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Author Topic: On echo chambers and popularity contests  (Read 4289 times)

Lyn Farel

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On echo chambers and popularity contests
« on: 13 Aug 2012, 07:15 »

Hello,

Please note that this post is in no way trying to tell people they are doing it wrong, or anything insulting or related. Eventually it is more about a very human syndrome related to online echo chambers, lobbies and popularity contests than anything else. Take it as you wish but I wrote it in the (vain ?) hope to write something constructive that could enhance your RP future experiences and also interest more people, often very good RPers, that stay away of the main community for all these reasons (and that made me doing it too by leaving).

So, the main issue I had to deal with more and more with the Summit and the OOC channel is that often at the contrary of backstage (but not always), it is a blend of characters not always really following any IC logic while actually trying to achieve OOC goals and looking for friendly and accepting online communities turning into social mutual support groups where roleplay sometimes seems to be put in the background to the profit of these considerations. A lot of people on both of these channels are not really here for actual RP, but for social groups.

And then when you come to somehow disagree with these groups you inevitably start to get shuned, hated, or despised for what you are trying to achieve. Difference of opinion is not prohibited, no. It is just merely not encouraged at all and often seen in a bad way. I also had the same experience with some of the RP factional groups that have a really hard time to accept critics or just simply the view of someone else. These groups tend to turn into online echo chambers where they keep repeating to themselves things that are actually totally player created to a point where they start to think that this is part of the PF. Napanii, for example, is not far from such an example (do not take me wrong, I admire the work behind, I am just uncomfortable with the fact that players say it is THE caldari official language and impose that to other players as well). But this may be related to another topic in itself...

So yes, it mostly ends up in popularity contests where as long as you are more famous than someone with barely a few connections or not very well known or sociable in the community, you can perfectly disagree with him, OOCly or ICly, and get out with it since everyone that knows you will side with you, just because they know you, you know. It was mostly how it worked for me a few years ago, or even the last year, when I started to debate with people ICly and somehow saw most people supporting me, and I wondered even why some of them did. And then, recently, I made the mistake to oppose ICly (and then OOCly as well) characters that are well know, famous, well appreciated, or just pillars of the community (mods, mostly), and here you go, my popularity was way below theirs, so suddenly all the people that supported me in the past started to turn back against me, which was properly ludicrous.

Then of course, you have the usual people that complain about OOC/IC bleedovers everywhere here on backstage (we maybe have one of these posts or discussions every few months to say the least) and still are guilty of it ingame or in other discussions. I have recently been attacked on things that my character usually does because I made the mistake to behave a little like her once, and also been the target ICly of OOC veiled attacks on the IGS, for example. From the very people that complain about it. Of course, often related to echo chambers as well.

Then I also often stumbled into another syndrome that I find totally damageable to the community and also which is quite telling of the issue at hand, when you have for example people like Seriphyn, me sometimes, or other passionate RPers that try to start a meaningful discussion about the lore, about RP, about the world or whatever, and then get crushed under a spamm of rubbish, vapid ooc stuff that were spammed just for the sake of saying something to derail the new discussion or to drown it under their own because it just doesnt interest them. Then, the question some of us inevitably ask, is "why are those people on this channel, if not to speak about RP" ? The channel is called OOC, not "giant social fuckfest" or whatever. Not that it is bad to speak about anything OOC really, of course (this is not what I said).

Eventually, it is of course, your channel, your rules, your expectations, and if people are not happy, I can understand that they can just htfu and create their own channel (which is probably going to fail though). But the thing is that the Summit and OOC are the main and almost only active RP channels by default, and not being able to take part on them is like being barred from 95% of eve written RP (vs RP conflict). And yes, I know some people that just do not want to use them or take part in them for all of these reasons.

It is probably not going to do anything in the end really, I guess, since people will return to their old usual patterns and do as if nothing happened, but well...*

Thank you for reading (or not),

Lyn's player.
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Tiberious Thessalonia

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Re: On echo chambers and popularity contests
« Reply #1 on: 13 Aug 2012, 07:38 »

Lyn, I think the reason that you've been having problems of late is that when you argue with people you have been coming off as "Arguing to argue".  This is a position that isn't helped when people see your arguements as not even requiring the other person to be present, IE that you aren't listening to the counterarguments being put forward to you.

I have not seen a lot of element of an echo chamber, myself.  If you could tell me some specific instances, it might help.
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Saede Riordan

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Re: On echo chambers and popularity contests
« Reply #2 on: 13 Aug 2012, 07:58 »

I can agree with some of what Lyn says here. I've definitely noticed the way certain conversations are outright drowned out by the mob, both in OOC chat and in IC, and a lot of it seems rather deliberate. In the future if I find examples of it, I'll forward to you Tibs.

Quote
So, the main issue I had to deal with more and more with the Summit and the OOC channel is that often at the contrary of backstage (but not always), it is a blend of characters not always really following any IC logic while actually trying to achieve OOC goals and looking for friendly and accepting online communities turning into social mutual support groups where roleplay sometimes seems to be put in the background to the profit of these considerations. A lot of people on both of these channels are not really here for actual RP, but for social groups.


THIS. SO MUCH THIS.

The thing it really seems to be to me is that on some level, a lot of people don't want discourse, they want gossip and IC socializing. Anyone who goes into the summit to do anything other then hold hands and sing seems to frequently get stepped on. The dominant voice of the summit seems to be right now that everyone should agree and get along, whenever anyone comes in who challenges the opinions of the mob is drowned out, bitched at until they leave, or ostracized and constantly ridiculed by everyone. What happened to the angry shouting between slavers and freedom fighters? What happened to the vitrol between the Caldari and the Gallente? What happened to people not liking each other? There's very little conflict in the summit anymore, everyone would rather be friends, in my mind because OOCly a lot of people are friends, and I do get that. Just...I'd like to actually have a few real enemies.
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Kybernetes Moros

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Re: On echo chambers and popularity contests
« Reply #3 on: 13 Aug 2012, 08:05 »

A question I've raised in the past is "If the Summit's no good, why not RP outside it?".
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Saede Riordan

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Re: On echo chambers and popularity contests
« Reply #4 on: 13 Aug 2012, 08:15 »

A question I've raised in the past is "If the Summit's no good, why not RP outside it?".

Because for a lot of people, there is no where else they can RP where they will actually have people to RP with them, not only that, but a lot of places outside of the summit are for XYZ specific faction or group, and people who don't belong to that or a friendly faction or group are simply not allowed in, which means that a lot of bars, and clubs and channels are all very much echo chambers. The only places that really aren't like that are The Last Gate and the Skyhook, and if the bar scene isn't your thing then you're up shit creek. The IC communities are very cliquey, which would be perfectly fine if there was RP and interaction in space, but there isn't much of that either, the space stuff has become completely divorced from the RP, to the point that even when I offer people isk for services, they still won't do anything. When did we get so conflict averse?
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Kybernetes Moros

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Re: On echo chambers and popularity contests
« Reply #5 on: 13 Aug 2012, 08:21 »

If there's nowhere else a character can RP, perhaps the character needs altering. Failing that, there's always the route of taking the initiative and approaching people outside of any particular channel.
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Katrina Oniseki

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Re: On echo chambers and popularity contests
« Reply #6 on: 13 Aug 2012, 08:51 »

If there's nowhere else a character can RP, perhaps the character needs altering. Failing that, there's always the route of taking the initiative and approaching people outside of any particular channel.

This. I have said countless times that Katrina is available for RP outside the Summit. That is in fact the entire reason for my public OOC channel - to provide you a way to contact me and set up something to RP. Ask anyone who has visited her home (the most popular option), or spoken with her before/after a major event.

I remember an impromptu RP I had with Seriphyn just outside the Last Gate* where they were responsible for the death of three 'normal human' thugs, and it turned into a very heated and emotional outburst of ethics versus necessity. That was an excellent example of actual RP, and it happened outside the Summit because we took the initiative to get with each other and continue roleplay outside normal means.

It's not hard to say 'hey, I want my character to meet yours in person, how can we make this happen?'. Try doing it more often. Plan something, make your own RP channels, bring people inside them - or go visit others'.

I hear these same complaints every week on Backstage, notably that Summit isn't serving someone's needs, or that they want more conflict driven RP, or they are sick of the pointless banter on the Summit. Stop going to the Summit! Don't whine about your lack of satisfying RP... make more of it!

TL;DR

Get in contact with people OOCly to plan some better RP with them, instead of waiting and hoping for it to happen naturally in the Summit, then complaining when it does not.

*- This RP happened in a channel we created to represent the station interior outside the Last Gate. They met in TLG, and walked out pretty much together. This wasn't just us doing something impromptu within another already created channel.
« Last Edit: 13 Aug 2012, 09:04 by Katrina Oniseki »
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Saede Riordan

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Re: On echo chambers and popularity contests
« Reply #7 on: 13 Aug 2012, 09:31 »

I suppose that's true. I guess I have a vaguely unrealistic expectation of immersive purity from my tabletop days, and it really is okay to plan out RP OOCly, and doing so doesn't make it less fun. Eve doesn't have DMs, so we have to all be our own DMs and I should get used to this.
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Mercy Kincaid

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Re: On echo chambers and popularity contests
« Reply #8 on: 13 Aug 2012, 09:50 »

Is English your primary language, Lyn?
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Gottii

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Re: On echo chambers and popularity contests
« Reply #9 on: 13 Aug 2012, 10:42 »

If there's nowhere else a character can RP, perhaps the character needs altering. Failing that, there's always the route of taking the initiative and approaching people outside of any particular channel.

Man, so much this.

Logic would dictate is that if a lot of people cant find RP out of the Summit, then there is a ton of players looking to RP outside of the Summit. 

Ive roleplayed in EVE for something like three years.  Ive only RPed in the Summitt like a dozen times, probably less, and only one of those times was a meaningful exchange really. ( a cool conversation with Malcom that I really enjoyed)
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John Revenent

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Re: On echo chambers and popularity contests
« Reply #10 on: 13 Aug 2012, 11:04 »

I don't RP in the Summit (Because to John that place is.. erm well you know -_-), there are places to RP outside of the Summit you just have to look for a group. My RP is not as expansive as most of the RP community and generally only involves groups like the ILF/I-RED, but I still RP.

vOv.
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Ember Vykos

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Re: On echo chambers and popularity contests
« Reply #11 on: 13 Aug 2012, 11:46 »

If you see me in the summit then it's usually for one of two reasons either I'm a: really fuckin bored or b: something interesting is going on and hasn't been fucked up by other people yet.

Most of my rp is either at home or other places. I'm not very expansive either, but I don't have a hard time finding RP when I feel like it. You just have to go find it.
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Mercy Kincaid

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Re: On echo chambers and popularity contests
« Reply #12 on: 13 Aug 2012, 11:53 »

Is there any place to interact that has a meaningful impact on the game? I like my roleplay to enhance my gaming experience, not separated from what I do in space. It's what I feel is lacking in bar RP and the Summit.
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Seriphyn

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Re: On echo chambers and popularity contests
« Reply #13 on: 13 Aug 2012, 11:58 »

I have not seen a lot of element of an echo chamber, myself.  If you could tell me some specific instances, it might help.

You probably haven't seen it because you are considered a 'popular' one, I reckon.
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Tiberious Thessalonia

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Re: On echo chambers and popularity contests
« Reply #14 on: 13 Aug 2012, 12:19 »

Abluh?
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