Greedy Goblin

Thursday, November 12, 2015

What if I did nothing about the Goon propaganda book?

The Kickstarter for the Goon propaganda book failed horribly (less than 20% funding after a week, the counter often goes backwards as people un-fund it). Since among the notable bloggers, CSMs, CEOs and other EVE-personalities only I campaigned against it, I found it obvious that I broke it. Hey, here is some MSPaint to celebrate (source)

However many commenters believe something else: the top comment on reddit says "the kickstarter failed when the 4th zero was typed in to the goal box". What they don't seem to notice is that option is much worse for the community. I mean "we did the right thing but big bad Gevlon ruined it with the necromancy of a 3 years old misstep" at least paint them the good guys. But if the project was bad on its own (evidenced by the fact that the community refused to give significant money for it) then why the hell no relevant community figure warned against it?! We are talking about guys who know the community and the game inside out, they find and blow whistles over the smallest of problems (remember the Enthosis-trolling uproar). Cat took their tongue?

No, fear took it, because messing with The Imperium is considered a bad idea, no matter the objective outcome. The "supporters" hopped on the now wrecked bandwagon for a reason. Many didn't support it, but keeping silent seemed safer for them, especially after open CCP support on the highest level. Their "political" positioning is understandable in someone's day job, but for God's sake, this is a silly video game! Can't you be brave and true to yourself even here, where the worst thing that can happen is having to pick one of the thousands of other games? (Hey, look, Demon Hunter looks cool!)

The sad thing is that if I had nothing to do with the failure of the Goon propaganda book, then the EVE community opinion leaders are corrupted, cowardly people who sold their soul to or afraid of The Mittani. They are like journalists in some half-dictatorship who censor themselves to keep their jobs. Their silence and their bitter comments about "PAX Goonica" and "CFCP" suggest that EVE is beyond help. This is a self-completing prediction that demotivate others from being the change.

I don't believe EVE is dying. I believe it's still the best game out there if you want to do more than kill 10 rats. I don't believe that CCP (as an organization) is corrupted and guarantees the victory of the Goons. Yes, the top dev cheerleading for the Goon propaganda crap is sickening. So were the attempts of the community manager to destroy my credibility (did I ever have any?) by repeatedly quoting the Goon propaganda line. Or the dev who literally paraded around with a Miniluv badge. But does any of you have any evidence or reliable testimony that CCP gave any in-game support to Goons? Any T2 BPOs, free titans, intel or anything that helped them in-game? You seem to forget that good systems are planned with the assumption that the people operating them are not good. The police isn't reliable because Joe the cop is a righteous man, but because he has to adhere to rigid procedures and his actions are petitionable to the court. I see no difference with CCP. While the individual devs might love Goons (or more specifically, they love the PLEX sale numbers of the Goon propaganda site), their actions in-game are governed by the rules of neutrality set up after T20 and they only surrender to their bias when they speak, not when they act. While their words indeed have propaganda value for Goons, it also help everyone fighting goons to be "underdogs fighting against metagaming oligarchs" (See MoA slogan "INDEPENDENCE IS A LUXURY!").

The other self-fulfilling prediction is "Goons already won EVE". Yes, sure, that's why they lost half of their land in one year, that's why they never go to serious offensive and that's why they came out beaten from their only unserious one. The truth is that Goons are only posing threat to overstocked freighter owners and anom rats. They are easy kill for anyone who bothers to roam their land. They can and should be defeated, as their fall would be the ultimate proof that EVE isn't corrupted.

Of course many community figures are indeed corrupted. Above all, Grath Telkin who had the nerve to publicly support the propaganda book. But the shame is not on him, but on the PL line members who still didn't awox his titan on their way out to some group that actually fights. I guess farming Brave or dropping supers on 5 Caracals is more fun. Or the signatories of the document of shame that enabled the "hundreds of carriers ratting in a fleet and cyno to each other to be unkillable" doctrine. They might got some "media deal" or in-game deal so they did what their interest demanded. But why do you fly under these corrupted leaders? Do you really expect them to not sell you again? Quit already and get into a group that fights! Let me give you a little list: MoA, OOS, Project Mayhem, Hard Knocks, Snuff, Marmite. They aren't intimidated by "metagaming" but slay the minions of Evil wherever they find them (and usually everyone else too).

Every CCP-player partnership is unacceptable favoritism betraying the ordinary players who will never get the same benefits. EVE won't become great when CCP partners with me, but when they partner with no one, can be influenced by no one who has horse in the race. The Goon stance is a simple call for corruption: "hey, if you let Goons have their pretty propaganda, you can have yours too!". It's a call for the content creators to unite to sell out their followers, like Grath sold out the PL guys. I'm afraid many agreed to this Faustian offer and many more are sitting in silence to see if it's safe to hop on. I will not! I believe in meritocracy, I believe in reaching your goals by your own skill instead of by handouts received for kissing the ring. Also, while I never suffered from too small ego, the idea of a book praising my greatness seems unnatural to me. I'm not Kim Jong Un after all. I don't want my own tree in the putrid forest of Goons! I want to see it all burn, because I'm sure that without the trees, The Mittani is no powerful devil, just another asshole in a wizzard hat.


Math Is Hard said...

The campaign is at 20% in a week. With 30592 raised from 530 backers. Kicktraq has the project trending to raise 118k. The CFC alone has 8000 members and they have yet to be mobilized. Do you think you declared victory to early or are you privy to something we don't know?

Anonymous said...

The problem with your campaign against the kickstarter is that you're preaching to the choir, the people that read your blog and agree with your opinions were never going to back the kickstarter anyway and those that read your blog and don't agree with your opinions are labelled as goons by yourself which implies they were always going to back it.

The only efficient way of campaigning against something like this is to use social media, official forums, reddit and other avenues to get people who don't read your blog to read and understand your point of view however you've already stated that you refuse to interact with people using these methods.

Kevan Smith said...

On an unrelated note:


Unknown said...

@Anom: clearly the post above yours by Math Is Hard shows not everyone is a member of the choir.

Keep it up Gevlon. It is always good to hear someone else who knows Goons are scum and bullies.

Gevlon said...

I know 3 things:
- Kicktraq seems to be buggy. According to their own projection, the project will end between $40 and $60K. I have no idea where their "trending" data comes from.
- 118 is not 150. So even if we accept that projection, it's pretty far from winning
- the Providence invasion failed while Deklein is the #1 ratting space. Which means Imperium members are members only for convenience. They probably despise The Mittani no less than me, just made their own little deal: "I click the minimum paplinks for good Truesec". These people will never donate money.

Unless The Mittani is ready to pour $100K of his own money in the last day, it won't be funded. Even if he does, the crowdfunding failed (as the project will be self-funded).

@Anon: I don't have to go to Reddit, someone (usually a Goon) always link me. Same for social media, corp forums and so on. Also, the post today is about "what if I had no effect".

Anonymous said...

"Yes, the top dev cheerleading for the Goon propaganda crap is sickening."
They aren't cheerleading for goon propaganda, they are cheerleading for a novel to be written based on their game. That;''s what people don't get. People are going "grr goons", when what they don't realise is that by rejecting a novel being written by a decent author, they are sealing the fate of further media being produced. After how small and unmarketable the community is proving itself to be, no good authors will put themselves forward after this, and certainly there will be no chance of an EVE movie some people hope will one day be a reality.

Gevlon said...

Well, if CCP wants a good novel, why didn't they hire an author? Or why didn't they do a kickstarter? Can you tell ANY reasonable reason to partner with TMC on this project? Just think:
- Jeff writes the novel
- CCP gives the IP
- Players give the money
- TMC contributes with ... nothing?

This is why it's a shitty propaganda book: TMC gets control over the project without money or license or work in it. Even if the book itself is unbiased and great, TMC still got huge credibility and traffic from CCP and Jeff Edwards for absolutely nothing.

Imagine the same situation with me. Jeff writes the book from CCP IP and player money, but you see "" all over it. Bizarre, right?

Anonymous said...

Because TMC had the idea to go out an get an author, get a subject, license the idea with CCP and push forward the project. I imagine CCP have no interest in spending their own money on pushing a book (which they would have to do even if they crowdfunded it as a lot of work would go into setting it up, and staff cost money).

"This is why it's a shitty propaganda book: TMC gets control over the project without money or license or work in it"
TMC don't get control really. Jeff is writing it and CCP are signing it off. TMC are sourcing the marketing and media behind it.

"Imagine the same situation with me. Jeff writes the book from CCP IP and player money, but you see "" all over it. Bizarre, right?"
If you can get an author, a good idea and get CCP signoff, then no, It wouldn't be bizarre, and I'd back your book too. I have no horse in this race, I think it's a good thing for there to be EVE books. I don't see the need to destroy that just because someone I fight with in-game is involved in it.

Diana Olympos said...

I have a question for you gevlon. What if people just don't care about goons and just let them live in their part of space, isolated and dying from boredom?

Because it is exactly what is happening. People just don't care.

Oh btw Crossing Zebra published a neutral-against article. And noone from our writers published anything else because noone saw anything to say.

Gevlon said...

@Diana Olympos: People have the luxury to don't care, since the document of shame removed the need for space, as the current anom concentration could support 4-6x more players.

I couldn't find such article on Zebra, care to link?

Anonymous said...

non of my corp mates reads your blog so you surely have no influence on their opinion. But all of them see the kickstarter project as a PR disaster. Jeff may be the best writer for this kind of book in the world. But with the mittani posing so prominently at most of the rewards is disgusting for non mittani fanboys. A book signed from the auther, fine take 5$ extra.
An overstretched egomania like mittani signing my book? no thanks, could I pay another 5$ to get ride of that?

You may influence some of your readers with your blog and they may have rallied behind you to not support it. But as I said in the opening non of those I spoke to read any blogs about eve and still find the project wrong for mittani making too big of an ego.

Diana Olympos said...

You are welcome. By the way, i don't see how making it possible for player organisations to grow up and making cfc die from boredom is so bad. Maybe there is other things than isk to make a nation...

Anonymous said...

hard knocks i lead by PL,and was founded by PL members

they were sold out the moment they were created,the other groups sound fine

Esteban said...

One of the sad aspects of this whole thing is that a more representative best-of-EVE book could very well be written about stuff other than the Fountain War. People erroneously think that hundreds of thousands of (ephemeral, illiquid) dollars in destroyed virtual property is the hook that'll get people reading about the politics.

A MoA 'virtual underdog guerrillas' story is just as viable. Or the story of Provi. Or Sugar's lowsec market story. Or a searing, tell-all unauthorised bodice-ripping biography of Harry Forever. (okay, maybe not)

Seriously, though, if someone wrote up the old Rooks and Kings Clarion Calls in literary form, I'd enjoy that a hell of a lot more than Fountain.

Hamlyn Medley said...

I see what you did there with the trees Gevlon! ahahhaha

Anonymous said...

Gevlon, did it occur to you that the rest of us were following a strategy too? The strategy is "Say nothing, and it will die of apathy without any outside help." All you're doing by writing this is providing fuel and ammo to TMDC: "Give us money or Gevlon wins."

Now if it does succeed, that *will* be your doing.

Unknown said...

Well done GG.
I wish that you were responsible for the kickstarter failure, I stil have my doubts, but still, you did the right thing in my POV.

Although it must be siad that there were several threads on reddit, where "non-CFC" members, well-known people openly criticised Mittens and commented very negatively about the whole damn project.

It was somehow nice to see that there exist threads on reddit, where shitposting did not happen on a large scale.

If people are interested in a book about the rise and fall of EVE empires, there's already a kickstarter out there, without promotion from CFC, CFCP (I lover this term) or any other group. That kickstarter copmpaign was pretty successful and you can pre-order the book there. The author presented a slide show at Fanfest 2015 afaik, There is a video on YT, whoever is interested will find it: search for : EVE Fanfest 2015: The Most Pivotal Decision in Nullsec History.

Again, good job Gevlon, now, waiting for business posts... :)


Gevlon said...

@Diana Olympos: the post you linked was posted on Nov 5. The Kickstarter was visibly dead (or at least dying) by then. Being smart AFTER the fact doesn't count.

@Anonymous: "Say nothing and it will die of apathy" only works if they can't make noise themselves. You can kill a newbie blogger that way. But against an established site like TMC it's just giving the field to you. The FACT is that everyone in the community knows about this Kickstarter. If we don't speak, everyone will know from The Mittani.

Ryanis said...

"I have a question for you gevlon. What if people just don't care about goons and just let them live in their part of space, isolated and dying from boredom?

Because it is exactly what is happening. People just don't care."

I agree with this.
- Before reading your blog, I did not even know about the book (which, in is quite ironical btw: you may have helped TMC on this subject).
- My corp mates never heard about it and don't care anyway.
- Also, remember that EvE does not host only English sppeaking communities, far from it. So most people probably don't care at all about a book they won't be able to read (and yeah, I know that they may care of it because it could bring people in... but remember your blog title ?).


Anonymous said...

Great file name for the image Gevlon

Unknown said...

So far I had chosen to not talk about this book project, and will not participate in the Kickstarter campaign. This said, you are right in pointing out though that on such subject, public figures should take a public stance instead of leaving the comm field.

Now, if the book is written, I will judge Jeff William's work on its own merit.

If the Kickstarter fails, it will clearly shows that The Mittani has over estimated their capacity to have their line members commit money at their whim.

Also, when someone cliks on The Mittani web site anywhere but on a link, the site takes them to the book project. This is both a sign of how desperate to bring attention to their project they are, as well as another aspect of how the TMC leadership choses to wield their media influence, by tricking people to their kickstarter page. I hope that those that can still wield some amount of independence while working for TMC will internally bring this up and expose it as the gimmick that it is.

CraZeD said...

I honestly don't care if this kickstarter fails or not, as I wouldn't buy it anyway, There is much more interesting aspects of Eve than some conflict like that.

Also just a side note, who is Jeff Edwards? I actually had to google him lol.

Anonymous said...

I am just amazed at the arrogance and shameless self promotion involved in this non project. The Shittani must have the arrogance of Kanye West to think that people care this much about a slanted account of some fictional war in an online game. It is great that this project has not been funded because it would lead to a never ending parade of ridiculous internet pandhandling schemes in relation to Eve Online. The player base already has a terrible reputation and this would not help. Face it, if this book was going to be worth a shit and was going to have any sort of demand at all, CCP would fund it.

Anonymous said...

Hey Gevlon,

I wonder if you might have a personal agenda to agrue against this book, despite your grr goons project. Maybe, you are afraid that this book will release some information about you, as you were in test for the time during the fontain war, that will put you into a whole new spotlight.

For example how you tried to buy yourself into test leadership, how you described yourself as a thinker who doesn't do much but to think, work should be done by others. Something like that? Maybe?

I'm asking because you seem to be turbo grr since this whole book thing came up.
Cause, you know, I'm sure testies will be heard too when this Jeff person starts writing.

Gevlon said...

Yes, I'm very afraid that Jeff might post something that you just posted. So far I managed to keep them secret and no one knows about them (except you and anyone who reads TEST forums or its countless dumps or my blog), but if Jeff would write them down, it would be a disaster.

Math is Hard said...

So what happens if the book gets funded, it doesn't turn out to be a propaganda piece and its actually entertaining? I haven't heard anyone address that possibility and what that would mean.

Gevlon said...

Because that possibility is so low (not theoretically zero, just "win the lottery and get struck by a lightning" low), that no one cares to explore it.

Math Is Hard said...

@Gevlon: While I expect most to take the slackers route and kick their feet up, I expected you to due your due diligence.