Monday, February 18, 2013

"Bad people" - social response to threat

When I'm ganking barges and exhumers, I scan the ships first looking for tanking modules. I'd say less than 10% of the barges has any form of tanking (even dumb ones like armor plates) and less then 20% of the exhumers, and even these are mostly some random tanking module thrown to the empty med slots. I've yet to see a single Orca with shield or armor gang link and saw only one with shield transporter.

It's surprising if we consider the ego of EVE players who are sooooo much better than WoW players. Well, the infamous cloth gear warriors are rare examples in the magnitude of 0.1-1% while in EVE the majority of the miners are complete failures. But it's not about re-iterating my opinion of the average IQ of EVE players (which I believe to be lower than of WoW players). It's about the miracle that they are still living/playing. I mean with their complete ignorance of ship fitting they should die more often than they could mine enough to replace their ships. Yet they are living and progressing enough to enjoy the game and keep playing.

The cheap answer would be "dumb people can progress in EVE because their competitors are equally dumb, an untanked mining barge is safe from equally badly fitted gankers". But I've seen a weird, greatly sub-optimal, yet fun functioning response to threat. While they don't even try to address the problem (their barge can be ganked by a single 10M destroyer) but they put great effort into resisting me, the player behind the destroyer.

I've yet to see a single advice (beside my own) in local to fit tank. But if I enter a system I've done some ganking before, I quickly see "beware, ganker in local, dock up". Some of them even camp the station or the belts with (usually horribly fitted) combat ships to stop me. Others try to locate my scout and convo the targeted miners. It doesn't really help, because they can't respond to warnings when they are AFK. However they are clearly trying to save themselves and their fellow miners from danger.

This behavior is too persistent and repeated by too many people to be random acts. This comes from the core of the social thinking: "people matter" as opposed to "things matter". They believe that the key to safety isn't being able to defeat a Catalyst destroyer but to defeat a "bad person". If people wouldn't be evil, there wouldn't be bad things! Their refusal to fit tank comes not from ignorance of EVE ship fitting, but refusal to accept the existence of the ganker. Fitting tank means "ganking happens, I'm prepared". They don't want it to happen, since it's evil. So they focus not on saving themselves but to stop "bad people".

This is another ape-subroutine, mental scheme from ancient times when prehistoric men lived in small communities. There every single troublemaker could be identified and handled. A closed village could be kept clean from norm-breakers. This is much harder in large cities and completely impossible on the internet. Their coping attempt with ganking in EVE is totally futile since there are many gankers and alts. It was funny when I ganked the loudest anti-gank activist simply by using a different alt for scouting. He ignored the ship right top of his barge because it wasn't named "Goblin" so it wasn't identified as a "bad guy".

So ganking them is a more worthy activity than I initially thought. It has the prospective to save these people from this thinking. One who stops watching local for known gankers and fits tank did not change his gameplay, but his real life thinking. He stopped trying to be safe from bad people and started to defend himself from bad things. So, save a social from his ape-subroutines, gank an AFK-er!

23 comments:

Jumina said...

This is very interesting. When I read internet discussions on the internet I often find people saying something like: "We should elect the good and moral people".

spinksville said...

Maybe they're not stupid. Maybe they've done some risk assessment and figured that the risks of being ganked while mining are pretty low so it's not worth the effort of fitting ships defensively. Plus calling out known gankers is a significant reduction in risk for all miners in the area. (It's altruistic to warn others, but will pay off if it encourages them to do the same thing in return.)

So you could ask instead, is that risk assessment mostly correct? And if so, why are the risks so low?

Azuriel said...

Well... isn't the "sub-routine" actually applicable here? As far as I can tell, you aren't ganking for profit here - you are ganking on principal, to forward an agenda completely at odds with the rules of the game itself.

If mining required some minimum amount of armor or required players to be at their keyboards to mine, miners would do so. Instead, all they really have to do is be on the lookout for specific players engaging in irrational behavior.

Anonymous said...

Why do you still recommend to tank a *barge*, if it isn't cost-effective? Tanking a barge hurts profit more than gankers do.

Regarding docking up: Since the New Order makes it obvious that you don't gank for profit, why should anyone assume that you stop because a ship is better tanked?

Especially in your case there is so much money and accounts involved, that there is no escape if you wanted to see someone dead. You just have still enough easy target, that the consideration doesn't matter yet.

Anonymous said...

I kinda feel this is more the case of maximising their profits while they're outside mining, versus spending 15 mins (where they could do something else) docked up.

Anonymous said...

Don't go for the cheap answers. It will only work aginst your ultimate goal-- Converting the MnS.

It's basically Darwinism at work. These miners have lived in a world where there are no predators. A place where they are at greater risk of blowing them selves up than being hunted down.

The first signs of predators are already showing. When you arrive, they dock. Like birds chirping "snake!". But hiding in a cave will make them hungry, starvation is cruel.

Soon they will venture outside only when fully tanked. Maybe even with an escort.

/Sal

KillTheBear said...

"As far as I can tell, you aren't ganking for profit here - you are ganking on principal, to forward an agenda completely at odds with the rules of the game itself."

You don't play EVE much do you. People can gank for whatever reason they like. There are no rules in EVE dictating what we can and can not do.

Some of us like to harvest tears instead of ore.

Anonymous said...

Gevlon,

Firstly you are hardly the person who should be talking about fitting in eve - you have shown on more than one occasion your complete lack of understanding of fitting even the simplest of ships.

It has been pointed out to you before on many posts you make on the subject of taking exhumers that given the likelihood of being ganked, weighed against the loss of yield from fitting a tank that in many cases it is far better to NOT tank and go for maximum yield from a purely economic standpoint.

Where you do suggest that miners tank you offer up a feeble mixed tank strategy instead of a pure shield tank geared to withstanding gallente damage patterns - the best (and perhaps only way) to survive an alphastrike style attack.

While on the subject of alpha, even with the buff to barges and exhumers, the nature of alphastrike means that a miner will in many cases realise that he is going to be killed because the ganker will more than likely bring friends. If you were to scan for a gallente damage optimized shield tank that you couldn't break on your own, you would bring another catalyst to assist you - there comes a point where the acceptance of losses as a cost of doing business becomes the only logical option for the miner.

As for the miners attempting to warn people of your presence - you are right in that you have stumbled upon another example of human evolutionary behavior - but it is not as you believe restricted to small communities and it is precisely that evolutionary behavior that is the reason large cities and the internet exists...why mankind is and still manages to stay at the top of the food chain.

We are social creatures. We are otherwise unremarkable except for our ability to act in the collective good via a hardwired and evolved "morality". Your personal philosophy may disagree with this but you have a mountain of biological and anthropological evidence that you must overcome for you to be right.

Yes you are considered to be "the bad person" in this particular community of miners. It is only natural that they will band together to warn one and other and attempt to protect themselves from you. There are no surprises here, this is how human beings work.

Gevlon said...

@Anonymous: the problem is indeed that it's not how human beings WORK. It's how they fail to work. Their warnings and "stop the evil" attempts fail, where a simple Damage Control II succeeds.

Yes, everything can be ganked. But why would anyone form a fleet to kill you when there are 5 other, untanked barges around that can be soloed?

You know the rule of outrunning the bear: "you don't have to run faster than the bear, just faster than the slowest guy in the group"

Anonymous said...

@Anonymous: the problem is indeed that it's not how human beings WORK. It's how they fail to work. Their warnings and "stop the evil" attempts fail, where a simple Damage Control II succeeds.

I, and the prevailing scientific opinion, would beg to differ with you.

The success of the species, its greatest achievements, its societies, its artwork, its invention, its accumulated knowledge, its monumental projects of discovery can all be put at the feet of the specie's highly evolved sense of community.

It is precisely the same trait at work with the New Order - cooporation and group knowledge feeding into a singular cooperative body which allows it to operate.

Are the miners less organised than the New Order? of course they are - but their failing isn't through the social experience. They are being destroyed by a larger and more organized social collective. You are seeing a behavior and coming to a conclusion which fits with your world view. A worldview which is demonstrably wrong in this case.

As for why gank untanked vs tanked? it still doesn't matter. Economically it does not make sense to tank a barge. You can make more with the increased yield vs the number of times ganked (if you are not a complete moron) - it is a cost of running the business.

DSJ said...

On those arguing against a miner barge tank --- what EVE are you playing?

Just filling empty mid slots with Shield Extenders would in many cases prevent a one destroyer gank ... so the tradeoff cost of that to doing nothing is practically zero.

In most cases a single damage control is not beyond the possible since in many cases only players with good support skills are going to have the fitting room to max out with yield modules. You might as well have a damage control if you can't go with a yield because of fitting room.

Increasing your tank enough for one destroyer makes every ganker work twice as hard as currently to kill you --- that's a good investment. It stops being cost effective when it's one miner against a team.

Anonymous said...

@Gevlon

Let me show you a link: http://www.minerbumping.com/2013/02/goodnight-moon-part-1.html

And let me quote James:

"There is no tank strong enough to ward off a gang of determined Knights. Once their focus is set, they do not rest until they achieve their objective."

Your leader has invalidated your claims about tanking and verified that it's pointless.

Gevlon said...

@First anon: I do solo ganking, away from the New Order fleet, though I don't question their help to let me get started. There is no social organization against those miners, just me.

@Second anon: That's about Moonsong Miner, an extremely vehement New Order opposer. No doubt he was ganked. A random miner is saved by a Damage Control.

Anonymous said...

@Gevlon

"A random miner is saved by a Damage Control."

...unless there are enough gankers to kill him anyway. And that's the reason why people don't fit tank to barges. It's just pointless, since if someone wants to gank you - you will be ganked. It's just better to fit for yield and make more isk even when killed in the process.

Dàchéng said...

"save a social from his ape-subroutines, gank an AFK-er"

If he is AFK, no "subroutines" of any sort are in operation, so you are not saving anyone from anything.

Dàchéng said...

Killthebear wrote:
"Some of us like to harvest tears instead of ore"

Where's the profit in that?

axin said...

Why not just pay the 10 million fee for a year and mine in peace? 10 million is less than a cost of a ship that you will most certainly lose. You can focus on moving and hauling your ore instead of who's in local and run and hide in the station until the 'bad' people are gone.

I haven't been asked about the fee but as soon as the New Order are operating in my system, I will gladly pay it.

As for fitting a tank, if the New Order has deemed you a target worthy of destruction, I see no reason in fitting a tank. Though it will save you from one ship, maybe two. But if your name is on the list, I feel they will not rest until they harvest your tears. It is a war you cannot win. I end with this quote from the IRA in Ireland from 1984, as I feel it applies to the gank.

"Today we were unlucky, but remember we only have to be lucky once. You will have to be lucky always."

If they want you. They. Will. Get. You.

Kristophr said...

Axin: If they want you. They. Will. Get. You.


Exactly. Permit tank is the best tank. For a cheap 10m ISK/Year, the New Order will not gank you as long as you follow the New Order's rules for miners.

We are selling so many Permit Tanks, that we may have to move on soon.

Azuriel said...

You don't play EVE much do you. People can gank for whatever reason they like. There are no rules in EVE dictating what we can and can not do.

Of course. My point was that Gevlon isn't even ganking for tears, but rather to try and change the nature of the game, despite the fact that the nature of the game mechanics encourages the very behavior he is against. AFK mining would disappear overnight if:

A) Mining required random inputs;
B) It was more profitable to gank untanked miners than to AFK mine;
C) Rat spawns necessitated X tanking modules while mining;
D) etc

Gevlon is trying to affect change in an unsustainable way. The minute he or the New Order stop suicide-ganking miners, the tanked miners will be at a disadvantage to the maximum-yield (AFK) miners. All this work is literally pissing into the ocean.

If you gank for enjoyment, then no worries; you are receiving your reward at the time of gank. But ganking to change the nature of the game, using these means, is simply irrational. Maybe you make a few miners paranoid for a while, but all the new ones will be doing the most economical thing: AFK mining in an untanked ship.

Rammstein said...

"Gevlon is trying to affect change in an unsustainable way. The minute he or the New Order stop suicide-ganking miners, the tanked miners will be at a disadvantage to the maximum-yield (AFK) miners. All this work is literally pissing into the ocean."

There are many other gankers besides the New Order operating in EVE. Clearly, you have no idea of which you speak.

A good percentage of the untanked miners don't fit for yield instead of tank, but for cargo expansion, which is basically useless at this point and actually reduces tank. Miners are not being economically rational, as a group, but most assuredly irrational. Max yield fit with 2 tank rigs and full midslot tank, which is what your argument, though without any supporting math, seems to favor, is around 2% of all ice miners. Come back and post when you know enough about EVE to make a relevant entry.

Maxim Preobrazhenskiy said...

@Azuriel
Dunno, it seems to me that G is actually enjoying ganking :D. The whole recent post is more an attempt to explain why he enjoys it.


@Fitting tanks
There seem to be three factors in play when deciding whether to fit a tank or not.
1) Fitting tank reduces MPS (mining per second).
2) Fitting tank won't increase MPS versus organised ganking.
3) Fitting tank increases MPS (and quite dramatically) versus single-person ganking.

In order to truly adress the usefulness of tank fitting, you need to show that 3 outweights both 1 and 2. For that, you need to dig up a good amount of obscure statistics.

Until these statistics are collected, both Gevlon and "tank-is-not-economical" people don't really have a real basis for judgement.


@Gevlon on "Ape-subroutines"
I take a bit of offense at calling any part of human brain functioning "ape-subroutine".

Not only that, but calling them "ape-subroutines" is ineffective in terms of reaching an understanding as to how they actually work.

If you look closely, the subroutines you don't call "ape-subroutines" are simply "ape-subroutines" put in different order.

Specifically, in case of miners, you see them using "running for help to community" subroutine before "figuring out an efficient way to help themselves" subroutine. You want it to be the other way around.

P.S: unless you for some reason think that helping oneself is a more advanced and worthy subroutine than being able to interact with community. On this i'll have to call bs.

Ruby Porto said...

FYI, when I did a risk assessment in the aftermath of HAG, I *think* the number that I came to with some fairly generous assumptions (like an average HS mining fleet of about 1,000 exhumers) was that suicide ganking represented about a 500,000 ISK/hr risk during HAG with the bounty. Now that ganking has fallen off, it's likely far less.

That said, I do not think that most miners have actually weighed the odds and decided that the third MLU is more valuable than tank. I think it's simply the idiotic assumption that HS is or should be a "safe" area.

The old saying: a stopped clock is right twice a day seems to fit.

tangurena said...

This is another ape-subroutine, mental scheme from ancient times when prehistoric men lived in small communities. There every single troublemaker could be identified and handled. A closed village could be kept clean from norm-breakers. This is much harder in large cities and completely impossible on the internet.

You are describing Dunbar's Number. Basically, due to the structure of our sad little primate brains, there is an upper limit on the number of people we can care about. And when you fill those slots with celebrities, there is even less capacity to care about J. Random Stranger.


http://www.cracked.com/article_14990_what-monkeysphere.html

Reputation systems are an attempt to manage the growth of groups past that threshold. And since this is a game, some of those "I can care" slots are filled with real-life people, and only a few can have pixel-people stuffed into them.

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