BB28 Political Blues

In recent months, the relationship between CCP and it’s customers has been the subject of some controversy. The player-elected Council of Stellar Management has played a key role in these events, but not for the first time they are finding CCP difficult to deal with. What effect will CCP’s recent strategies have on the future of EVE Online and it’s player-base? What part can and should the CSM play in shaping that future? How best can EVE Online’s continued health and growth be assured?


“No, dammit.”  Mike was yelling into the comm.  “That is wrong no matter which scenario you think is right.”  He ran his hand through his hair and took a deep breath.  “Let’s try this one more time . . . ”

He ticked off points as tho0ugh giving a lecture.  “One: The powers that be screwed up right royally, making a hell of a lot of pilots unhappy.  Yes I know unhappy is a huge understatement but humour me.  This disatisfaction has lead to a diminishment of pilots as some decided they had had enough of the spaceways and retired to (or bought) planets.”

“That leads us to Two:  Said powers realized that this was more than just the usual level of disatisfaction and realized they better do something quick so they called upon the CSM to come and confer . . . .something they should have done in the first place.  What?  Yes I do thinki they did confer with the previous CSM and were told point blank that they were gonna regret this, but that is water under the bridge.”  He took a sip of water.  “But good point.  I will return to that in a moment.”

“Three:  They have a meeting and come out of the meeting to do photo ops, making Mittens look like an elder statesman and he was lapping it up.  Notice that very few of the other CSM members were speaking . . . that is important.  They all toed the company line and nodded in the appropriate places . . . but that is it.”

“Four:  Minutes are promised, giving us an insight into the content of the days, yes DAYS of meetings . . . but they do not come . . . and we wait . . .and wait some more.  Even Mittens eventually realizes that they have been played as a stalling tactic and shills.  He raises a call to arms.”

He paused and gathered his thoughts.  “Now we have a few ways we can look at this.  It could be exactly what it looks like . . . a CSM6 mmeber is finally being proactive.  I don’t think this is what is going on, though.  If you look at the last elections you know that Mittens is  . . . well, devious would be a nice way of putting it.  So I think looking at this at face value is a mistake.”  As he spoke Mike poured a class of an amber liquid and swirled it about as he continued.

“Another take on the same set of actions might be found in ancient quotes.

All publicity is good publicity

Say anything you want about me as long as you spell my name right

Which means that his fire and thunder doomsday speech was just a way to revive the New Eden Pilots and the powers that be and put them back into the limelight.  Whether this is in conjunction with the rest of the CSM or another glory grab by Mittens you have to admit it is successful.  Many cynics have declaimed the CSM as little more than a publicity stunt all along . . . maybe this is just another link in that chain of thought.”

Mike listened for a moment and nodded.  ‘Yes, I did run for the CSM, yes I did lose, no I have never thought that I was trying to be a front man for an advertising campaign.  But I did lose and I cannot tell you that others had the same motives or agenda as I did.  Mittens spent a lot of time after the election crowing about how well he manipulated everybody . . . and now we are to trust what he says this time?””

Pause, listen, nod.

“I really don’t know.  I believe that some of the CSM still think they are relevant and are trying to represent the player base.  I just don’t think Mittens is in that group.  He has his own plans and his own way of doing things.  Why do I think that?  Well, when was the last time the nominal head of the CSM spoke to the player base?  Riiight, he speaks to the goons and lets the rest of us pick up the scraps.  He avoids the basic communication channels to use his own.  He has even gone so far as to give instructions as to HOW they are going to control the message.

There’s not much point for Goonswarm striving to ‘fix EVE’ by seizing control of the CSM and negotiating successfully with the FiS devs if the amount of resources allocated to FiS itself dwindles and the game continues to stagnate. In the coming weeks we are going to be making some extremely loud statements regarding the neglect of FiS, the failure of Incarna, and the need for CCP’s management to pull the game out of this stall. We need something new to do, not something new to wear.

This will not take the form of an incoherent threadnaught (though that certainly got results, last time) but we may seize control of the internet’s dynamic media – Slashdot, Digg, Reddit, and the gaming press as a whole for several news cycles.

His loyal followers have raised the banner high and already the media resounds with echoes of his warcry, often naming Mittens as the newsworthy focus, not the powers that be.

But what will it bring?  A focus of attention back to a game that could use some light shone on it.  It also raises the other planetary projects of landling immortals and they who fight ground wars.  Rather than dragging the powers that be down he is helpng them at every turn.  Again, this was how he worked during the election . . . say it is an attack but make the suckers work for you while they blindly rally to causes.”

Pause.  Mike laughed.  “No, I an not mad, neither am I your ‘bro’.  You asked me what I thought and I have answered.  As to where the CSM will go from here?”  Mike shrugged.  “It depends on how the next election runs.  If Mittens decides to keep his grip on the power and nobody notices that he has not accomplished any of the things he said he would . . . then I think it will be relegated to the sidelines as a quaint little publicity scam.  If a dynamic leader who actually cared more about the game than their own fiefdom steps up . . . damn I miss Mynxee and Teadaze.”  Mike sighed.  “No, I ain’t mad, just prepared to be disappointed.  Thing is I like flying and so I probably will get through this but a lot of pilots are taking their riches and leaving the life of a capsuleer.  If too many go well then the cloning facilities will close as not being profitable and the rest of us will return to having one life with an end in sight.”

“Mad?  No,  sad.”



The way Mittens is attacking well . . . this  Blue on blue attacking but nobody getting hurt.

Bad communication, control of the story, but in the end, they are firing blanks and have a different agenda.

Go Here to see other writers take on this stuff because, as usual, I am probably waaaaay out in left field.

fly it like it will be around for a while



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9 Responses to BB28 Political Blues

  1. Bleys says:

    I thought you loved Mittens? Personally I often feel that if the public skinned him alive he would make a nice pair of gloves.

  2. mikeazariah says:

    Ironic, since he always seems to have his hand in things everybody else does.

  3. Seismic Stan says:

    I love your writing style Mike. I like that my brain has to gently backwards-engineer the content in order to understand your real-world point. It’s like literary calisthenics.

  4. mikeazariah says:

    Thanks Stan. Considering the admiration I have for a lot of your work you compliment means a lot to me. (I still hear top gear in my head when looking at new hulls)


  5. Pingback: Space politics « EVE's parity bit

  6. paritybit says:

    That’s an interesting take on the situation. There does certainly seem to be a lot of theater around CCP and CSM interaction lately.

    The intent of CSM was not to take action, though. It was to provide a body of advisers that could represent the player base. Reality has loosened the grip of idyllic vision, however.

  7. mikeazariah says:

    Reality and dreams are always a meesy collision. I think that CSM candidates should have to take a quiz about the definition of what they are and what they should be tasked with. Same goes for the CCP contacts.

    If you look at the last campaign a lot of WAS a redefinition of what the CSM was all about. We have been seeing (or not seeing) the success of the victory of those who strove to remake the CSM into a newer version.

    IF the CSM exists after the end of this term I will run again . . . and most likely lose. I still believe in the concept of what it was supposed to be. Not a platform for fame, not a way to push personal agendas, but a representation of the game players to the game makers, no more, no less.

    We were not supposed to be the beta testers, no where within the CSM mandate was ‘check the prices of monocoles’. Trebor still gets it. Can’t say the same about any of the rest of them and I really wonder if he is the lone voice in the wilderness, as Mittens planned all along. By making Trebor the ‘alternative to Mittens he managed to keep any other opponents from managing to get elected.

    It was a smart manipulative move . . . .I can admire the skill while deploring the result.


  8. Bob Fenner says:

    I would hate to see the CSM relegated to yet another arm of the CCP appreciation society. We need people who aren’t afraid to actually rock the boat – like Mynxee did over the spacebook security issues (I think it was Mynxee who blew that one open anyway).

    I love this game so much I very rarely play anything else, but I have started to become VERY jaded to the seemingly offhand way that CCP deals with customer complaints. If CCP continue to ignore their fans they will kill off their own creation, and that would make me a most unhappy pilot. 😦

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