Skip to content

A Resolution

October 9, 2013

Dear Reader,

So, I left my guild on Monday.  It was a tough weekend, but it also made it easy to decide what to do.  Those of you who’ve been keeping up since Friday saw the lovely tidbits left here for me by some of my “family members,” or, if you haven’t, I suggest you go read them.  Actually, no, you probably shouldn’t.  They don’t deserve the attention.

That said, a whole forum thread went up about me and my blog over the weekend, too, hidden behind account requirements on my guild’s forum.  I guess the people there assumed that because it was hidden away they could say what they wanted because it would never see the light of day, but considering what they were already angry at me about, that doesn’t really make much sense.

I’ve compiled a few comments from a larger discussion which I considered replicating in its entirety here, but decided against because it was from the members only part of the forums.  Since shining light on the other public actions of the guild was met with such resentment by a handful of people, I figured I’d only point out the particularly egregious examples of the public shaming of me that’s taking place.

I considered hard, too, whether to paraphrase what was said, which would be more “socially acceptable” (I guess) or whether to just put quotes out here and let the comments speak for themselves.  I was even asked by a friend not to post them here, and while I understand his points and his position and I do respect him, I’m not going to pull punches when people are being so overtly accusatory and insulting.  Or, rather, I’m not going to let those who would be so accusatory and insulting pretend they pulled punches, since I’ve yet to throw a punch (and have no intention to).  Sunlight, after all, is the best antiseptic.

“A Family Member” (though not the one who left the comment here to that nature):

If none of this (my recent blog post) is true and this guild person continues to tell false stories than maybe it is time for someone to say something to him. He has already slandered us and called some Neanderthals and thinks we can only handle things by calling each other names. What is next for him to blog about? Just getting tired of it.

I Just Feel Now This Person Is Trying To Stir The Pot For Attention And Juicy Info For His Blog To His Virtual Friends. (Capitals are a forum error, not what the OP intended)

I’m sorry, virtual friends, that you got dragged in to this.  What’s equally disheartening was the general agreement among the chorus with these comments.  I find it noteworthy that the so-called “false statements” I’ve made have yet to be identified (and have since been confirmed by some guild members as accurate), but the attacks against my character and motivations continued unabated for a while.  Also, this person’s understanding of “slander” is somewhat inaccurate, but as you’ll see, most of the vocabulary choices in these messages are designed rhetorically to connote that I’m “bad.”  Instead, careful readers note that sort of thing and count it against the author, not his or her topic.

Couched within this message was a question about whether or not what I’d said about this group being disciplined had any truth to it, or, as the same “family member” put it:

It says in his blog that he talked to a officer in guild about the past events with a group of us doing SoO on our own. He says a officer said that we would be punished and be sat out of up coming raids.
I guess I want to know if any part of that is true. I know that there is always a hint of truth in every fabrication and that is why I am asking.

Ah, so the truth comes out; this isn’t about me, it’s about the perception of who’s right and who’s wrong, about whether they should be punished or I should be.  Fear drove this, then, not just spite, which actually makes far more sense.  Of course, it’s written with more negatively connotative words to try to turn public opinion, which was largely successful, unfortunately, though with no specific details as to what it was I’d “fabricated.”

I have to pause here and admit that of everything I wrote, I think this one piece – what the two officers who made this “discipline” comment said to me and another guildy, which is why I didn’t for a second think it was said in confidence – might have been a mistake.  I outted two officers who apparently had not communicated this message to the other officers, as was shown when these two comments came in from officers (though not the two I spoke with):

We Never Said Or Did Or Intended To Punish Anyone, That’s Not How We Do Things. There Is A Lot Of Misinformation And I Will Need To Talk To Him To Clear Things Up.

This officer and I have spoken at length since then, and while it’s clear we disagree on a few points, we had a nicely civil conversation.  I said to him then and I’ll repeat now I think he’s one of the two best officers in the guild, and I wish him well, but as they say of divorce, I think this guild and I had irreconcilable differences.

The second officer’s comment:

I’m not sure where this (the comment about discipline) came from, and it certainly wasn’t the case.   As an aside, that is not, nor should it be, how we operate.

And that’s when I knew I had to go.  Here’s an officer that I barely know – I truly think I’ve only ever in a month done one thing with him, and that was the previous guild meeting – and he’s saying that when people overtly do things to their guildies that communicate an elitist attitude, hurt their guildy’s feelings, and that are exclusionary, there shouldn’t be any repercussions.

Clearly, the propaganda, filled with rhetoric but no facts, had been successful, but that’s not enough in and of itself to /gquit.  However, that the officers clearly hadn’t been communicating with one another really worried me, and their willingness to make such bold statements when I have to assume they hadn’t actually come together and figured out what was truly going on bothered me, too.  I don’t blame any one officer for this, especially since there’s so many officers (more on that later), but that’s the state of affairs.

Of course, topping that off with the fact that I was being made out to be the villain for daring to talk about what goes on in our “family,” a family with members who were clearly was ready to get rid of me, doesn’t help.  Funnily enough, it’s a family when someone makes “fabrications” to “stir the pot to get attention,” but an organization from which one can and should be removed when that’s more convenient for them.  In other words, it’s simply another manipulation of language for rhetorical effect, which, being a writing teacher, I can identify from a mile away.

At any rate, some calmer posts came later, some bond-rebuilding, some commitments to improvement.  The two officers came in to put a stop to the more affronting comments and ask for a commitment to move forward, which I applaud them for, though I had no intention of remaining in the guild, regardless.

So I decided who I wanted to talk to – the officer who I knew had all the facts, as he’d been the one who made the “discipline” comment – and communicated with him.  It took until Monday to actually schedule a meeting, but I had a few things I wanted to say before I left, and I also didn’t want to leave too quickly and inadvertently reinforce the abusive people’s bad behavior.

In my exit interview, I had some suggestions that could be widely applied to guild management in any guild.

1) Don’t have too much middle management.  The lack of communication between the glut of officers in this guild created a large amount of this situation.  It seems like even before there was a “problem,” there was a problem, because information is coming out that maybe those guildies had permission from an officer to do their secret-exclusionary-calendar-invite-only run.  As mind-boggling as that may be, I wonder if it’s not true, and if it is, then there’s been an enormous miscommunication among the officers as to the guild’s intent.

2) If you see a clique forming, find a way to break it, preferably by engaging them in a larger group-building exercise so that the clique is dissolved into the group as a whole.  It’s far better to re-integrate, but if you can’t, then it needs to be broken, regardless.  I have to assume since my blog buddy Quori invited me to this guild that this whole situation is a new phenomenon, so I hope the guild figures out how to deal with it, but since it’s been a somewhat capitulatory approach, I’m afraid things may only get worse.

3) Make sure you don’t have secrecy as a policy, and if you do, make sure it’s communicated to new recruits.  The expected self-censorship was never mentioned to me, and the repeated queries on my part as to whether my blog was a problem (since I saw references into the blog from the officer’s forum) were responded to with strong “NO’s!”  Clearly it was, but no one wanted to say I needed to censor myself.  Look, being the person who has to ask someone else to censor himself stinks, but if it’s a choice between a ton of drama and someone leaving or just saying, “Yeah, you should tone it down a bit,” then you should communicate that to everyone who’s coming in.

4) Don’t confuse longevity and tradition with value.  An old member can have value through their knowledge of the organization or the game, and tradition can provide value depending on what the tradition is, but neither have value in and of themselves.  That I was “new” and some of the other members were “old” is meaningless.  It’s the actions and thoughts that matter, and while I’ve repeatedly stated that everything printed here was true and asked for discussion to straighten out the misunderstanding and the older members (save one, who’s spoken to me a lot) have ignored my requests to help sort this out, one has to wonder about their motivations and, thus, value.

5) Make sure your recruitment message is in line with your actual culture.  This one was not, and while I don’t believe I was ever consciously “misled,” it caused a lot of problems.  When I spoke with the GM, I get the impression now (which has been somewhat confirmed with others) that he was speaking about the potential ideal of the guild, not where it factually was.  The transition that’s going on within the guild, evidenced by the change in homepage message brought to my attention by Zarisia’s comment, really needs to be resolved before any more recruiting is done to make sure that the message and the culture are consistent.

So before I left, I spoke to an officer about all of these things, and I hope they’re seriously discussed in the large guild meeting that’s coming up.  I suspect some will be and some won’t, but unless all 5 are well nailed down, there’s going to continue to be drama in this guild (and others that have similar problems).

In the end, I’m saddened by the way this turned out.  The attacks on me were very effective, and it did anger me as it was intended to, though I burned through all my willpower to not respond in kind.  It succeeded also in making me sad, which will make some smile when they see that, which saddens me further, but if I’m going to be honest and direct about things, then I have to include that truth, as well.

I suspect, in the end, that unless a lot of otherwise polite and quiet people speak up, this group’s going to get what it wants: to direct the guild policy through refusing to compromise and abusing those who disagree.  Not everyone in the larger group who want more hardcore raiding does that, of course, but enough do.  In the end, I wish the best for the guild, but if they don’t stand up as a whole against some of the more volatile personalities, well, that’s their bed to lie down in.

Then again maybe all this is just a fabrication.

Sincerely,

Stubborn (and exhausted)

About these ads
53 Comments leave one →
  1. October 9, 2013 5:52 am

    I’m very sorry to hear that things ended badly after all, Stubborn. :( I have to admit that while I enjoyed the posts about what was going on with your guild, I stopped commenting on the more recent ones because it felt like things were becoming more and more heated and personal. It was somewhat like seeing two spouses get into a loud argument in public and being unsure of how to react. Regardless of who’s right or wrong, some things are better discussed without involving outsiders. I kind of had a feeling that it was only going to go downhill from there.

  2. October 9, 2013 7:50 am

    I have to agree with Shintar. Take it to whispers (since you can no longer take it to guild chat).

    • October 9, 2013 2:40 pm

      There is nothing more to say, unfortunately. I asked for their perspective so we could see where our differences lie, and not a single person took me up on my offer.
      Thanks for the comment!

  3. Samus permalink
    October 9, 2013 8:56 am

    Sadly, I have to say this outcome does not surprise me. WoW raiding is extremely poorly designed from a social perspective. In fact, I’m not sure I could make a system much worse if suffering was my explicit goal.

    It seems evident that competitive-cooperative games bring out the absolute worst in a lot of people, enough people that it is statistically impossible to avoid them. I think you are going to have to lump WoW raiding in with League of Legends as games that are designed in such a way to attract toxicity. The only way to avoid it is not play.

    • paendamonium permalink
      October 9, 2013 9:41 am

      I don’t think “WoW raiding drama” is the fault of Blizzard; it is usually more a problem of group dynamics and especially guild management. Unclear rules and unclear communication in particular seem to be the leading causes of every guild drama I’ve ever seen. In fact, all 5 of Stubborn’s suggestions are at least indirectly related to communication issues.

      While Blizzard could enhance in game communication protocols (in game voice communication in particular), avoiding guild drama and maintaining clear communication has to be done by guild management.

      I’m not saying that Stubborn doesn’t bear any responsibility for the situation, but if there’s ever a situation that’s louder than a single squeaky wheel, then resolution should probably come from the top.

    • Samus permalink
      October 9, 2013 10:15 am

      I’m talking about the fundamentals of raiding specifically (and to be fair I think these are consistent among most MMORPGs, not just WoW). All rewards are individual rewards, there are no group rewards. You do not form a team working towards a common goal, you are forced to group with others who are also competing for individual goals. If you could raid alone and keep all the loot, you would be better off (from a reward perspective).

      The raid itself is entirely focused on mistakes, not on positive gameplay. I have never seen any highlight reel of “the best warlock” during a raid, the whole thing would be incredibly boring. He wouldn’t do anything special, he just wouldn’t make any mistakes. You need a damage meter add-on to even know you are doing well. Instead, what matters is that one mistake from one player ruins the raid for all the other players.

      The system is made worse when it comes to performance. There is a very narrow band of performance that you could consider “similar” between players. Narrow enough that it is unrealistic to think all 10 players will ever be at the same performance level. This leads to the situation in virtually every raid where some players are being carried, and other players are doing the carrying. Carrying their own competitors for loot.

      So yeah, I don’t think there’s any surprise that this system would cause guild drama at a very minimum. Every guild WILL have some players that are better than others, and the structure of the game can only lead to a great deal of resentment toward the “bad” players they are carrying.

      These fundamental issues are not going to be fixed by better communication tools to talk about them.

    • October 9, 2013 1:14 pm

      “All rewards are individual rewards, there are no group rewards. You do not form a team working towards a common goal, you are forced to group with others who are also competing for individual goals. If you could raid alone and keep all the loot, you would be better off (from a reward perspective).”

      The hell? You think loot is the only reward? I rarely use this “word,” but…lol?

      The group reward is beating the boss. It’s getting the achievement. It’s getting a good ranking. It’s being able to recruit new people when needed. It’s having a happy atmosphere because progress is made and bosses are beaten.

      Loot mainly exists, in raiding, as a means to nerf content over time. It happens to be a fun “reward” that makes dailies go faster, I suppose, but its primary function (as a reward for raiding) is to allow the group to progress over time without having to increase their skill.

      “This leads to the situation in virtually every raid where some players are being carried, and other players are doing the carrying. Carrying their own competitors for loot.”

      Man, you sure hate your teammates and are pretty obsessed about loot. I think I’ve found the issue.

    • Samus permalink
      October 9, 2013 4:39 pm

      Balkoth, you comment, quite frankly, confuses me. I don’t know whether you’ve never played WoW before in your life, or if you have only played with very hardcore raiding guilds that have drastically different culture than the other 99% of raiders.

      You do dailies for loot. You run heroics for loot. You run LFR for loot. You raid for loot.

      I’m not saying that’s good. I didn’t design the game this way. I’m not saying it should be designed this way. But loot IS the reward. That IS how the game is designed.

      When a Blizzard developer talks about the “rewards” for a certain raid boss, he will do so with zero mention of any of the things you talk about. He will be talking about loot.

      If you really have a guild that overlooks the game design, good for you! But don’t pretend the game is something it isn’t, and don’t pretend to be all surprised that the vast majority of other raiders care only for loot.

      It’s sad, but it’s true. Acknowledging the truth doesn’t make me “obsessed about loot,” I’m the one that wishes it were different.

    • October 9, 2013 5:40 pm

      “I don’t know whether you’ve never played WoW before in your life, or if you have only played with very hardcore raiding guilds that have drastically different culture than the other 99% of raiders.”

      I lead a guild that’s 7/14H on two nights a week. Here’s my armory: http://us.battle.net/wow/en/character/greymane/Balkoth/advanced

      Our culture is similar to that of any other successful heroic raiding guild — loot is for progressing in raids. Loot lets you kill more bosses. Our guild even funnels most loot to our DPS because the tanks and healers don’t really need it in heroic content. Nearly always about DPS checks (and higher DPS makes the healing and tanking easier). This is fairly typical as well.

      Do you think our healers and tanks would stay with us while not getting any loot for potentially months (or at least any loot that is usable by a DPS) if loot was the reason they raided? In fact, they’d be LESS happy if we split the loot with them — because it would mean we’d kill bosses more slowly, hurt our ranking, hurt our recruitment, and wipe more.

      “You do dailies for loot. You run heroics for loot. You run LFR for loot. You raid for loot.”

      I raid to kill bosses in a group, which is something that is difficult to find in any other game and none of them do it as well as WoW. If you raid for loot you’re only going to get frustrated and be unhappy, which sounds like it happened to you.

      I mean, hell, I did the Operation: Shieldwall and Thunder King dailies solely for the lore — I got precisely ZERO loot from them. And I *knew* I’d get no loot from them.

      In short, the reward for raiding in WoW is the very act of raiding. Killing bosses. Working together as a team. Having fun as a group.

      If you happen to get loot, great, but you’re just going to be disappointed if you think that’s the main reason to raid. It isn’t.

      “But don’t pretend the game is something it isn’t, and don’t pretend to be all surprised that the vast majority of other raiders care only for loot.”

      Why is loot a reward? Why does it *matter* if you get more loot? Money is a reward in real life because it lets you buy the things you want.

      Following that logic, loot would be a reward in WoW because…it lets you raid? Nothing else in the game needs gear (PvE wise). So the reward for raiding is to let you raid more.

    • October 9, 2013 5:55 pm

      To be fair, I have made a similar accusation, though I may have wrote it in less accusatory terms. Let’s turn down the rhetoric on both sides and acknowledge that there’s a HUGE disparity between the experiences of the two ends of the play spectrum. I think we can all agree on that, if only that.

      For what it’s worth, I did the Shieldwall for the lore, too, since I was beyond that loot level when I came back to the game. I think that story was excellent. I was, however, doing the IoT dailies and enjoying the loot I got, so again, I think there’s truth to both sides here.

    • October 10, 2013 2:06 pm

      “Let’s turn down the rhetoric on both sides and acknowledge that there’s a HUGE disparity between the experiences of the two ends of the play spectrum. I think we can all agree on that, if only that.”

      I’ll agree that people doing LFR are only in it for the loot — which is one of the fundamental problems of the LFR system. Even after the change to personal loot to prevent feeling of loot competition, other people in LFR are essentially obstacles to getting *your* loot faster rather than teammates (not even friends) that you’re working with to defeat a boss.

  4. October 9, 2013 9:36 am

    I’d probably just avoid guilds that advertise themselves as a “family”, that seems to just be code for a lack of structure and merit based on peer opinion. If they like you, you’re in.

    Good riddance.

    Also, I appreciate you posting this publicly, there isn’t enough frank discussion about guild conflicts out there, too much of it is a PS a couple of months after the fact that skims over the issues as water under the bridge. Seeing what you went through as it happened should help many people make a decision about similar issues they’re having with their guilds… after all, there are a LOT of “family-oriented” guilds out there, your ex-guild wasn’t the only one with a clique that ran roughshod over the others.

    • October 9, 2013 2:43 pm

      Thank you. I’m catching a lot of flak for not self-censoring, and it has made me think more about it, but to be frank, I mostly am getting mad at myself for considering self-censoring.

      None of this was a problem in anyone’s eyes for the many previous posts where I’ve done the same thing. I’ve always written about my guilds, some good things, some bad, and no one had a thing to say about it then. Now people are upset. The only thing that changed is that this guild became aware of my blog – through no actions of my own. So it seems to me that a fair share of this ire should be directed at the people in my guild who publicized what I was writing here and thus caused the actual drama.

      So thank you for your appreciation. It’s good to know I’m not the only person here who thinks that reporting what happens is acceptable, and that if people don’t like it, it’s probably because they have something to be ashamed of.

  5. October 9, 2013 9:58 am

    Going to strenuously disagree with Samus for multiple reasons.

    First, one of the main reasons for LoL toxicity is the fact you’re playing against other players. The raid boss doesn’t care if you win or loss, it’s simply a program. In other words, WoW raiding is not a competitive-cooperative game in the same fashion as LoL.

    Two, most decent raiding guilds avoid this kind of toxicity. They’re simply a group of people hanging out and killing internet dragons. In fact, this sort of thing is far less common in better guilds — precisely the group has set social rules and a clear group goal. Go listen to the Mumble chatter on this video from Method — does that sound very toxic? And that’s currently the top guild in the world.

    Ironically, it’s the “friendly social guilds” that often have more problems because they often don’t have clear performance and behavior expectations.

    Three, I really question this statement:

    “WoW raiding is extremely poorly designed from a social perspective. In fact, I’m not sure I could make a system much worse if suffering was my explicit goal.”

    How exactly is this system worse than playing with three friends against a computer opponent (or opponents) in Warcraft or Starcraft or Mass Effect or any similar game? The success of the group depends on individual members working together.

    Hell, the existence of gear in WoW makes it a better environment — because even if your group isn’t skilled enough to beat a boss initially, you can obtain better gear and eventually beat the boss without having to simply cut a player.

    I mean, maybe you’re referring to the weekly lockout, but beyond that?

    • Samus permalink
      October 9, 2013 12:18 pm

      You’ll have to read my criticism of WoW raiding above (or at least part of it).

      For LoL, I will just say that the VAST majority of toxicity I’ve seen has been directed at teammates, not the other team. The comparison works because the root cause in both cases is that a player or players’ poor performance makes them a target for negativity.

      As I said, it is virtually impossible to assemble 10 players of exactly the same skill level. Someone is getting carried and someone is doing the carrying. The fact that “bad” players are a liability, and not just helping less, is the fault of the game design.

      That is exactly the situation you see here, as the “elitist” guild members are trying to exclude the “bad” guild members. You can call them jerks, but you can’t deny that based on the game design they are doing the optimal thing to best obtain the rewards.

      If you want an example of this done better, look to the dynamic events in Guild Wars 2. Every player who joins in is someone you are happy to have helping you, never a liability or a leech off your own rewards.

    • October 9, 2013 12:57 pm

      I have to disagree with Samus on this one. The GW2 world bosses are one of the things that drove me away from that game. Any system that is designed to cater to the ability of the lowest common denominator will become a mindless zerg.

      Speaking as an average player I failed to see the point, much the way I feel about Loot Pinata Island in WoW. Let me work for things, success actually feels like something if I manage to win.

      That does, however, lead to the point you raise about trying to mix high, mid, and low performers. I cannot see a way to make that work if you are dealing with Big Internet Dragons as a boss model. Perhaps there is another way but I would argue that nothing has displaced it yet because there is nothing as successful. The idea of multiple objectives still appeals to me and has led me toward the unthinkable – reinstalling SW:ToR to see how they manage it.

    • October 9, 2013 1:19 pm

      “For LoL, I will just say that the VAST majority of toxicity I’ve seen has been directed at teammates, not the other team”

      And the toxicity only exists because you’re against another team of players.

      Again I ask:

      How exactly is this system worse than playing with three friends against a computer opponent (or opponents) in Warcraft or Starcraft or Mass Effect or any similar game? The success of the group depends on individual members working together and individual members can ruin it for everyone.

      “You can call them jerks, but you can’t deny that based on the game design they are doing the optimal thing to best obtain the rewards.”

      Short-term, they might be doing the optimal thing to obtain *loot* specifically. But they’re only hurting their team as a whole with their actions and they’re shooting themselves in the food.

      “The GW2 world bosses are one of the things that drove me away from that game. Any system that is designed to cater to the ability of the lowest common denominator will become a mindless zerg.”

      Absolutely agreed.

    • Samus permalink
      October 9, 2013 3:31 pm

      A socially adjusted human will have a higher level of concern for the success of their actual friends and will be more forgiving of their mistakes. For example, in an online game a normal human would be more likely to forgive the mistake of a friend over the mistake of a stranger, and would be feel happier that a friend received a reward rather than a stranger.

      Important to the toxicity of a given game, this obviously affects how others treat you. If you are not their friend, they will not forgive your mistakes, and they care nothing for your rewards. When the rewards are individual loot that can only go to you or them, that isn’t a situation that is going to promote social bonding.

      This behavior is reinforced by certain “mistake focused” game design. If you die 5 times in lane in LoL, you have indeed ruined the game for your allies. One person’s mistake in WoW raiding can cause a full wipe.

      Conversely, in the GW2 example I gave, the failure of some other random player cannot possibly have any negative impact on you at all. If he stumbled in, landed one attack and then died instantly, you are still one attack better off.

      I agree that these elitists are thinking short term, but humans tend to do that. I am only saying it’s what you should expect if you design a game this way.

    • October 9, 2013 5:51 pm

      “For example, in an online game a normal human would be more likely to forgive the mistake of a friend over the mistake of a stranger, and would be feel happier that a friend received a reward rather than a stranger.”

      Are you trying to be obtuse?

      Raiding with friends vs LoL with friends vs WC3 with friends vs ME3 with friends.

      OR

      Raiding with strangers vs LoL with strangers vs WC3 with strangers vs ME3 with strangers.

      Your statement has nothing to do with what we’re talking about. Either you’re with friends in all examples or you’re with strangers in all examples.

      You’re claiming that raiding in WoW with friends or playing LoL with friends is somehow worse than playing WC3 with friends or playing ME3 with friends (and in every case you’re all on the same team versus opponents).

      “If you die 5 times in lane in LoL, you have indeed ruined the game for your allies. One person’s mistake in WoW raiding can cause a full wipe.”

      And you can ruin a game of Counter Strike or Warcraft 3 or Starcraft II or Mass Effect 3 or any number of other games as well. Why are LoL and WoW apparently so much worse?

      “When the rewards are individual loot that can only go to you or them, that isn’t a situation that is going to promote social bonding.”

      I guarantee you no raider cares about Ulduar loot at this point but they sure love having their realm first unique title (Death’s Demise) that offers absolutely no power benefit. That was a group reward — and see the other post for more stuff on loot.

      “Conversely, in the GW2 example I gave, the failure of some other random player cannot possibly have any negative impact on you at all.”

      And what if the boss shoots a fireball at every player which does an AoE? And the random player stood next to you and thus got both of you killed (since you could survive one hit but not two)? Or does this never happen?

      “I am only saying it’s what you should expect if you design a game this way.”

      If only WoW had some kind of lasting system set up to track accomplishments or something that persisted far beyond gear that no one will care about in six months.

    • Samus permalink
      October 9, 2013 7:31 pm

      “Our culture is similar to that of any other successful heroic raiding guild”

      I’m not going to dispute that, but heroic raiding guilds represent a very small percentage of the WoW population. The culture outside of heroic raiding guilds is undeniably focused on obtaining loot. So maybe the game is properly designed for the top 1% of players, but for nearly everyone else, I would consider this kind of guild drama to be typical.

      “And you can ruin a game of Counter Strike or Warcraft 3 or Starcraft II or Mass Effect 3 or any number of other games as well. Why are LoL and WoW apparently so much worse?”

      I can’t tell if this is a serious question or not. It should be. Why ARE LoL and WoW so much worse?

      I have given my reasons, and you offered no intelligent arguments disputing them. They are both competitive-cooperative games with largely mistake focused gameplay. Outside of the LCS for LoL and heroic raiding guilds for WoW, the rewards are entirely individual rewards. The games are designed for you to play them like Gevlon.

    • paendamonium permalink
      October 9, 2013 8:42 pm

      Samus, I disagree with your basic premise that loot is the primary focus, mostly because I don’t think you are differentiating clearly enough between LFR and normal/heroic raiding. I would admit that for most players who do LFR (and probably many who do Flex), it’s all about the shinies. However, I think guild raiding in particular is more about the teamwork and the camadarie. The reward isn’t the loot; it is the satisfaction and achievement of downing a difficult boss as a team.

      Blizzard has designed heroic and normal raiding to be pre-formed team activities. It is up to the individual teams (and more likely guilds) to ensure that they foster a successful atmosphere. I would compare it to most team sports; if a team doesn’t have clear communication, good leadership, and a positive method to deal with mistakes or under performing individuals, it is going to fragment. However, the individuals aren’t doing it for individual glory, but for the satisfaction of team accomplishment. I think that applies not just to heroic guilds, but normal guilds and even casual guilds who are progressing through flex at their own pace.

      I do think you are right when it comes to LFR, however. When people are randomly matched with 24 other individuals, which they probably will never see again, there is very little incentive to keep a positive or professional tone, since it is unlikely there will be any repercussions.

    • Samus permalink
      October 10, 2013 5:34 am

      “What are the rewards for raiding?”

      If you posed that question to a typical raider or any Blizzard developer, they would give you loot tables. If they instead responded “the reward is the sense of achievement for completing the raid,” we would all laugh knowing they were joking. And then people would start saying, “no seriously, what’s the loot?”

      Let me put it to you another way. What if they removed all loot from raid bosses? Do you truly believe this would have no impact on raiding? Because I think the public outcry would be more massive than we’ve ever seen on any game forum before, and people would basically stop raiding.

      One thing I have actually done myself is to go back and solo heroic dungeons from previous expansions. The level of difficulty varies wildly, but can often present unique challenges. Of course, none of the loot matters at all, only the challenge and experience of it.

      How many other people do you think have done that? How many people do you really think you could convince to do that? Because I’ve never been able to convince a single other person. I think the vast majority would regard it as a complete waste of time, because they only think about the loot.

    • October 10, 2013 2:44 pm

      “The culture outside of heroic raiding guilds is undeniably focused on obtaining loot.”

      For LFR, maybe. For heroic guilds, the focus is on progression. For normal guilds, the focus is on raiding with friends and family. This is why heroic guilds are willing to remove Bob’s not-very-good cousin from the raid team while normal guilds are loathe to do so. Loot is secondary to these main goals.

      Furthermore, you have to ask WHY obtaining loot is important. It’s not needed for dailies or heroic dungeons or PvP or any other aspect of the game. Obtaining raid loot allows you to beat bosses you couldn’t beat before — it nerfs the raids over time and allows less skilled groups to complete the content.

      So, even from your perspective, the “reward” from raiding is…to let you raid more.

      “I can’t tell if this is a serious question or not. It should be. Why ARE LoL and WoW so much worse?”

      I dispute the claim that they ARE worse. You should see of the comments made in WC3 games or SC2 matches or Counterstrike rounds or ME3 missions — they can be as or more toxic than anything in LoL or WoW. They are also competitive-cooperative games where mistakes will make your team lose. And losing hurts your ranking or makes you waste in-game money you spent.

      “Stuff from paendamonium”

      Agreed entirely.
      “‘What are the rewards for raiding?’

      If you posed that question to a typical raider or any Blizzard developer, they would give you loot tables.”

      Funnily enough, Blizzard’s been working to change this perception. At the start of Mists of Pandaria, Blizzard introduced “Ahead of the Curve” (for normal raiders) and “Cutting Edge” (for heroic raiders) achievements to make it clear who beat the content while it was current — because those raiders wanted bragging rights. They knew the gear was extremely temporary and would be replaced once the next tier came out.

      In Throne of Thunder, Blizzard introduced Ra-Den as a heroic only boss to give heroic raiders a special reward. Being able to face Ra-Den WAS the reward.

      In Siege of Orgrimmar, Blizzard’s gone even FURTHER. For people doing Flex and above, they can get heirloom weapons from Garrosh to help leveling in the next expansion (while the rest of their shiny raid gear gets vendored within a few levels). For people doing normal and above, they get a special Kor’kron wolf mount for the Ahead of the Curve achievement. Heroic raiders get a Kor’kron Juggernaut mount as a drop from Heroic Garrosh.

      And people go NUTS over these mounts — we sold Heroic Ragnaros and Heroic Madness mounts for 150k+ back in Cataclysm. We’ll do the same for Heroic Garrosh mounts. Why? Because people want the unique mounts that last rather than shiny gear that gets replaced within a few months.

      “Let me put it to you another way. What if they removed all loot from raid bosses? Do you truly believe this would have no impact on raiding?”

      It would have a massive impact on raiding, but not in the manner that you meant. Guilds would hit their skill cap and be unable to progress and thus quit. In ToT, Paragon killed Lei Shen with like 530 ilvl. Groups near the end of ToT got 547ish ilvl plus a Legendary Meta Gem which made the boss much easier. Blizzard would have to do ICC/DS nerfs constantly because there would no longer be a gradual increase in character power over time to nerf the bosses *for those who keep raiding and trying.* The optimal strategy would be to wait for the bosses to get nerfed enough and THEN raid, which Blizzard does not want.

      “How many other people do you think have done that? How many people do you really think you could convince to do that? Because I’ve never been able to convince a single other person. I think the vast majority would regard it as a complete waste of time, because they only think about the loot.”

      Do you have ANY idea how many people go back to solo old raids and dungeons for pets, mounts, and transmog gear? It’s a hell of a lot.

    • Samus permalink
      October 10, 2013 4:33 pm

      “Do you have ANY idea how many people go back to solo old raids and dungeons for pets, mounts, and transmog gear? It’s a hell of a lot.”

      But that’s….loot…..

      *bangs head against wall*

      The point of the argument was that raiding is focused on individual rewards. You claimed that wasn’t true at all. And then you proceeded to list out all the great new individual rewards that “people go NUTS over.”

      I can accept that heroic raiding guilds are focused on progression, and gear is just a tool. But normal raiding isn’t like that, and I had to wonder if your denial was truly because you believed normal raiders don’t care about loot, or if you were simply lying just to mess with me.

      I guess I have my answer. You appear to be fully aware of the loot obsessed culture in WoW. As long as the game has players climbing over each other for loot, it isn’t a game structure that’s going to promote positive social interactions.

    • Paendamonium permalink
      October 10, 2013 5:05 pm

      Samus, I still disagree that the “loot obsessed culture” applies to all levels of WoW, especially at the normal/heroic level of guild raiding.

      Look, I completely agree that when someone is in an LFR, or a Flex PUG, they are interested in mostly their personal loot (and maybe seeing content if they haven’t seen it otherwise).

      However, when one is a member of a set team/community, especially one with set loot rules (such as Balkoth’s where loot is funneled to DPS and not really to tanks/healers), the focus is not on individual gear advancement but the group progression.

      Basically, I think raiding is working exactly as Blizzard intended; normal/heroic is intended for teams with more time/standards who want the group accomplishment of overcoming difficult group tests, while LFR/flex is intended for people to see content they otherwise would not and improve their gear. I think that LFR tuning could be improved to better fit the intended audience, but in general I think raiding at all difficulty levels is functional and not necessarily a one way ticket to a toxic environment.

    • October 10, 2013 7:15 pm

      “But that’s….loot…..

      *bangs head against wall*”

      They’re vanity items. They offer no increase in character power and are there simply for fun. Prior to this post, my understanding was that you were talking about raid loot (or valor loot or heroic dungeon loot) that provided upgrades and increased character power.

      For clarity, let’s use the following terms from here on out:

      Gear: items that increase character power

      Vanity items: stuff that offers no increase to character power

      “But normal raiding isn’t like that, and I had to wonder if your denial was truly because you believed normal raiders don’t care about loot, or if you were simply lying just to mess with me.”

      I never said normal raiders don’t care about gear. Never said heroic raiders didn’t care about gear. I said it wasn’t their main focus. You seem to be saying normal raiders are only raiding because they want gear — that’s simply not true. While it might be true for some normal raiders, most want to progress through bosses as part of a team. The gear is a nice bonus but it is NOT the main reason to raid. There’s quite a difference between being “obsessed” with gear and not caring about it at all.

      “As long as the game has players climbing over each other for loot, it isn’t a game structure that’s going to promote positive social interactions.”

      I still find it amusing how you portray it as people fighting tooth and nail for items versus working together and splitting rewards. Guess what? If you feel like you’re fighting over people for rewards, you’ll get negative social interactions. If you feel like you’re splitting up rewards among the group, you’ll get positive social interactions.

      Sounds like the main problem here is either you or your personal experiences here — not the game itself.

  6. October 9, 2013 10:06 am

    After going through something similar myself a couple of times with guilds at the more casual end of the raiding spectrum, I think it comes down to one thing.

    Ego.

    In a more disciplined raiding guild, the entire structure is optimised around raiding. There are no favours or family groups, just your performance and your ability to work as part of the group. If anything gets in the way of that, you’re out. It’s why they stand the test of time -there’s no room for nepotism or ego.

    Social raiding guilds, on the other hand, are notorious for drama. There are cliques, groups and circles that constantly vy for supremacy. It can be like high school, or an amplified version of office politics. Social guilds are great, but as soon as you add a goal it becomes a social competition, and that’s not a good thing.

    If you want to raid, find a guild that’s serious about raiding to the level that you want. Anything else is just asking for drama.

    • October 9, 2013 11:19 am

      Gazz states perfectly the issue found in smaller guilds or more precisely non hard core-focused guilds. Hard core guilds have a standing common goal and all other desires, wants, etc are cast aside for that common goal. Kill X boss before anyone else.

      A casual/social guild which lets be clear is the overwhelming majority of guilds/players in the game, find multiple voices all with various primary goals that could very well contradict each other.

    • October 9, 2013 2:37 pm

      Yes, and I fully acknowledge that my own was a factor while I’m still agreeing with your point.

      My problem with your suggestion is the apparent dichotomy of my needs. I don’t have the time to be a hard-core raider, but I want to have a few nights a week where people show up on time gemmed, flasked, and ready to go raid seriously. I had my one “best guild” that worked well, which I left through no fault of my own (it was my buddy and the GM, and I wasn’t going to make my buddy stand out in the cold himself), but since that guild I haven’t found one that did that properly. Either the expectations are too high for a working professional with a busy schedule like me or they’re too casual and just want to screw around and get where they get.

      I had hopes this guild was another good fit, but after being sat repeatedly simply due to having too many of a particular role, it became clear that what I came for- raiding – wasn’t happening. I was told flex would resolve that, but it didn’t, and so I’ve now left. Everything else beyond that, my staying and trying to make things work, and getting upset when they didn’t – was ego, pure and simple.

      Thanks for your comment!

  7. Beshara permalink
    October 9, 2013 11:18 am

    I am sorry to hear how things ended up. Unfortunately, lack of communication is a hard thing to overcome. I am thankful that you posted this, even if your former guild mates are not. It helps to see someone else’s perspective of a situation, and your former guild would be wise to take this information into consideration moving forward. I think it’s also helpful for those who may have been in a similar situation to see they aren’t the only ones to go through it, or to get an idea of how to approach a resolution.

    I hope you find what you are looking for. It seems like if you are not a heroic raider or looking for a social guild, the opportunities are hard to come by. I think the forum for guild recruitment on the official website needs some subsections, to help people look for a variety of different guilds there. The in game tool is not very effective that I’ve seen. It’s hard to tell which posts have been updated and which are from expansions prior.

    • October 9, 2013 2:33 pm

      Yes, and I suspect LFR had something to do with it. There’s no need for part-core raiding any more; if you’ve got the time and interest to be hardcore, you are, and if you don’t, you can always go to LFR to see the boss fights. I said something about that when it was first released, and I haven’t found a good guild since.

      Maybe flex will help bring that back as an option, but only time will tell.

      Thanks for the comment!

  8. October 9, 2013 12:00 pm

    Stubborn, I am sorry that you had to leave a guild that is predominantly a good group of people, albeit with some dysfunctional communication from time to time. That characterization is not uncommon, as most guilds have that surface from time to time as do real life families, working groups, circle of friends; really any time a group of individuals get together to do something you can often find mis-communication when folks do not agree on everything.
    My question back to you is this: What did you contribute to this situation? I ask because you portray yourself rather well here as some blameless victim of a horrible crime. Was there a fire already going…sure. Did you start the fire..no. Did you fan the flames and pour some lighter fluid on it…yes. Yes you did. And I multiple times suggested you should back off and not fuel the fire.
    If my spouse and I are going through a conflict, the solution isn’t for me to post a running Facebook dialogue of everything we say to one another. Some things should be private and amongst those trying to find common ground and resolution. You are not a news outlet, you are not the media, and you are taking portions of a private conversation that was held in the private guild forums and posting (selectively posting the portions you choose) out onto a public place. You act as some beneveloent whistle-blower falling upon your sword.
    I most always write about guild drama and strife on my blog, usually masking names and doing my best to ensure I do not misrepresent an individual’s words or attitudes. There is certainly nothing wrong with openly discussing your feelings and perspectives regarding what you experience and what you regard as right or wrong; however, you’ve crossed a line here. You went from stating how you feel and how it affects you, to openly discrediting an entire guild.
    I take personal offense to that. While I do not agree with everyone in my guild, and in fact even commented on your post regarding the “Neanderthal” you mentioned, it doesn’t make them all bad people. Are the actions of each and every person all positive and perfect, absolutely not; but when a guild mate makes a mistake they have to answer to their fellow guildmates, not the entire internet.
    When X person does or says something that hurts or offends me, they owe none of my blog readers an apology. They owe me the apology. I have the conversation with them privately and discuss our differences. We either hash it out or part ways, but it’s not an excuse to then do a “tell all expose” on the guild and position it as everyone’s fault for the actions of one or a few.
    Lastly, and this is very important. Because the decisions made were not yours, because the solutions presented were not yours; does not make them all bad decisions/solutions or destined to fail. Worse yet, you didn’t even decide to stick around and see the outcome of those decisions and solutions. They may or may not work, but deeming it a failure before it has time to cycle is abhorrent.
    If I were the GM of a guild (and I have been in the past multiple times), I would refuse you entry. A commenter here posted a video of Method’s raiding and subsequent mumble conversation. Everything sounds happy and awesome; does that mean they have no internal conflicts ever? – Of course not. They keep their issues internal and discuss them amongst themselves. They ensure a unified front for all the public to see, regardless of whatever internal disagreements they may have.
    You are not the blameless victim here Stubborn. Whatsoever.

    • October 9, 2013 1:30 pm

      “You are not the blameless victim here Stubborn. Whatsoever.”

      Maybe I’ve misunderstood the situation or maybe Stubborn’s misrepresented it, but it sounded like he joined a guild to raid normals and then kept getting sat for no fault of his own. And a clique would go and apparently do their own thing and effectively cancel other guild events.

      From the sound of it he was extraordinarily patient and volunteered to sit several times to try to help resolve situations and nothing improved. He spoke to officers privately who didn’t communicate amongst themselves. Rather than leave he gave the guild time to at least manage to consistently do a group flex run.

      And, pardon my language, jack shit happened.

      If I were him, as the leader of a two night a week 7/14H guild, I would have left long, long ago. What he was putting up with was abhorrent. I told him in-game that he should leave because he shouldn’t have to put up with the nonsense going on — raiding 1/3 of the nights and such. That’s not what he signed up for and it was clear to me it wasn’t going to change anytime soon. But he tried to make it work.

      “If I were the GM of a guild (and I have been in the past multiple times), I would refuse you entry.”

      Funny, I’d accept him in a heartbeat as a flex raider or casual member. — from my perspective, he put up a hell of a lot to try to make it work versus simply jetting as soon as it was clear he wasn’t getting what he signed up for.

    • October 9, 2013 2:12 pm

      Q,
      I’m sorry that you’ve ended up feeling so hostilely toward me as a result of all this. I have never and do not blame you for any of what’s transpired, and I have actively kept you in mind when discussing who would be negatively affected by some of the proposed changes (at least one of which went through last night, that raiders are now *required* to attend 2 nights a week).

      I feel I have been quite frank in the things that I’ve done for both right and wrong and have never said I did not contribute to the problem. I could have hidden the fact I raided with another guild last week or deleted the more unpleasant responses here to make it seem like no one was upset. Instead, I was open and honest in my dealings. I recognized and considered your point of view and even mentioned it in this response. I put off posting this on Monday, when it was more topical, and waited. And I was right to do so. I made another round of edits on Tuesday that further removed some of my angrier language and actual attacks on that guild member’s character, mostly because I didn’t want B to be upset, since he’s been quiet and polite throughout this event. In the end, though, I’m writing here about my experiences, and I haven’t censored myself in the past, and decided not to this time, too. You of all people knew that before you suggested I join; just because this guild became aware of my blog’s existence didn’t nor should mean I change its purpose.

      I don’t believe I have discredited the entire guild. I made specific mention of the small group of people who have been abusing their place, and I mentioned that I felt that there are several good officers. I never blamed the guild as a whole, or even the whole group of hardcore raiders. I’m sorry if you’re generalizing my message to include everyone, but neither it’s intent nor, from my point of view, the actual writing do so. If you’d like to point out a place you felt I too broadly swung my brush, I’d be happy to clarify. I especially do not believe I’ve painted it as “everyone’s” fault; I’ve tried to defend the position that a lot of this was a misunderstanding caused by a clash of two cultures, neither of whom is implicitly right or wrong, though some of their methods have been.

      As for hashing it out oneself, I was told that I should bring my problems to the officers, so I did. The individual problem I had with that one particular member we eventually spoke about and came to terms, and I complimented him here after the fact, as you may have noticed. There were no other “individual” problems; there was only the two competing cultures. Additionally, never asked for an apology for anything. I can take my lumps and move on, but that doesn’t mean I won’t talk about, on my own, private blog, a blog I never advertised to anyone in the guild, what’s been happening to me in the game. That’s why this blog exists.

      My “premature” departure had less to do with the decisions being made than the personalities involved. I cannot and will not work with certain members of the guild any more, and I felt that such a position would cause more problems if I stayed. I left specifically to try to help the situation, so if that his abhorrent to you, I apologize. I’m a lot less forgiving or forgetful as some of the officers, and there were simply things that I would want answers about before being willing to move forward. I recognize that as a likely problem, so I left.

      For the record, only 2 things have specifically and officially changed since I joined. One was the flasking and food requirement, which I helped along with my suggestion that someone simply distribute them during the raids, and the requirement that raiders attend 2 raids per week, which will be interesting for you, I think, since I don’t believe you’ve often done so. That “compromise” (though I do not know what the other side gave up to get that) would not have likely happened with me at that meeting. So I’m not sure what you think I was unhappy about from a “formal” point of view, or what you think I should have hung around to find out the outcome of.

      As for your discussion of Method, I assume that what you say is correct. However, I find it likely that such a policy is communicated to their members, a suggestion I made here as a result of what’s happened. I asked, Q, several times of the officers whether my blog was an issue. I was told each time that it was not. I did my due diligence, so be angry if you’d like, but that, too, saddens me. I had actually already told Ati to pass along my RealID to you (which I tried to during the meeting last night, but you weren’t on).

      If in the future you’re interested in it, I still consider you a friend and am still interested in raiding LFR or w/e in game with you. If not, then I’m sorry you feel that way.

    • Cain permalink
      October 9, 2013 2:21 pm

      “I most always write about guild drama and strife on my blog, usually masking names and doing my best to ensure I do not misrepresent an individual’s words or attitudes.”

      Pretty sure the guild members are the ones that have shown their own words and attitudes. For a fellow blogger that blogs about the same stuff, what exactly are you getting bent out of shape over? He purposely didn’t post names or blame anyone. It was only from the comments that people posted themselves that any names were tied to it. And as one of the commenters even said this is all resulting from a group that is unhappy with what they were led to believe as well. So the two sides should understand each other’s positions better because they are both the same position from opposite sides.

    • October 9, 2013 2:27 pm

      “A commenter here posted a video of Method’s raiding and subsequent mumble conversation. Everything sounds happy and awesome; does that mean they have no internal conflicts ever? – Of course not. They keep their issues internal and discuss them amongst themselves. They ensure a unified front for all the public to see, regardless of whatever internal disagreements they may have.”

      “As for your discussion of Method, I assume that what you say is correct”

      I’m not sure what their policy is about making specifically disagreements public, but it’s public information that they HAVE disagreements — they don’t hide that fact in general:

      http://wow.joystiq.com/2013/10/03/method-talk-about-their-world-first-race/

      “Are you all still friends? Did you have any arguments or fallings out?
      Treckie: There are always some small moments of rage, and arguments in the heat of the moment, but in the end we are all still friends (ending first obviously helps :P).
      And while we all take the game very seriously, it’s all about teamplay, and you can’t teamplay that great if people can’t play well with each other.

      Method talk about their World First raceSonie: I think Method really stands out on this. We have a really friendly and relaxed raiding environment with a lot of laughter and jokes which makes the time fly by quickly. Of course people have arguments from time to time, but at the end of the day we are all very good friends.

      Leeds: Some exceptions here and there of course! :D People of course get mad at each other every now and then but I think it was a really good atmosphere once again this tier.

      Gabzz: The ambiance during this tier was really good and we had a lot of fun. It’s really enjoyable to be able to play at this level while laughing so much.”

  9. October 9, 2013 12:21 pm

    Yikes.

    I think bloggers have a pulpit that others may not, and we should keep that in mind. That’s not to say that we are any kind of authority, but we do often have a larger audience than other players. It seems disingenuous to use your blog as a way to write an incredibly detailed attack on your old guild and then act surprised that they a) saw it and b) talked about seeing it.

    Whether you were hard done by or not, what you’re doing here is not very cool in my opinion.

    • October 9, 2013 12:58 pm

      I’m sure my response to Quori will say some of these same things, but I haven’t written it yet, so I’ll pre-repeat some of them here.
      First, stating facts is not an attack. Reporters state facts all the time, and primarily what I do on this blog is report on my experiences in games. In Friday’s post, I was diligent to just report what happened without too much analysis. Here, I added more analysis, but I did so trying to avoid bias as much as possible because I wanted to contextualize my exit, and a lot of that context was written in an inaccessible location.

      Some people duck when someone throws something at them; I’ll just take the hit and let people see who threw what. That’s a stylistic and behavioral choice on my part, but I don’t find it aggressive or passive so much as assertive, something more towards the middle.

      Additionally, I am not surprised they saw it, though the actual viewership from my guild prior to Friday might have been two or three, but after Friday was far more, as there were PMs being sent between guild members on the forums to direct them here. That was their choice. My expectation was, of course, that they would talk about it, but since I had spoken to multiple officers at length, that should come as no surprise.

      Bloggers do have a pulpit, but the beautiful thing is that anyone can be a blogger, and even if they don’t want to, they can leave comments. I didn’t edit or delete the nastier comments specifically for that reason, to make sure they had their opportunity to respond. The quality of those responses was their choice, and we saw the full spectrum from solid, civil, and informational down to nasty and emotional.

      I’m sorry you don’t find it cool, but this is what I write about and have written about for a long time. That it happened to become more public this time was through no action on my part; I never publicized my blog to my guild, so any outcome that resulted from its publicity can be attributed to whoever publicized it. The good news is that since it’s over and done with, that’s likely to be the last post on guilds for a while.

      Thanks for the comment, and I hope that this one incident doesn’t forever color your view of this space.

    • October 9, 2013 1:35 pm

      “It seems disingenuous to use your blog as a way to write an incredibly detailed attack on your old guild and then act surprised that they a) saw it and b) talked about seeing it.”

      Chiming in, but I don’t think he was surprised about either A or B and he hasn’t acted surprised. His surprise (and disappointment) was how they reacted, not that they saw it.

      “I didn’t edit or delete the nastier comments specifically for that reason, to make sure they had their opportunity to respond.”

      And it’s much appreciated, unlike a few other bloggers I could name who are hypocrites and don’t allow even extremely polite disagreement on their blogs.

  10. October 9, 2013 12:22 pm

    A really interesting link I grabbed from Leiter’s blog: https://bookofbadarguments.com/

    Very useful in a surprising number of situations.

    • October 9, 2013 12:59 pm

      Is there a particular one you’re directing me to? I teach fallacy as part of my writing courses, so while I’m sure I’ll view the book to check the illustrations, I’m in the middle of a high-grading period right now and don’t have the time.

      Thanks for the comment!

    • October 9, 2013 1:33 pm

      Most immediately, “Appeal to Hypocrisy.” It seems that people have decided the original issues raised are not important enough to discuss because you dared talk about them on your blog. Even better than the normal fallacy as this is, largely, an imagined fault (a blogger actually blogging) and not an actual issue.

      But really, there are so many: Straw Man, False Dilemma, Appeal to the Bandwagon, Circular Reasoning, and the (internet requisite) Ad Hominem.

    • October 9, 2013 2:48 pm

      I asked for clarification because I wasn’t sure about the direction of your comment – whether it was meant “for me” or “for others.” I’m relieved to know it was – mostly – for others (;

      Yes, that’s a point I kept harping on too, particularly in the forum over this past weekend. I kept asking people to specifically identify what had upset them so we could talk about it, but it was only that I had dared speak at all. As I said in a comment above, my point of view has always been that reporting what happened has neither a negative or positive connotation, and thus, when people get upset about it, it’s likely (but not always) because they want to hide their actions because they know they’re wrong.

      I’m sure that no one immediately concerned with the situation would admit to that, of course. There’s been more and more talk of the fact that the elitists are, in fact, the victims in all of this, and a few people seem to be accepting that argument.

      Thanks for the comment and the clarification!

  11. October 9, 2013 4:05 pm

    Sad when any potential social activity falls this way, and I think you’ve done a good job of keeping the content in the blog honest. The recent posts sounded truthful and in tone also paid respect to the people you sought to communicate with; and communicate about.

    Initially you might have been affected by some members of the guild fearing what would be written. And it certainly appears from the quotes that they disliked you having a blog.

    As a blogger (and an often inactive GM) in a WoW raiding guild I struggle to write posts which involve what is going on. Almost all the time I choose not to write them, or I wait 6 months or so until the drama has ended. Recently I published a post around banning people and a few whispers came back asking who I was talking about. In fact it wasn’t anyone at all in the guild at the time, but it is very difficult to write in a manner which is “safe” for all reader’s perspectives and also “meaningful” in terms of the content resonating truthfully. It seemed that every fact in the story I added also could be taken several ways.

    I can’t give better advice on the casual/family vs hardcore, or the styles of elitist than in the comments above, and to be frank I think buying into too much of those arguments is largely a waste of energy. Heck I’m a casual, of course I’d say that. :)

    The positive is you get to keep writing about what you enjoy, and I hope you find a guild which can support your raid needs, be happy with a blog, and actually have a personable culture without faction. I hope you stay positive, and keep the posts coming.

    cheers,
    typhoonAndrew

  12. October 9, 2013 5:21 pm

    There seems to be a line drawn where some readers feel that certain topics are too personal to warrant posting about, but I’m of the opinion that it’s your blog and you should be able to post what you’d like, even if the reader’s opinion varies.

    I’m sorry to hear your recent venture with your guild didn’t work out, but at least you can move on and try again somewhere else. If anything, the experience will most likely cause you to be a bit more vocal and inquisitive before joining a new guild, and that’s in no way a bad thing.

    Overall it just seemed like a lack of communication and ended up blowing up in to something that could have been avoided altogether. If their collective outcome was something you didn’t like, at least you could say there was a “collective outcome” instead of a miscommunication (or a complete lack thereof).

    As a reader, I’d like to point out that I never once felt that anyone was called out by name or that your guild was shown in a bad light. The only ones who were obvious were the ones commenting in the previous post, and they chose to do so on their own. You also, on various occasions, praised other aspects or players in the guild and stated that these were not bad people, just conflicting personalities and playstyles with a lack of communication between those of authority.

    Keep on keeping on and good luck.

    _bikethief @ Cheap Boss Attack

    • October 9, 2013 6:20 pm

      To be fair, as a reader I don’t think it matters what I personally consider too personal to post about. I do however think that the opinion of the people whose actions are being talked about in public does matter… at least in terms of courtesy. Unless you’re specifically talking to a member of the press, you don’t generally expect everything you say and do to be broadcast to the world at large, and I can’t blame anyone for being upset when this unexpectedly does happen, which is sort of the impression I got from some of Stubborn’s former guild members here.

    • October 9, 2013 6:42 pm

      To be fair, I don’t think I quoted any exact words in between when I learned that someone from the guild (other than Q, who recruited me) was reading my blog and this post. I did report on what happened, which is still within the boundaries of your message, but I still firmly believe if I’d been talking about all our awesome boss kills and how great everyone was, there’d be no complaints. There was only anger, I think, because the events didn’t make them look real great, in which case, perhaps they should reflect on their decisions. Regardless, it’s over.

      Thanks for the comment!

  13. October 9, 2013 5:36 pm

    After reading those other comments I think you made the right call Stubborn. Better to find people whose goals are more inline with your own instead of this culture clashing.

    Also I think your guild should update their Charter since clearly it is out of date.

    from the guild web page (edits by Stubborn)
    —–
    The intent of the guild is to promote teamwork and fair play amongst all its members in a collaborative environment in the intent of maximizing the enjoyment of World of Warcraft to its fullest.

    What the guild isn’t is a power gamer’s guild, which strictly only has top tier level members, for the sole purpose of gaining elite loot/items, large scale raids, forced time requirements and events.

    What the guild is, is an all purpose player guild, where both casual and serious gamers can come together to assist one another get to the top rung of the game, by cooperation and assistance in leveling, instance runs, and other objectives in the game World of Warcraft.

    [This Guild] is a guild that is comprised of individuals dedicated to a common goal. As a team every individual earns new gear, progression bragging rights and the right to utilize guild resources for the sake of guild progression and enjoyment through the combined teamwork of all members of the guild.
    —–

  14. October 11, 2013 3:19 am

    Stubborn,

    good luck on your search for a new guild. I can safely say that being in one of those “hardcore” raiding guilds is not impossible for a professional with a limited schedule. There are a lot of very successful raiding guilds out there, that only raid 2 or 3 times a week, for 3-4 hours at a time, and even then you probably won’t need to have a 100% attendance.

    It’s usually the casual guilds that waste so much time trying to raid, simply because organising raids with 25 not-really-motivated people is like herding cats. If you want to do a task in an organised, timely and efficient manner, stay far far away from anything that advertises itself as casual, because you certainly don’t fit in that category. You are simply time-constrained, pretty much like every other raiding adult in the game.

    Plus with flex, a lot of guilds now run the new lockout with their members that can’t/won’t attend normal raids, so you can always fall back on that.

Trackbacks

  1. There’s a First Time For Everything | Harbinger Zero
  2. Skinner and Obsolescence | Sheep The Diamond
  3. The Cynic Dialogues The Implications of Modern Society on Guilds and Gaming
  4. Link Dead Radio: Exploits, End Game, and Newbie Lovin | Healing the masses

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 52 other followers

%d bloggers like this: