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I'm your host, Jester. I've been an EVE Online player for about six years. One of my four mains is Ripard Teg, pictured at left. Sadly, I've succumbed to "bittervet" disease, but I'm wandering the New Eden landscape (and from time to time, the MMO landscape) in search of a cure.
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Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Monolith

Needless to say, I'm going to have lots and lots to say about them over the next few days, but for now, I'll just say the CSM December Summit minutes are out.  There's also an associated devblog with its normal associated comments thread.
http://www.eveonline.com/devblog.asp?a=blog&nbid=3377

Something that jumps out at me immediately, though?  I've said in the past (usually in footnotes) that the CSM's lack of a communications strategy comes off as a cynical political ploy.  Nowhere is this more apparent than in these minutes, which equate every CSM member with every other CSM member.  There isn't Mittens and Trebor and Seleene and Two step and UAxDeath... it's just "the CSM".  "The CSM" thinks this, and "the CSM" thinks that.  There are no visible seams... and more importantly, no visible weak spots.

Two step took a shot at trying to explain this this morning, but his explanation comes off as hollow to say the least.

Astronomers sometimes joke that in terms of mass, the solar system is made up of the sun, Jupiter, and various debris.  In much the same way, from the start of their term until the second "fireside chat", there was a perception that the CSM was made up of Mittens, Trebor, and various debris.  Starting from not long after that, though, the CSM closed ranks and have been doing everything they can to put forward an impression that they are a single unified body with a single opinion.

On page four of the minutes, CCP does an amusing job of hoisting the CSM on this petard by indicating that CSM7 may well be cut from nine members to seven, since:
  • there's a unspoken perception that there are only four or five solid contributing members of a given CSM anyway; and,
  • the differences between individual CSM members have become so blurry in CSM6 that there's little value-add to having more people on it.
I'm afraid I laughed when I read that.

Anyway, this isn't a full blog post.  As I write this, I haven't even read the full minutes yet.  But that's the first impression that jumps out at me as I read them.

Stay tuned.  More to come.

21 comments:

  1. There are nine CSM members? Wow, I thought there was only 3. ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. @Kirith, your reply may have been sarcastic - I for once really had no idea how many CSM members there were. I assumed there was Mittani and then "others". How many and what they stand for, does it even matter?

      Delete
  2. wherefore art thou, Garth?
    Jester's been posting too much :)

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    Replies
    1. I've been smelling brimstone around my desk lately, so Garth is apparently hiding somewhere close by.

      Delete
  3. You just can't give this CSM a break can you. We *finally* get a CSM that figures out if they work together they can actually get stuff done and you criticize them for not being like the splintered, ineffectual CSMs of the past. Amazing...

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    Replies
    1. In all fairness to Jester this CSM has done little but lend itself to incredible critisicm from its inception to its conclusion. I can see no reason to blame Jester for pointing out what are glaringly obvious flaws in a group of people that are at best a little obtuse in the way they operate.

      I wouldn't necessarily credit the sucess of Crucible to teh CSM in any way - infact I rather suspect it had a little more to do with their own in house subscriptions team noticing a shocking trend.

      Delete
    2. What has this CSM achieved?

      Crucible is the result of mass riots and unsubscriptions, not the CSM.

      Delete
  4. Really looking forward to further blog posts from you about these minutes. Working my way through them now myself.

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  5. I'm not sure why you think my explanation "came off hollow", but it is true that it is very difficult to distinguish the various voices.

    I do also think it is the responsibility of those who spoke up to clarify which stuff they said. I'd love for the "build a fortress" person to speak up, for example...

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    Replies
    1. That would be the guy who said he wasn't going to comment about parts of the game he doesn't play?

      Delete
  6. CSM5 minutes also did not attribute comments and ideas to individual CSM members. I was in favor of identifying individual CSM members' contributions where it made sense, while combining opinions with generic attribution where that made sense. That way, it would have been more clear to players which members were supporting or opposing which ideas--and almost as importantly, who was participating and who was not. However, a majority of CSM5 members voted for generic attribution when the question of which approach to use was brought up.

    While using generic attribution lets non-performers fly under the radar somewhat, it does simplify the task of writing the minutes--which usually equates to being able to share them with players sooner. It also avoids the complication of individual attribution when various CSM opinions are distilled and presented in the Minutes as a single statement, as is commonly done for the sake of brevity and clarity.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Speaking as someone who transcribed a fair amount of the minutes, and edited it all, individually attributing everything people said would have been a nightmare. We had one mic and one little camera recording stuff (the video was mostly useless), and it was very difficult to keep people straight.

    As I posted on FHC, if there is a particular point you want clarification on, ask, and I for one will tell you what my position was.

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  8. With re: the various comments on this. The positions being taken by individual CSM members in these minutes are quite a bit more controversial than in previous CSM minutes. I also have somewhat of a hard time believing that the voices are THAT hard to differentiate.

    Compare and contrast to the famed summit of last year where "the CSM" said that jump bridges could be dispensed with. That's the level of controversy that can be attached to "CSM" suggestions like:
    * super-cap alts being allowed to reallocate their SP,
    * the Drake losing its kinetic missile bonus,
    * allowing super-carriers to dock,
    * giving null-sec blobs the ability to shut down NPC station services, while,
    * making sure non-blobs can't hurt player-owned stations,
    * not adding new capital ship types to the game,
    * wormhole stabilizers...
    etc. etc. etc. etc. etc. This document is full of "CSM" suggestions that are going to inflame groups right across New Eden, none of them attributable to individual CSM members.

    THAT'S why I bring it up. THAT'S why Two step's explanation on FHC rings hollow.

    But sure... Two Step, Trebor, which of the positions above are the two of you for and against?

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  9. I don't see how this is particularly surprising. It's a standard heads I win tails you lose tactic.

    ReplyDelete
  10. For:
    * super-cap alts being allowed to reallocate their SP,
    (Note that I am not in favor of the more general skill respec that was mentioned)

    Somewhat For:
    * the Drake losing its kinetic missile bonus,
    (I actually think it is more important that the Drake loses its resist bonus)
    * allowing super-carriers to dock,
    (should be an upgrade, and should be limited in numbers)

    Not For:
    * giving null-sec blobs the ability to shut down NPC station services, while,
    (I do think there are some issues with NPC nullsec, I don't think this is the way to address them)
    * making sure non-blobs can't hurt player-owned stations,
    * not adding new capital ship types to the game,
    * wormhole stabilizers...
    (would be *terrible* for w-space)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Why are you for super cap alts being allowed to reallocate sp? because they where made to use an op ship and thats not the case anymore?

      Delete
    2. "For:
      * super-cap alts being allowed to reallocate their SP"

      Srsly? Any CSM member who supported this should immediately be dismissed from their post. There should NEVER be skill respec's in Eve unless CCP removes a skill (such as when the learning skills were removed).

      I know for sure who's not getting my vote for CSM7.

      Delete
  11. "super-cap alts being allowed to reallocate their SP,"

    Sorry. Where is this in the document?

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    Replies
    1. See my post today. Bottom of page 13.

      Delete
  12. "giving null-sec blobs the ability to shut down NPC station services, while,"

    The way this is worded in the document, isn't it pretty much directly aimed at Pandemic Legion?

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    Replies
    1. While "the CSM" believes there are "iceberg allianceS" (emphasis mine) that "live in NPC stations, amass supercapitals, and hold high-value moons", there is only one alliance in EVE that I'm aware of that fits this description. Their name begins with "P" and ends with "andemic Legion", yes.

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