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I can tell you that this is one of the moments where we look at what our players do and less of what they say. ”

That phrase has been repeated by many bloggers and forum posts with the vast majority of these decrying this as clear proof that CCP is out of touch.  On the contrary though, its exactly the phrase that I want to hear… (let the flaming begin…)

I’m not a big fan of the “The customer is always right.” ethos, mainly because it means that there will be a lot of nonsensical shouting, a person with an air of entitlement, and the wrong person getting “burned at the stake” as it were.  I also know that people, even with the best intentions, can be so completely blinded by a percieved slight, that rational thought is no longer possible.  For a good example of this, let’s look at the current political situation in the United States.  There has been a deep undercurrent of hatred and distrust of the government for many, many years.  The distrust is based off of beaurocratic foolishness, lazy governing, and pretty much an overall lack of understanding of even basic citizen needs.  This has resulted in the spiraling rise of a political group known as the “Tea Party”, a group which has ultra-conservative aims and was able to win some seats in the US House and US Senate.  The group also tends to be very loud and vocal, and refuses to cooperate with business as usual.  As such they have been able to direct many of the conversations to some very difficult subjects and force significant compromises.

Now, I would consider myself a moderate-conservative type person, despite the fact that I in no way get involved in politics (i.e. I don’t vote.. ever).  So normally I would see this as a positive step… if it weren’t for the fact that these vocal proponents of change.. are mostly made up of morons.  Morons who are supposedly college educated.  I can’t help but cringe when one of these candidates try to give me a “historical” or “religous” lesson (Google “Sarah Palin” or “Michele Bachmann” or “Rich People make jobs”).  The sad part is, they don’t even make up the majority of the Republican party, yet are able to direct it any way they want to.  This is why CCP Hilmar’s quote is important and it should be one of those things that people should be encouraged by, not discouraged with.

You see, the people who post on the forums and the people who write blogs about Eve Online are really a small minority of the players in the game.  We are certainly a vocal minority and our experiences cover the width and breadth of Eve Online, and fortunately, we aren’t all idiots.  But the simple fact is we don’t all agree on things and listening to a few selected bloggers and forum posters about the game may not give a true picture of the problem.  Even the CSM, who are generally elected by that same player base of vocal people, may not really see what all is happening or be aware of all that is needing to happen.  It is true that we of the vocal community are great at pointing out problems and sometimes have good ideas regarding fixing them.  It is true that sometimes what we percieve is correct and what CCP sees is wrong.  But it is also true that we can be resistant to change, things like Incarna, which will absolutely be good for the game in the long run (And really, the major drama about losing “ship spinning” is rather ridiculous.  If you want to spin your ship, just undock).

Does that mean I’m going to stop talking about game problems?  No.  We are still CCP’s customer, and while I don’t believe in “The Customer is ALWAYS right”, I don’t believe that the customer is always wrong either.  This time around the community stepped up and their actions, our actions, matched our complaints.

On a side note, I am a bit preturbed by the way CCP handled the revolts staged by Helicity Boson.  Those revolts weren’t game breaking and were only an inconvience at best.  A permanent ban for something like that.. but only a day or so ban for RMT’ers?  You call that reasonable, CCP?  And considering this was a response to a very major blunder on your part.. I think it was poorly done and you should let Helicity Boson play again.

Helicity’s Blog
Helicity’s Banning

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