Greedy Goblin

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

A wannabe nullsec alliance members plight

While I'm not Jester yet, but I have another, smaller, more technical post for today, read that too if you wish.

I've read yet another shameless propaganda/recruitment post from CFC. I mean can a recruitment post be more obvious than "Every day is a challenge and every day is a fight. It’s the best war in the game right now and it’s certainly the best time to be playing EVE in its history."

It's no secret that I'm looking for a nullsec home. Now it's not an easy task for me as I have my own terms. Most people just want to belong and try to fit in. I don't. I rather be alone than having to tolerate things I don't want to tolerate like a culture where contributing by keeping others in ships is not considered equal. But this would just be my personal problem. Normally I'd approach alliances that I like and they would either accept me or not. Who cares about my personal diary?

Instead, I'd like to point out a rather weird problem that is probably unknown to the busy recruiters who write posts like that. I mean the problem that prevents me even from applying when I find someone interesting.


Don't laugh! I think one of the biggest obstacle between a nullsec alliance and a prospective member is corporations. I understand what a small pirate corporation do. I understand what a WH corp do. I understand what a highsec PvE corp do (stay docked). But what the hell does a nullsec sov-holding powerblock member corporation do?

I mean all "politics" and "culture" is in the alliance or even on powerblock level. The corporations don't seem to have any unique culture, most of them don't even have a forum or it's dead. From the news it seems the alliance has FCs, the alliance has the ISK, the alliance directors make the strategy, the alliance has the forum, the alliance has the killboard, the members identify with the alliance. I've been reading, the official CFC "Fox News". It talks about "CFC did this, Dotbrothers did that". Can you find a single corporation name in the posts? I couldn't. This "diplomatic update" lists 17 alliances as members of powerblocks. The alliances are visible. They have characteristics. But corporations don't.

Now let me give the problem as simple as I can with a bizarre example. John is so offended by the usage of the sexist insult "mate", that he immediately decides to eradicate it or die trying. He wants to join NCdot, the only entity in EVE that shares this noble goal. But there is no such thing as NCdot recruitment! He opens up the NCdot info and finds several corporations. Which to join and how?

So let me give an advice to the busy writers of alliance propaganda: link a little guide how can someone apply to the alliance. The people see the alliance, they know nothing of corporations. Something like that "If you want to help us fight the ones who consider calling each others `mate` tolerable, you can apply to Bashers INC [link] (for casual PvP fun), Reapers INC [link] (20M SP, 500+ kills, do your job or GTFO) or Hoarders INC [link] (industry, logistics, some PvP).

Finding a home is hard enough, especially in a game where scamming is allowed. If you want new members, don't make it harder by having to deal with obscure corporations.

Finally an interesting question: is it just coincidence that the two strongest alliances, GSF and TEST have one-one mega-corporation in it? Practically Dreddit is TEST, not member of it. Can it be that corporations are just obsolete remnants of the small-gang origins of the alliances and completely unnecessary? Wouldn't an alliance be better off just merging them all until the member count cap? Of course I can be wrong here, but then enlighten me, what the corps do in a nullsec alliance?

Still no daily report until the implant prices stabilize somewhere.


Serpentine Logic said...

The goonswarm alliance-centric culture is a deliberate organisational choice. It reduces cliques and allows for greater direct control/influence over members.

Gevlon said...

I understand that. My questions are:
- why do Goonswarm alliance still have like 50 corporations?
- why do other alliances don't follow the scheme?

Anonymous said...

You'll find that corporations do in fact have their own cultures and rules. However in "good" alliances the views of member corporations whilst important internally do not get in the way of the message of the wider alliance or coalition.

Corporation selection is important. Some alliances have timezones neatly compartmentalised into corporations which leads to a sense of national pride at a corporation level. Others may have particular internal political ideologies which are attract a certain type of player (democracy vs autocracy etc).

Whilst in block level war the important entity is the coalition (its not even the alliance, as the power bloc as a whole which is a collection of alliances operates for all intents and purposes as a single entity at the block level), the identity of the member alliance and the member corporations which make up that alliance are going to be most important to the individual pilots participating.

Identifying with a large group is one thing, but the day to day administration (where you park your ships, how your hangers and wallets are arranged, corporate level taxes, corp operations, internal corporation politics/structure/hierarchy etc) will be dictated by the corporation - although often with direction from at least the alliance it is a member of.

I'd go as far as to say that picking a block is doing it backwards - finding a corporation which adheres to your particular ideology will be far easier than trying to find a 10000 pound gorilla of an alliance which adheres to the same at the macro level.

Anonymous said...

goonswarm have many corporations because they form convienient ways of pigeonholing particular groups into neat organisational boxes.

(decentralisation is also a good tactic to get around eve's terrible corporation interface and minimize the risk of theft...unless someone is made a director of the executor corp 'only' 1 of many corporations will be impacted)

Mary Titor said...

Dreddit and GSF not being composed of separate corporations is not a coincidence, however, this arrangement is an artifact of their particular origins. Back in the Days of Olde, when Goonswarm was just starting out, their arrangement was dictated by their recruiting method, which was, and still is, predominantly by selecting from a population of their offworld forum. They were initially recruited in this manner, and never formed smaller tighter-knit units, because they never aggregated from smaller units like most other alliances did. The skill "Empire Control" exists because Goonswarm needed it to support their particular organisational structure, and successfully petitioned CCP to make it. The alliance object only exists because Goonswarm wished to go after nullsec sov, which, for mechanical reasons, only an alliance may hold. TEST's story is quite similar.

It is a fact that entities that recruit members in this fashion do have a natural selection advantage over others because of Eve's markedly hostile nature. But I wouldn't go so far as to say this constitutes a stable evolutionary step per se, and that the days of alliances created in other ways are long past -- the circumstances that produce this advantage may change. (They'd better, though I won't pollute your comments with the long explanation why this is essential.)

Anonymous said...

Anon 0735 is right, now that I think back to my own recruiting into null. The corporation is the one that is your immediate family, your direct culture, and the corp is the one that actually handles recruitment at an individual level. So in one alliance you have say 10 corps. At a given moment, corp A can have closed recruitment, corp B can have 60mill SP/supercarier or gtfo, corp C is Croatian speaking only, corp D is east coast US TZ recruiting elite PVP, corp E can be actively recruiting every hisec carebear they can find and their dog, corp F recruits only from, corp G...

The alliance is a level above the corp, it deals with corps the way corps deal with individuals - ranks KB performance/attendance for member corps, holds corp leadership meetings, solves issues at corp-corp level, handles sov and high level finance, and so on. When an alliance kicks/recruits , it does this with entire CORPS, not individuals.

Anonymous said...

Corporations in the CFC+HB mostly exist for historical reasons and because some people take pride in where they came from before joining the alliance.

The role they usually fill (organizational pidgeonholing, immediate peer group) is already handled by special interest groups (SIGs) and squads.

In my opinion the question that separates "actual" corporations from those that only exist on paper is "What would the corp members do if the corp left the alliance?"

If they would join another corp in the same alliance, then the corp has been meaningless.

Some corporations come from OOG communities (e.g. Ars ex Discordia comes from the ArsTechnica forums, Merch industrial from Penny Arcade, Eighty Joule Brewery from Elitist Jerks, ...)
These corporations would probably survive leaving their respective alliance and would have understandable qualms about integration into dreddit/GoonWaffe.

But do Vily (Eternity INC.) or Rydis (Amok.) really need their own corporations?
From my point of view their raison d'ĂȘtre is a mix of historical reasons and ego-boosting and they could just as well exist as SIGs.

Anonymous said...

the part about talent migration is important as it effectively is a mechanism that gets rid off pointless corporations (much to the woe of this diplomat)

Anonymous said...

"When an alliance kicks/recruits , it does this with entire CORPS, not individuals."

except when TEST kicks corps they offer decent corp members the option to join another allied corp.

any corp leader joining TEST is a target. the leadership wants your pilots, not you.

recollector said...

If you do not know the answer already (I hope you do, really) let me ask you a rethoric question, regarding USA or EU :

If you would have the freedom to become an american citizen, will you want to live in Minessota or California?

Or the same for EU : would you like to become a german citizen or a greek one?

The same applies to alliances in EVE.

Wanna be a top pvper ? Join that corp in that alliance that is TOP killer.

Best indy corp ? Just look at the corp with the lowest kill rate BUT old enough in that alliance.If it is not old, it means it is NOT and indy corp.

Tego said...

I cant help but think that people are ignoring the important half of the statement. Its not that corps are completely useless its that the recruiters that you find are shlepping alliances. How does someone who doesn't have an outside reason to join the hello kitty forum corp in alliance G or the my little pony corp in alliance T find information on the individual corps so they can join the right kind of corp if most of the culture, and recruitment seems to be happening at the larger level?

Anonymous said...

@Tego you look at how long they have been in the alliance, how active they are, ask around what their reputation is, ...

in the end you will find that the intersection between the set of corporations that are not terrible and the set of corporations that do public recruitment is extremely small.

Anonymous said...

"How does someone who doesn't have an outside reason to join the hello kitty forum corp in alliance G or the my little pony corp in alliance T find information on the individual corps so they can join the right kind of corp if most of the culture, and recruitment seems to be happening at the larger level?"

By getting to know people. Which isn't an answer likely to endear me to Gevlon.

Which is why a lot of large corps have some kind of trial period, or an associated scrub corporation. If you want to join 401K for instance, you join RAGGY and then after people get to know you they invite you into their corp - you can either accept straight away, or continue to get to know them and possibly hold out for another invitation.

And Incidentally - if you were referring to Ponywaffe in Test, they were formed by recruitment officers from E-UNI who wanted to go to null sec, so a core of people knew each other and had flown together before forming the corp.

Anonymous said...

e.g. in the whole of Goonswarm Federation there two English-speaking corporations that do public recruitment.

So if you don't have any out-of-game reason to join a specific corp (language, friends that can vouch, OOG community) you can completely disregard the other 154 corporations in the alliance (which make up > 90% of its members).

And when the only options are either Wildly Inappropriate (which still have a very special culture) or Eternity INC. (which are your regular pvp corp lead by one of Goonswarm's bloc level FCs) making a choice should be manageable.

Dioxin said...

If that day in the life article is a recruitment post then it's as much for the dotbros as it is for the CFC. The CFC have been nothing but "dotbros are awesome underdogs and know how to bring gudfites" ever since the war started. You might want to consider the possibility it's just someone writing about what an awesome time he's having, rather than a sign that you're too clever for their recruitment propaganda.

Gevlon said...

@Anonymous: if one who wants to fight for NC. have to know people in an NC. corp first, isn't that an unnecessary obstacle that hurts NC.?

Anonymous said...

"@Anonymous: if one who wants to fight for NC. have to know people in an NC. corp first, isn't that an unnecessary obstacle that hurts NC.?"

No, not at all. Most people find it fairly easy to get to know people. Someone who is completely asocial is also much more likely to up and go when things turn even slightly south.

Your example of NC. contains multiple corps all of which draw from different social groupings which takes care of numbers.

You could argue that Goons are much more successful at the numbers game - but then they draw from a pool of people with an existing common culture - most Goons wouldn't actually want to be in any other alliance.

Tego said...

@28 Annon August, 2012 22:28

Oddly enough I don't play eve. I started reading GG when I still played WoW and Gelvon was beating the tar out of pretty much every other inscriptionist he could find. I still read the blog because the out of game implications have always interested me. So the existence of Pony waffle and my examples are complete, though funny coincidence.

Gevlon said...

@Anonymous: one who finds it easy to get to know people will find it just as easy to get to know people at the enemy.

Anonymous said...

They will do, but they'll tend to have a certain loyalty to the people they know the longest.

If they leave corp they are much more likely to leave along with a bunch of other people that they actually like flying with.

As social relationships are sticky, they are less likely to roll/buy a new character and join the opposition.