what you’ve done for the player base, not what you’ve done in school or for your day-job boss.

    And, it seems like a useful, if not essential, safety measure.

  4. Met says:

    I don’t believe the rest of us having the real-life name of a CSM member is too important, but in all of this drama lately I feel there’s a distinction to be made that is sadly getting lost…

    CSM members are not their characters.

    They are players. Humans. We dramatize over whether Mittani or Seleene or Kelduum would be a good member. Thing is, the CSM is players representing players… OUTSIDE the game. If I voted for Mittani, I don’t expect the leader of GSF to represent me, I expect ALEX to represent me.

    Huge difference between players and their characters when it comes to CSM. And I believe Alex realized this, albeit too late.

    • Trinkets friend says:

      I disagree. We hire Mittens to represent the players, not ALEX. Otherwise every CSM member should have their real name as who to vote for, but then we should expect to have your IRL name to ensure only meatbods are voting for meatbods, not characters or accounts voting for characters in game.

      Where in the EULA does CCP state that when you sign it, you give them permission to release your personal details to the general public?

      Why do we know 90% of CCP staff just by their monickers or character names? Because they are staff working for a gaming company, and you don’t need to know who they are. Nor do they neccessarily want their names published on the internet – and especially right now, if they have seen the shit that’s gone down with Mittens, why would any sane person think that turning up to code should expose them to internet psychopaths? If I was a staf member at CCP I’d be making damn sure my real name stayed private.

      As a player, I don’t want people knowing who I am in real life unless I choose to let people know – and they are corp members, friends, etc.

      If I go for the CSM, to grandstand and stroke my ego, to put my time and effort into the game I love, i do so as Trinkets friend, not as my personal name, because no one in game knows my personal name (certainly not several thousand people) – so your claim that we vote for the people behind the CSm is null and void.

      People on the CSM may go to Iceland to meetings with CCP, but that does not entitle anyone to know who they are. It is immaterial. Not only do we NOT know every programmer at CCP, we have no need nor right to, and the same goes for CSM.

      • Met says:

        I understand your reply and perhaps my post was written too hastily. My point was that CSM members are players representing other players, for the good of the game. I will concede the issue of the real names not being too important here. I brought it up because 1) CCP requires it of CSM members, and 2) I believe CCP wants the CSM to sort of “transcend” and step outside the game. It’s detrimental to the game (read, subscriber base and revenue) for the CSM to be a political body consisting of humans role-playing their avatars or characters and pushing the goals of their corp or alliance, even in part. In one of the long threads regarding recent CSM drama, a CCP dev posted that CSM members are there to represent all players, not just those they fly with or those who voted for them. Mittani’s old comment stating (and I’m paraphrasing here) that “If you didn’t vote for me, you’re not my constituent, and I don’t represent you” is precisely the stance a CSM member should *not* take.

        The CSM is out-of-game. Alliance or high/low/null politics should not be a factor. I actually feel that Mittani and the rest of the CSM did a good job, but I’d like to remind them that they do, in fact, represent me and my interests (as a paying/subscribed player), regardless of who I voted for.

        Improving the game does not, in general, mean buffing or nerfing, but rather enhancing the experience of playing the game as each player sees fit to play it. The CSM is representing CCP’s paying customers (PLEXers or not), not New Eden’s residents.

        The in-game tug-of-war between highsec and null doesn’t belong in the CSM. High sec players want some things; null sec players want so other things. Advocating the extermination of one side is fine in-game, however advocating the goals of one group of players to the detriment of others is not representative of the playerbase as a whole. We cannot allow the CSM to fall victim to the two-party system of government so typical in modern society; we need to think bigger than that in order to improve our game

        My distinction between voting for Mittani vs. Alex was more about the difference between the human and the character, and less about the importance of knowing the man’s real name.

  5. Tolmos says:

    It was not his character that made the comment.. he wasn’t even logged in! The comment was made by a real person, in the real world, convincing people to harass a REAL human being to point of taking his own life using slides that were put ahead of time (showing that he planned to do this).

    Alexander needs to HTFU. The real world is a lot tougher of a place than the pixelated playground he is used to, and he needs to realize that trying to push a human to taking their own life has more consequences than just a slap on the wrist in a video game. He can cry and complain all he wants, saying it is all the media’s fault this is happening to him, but at the end of they day there is no one that forced him to say those things. He needs to learn the real lesson that anyone else learns when they are children: your actions have consequences, and the real world is not the same as a video game.

  6. Huovinen says:

    If the CSM members would behave in a manner that I’d expect from a council of representatives, they would not really need such protection. If they can stand behind their actions, they don’t need such protection any more than a real life low level politician. And what they certainly don’t need, is a veil of anonymity to hide behind to pull dumb shit like Mittani. That just doesn’t bode well either.

    Indeed, the CSM members are representatives of players, not their characters. At least I hope they are there to drive things forward for the whole player-base, not their character’s goals.

    For anyone who gives the players the respect they deserve, this shouldn’t really be considerable threat.

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