Greedy Goblin

Friday, November 5, 2010

98% right

I got an interesting comment from Yagamoth: "you shouldn't neglect the possibility that you/a leader could kick/blacklist ~1 out of 10 wrongfully. Meaning: You kick way more M&S than 'others', but these 'others' do not even have a remote chance to form a proper group".

This comment made me to write this post. It could be summarized as "my way from a lone anti-social who defied all authority to one who values law and order highly". In my young age people with power caused me much trouble, because (I believed) they were ignorant and arbitrary, using their power only for itself. And here I am now, preaching what I never did: "stand in the line", strike that, I'm forming my own lines, bringing order and authority where there was none (own guild, WG). What happened?

Socials happened. I believed that people - like me - are following their own interests and guys with power are simply strong competitors towards resources. Now I know that most people behave irrationally, serving long-obsolete evolutionary subroutines and the leaders are the guys who keep this ape horde from tearing each other (and me) apart, strike that, make them doing a little parts in advancement of the mankind. I know that the world without leaders (or with worse ones) would be a much worse place.

The question was: if the leaders have the power to exclude the M&S from our groups, what will happen to those who are excluded with them, simply because the leader made a mistake or was a jerk.

The answer is nasty: the leader most probably did not make a mistake. I'm not claiming that you were just as useless as the M&S, nor that they were right in the rational sense. You must understand one thing: if one is not a rational, nor a useless M&S, he is a minion of a leader. His natural state is ape-grooming: pointlessly giving and receiving positive emotions until his home falls upon him due to lack of maintenance (his instincts are enough to make him find food, but insufficient to make him plan for tomorrow).

The leader turn these apes into people who build great things. Most probably a rational designed the computer you're reading this post, but it were hundredths of minions who assembled that individual unit, transported to your country, sold it to you, supplying electricity and internet services as we speak. Without the minions the World would fall apart. Not because rationals couldn't run it, but because the ex-minions would act like raging zombies like the ones you can see after disasters: killing each other over a bottle of beer.

You were excluded because you did something that decreased the control of a leader over his minions. What you did is not rationally harmful, but remember, the means of control are irrational.

Most probably you were doing something that's banned to the minions, like passing the speed limit or driving a catapult in WG. The leader banned these things because minions couldn't handle it properly. Maybe you can. Maybe you are much better driver than the average punk. Maybe you found a spot in WG where you can hide a catapult and safely destroy a tower. It doesn't matter. One of the core routines of the socials is "inequality aversion". If a minion would see you doing this, he would automatically assume that it's allowed to him too. The truth is that you know what you're doing and he does not is unbearable to him. So the leader must punish you for doing it, despite he knows that you did nothing wrong rationally.

The other common problem is openly criticizing the leader or his orders. The other nonsense core routine of the socials is "responding to peer pressure". Most leaders use it. However it has a flaw, a single dissenter can break it. You are most probably right in what you told. The leader most probably knows that. Still, he must stop you from saying it, or his minions will respond to your opinion and stop following orders. No, they will not follow you, they will just go erratic.

The right of free speech, implemented into the legal system of enlightened countries aims exactly this: to allow people to remove unfit leaders. You have the right to rise up against an unfit leader. But you must be aware that you are doing exactly that and not just debating some random issue. When you say: "Hey! The catapult is useful!" you mean that. When I see it on the chat, I know that it means that. But the minions see "The leader is saying nonsense, stop following him!", so I must kick you.

Shall we forever obey the existing status quo and be silent in fear that we can set the minions free by mistake and turn them into mindless zombies obeying nothing but their basic instincts? Of course not. At first, there are times when the old leadership must be removed and you shall take over. If you are ready for the task, and want to lead apes, go for it!

But most importantly, as a rational, you can do practically anything as long as you keep one rule: stay under the radar of the minions! It's not hard as they are not very bright, and in dubious situations they see what they want to see. You can criticize the leader in close circles or in person, even to him. He'll most probably be happy for the feedback, as long as the minions don't see it. You can break the rules, just make sure that minions don't see you!

My purpose with this site is exactly to inspire you to break the rules! I want everyone with a bit of rationality inside to stop being a minion, and start thinking for himself. With this post I say nothing else but to keep low profile while doing so. There is no gain in setting your neighborhood on fire unless you are on a mission to de-throne the current leader and take the long, often annoying and never-ending task of leading minions yourself.

Note: "rational" and "minion" are archetypes and not actual people. Real people have a bit of both, and act mixed in real situation. So a good leader mixes rational explanation with minion-manipulation. For a post I have to write black and white to make the point visible.


Squishalot said...

This, of course, presumes that the leader has a right to lead, in some way, shape or form. The rational ones you kick from the raid would not acknowledge your right to lead and make decisions for the raid, and would thus report you for it.

What you are is a local governor of a province, in a country ruled by a dictator. If your minions don't like your actions, they can still appeal to the dictator (i.e. Blizzard) to have you and/or your position removed. Not to say that the dictator will necessarily agree with the appeal, only that you run the risk of it.

Turiel said...


I always wondered how I pulled in so many of the "top" players together in my raid and kept them there without fear of losing them to any of the other guilds. I did not generally understand how people ran raids inefficiently... I read this now and realize that to a large degree, I control my minions with that combination of social-manipulation (I make them feel like they are very important) yet I restrict them on what they can do (I have asserted myself on more than one occasion, to the chagrin of many, but I usually silence the opposition).

Through all this I'm viewed as understanding, loyal, and fair. Even though if I think about my actions they are primarily based around keeping the 9 others headed in the direction I want (generally, this is downing bosses during raid times).

Unknown said...

Trade Prince Gevlon,

I am a mid to upper level executive at a huge multinational corp. big market cap, lots of employees, prestigious, etc. and oh, I also play wow.

I am considered by my peers and senior leadership as ambitious, capable, and a real up and comer to break into the senior exec ranks.

to this end, I read a lot of malcom gladwell, tom friedman, the economist, harvard business review, etc., ANYTHING that might give me a tiny advantage over the next guy.

more than anything ive ever read or learned in a leadership seminar, your posts give me the edge.

your theory of human org behavior is what string theory is for physics, the theory of everything that explains every possible empirical observation.

Thank you so much.

Anonymous said...

@Squishalot - there is nothing reportable in the described leader's behavior, so any appeals to the "dictator" would be useless.

>This, of course, presumes that the leader has a right to lead, in some way, shape or form.

No. Ability to lead and "right" to lead are two different things, and you do not need the "right" in order to become a leader. It often happens that the true leader of a group of people will not be the captain/manager/guild leader but some person within the ranks without an official title. He says jump, and the people jump, regardless of his title.

In WG, the title would be the game-assigned raid-leader spot, but if you are a true leader, you will have people willing to kick the real raid leader, or defect from that raid to join yours. Eventually people will come to accept you as the "true" leader.

Titles do not grant power (except in video games, and that is only temporary)

Squishalot said...

@ Anonymous: "there is nothing reportable in the described leader's behavior, so any appeals to the "dictator" would be useless."

So Gevlon hopes. The dictator, of course, can think whatever he/she/it likes - they have all the power.

"Ability to lead and "right" to lead are two different things, and you do not need the "right" in order to become a leader. It often happens that the true leader of a group of people will not be the captain/manager/guild leader but some person within the ranks without an official title. He says jump, and the people jump, regardless of his title."

You're missing my point. The person who leads is different from the person wielding the power of a position. Anybody can be a leader in the sense that you're referring to. Only one person (the one holding the title) can take enforcement actions.

"In WG, the title would be the game-assigned raid-leader spot, but if you are a true leader, you will have people willing to kick the real raid leader, or defect from that raid to join yours."

My point is that the 'raid leader' position has the power to control the raid, even if he's doing it in a poor fashion. I'm suggesting that the game-assigned raid-leader spot shouldn't have that complete power, and that there are checks and balances in the form of a higher authority (i.e. Blizzard) that the RL is accountable to as well.

Visalyar said...

Well the first post I´ve showed my boss, since he doesn´t play wow and is not that good in english, he laughed anyway. The definition of "minion" is almost brilliant in conjunction to the fearful following M&S ("Oh noez Boss don´t kick me! I´ll be uzefull!").

The message to act autonomous, but out of sight from the M&S is truly essential. The only problem is for the leader to mentally seperate you from the minions, while watching the map (in last consequence, well he kicked you, big deal, debate tactics post-battle in /w and he will recognise you as a non-minion type and appreciate not starting a minion-revolt).

@Squishalot: Our premade-group got over 300 tickets in AV by enforcing the M&S to do valuable things by reporting them AFK (standing on idiot hill or tapping the idiot´s base (second-last graveyard)). what did blizzard do? we got a message from a GM who said: "please be informed, that you will not be punished while you act on performance purpose."
We also got a response on realmpoolforum that this usage of the AFK-voting is intended.

Same response (per ticket) gevlon and two other WG-"leader" got. I think we can close the "guessing what blizzard wants"-case until they deny their own statement. (it starts to get a endless argument circle of "yes but when blizzard thinks that they have to think in another way than they stated up to you they maybe could..." double hypothetic at least)

Yagamoth said...

I do understand and accept your points. Basically you wrote what I somehow knew, but couldn't express properly for the most part.

I'd most certainly be thrown out of your WG raid. I love thinking out of the box and often my ideas are (seemingly) only logical to me. I'm sure you'd understand my way of handling things (and my capability to do so) yet I'd be a threat to your ability to lead the minions.

I do like your(?) ideas. It would be interesting to participate in your raids.

Please keep us informed about the developments on your server.

Gevlon said...

@Yagamoth: I'm sure we could figure out a way to cooperate. With enough thinking a way can be found where the minions' irrational subroutines are not activated. Not easy, but can be done.

Always. Otherwise we'd still be sitting on a tree.

Kring said...

That sounds a bit like a police state but there is no successful police state on our planet. The successful countries are the free ones where rationals are not discriminated. The successful countries have free speech (within limits).

I think you're on a path to failure because you're ignoring history.

Anonymous said...

What you just said Gevlon is pretty much:

"I know that you are more then just a M&S and you do have a point but your ruining my authority and plans, thus I must get rid of you".

I agree with it. The fact someone wants to take over is nothing new. Its something that keeps happening since life on earth started to exist. Its only that all the "ape" subordinates are aware of it and "believe" they have what it takes to be a leader when in reality they dont have what it takes.

His method might be that which can be labeled as "dictatorship", so what? No seriously! So what? If he would be a bad dictator then it would be a problem, but from what we see so far he pretty much privatize of VoA for his faction and victory for his followers whenever he logs and bumps into WG.

Allowing him to do as he pleases gives most of us what we want. Perhaps not everyone will get the best slice of the pie all the time and perhaps few innocents heads will be cut along the way, but if we get what he promises then it will be always worth a shot more then "we are all equal" and "lets pwn" M&S nonsense.

Emmanuel ISSALY said...

Good real life advice, imo. If you think you have better ideas than your leader, cooperate and explain your views in private, he'll value your advice if he's good. Everything else is open challenge, which is also an option if you want his spot, but be ready for the fight then.

Above all, disagreeing with a leader in public just because you think you're right is plain... unskilled :) Agreeing then would just state he's a bad leader.

Gevlon said...

@Kring: in most free countries the political opinions are "self-hidden" from the M&S. They are published in media that the M&S don't access because "itz not fun 2 read pages lol i watch tits instead".

Only primitive slogans "yes we can" or "less tax" reach the M&S.

Kring said...

> in most free countries the political opinions are "self-hidden"
> from the M&S. They are published in media that the M&S don't access
> because "itz not fun 2 read pages lol i watch tits instead".

That's a good point but I think it's not just an effect but also
a requirement.

Why would a rational work in your team if he can be punished at any
time for no rational reason? He will probably start to waste his
energy to make sure to not be caught, or quit.

That adds the following question to your experiment: "Are you a good
enough leader, or is leading efficent enough, that the army of minions
is more powerful then a group mixed of rationals and unguided 'minions'."
If all rationals leave you'll have to micro-manage the others to do every
sub task.

Gevlon said...

@Kring: the "unguided minions + free rationals" vs "iron fist dictatorship" depends NOT on the leader, but the leaded people. If most of them are rationals, you don't need to lead at all. That's why I love raiding with The PuG. Only "let's to this quarter" or "X tanks boss, Y trash" kind of decisions are needed.

On the other hand if the majority are irrationals, you better of suppressing the few rationals and lead the minions.

sha said...

"You were excluded because you did something that decreased the control of a leader over his minions. What you did is not rationally harmful, but remember, the means of control are irrational."

You need to change your mission statement or at least redefine it based on that comment, mostly for clarity of your arguement. As far as I have been able to tell, the main mission that you have been blogging about is roughly "to rid yourself of having to play with m&s through rational, non-emotional philosophy's". Now through that means, you stated above you believe you can kick someone doing something rational and could be doing a great job and have a good idea but it is banned to the m&s. I can understand that you will ban say 5% of rational/goblinish players that might be doing something smart that is normally associated with the m&s but these 5%ers are people that you should actively try to avoid having to kick exactly because they ARE rational/intelligent.

Unlike in real life (well very tiny percentage at least), when you ban a player, "the internet" can happen and they can go irrational. You have a 95% chance that the person you banned is an m&s but on the chances it is one of the 5%, you will have a problem on your hand. Because wow is a game, peoples goals in the game can change from i have fun raiding to how can I cause chaos within the system.

Bulbasaur said...

Razor cleaf!

My questions in the comments of the last article (bid percentage) were focused in the new benefits of guild achievements. In my current guild, officers are still debating if they're going to work forward those benefits, and make all the guild work toward them too.

Personally, I don't find the need of these new benefits as "game-breaker", so I haven't a f**k to give about them. Then, if they make this stuff mandatory, I'll just leave.

My question was, are you The Pug going to make them mandatory too, or as me you consider this benefits "useless"?

Sorry for my doomed english!

Campitor said...

Leadership is a very tenous thing and can be undermined easily if the opposition works hard enough to discredit it. How could a colony, full of british troops overthrow, at that time, the world's greatest super power? It convinced everyone the british empire was evil, which was easily done with all the laws favoring british goods at the expense of colonial trade, and it found another benefactor willing to help them in sedition - France.

Gevlon's philosophy on leadership certainly has some truths in it but anyone trying to extrapolate it to real life should be careful. He can maninpulate WG because he uses the small number of game mechanics to do so - flying into WG to avoid zone in, etc, which allows him to be auto selected raid leader.

Real life is WAY different and the hold on leadership more tenuous and the crowd more fickle. Humans are highly complex and adaptable, if we weren't we still be picking fleas out of each other's hair and trying to figure out how to make fire. Given enough pressure the M&S will do anything to overthrow an oppressive albeit intelligent leadership. And if overthrow isn't possible, the M&S will sabotage the leadership out of spite.

A leader must find the balance between a carrot and a stick and sometimes that isn't enough if there is another "goblin" who wants his power.

Gevlon freely admits he can't control the AH and its foolish to try - too much competition (other goblins) and too many M&S sabotaging markets with their "I farmed for free" mentality. Well what happens at the AH can also happen in the "leadership game". You can get outbid on leadership by fellow goblins and the M&S can undermine you.

I see the kernel of truth in Gevlon's philosophys but when I start reading how people simplistically adapt them to real life I start to get worried. I believe that behind every great revolution and upheaval there was a "goblin" who thought his rule and ideas were perfect absolute and therefore untouchable/undefeatable.

cheeze whizz said...

Speaking as a manager and former naval officer I agree with this 100%.

Even if a leader is wrong in one particular instance... calling them out on it publically can do far more damage than just following the order. A flawed plan that everyone follows is better than a perfect plan that noone follows.

A good leader is open to critizism when given privately. If you go to them with a solution to go with the critizism you will almost always raise yourself in his/her estimation as well.

There is nothing more a leader values than a good subordinate that can think for themselves.

Choky Heimlich said...

So, my friends Wilson Tarbuckles and Pickles Johnson and I were in Wintergrasp the other night, as outnumbered in wintergrasp as we always are. Our demos and sieges were being smashed to bits before even getting in range of the walls.

So what do we do? We got catapults! well only two of them, Pickles was healing, he's a druid and heals in shaman form. So while Pickles was healing our guys trying to defend vehicles we could as you say used to the catapults to "pwn lol."

Essentially we were able to defend the other vehicles with the catapults in order to win Wintergrasp.

So my proposal for you is, to use the M&S to your advantage...have the catapulting morons defend sieges and demos. They can still 'pwn' and be productive as well.

It would certainly reduce kicking and problems...but then you need morons, not so moronic and would actually be interested in defending siege machines as they attack the walls.

And it is quite possible to get even the stupidest morons to do things, it just takes a bit (or more) persuasion.

Rather than "Hey Meatstick, Move thy ass and swing they sword in defense of they siege."

Use, "Hello there, Chartreuse Daniels...could you please give me a hand with these horde over here, they aren't letting the sieges get through, come over here and kick some ass!"

Proper delivery can motivate them into doing things they normally wouldn't do. Since M&S are mostly socials, to deliver a request in a way that boosts their ego and plays into their social mindset defeats the idea of them vs us and organizes the use of them as a tool rather than dismissing them as an annoyance.

Doing so will keep your numbers up and make it possible for winning more often, and less infighting among the group, which is the bane of any raid group, no matter where it is. When people, whine cry fight, others leave.

So as my old friend Churrasco Thomas used to say, "if you can't beat 'em, sweet talk 'em." it just may work better than this massive see who "wins" Raid Leader and who gets to kick who first...That really kind of defeats the purpose of Wintergrasp, especially since people are doing what is 'intended' regardless of how stupid the intent may be.

Gevlon said...

@Campitor: it's obvious that RL is more complicated than WoW. That's why WoW is a good modeling field.

@Bulbasaur: I'm sure we'll be lvl25 guild fast without even trying. 160 members leveling up, doing instances, raids, BGs will roll in XP fast.

@sha: if a rational is unable to recognize that he is surrounded by M&S, he is not really rational. The M&S is real, ignoring it or acting like it's rational is irrational. So they made a mistake and deserve the kick.

Visalyar said...

"@Bulbasaur: I'm sure we'll be lvl25 guild fast without even trying. 160 members leveling up, doing instances, raids, BGs will roll in XP fast."

Beta & Designers scatches say, that the guildexperience earned is roughly divided by the number of guild member. That´s their factor to balance big Raid- and smaller Social guilds. Naturally bigger guilds can farm more experience since they can provide 75% guildinternal raids easily.

I could provide some numbers here if requested.

Vesoom said...

A lot of comments question all the rationals that would be kicked, but if you've ever worked for a company you know that you don't question the boss in front of everyone. You'll get fired. Your boss will usually not mind the same question in private however. Same with cata's, /w with a quick explaination of what your rationalization is and the leader will either tell you to fall in line or authorize your use of the cata.


You are posting your M&S rules at the beginning of the raid correct? Like no cata's, defend the sieges, etc. For many people these rules are obvious, but I know when I first went to WG I didn't know these things.

Gevlon said...

@Visalyar: I'm definitely interested, especially if you can link sources too

Ygg said...

Viewed objectivly from a behaviouralist view your thesis would seem to be correct, but there are other views to take. What made those individuals you call "socials" into "minions" or "subjects" as the rulers call them? Was it inherent in their biology, a part of their ape subroutine, or were they made such by their leaders in order to control/lead them? You imply that both answers are correct, and thus we have the classic problem of who came first, the hen or the egg.

Nikodhemus said...

A very good post, using very direct language. i've gotten in trouble at work many times because of my rational thinking, and while I don't attempt to lead others into my way of thinking, it leaks out often enough and most managers ultimately don't care for me because of it. Not that I'm some super brilliant evil genius (like gevlon!), but leadership has a lot to do with attaining a mutual goal, and dissenters, even well meaning intelligent dissenters, go a long way towards impeding the goals of a group rather than achieving. This actually has little to do with whether or not you are a social, but about understanding leadership and attainint your goals, as well as understanding the need for a group effort.

Great post!

Cyrell said...

This is all very well and good, but you're still not really understanding what I've been arguing on all the other threads. Kudos to you for "fixing" WG on your server in any case.

Back to my problem.

You can already make a raid to take Wintergrasp the way you want to. You stand outside the Dalaran bank, invite all your friends and then fly into Wintergrasp and click "No".

I don't think the automatic raids were designed to do what you want to do with this addon and I think you weren't entirely honest in the way you described the issue to your GM either. Other people have been banned for kicking people from WG and I'm sure you'll eventually run up against this problem too.

I'm against your addon not because I don't think your ideas are good, but because anyone can automate kicking people from raids now for whatever reason. To me, addons like this expose a "security flaw" in the Wintergrasp design and Blizzard will be right when they remove your functionality to kick from public raids, just like you can't kick from public Battlegrounds.

I played WC3 for almost 2 years and was constantly forced to host my own games. I couldn't simply join a game already in progress because someone's WC3 Banlist automatically kicked me for whatever arbitrary reason the "community" had come up with this time. Whether it was the "GB" IP, or time when they banned all of Benet because someone in Brighton was a leaver on 10.10.2006 at 10:15AM, they didn't like your name or the fact that you were 20 kills ahead of everyone else, or whatever. I don't want WG or Tol Barad to turn into this.

Anonymous said...

Seems you never studied what happened, happens and will be happening at Greece, 2006-201?.

Leadership and economy(free market) are collapsing steadily.

While thousands of M&S are steadily voting incapable persons,
a sudden 5000% increase has been noticed at the anarchist's movement.
Without any leadership, no value to money and authority, absence of belief to morals, ethics,religion
these people you could easily call M&S or socials,
are making many recreational and destructive actions and activities.

How can a social network with complete absence of almost everything you need to make a group function properly,
functions so good?

How can anarchists M&S+socials stand up so much against the rational system of Capitalism?

With every respect, Your Friendly Aonymous

Energybomb said...

@last anonymous

I am Greek, and several of the things you said were wrong.
Firstly, the anarchist movement started more than 40 years ago and has the form it has today for more than 30 years.

also, it's not lack of "belief" or anything. We simply don't efforce the rules.

No one, and I mean, NO ONE pays his taxes. That includes me, my parents, grandparents, friends and relatives of any kind. Paying your taxes has become a joke as you will never be hunted down for tax evasion.

the anarchist movement also has different roots than economics problems. To understand it, you must understand the recent political history of Greece, the civil war and the dictatorship. Without that, you cannot fully comprehend why that happens.

Anonymous said...

(US)English: "Most probably" isn't used much.

Probably implies a greater than 90% chance.(not a rule, just common usage) Most probably is than equivalent to "near certainly". If you want to use 'most'. Most likely works. (more likely than not) In common usage, 'most likely' is equivalent to 'probably' on its own.

Other than that and a few indefinite/definite articles and pluralization, your English is getting much better.

Feel free to moderate this. I doubt it has much use to anyone else. Hell, you may not even give a damn.

Anonymous said...

@ anonamous
Probably mean more likely than not, which is anything more than half the time. Most probably, is even higher, and would be more around the 90% mark.

Jim said...

The problem you have is when one rational player sees you kick another player for doing something non-normal (yet perfectly rational) the rational player gets demoralized. A rational player does not want to follow a leader who does irrational things. So the observing rational will start acting in subpar manner in order to conform to the social norms of the group and avoid getting kicked himself.

A good example of this in real life is yourself. You have admitted that your work earnings are subpar compared to their potential because you are reacting to the irrational decisions of society's leaders, the government.

Anonymous said...

Edward writes:

"[Gevlon's] theory of human org behavior is what string theory is for physics, the theory of everything that explains every possible empirical observation."

I wonder if the above quote was meant as a backhanded compliment. String theory is, at present, agreed to be largely untestable. That is, it has not made any predictions that can be proven true or untrue. In more than a few instances, this mirrors Gevlon's own claims about how the world works.

This prompts me to ask: Gevlon, what will be the outcome of your Wintergrasp addon effort? Will you succeed in changing individuals' behavior? Will your faction be more or less effective in WG? What major difficulties will you face? Will people play the way you want even when you or your minions are not leading the raid?

Anonymous said...

I am pretty sure the GM you contacted about your addon thought you were talking about the VoA raid.

Yaggle said...

If you are an unsatisfied minion is necessary to decide if the leader could be replaced with a better leader. If he/she can, then you undermine the leader when the leader is not there. You first make sure there is no snitch who will tell the leader everything you have said. Then you openly discuss with the other minions that the leader is incompetent, is weak, is unfair, and there could be a better one. You keep doing this for as long as it takes(even years). The other minions perform worse and if you are lucky, the worst M&S(not you) does so openly in presence of the leader. Eventually after enough failure, a better leader replaces your leader. Now, if there is no better leader to take his/her place, then you keep your mouth shut and do what they tell you.

Vesoom said...

It's amusing how many commenters are absolutely convinced that this addon is unfair or illegal and will get broken or banned by blizz. Even if it does, the point has been made.

Are the M&S who/what Gevlon says they are? Can you use the social tools that Gevlon has been ranting about for a long time to control them? I would not say the debate is over, but Gevlon has presented some very compelling statistics to back up his theories.

Squishalot said...

@ Vesoom - I'm not sure what the point is exactly, if it does get banned. Of course it is possible to control and herd people using social techniques. What Gevlon is doing in WG is what clique leaders and bosses are doing in high schools and workplaces all over the world - my way or the highway. It's not new. What is new is bringing it into WoW in an structured manner.

The thing is, bosses who do that are arseholes who aren't worth working for. I will not suffer a boss who isn't willing to publicly admit that they're capable of being wrong, one who would rather damage the company than have his ego hurt in front of others, and I'm good enough not to need to stay. Cliques and gangs are also not worth wasting time on.

So what is Gevlon's 'point'? That he can be just as bad as the M&S and get shut down by Blizzard? Anyone can be that bad. Being bad and getting away with it from Blizzard, however, makes a point about the WoW universe.

Vesoom said...


I'm not implying that Gevlon is nice, or even a "good" boss/leader. The thing that's very interesting to me is that after many months of posts about M&S, he spelled out the technique that he was going to use based on his assertions of what exactly makes someone an M&S. He then provided statistical evidence to back up his theories.

The difference between Gevlon and those "arseholes" is that he's using a specific technique that he developed based on his theory of the M&S. Whereas they have learned it (most of them anyway) through trial and error and have not derived it from a general theory.

There's been lots of discussion about the addon but to me that's irrelevant as Blizzard can arbitrarily do whatever it chooses in that regard. The statistical nature of his approach is what sets it appart from just a random rant that some seem to want to think it is.

Squishalot said...

@ Vesoom - "There's been lots of discussion about the addon but to me that's irrelevant as Blizzard can arbitrarily do whatever it chooses in that regard. The statistical nature of his approach is what sets it appart from just a random rant that some seem to want to think it is."

I don't think anyone thinks it's just a random rant - at least, I don't. But most importantly, I disagree entirely that his 'statistical' approach is any different to that of a bullying boss in real life.

Gevlon hasn't talked about how he's come to his view. But at the end of the day, it's all the trial and error of life. His PuG rules are a combination of theory and past experience. All he says is that he used to believe X and now he believes Y. What happened in between is his beliefs in X being eroded by socials. I'd call that trial and error.

What you don't realise, I think, is that a statistical approach, by very definition, relative to a theoretical approach, is trial and error.

Vesoom said...


Up until now much of the discussion has centered around the fairness or legality of the addon. My point is that the evidence to back up Gevlons point is much more interesting to me than whether Blizzard will allow the addon to continue.

"What you don't realise, I think, is that a statistical approach, by very definition, relative to a theoretical approach, is trial and error."

There is a difference between pure trial and error and using the scientifc method to investigate a theory.

Gevlon has been attempting to use the scientific method (flawed? probably, but an interesting place to start) to test his hypothesis. This is what interests me.

Cyrell said...

Correct me if I'm misunderstanding, but you're using data from one week to make your conclusions?

Let me point out some obvious flaws in your "study":

1) You need a much larger data set. I'd probably start taking your results as useful evidence after about a month or two of WG, at various times of the day and various days of the week.

2) How are you accounting for patch 4.0.1? Currently it takes about 3-4 seconds for DPS to destroy a siege engine. Vehicle stats have not scaled forever and Wintergrasp has become consistently harder and harder for the attackers.

3) How are you accounting for players not in your raid who you've kicked, but who may have a vendetta against you and are trying to sabotage your attempts by remaining in the zone and filling up siege spots, leading horde back to your hidden sieges, etc.

If I missed anything else I'll give an updated comment, but I'd like to see how you account for the above.

Squishalot said...

@ Vesoom - the scientific method requires you to have measurable goals and targets prior to starting the experiment. If Gevlon is attempting to apply the scientific method to his theories, he's doing a very bad job of it, judging by his assessment of WGClean on Tuesday. It reeks of trial-and-error.

"I have a theory, let's test it by using it" is not a legitimate means of scientific testing when you're not controlling your experiment in any reasonable manner.

I'm not sure what you mean by the "evidence to back up Gevlon's point". To me, he's said a bunch of general truisms that apply in very specific circumstances, and can't be generalised for the reasons I highlighted in my opening reply.