Welcome to Jester's Trek.
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.
You can follow along, if you want...

Sunday, March 23, 2014

Isn't that the game where...

I want to continue my series of posts looking at "EVE players behaving badly" this week with an eye toward finishing the series before the end of the month. Before I continue though, I want to address a one-off question on this topic: why should CCP care how EVE players behave? If I'm out here advocating that CCP should start to try to put the brakes on bad behavior (and I am), does CCP get anything out of it?

And the answer to that question starts with two young men you've never heard of, James Upchurch III and James Egbert III. Go ahead and read their Wikipedia entries if you like, but I'll summarize. Yes, this is another history lesson... but recent history this time. James Upchurch III is currently serving life in prison without the possibility of parole for the brutal and sadistic slaying of Lieth Von Stein, the step-father of one of his friends, Chris Pritchard. James Egbert III committed suicide. Both of these incidents were tragedies and I don't want to minimize the effect they had on the families of the people involved. But they do make an interesting point. What did these two young men have in common? Both of them played Dungeons and Dragons in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

Some of you know where this is going now. For the rest, I will explain.

In the early 1980s, I myself was in secondary school. One of the teachers in this school was the adviser and supervisor for a sanctioned "D&D Club" that met once a week on campus. By the time I left that school, the club was forbidden. By that time, you see, D&D had achieved a reputation as a satanist, destructive game that drove children to murder and suicide. Now the murder of Lieth Von Stein and the suicide of James Egbert III were undeniably tragedies as I've already said. But both were only very peripherally tied to D&D... yet there were just enough fantastical elements in both stories (the particularly horrific murder, the steam tunnels where the suicide took place) and enough whispers about the culture of the game (demons! hell! devil worship! chaotic evil! the book promotes the charisma of Adolf Hitler!) that the press at the time had an absolute field day.

There were books! There were movies of the week! There were episodes of TV series! There were outraged parents! There was a 60 Minutes piece! And in the middle of all of this was a little company with no staff that nobody had ever heard of called TSR trying to answer a lot of really embarrassing and off-putting questions from reporters all over the country.

The fact that their little game was only peripherally involved in the suicide and the murder didn't seem to be relevant to anyone.

All those dozens of satanist murders that you think you've heard about happening related to D&D? Didn't happen. All those murder-suicides you think you know about? Didn't happen. All those cults of demented kids studying witchcraft and occultism at the feet of some dungeon master out there? Didn't happen. As far as anyone's ever been able to prove, James Upchurch III and James Egbert III were all it took... and TSR's little game had only very little to do with either situation.

Yet, for the next decade, D&D had a stigma associated with it. TSR tried to fight it. Didn't help. They changed the names of creatures in the game to be less off-putting. Didn't help. They tried outreach programs explaining to parents that kids that played D&D read more, studied more, and did better in school. Didn't help. The company soon ran into financial difficulties, reorganized twice under new owners, eventually failed and was bought out.

All anyone knew or cared to know about D&D was "Isn't that the game where..." plus the fantastical story they could think of pulled out of a book, movie, TV episode, or pamphlet. Tom Hanks got an early paycheck out of it.

I assure you that CCP Manifest would rather volunteer for exploratory dental surgery than ever have to deal with a similar situation. And yet, I worry that's where things will eventually head. If you're a CCP executive, how do you deal with the fact that this is the reputation that your game develops? Sure, a lot of them kind of laugh it off. But sooner or later, I feel like someone in EVE is going to do something permanent and nasty to someone else in EVE or to himself and it's going to be one of those sick little viral stories that goes around.

If something horrible like that went down, CCP could say all the right things: that it's a tragedy, and that their game was only peripherally involved, and the individual was disturbed, and he was in no way emblematic of the player base, et cetera et cetera. It wouldn't matter. Discussions about EVE Online would suddenly start "Isn't that the game where..."

For those of you saying "Yeah, but that was decades ago. A company having to respond to a massive crisis with only one or two tragic deaths? Something like that couldn't happen today.", Toyota would like to have a word with you.

It probably won't happen. I hope it doesn't. Generally, EVE players -- even EVE players that dislike each other -- are pretty mellow at player gatherings and events. EVE players that commit suicide -- and tragically, there have been some -- generally have other factors in their lives also impacting their mental health. But all it takes is one disturbed individual to take things too far.

EVE is real.


  1. OK, its not often i do a post but this seams like a topic i want to have a crack at... and ill use the kiss method.
    if anyone believes the BS that is written in the daily press nowadays and takes it for FACT! then they are one of the many suckers that are bone every minuet of every day of every year, its common knowledge to the more, how should i say it, aware of us out there that the world press will over emphasis and exaggerate ANYTHING to sell there news over the next guy. with this knowledge you can read a peace and know that everything in the text in front of you is FACT.
    IE, if someone did commit suicide and they play eve, and the press did write up a story. id never believes the entirety of it, IE, the dude that committed suicide played eve, it MIGHT have been a factor but id be betting he didn't take his anti depressants and that's why he is dead. not because of what eve did.
    unfortunately alot of people in eve would laugh at this and so would i but id never say it, instead id say that i feel sorry to there family members for what they have to go through but on the inside id be going, one more sucker down, why, because that person isn't close to me, i have no emotional connection to the person. that's what the internet gives us in general. the ability to meet and say hello to others or kick em wile they are down. but if it came to real life, im sure that many of us would at least try and help in some way, or i hope we would (im a optimist lol)

    anyways i hope you all enjoyed the wall of text.


    1. Saying people won't believe the papers, is like saying people won't fall for scams in Jita.

    2. like i said there is a fool born every minute

    3. @nenny, (1) you are a gamer, (2) you are at least marginally intelligent..

      But ol' John Q. Public, he whom such tripe is written for however is, IMHO, neither... and as such is just the kind of person who does say things like "Isn't that the game where..."

      And what's worse is they feel they are speaking knowledgeably and intelligently... and the more fantastical the BS, usually the more deeply it is believed and promulgated... gods there are times I swear I despair for our race...

  2. Problem is, there is no way you can shield from that sort of publicity. If someone who does horrible things makes at any point claim that he belongs to group X (be it political group or playing EVE Online), the media will seize on that and run with it. Even if later on someone brings proof, absolute proof even, that the original claim was false, the media will be reluctant to make corrections. And should they demean themselves by making such corrections (not certain) they will bury it so deep that only few will notice. That is their modus operandi and that is what I have observed time and again and again.

  3. I played DnD back in the day. I never ritually killed anyone.
    I watched the 80's "video-nasties". I never went crazy-8-bonkers on anyone with a drill and set.
    I played GTA (the original). I never stole a car and ran down a line of Harri Krishnars (sic).
    I played CoD. I never gunned anyone down.

    The press love to blame things like this. However I doubt Eve-O will ever get this attention unless we are all flying spaceships in real life first.

    1. It was only a couple weeks ago a guy threatened to deal with in game losses, the "titan-ic Raven", and threatened to sort it out with violence IRL. Power has been switched off at peoples houses for in gane reasons. Its not u reasonable at all to think someone could go a step further.

  4. The economic problems of TSR had nothing at all to do with the press attacking the game as satanic. That was mismanagement and the emergence of video game consoles, plain and simple. Kids didn't turn away from the game because of 60 Minutes exposés.

    1. Good to see you have such a good grasp of game history. You know what also kills games? RMTing... Piss off, know one wants the opinions of a RMTing hypocrite; find another gaming community to haunt.

    2. Ccp has done more to kill rmt in eve than any dev I've played for. And for poes point im confused I never realized DnD was such a failed gaming disaster still printed by WoTC. Odd they would just make a new edition I guess they just did it for the love of the game not the money. Im really failing to see the point here. Its not like eve has some great public perception we are all wrecking. Its been 10 years subs still going up. No other game has managed that. But here we are claiming we need ccp thought police. Do something useful jester and stop them from nerfing probes in wh, I think ccps time would be better spent with that then trying to control its playerbase.

    3. Poe's basically right, though. The D&D-Satinism scare, while no barrel of laughs, did not kill the game. It was a huge amount of free advertising! For every anecdote of a closed after-school club, I can find three people who'd never heard of it until they were told they couldn't play it.

      No, the main reason TSR imploded was bad management: spending too much and selling too little. Just that: it's been covered in some depth over the years since by folk who were actually working there at the time. Like, a lot of depth.

      D&D itself was picked up by Wizards of the Coast (the guys behind Magic The Gathering), who have releases 2.5 editions since then and are working on the next. Also following the satanist shitstorm, a company named 'White Wolf' made a game about playing horrific monsters who hunt and kill people, named "Vampire: the Maquerade" set in a World of Darkness. You may have heard of it. Clearly, CCP is going to be swayed by "one time a company got lots fo free advertising, which indirectly created a company we later bought so we could make an MMO, because a crazy person played it".

      Similarly, Rockstar Games seem to be doing okay.

  5. The fear of that exact media shitstorm (no matter how based in reality) is why CCP came down on The Mittani for his Alliance Panel comments.

    As far as someone getting ganked, getting told to "go kill urself lool", and doing it, and having those fucking mass media idiots exploit the incident for their own ratings...well, I don't believe Eve would lose subs over it other than the usual bunch that just aren't cut out for it at that point in their lives and are regularly churned out for one reason or another.

    Would someone who sees through the usual media bullshit be interested in finding out more? Maybe. As someone pointed out a while back, there's a good chance that if a person wasn't an Eve player and was in the market for a space based sandbox mmo, they'd already heard of Eve and said "no thanks".

    Mass media is for the masses of unwashed that wouldn't be potential customers anyway.

    1. You seem to think that the only impact would be that a few "weaklings" would leave the game - boo hoo.
      CCP survives by outside investment (short term and long term). What if those investors decided *they* didn't want the reputation of funding a "psychopath incubator"? CCP *might* be able to limp along on subscriptions alone, but it would certainly involve layoffs and a reduction of enhancements (see the financial disclosure Ripard referenced recently).

  6. I too am shocked that no one has come to blows at Fanfest, or any of the other meetups. But it won't matter anyway, even if CCP got very bad press. Given their target audience, which is more and more clear is sociopaths, CCP would consider it great PR if the failed lawyer had been successful in getting his minions to drive The Wis to suicide.

    And the goons would have been using it as part of their recruiting material for years to come. "Eve is real! If you actually want to help kill someone, join us. We have a proven track record."

    Any self-respecting organization would have banned the failed lawyer and all his alts for life, and disbanded goons on the spot. But no, CCP hands out a 30 day ban to a guy who does not even log on. That will teach him not to mess with CCP. Obviously, CCP is driven by the same pathology as the goons and the rest of the grifers, and revels in inflicting pain. I watched what they did to Dolan for that charity drive. That might have been "in fun", but just shows the warped sensibilities that must permeate CCP.

    1. why, are you expecting anything? I suppose there's been lots of geeks going postal at wow conventions, right?
      Do you really froth at the mouth or is it all an act to make it sound like those who kind of disapprove a little bit of the stated purpose of goons and the awful forums (that being to ruin any game they play) are as loony as you appear to be?
      You're pretty much the Alex Jones of eve-online.

      And what did they do to Dolan, anyways? What's this got to do with what CCP is getting out of players behaving badly, or Jester's base assumptions? It just appears you went off about Mittens...off the deep end. How can we possibly take you seriously?

    2. most likely goon devs went into spin damage control over mittangate. citing "major influence on the player base... related to 9k accounts ... blah blah blah". If it had of been "joe scrub pubbie" on the panel - joe would have been booted so far from the game to land next week.

      and we where would be if an emotionally disturbed player was actually driven to suicide? would we still be playing today?

      I see that some people are shrugging this off. (looking at you Black). have a look at the scam whereby a player changed the game's wiki for personal gain. then read the commentary for the prime article at TMC. for many this was perfectly acceptable behaviour. why did it get to that degree? players will push the boundaries and CCP rarely if ever pushes back.

      GD on eve-o is now the cesspit that coad used to be. thanks to the more vitriolic and troll elements of the player base given free reign. the public face of the game looks like a victim of domestic violence.

      the more I exposure I have to meta-game; the less I want to know about it.

    3. @Dinsdale Do you even play this game?

  7. isn't there a story about some russian dude trying to kill a titan by cutting the powerlines to the house of the owner ?

    rumor has it that CCP later hired the guy with the titan and he tweeted a bunch of very interesting statistics.

    1. Ru really implying that ccp digstatics was kugutsman? Maybe u better look up T20 and find out what really happened as funny as this would be were it true

  8. http://www.featherlessbiped.com/6696/RPGSATAN/rpgsatan.htm

    I played D&D. I am an avid science fiction and fantasy reader. I am a gamer.

  9. okay, Jester, i think it's time your mommy upped your medication. *pat pat*

    Did facebook gain a reputation as a haven for vicious bullies who drove small white girls to suicide? always a favorite topic for media.
    Does eve-online have any satanic overtones? oh wait, that's World of Warcraft.
    gee, Jester, i've only got started...i'm barely 5 minutes into typing this up (even an edit or two) and i've uncovered your weakest link: WoW's example. demons, demonic worship, evil cosplay, rituals, unholy marriages, lions, tigers oh my and carebears. oh, and not a few suicides.
    yes, yes, all very terrible, but has wow gotten that stigma? No. why? because Geeks and Nerds back then were seen as hopeless basketcases without any viable career paths in life other than recluse bookish non-jock professions. The commodore 64 and Amiga appeared in the early 80s and the dot.com bubble was a decade away at least.
    The entire hysteria erupted because north america is rife with religious fundamentalism which bankrolled the media hype behind one mother's grief over her son's suicide (apparently linked to D&D)
    What you are describing, Jester, is not a valid point but merely 'moral panic'...and inciting moral panic is a really kind of silly thing when the shadow of WoW looms large.
    Does anyone know about Eve-online? i ask people a decade later and noone knows it from adam, but they sure know WoW. do they associate it with suicidal nerds? nope. A bit of an internet addition perhaps for geeks. that's about it. pretty benign.

    Do people care? have their morals/ethics been degraded? I dunno about the truth of that but i'm sure as shit concerned about people's uncaring attitude for pulling over when they hear sirens of first responders. Perhaps were are less empathic, less compassionate civilization these days.
    It's certainly not news worthy nor memorable these days.

    1. MinorFreak - I think you better get a good look at your discussion style. It's a sphegm of fallacies and non-arguments. Now could you give me a tl;dr please?

      And Ripard? Please turn on again your benevolent censorship ;)

    2. okay, MinorFreak, maybe your parents should let you outside to interract with other human beings for a bit,

      How about you stop being a condescending asshole and structure your post like an adult engaging in discussion. Instead you sound like that high school teacher who got a power trip every time a student was wrong or questioned something supposedly easy.

    3. U forgot one thing in your eve wow comparison. If things stay like they have been in 10 years wow will be a distant memory and if they ask what's eve ill still be able to link them a trial account.

    4. in 10 years i'm sure eve will still be going ...well, if not strong, stagnant. What has the longevity of eve have to do with it's notoriety or lack thereof? People will still remember WoW just like they do Napster. Will they still not know what eve is 10 years from now? yup. I rest my case.

  10. Potential media hysteria isn't even necessary. You know why I don't (and will never) play League of Legends? Go on. Take one guess. Okay I'll tell you. It's because the community over there makes any other MMO community look like a Mr. Rodgers convention. You know why several friends of mine won't even try Eve? Go on. Take one guess...

    But hey, that's the way we like it right? HTFU and so on. Go back to WoW. Now if only the devs would do what really mattered like revamp POS code and multi-threading. If only there was some way to expand the subscriber base and increase revenues so they could afford to pay people to do that stuff. If only...

  11. Interesting that both your examples are James III - see James III of Scotland

  12. You can't stop the news from latching onto something and harping on it. Vivaldi, of Four Season's fame, was accused by the news of his time for selling his soul to the devil for his talent. Paganini famously played up to the rumours the papers of his timed started of courtship with evil. And we're talking music here, pure notes, no vocal component at all.

    The news will say whatever the news wants, always has, and without any grounding in fact. CCP could be selling a game about sunshine and rainbows, and if it sold copy they'd talk about how it has an illicit subliminal message that corrupts society. Not saying your fears are ill founded Jester, just that their is jack crap CCP can do to protect against it.

    Especially now days in the US. Take the current case of the Boston's Children's Hospital. No one knows jack. There is a court gag order on the entire thing keeping lawyers from discussing it, and keeping BCH from talking about it. The family and people only very tangentially attached to it sure do run of the mouth though. For a couple weeks it was a daily news story, because it's the best kind of news story. One that can be spun anyway people want, with no descenting voice.

    And we're talking about an organization devoted to saving the lives of children having it's name dragged through the mud for ratings. They may be guilty, they may not, no one knows. If the news media will do that to a children's hospital without first hand facts, do you really think it'd care what it says about CCP? No matter what type of game Eve is or isn't?

  13. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Deviancy_amplification_spiral
    Basically, you'd have to accept that someone's actions were somehow 'deviant'...that the bullying and harassment that leads to suicidal warnings is unethical enough to warrant this moniker.

    "Moral panics have several distinct features. According to Goode and Ben-Yehuda, moral panic consists of the following characteristics:
    Concern – There must be awareness that the behaviour of the group or category in question is likely to have a negative effect on society.
    Hostility – Hostility towards the group in question increases, and they become 'folk devils'. A clear division forms between 'them' and 'us'.
    Consensus – Though concern does not have to be nationwide, there must be widespread acceptance that the group in question poses a very real threat to society. It is important at this stage that the "moral entrepreneurs" are vocal and the 'folk devils' appear weak and disorganised.
    Disproportionality – The action taken is disproportionate to the actual threat posed by the accused group.
    Volatility – Moral panics are highly volatile and tend to disappear as quickly as they appeared due to a wane in public interest or news reports changing to another topic."

    so, yeah, basically, cut the crap, Jester. There's never going to be a moral panic about Eve-online along the lines of the early 80's persecution of TSR's D&D.
    In fact, even if you're wildest fevered imaginings came true, did D&D suffer? Wizards of the Coast is doing quite well, why don't you email someone there? I'm sure they might be fascinated by your concern, however naive it must seem to them.

    1. While Wizards of the Coast is doing quite well, that's mostly because they came up with Magic the Gathering and the Pokemon card games. And got bought by Hasbro because of that. They're struggling a bit to keep D&D profitable (though they're still one of the few elephants in a room full of mainly mice, talking size-wise).

    2. Maybe i'm not that bright, but when i see the D&D logo on game store shelves year after year, i'm pretty sure that means it does okay. Game store owners would talk about how solid their sales are for the game.

      As for your blather about D&D profitability?
      "Obviously, we [Wizards] had a strong economic incentive for publishing a new edition; sales for any product line tend to spike when a new edition comes out, assuming the new edition is an improvement over the first. And given the change in ownership we thought this would be an excellent opportunity for WotC to 'put its stamp on D&D.'"

      you point was?

    3. Yes magic the gathering the other game where u worship Satan according to the media. So the same thing makings dnd not profitable got wizards enuf money to buy the IP interesting

  14. Those times are over.

    Anders Behring Breivik, the terrorist killing 77 people was playing World of Warcraft. He mentioned explicitly that in many texts. Yet there was no criticism on WoW.

    The reason: computer games became mainstream. Everyone's kids playing them.

    1. As someone living in Germany i can only underline this.

      We had quite a huge outrage over Amok-Runs related to Computer Games ("Killer-Games" is a Term here). There was basicly a huge discussion about games like Couter-Strike, World of Warcraft and Call of Duty, that they lead to Suicide and Amok-Runs and that those kind of games have to be banned once and for all.

      And, at least from my PoV, it seems like the "Gaming-Scene" has gone big enough to convince the general public that computer games did not cause those accidents.

    2. Remember that Jester is 55 years old. His experience is very 1980s.

    3. You couldn't be bothered to do a thirty second google search could you? http://www.cnn.com/2012/04/19/opinion/keen-breivik-internet/index.html this article makes a pretty clear attempt to criticize WoW because of that guy.

      You are making a terrible assumption that one indecent is the deciding factor for all incidents, Events like this occur frequently for other "mainstream" they often go nowhere but, it doesn't change the fact it happens and it could happen to EVE should the stars align( something bad enough happens, there is nothing more sever in the news cycle, People decide to exploit the issue for their own gain). Even Dungeons and Dragons has yet to escape the reputation it gained entirely and by extension many role-playing games since they can be directly compared to DnD; it isn't as effected by that reputation anymore but it still exists.

      You are also missing a key point in the article: a good chunk of the of the stories were wholesale fabrications. For some people reality need not apply to a good narrative, so what if the narrative is false, slanderous, and petty, if
      they can profit from the narrative they will go for it.

      Yes a lot of people play games and have their children play games, but that doesn't change the fact that their are people who hate games or are willing to make a quick buck off of that hate, that leads to a lot of innocent people getting hurt in their crusade.

    4. Poetic, Jesters observations have a lot more credence knowing that he has the experience behind him.
      One thing that has not really come in to sharp relief is the thinking and environment of the time. The place is the States and the time is with fanaticism through religion coupled with the need to sell sensationalism. Those three points together make this an article to consider and take notice of - but not react to.

    5. CNN eh? did you happen to miss the bio on the author of that claptrap? He's pimping his book. His career is a professional skeptic. I'd call that about as much subjective bias to spoil any objectivity and clarity to the point where he's worse than the trolls.

    6. @MinorFreak
      No I didn't miss the bio, I don't consider the author to be some authority rather I consider him to be a person that is attempting to exploit the issue for his own gain the type of thing that I was saying was a concern.

      yes I would agree that he is worse than the trolls. He is exploiting the issue to try and get ahead. I apologize if I was unclear in my last post, but aside from showing that WoW did receive criticism, my point was that there are people who try to create a moral outrage, which the article does show, even if only on a meta level. Given that fact I feel it irresponsible to declare the problem dead and gone.

    7. yeah, okay, i'll give you that. And i'd like to thank you because nested in the hyperlinks (in the article he flamed) was this cool bit:

      The point i've been trying to make (if one reads) is that although this shit happens time and time again, the era of hysterical moms taking on the industry, and winning the hype war, has come and gone.
      The "problem" of mass murderers and suicidal tendencies will never be "dead and gone"
      The "fact" is not "given" if the media hype fails to reach critical mass. I mean, gods man that psycho killed 77 people and i haven't heard about it till now.

    8. Because wow pays more to their pr ppl than to the devs that make the game. Just saying its not gameplay that sold that mediocre game

    9. I'm 55? When did that happen?

  15. Online games and the online community in general can be very nasty. I don't think this is specific to EVE and I don't think changing the EVE players behavior will shield CCP from the possibility that one day one of their players will do something bad. As Gevlon indicated this has already happened (although not player on player) and I question the reasoning that the nature of EVE would result in it happening here vs. the statistical likelihood (and a game more likely to be played by children) WoW.

  16. This was an interesting article. As someone who played and grew up during this era it is nice to see a correlation drawn to CCP.

    I know quite a lot about the people at TSR at the time, about Gary, and such luminaries at Ed Greenwood – to name a few.
    More over, it is interesting to see those with a negative attitude towards this article. To frame it: D&D still is something many people associate with Devil worship. In the 1980s even more so. Never mind the “Assured Mutual Destruction” the cold war - people - parents and teachers and other middle-class- know-nothings-of-suburbia knew real danger: D&D.

    The economic problems of the company are not to be laid solely at the feet of the 60 minutes piece – but it certainly did not help the fledgling company. TSR had to change quite a bit of terminology such as “demons” and “devils” meaning that company resources had to be directed into rewrites, additional printing, and legal costs of research, trademark development, and patent protection (for instance re-branding demons as baatezu and tanar'ri.)

    Gary was not great at running the company, as it was a large swath of his time. However, in the end something that ultimately depends on parental-purchasing-power did not do well because of the hype around the game. Hell, even today Pat Robinson of the 700 club still says “D&D will ruin your life”. As things change at CCP, and it begins to gear up for Vampire (a game indisputably based on death, alienating players, devil worship, insanity, politics, and many other lovely game mechanics) it will be interesting to see how CCP evolves its public image.

    In my opinion, the problem is people seek authority to pushing others and prove they are right. Courts work this way, and our culture places little emphases on individual accountability. EVE players punishing other players for their word usage on comms, other websites, meta, and the like is only exacerbating a problem that is truly nonexistent. It gives credence to the idea that words and the internet can hurt, as opposed to examination of deep psychological traumas or issues the internet is merely a symptom of. It gives power to “the bully” in the idea that he has power, and can do (and has done) true malice in a game of pixels.

    Players should voice their opinions, and stand up for others (if they so wish) but under some “moral” cause is just a feeble a reason as in the very same one the people who had problems with D&D.

    tl;dr Devil worship kid's game is not good for a struggling board-game company. Moral indignation is a lark-logic used by those who feel attacked and oppressed as those who use it against them.

  17. Given your reported facts;
    1) D&D did not in fact cause these 2 deaths
    2) TSR's huge efforts to change the perception of the game failed completely
    3) The people who slandered D&D didn't care about facts at all

    If we're to take the D&D example as relevent to EVE then surely the logical conclusion is that there's nothing useful CCP can do. If 2 nutbars *who happen to play EVE* murder-suicide each other, then there's nothing CCP can do to stop it, nothing they can do to fix the damage, and even if they do nothing it won't make any difference to how the game is perceived.

    I suggest picking another example.

    I also suggest that you should take encouragement from the fact that, so far as I am aware, no one has been murdered because of EVE, or even injured. Unlike some other MMOs I could mention, including ones where playerbase actions are far more tightly moderated than EVE's.

    Oh, and just to utterly destroy your terrible logic, here's a real world, recent counter-example: http://kotaku.com/5903501/the-life-of-a-mass-murderer-in-world-of-warcraft

    Seriously, Ripard. The problem here is *you*. You're burned out and you don't want to admit that to yourself, so you're taking the classic route of blaming the game. Huge heaping helpings of confirmation bias in your observations, generalising from specifics, handwaving away any facts or evidence that contradict your doom & gloom.

    Delete the launcher shortcut from your desktop and go play something else for a few months. It'll all seem much much better when you get back.

    1. The "reported facts" aren't being reported as fact here. They are presented as PR disasters, and in fact they were. That no one has been brutalized/murdered because of EVE *yet* is beside the point. CCP would be foolish not to plan for the day when it *does* happen.

      We're only dickering over price here.

  18. Well, there is always something thats dangerous and will turn the kids so monsters and murders. We had the storm against hard rock in the early 80:s in US the most famous part was the hearing of Dee Snider before the US senate 1985. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S0Vyr1TylTE There are quite alot of head bangers out there and they are not more violent then other people...

  19. We live in a word of YouTube videos and Twitter pics and rants. I think it depends on how something terrible happens. If someone who plays Eve goes out and blows up several cars, then you have a crazy person destroying vehicles. So what?

    What if someone goes postal at Fanfest, though...pulls out a gun and starts shooting people? Now we have a direct relationship between gameplay and RL actions against players. We'll also have several videos uploaded to YouTube, immediate tweets with pictures, and CCP will likely have to cancel the company's huge annual celebration. Now we've moved from the 80's D&D style of thinking into what would move people in 2014. CCP would have a very hard time recovering from this type of negative media coverage. I feel an event such as this would likely resonate through the gaming community, affecting sandbox MMOs, particularly.

    You think CNN wouldn't devote time for the grieving parents to air their discontent with CCP? We'd see 6 idiots up in boxes all commenting on how CCP f***ed this up. And, oh yes, to Mittengate. At least one of the boxed heads would mention how Mittens received only a slap on the hand for encouraging the RL suicide of another human being. Then the lawsuits would start.

    The funny thing is the majority of those who play EVE would not be affected by the press or the news, other than perhaps "R.I.P. whomever" showing up on TMC. The current EVE players would only fuss if CCP were forced to changes the rules.

    At some point, someone involved in a sandbox MMO will make a very bad and quite public decision. Life isn't fair. The only thing for certain is that people respond to stress in a myriad of ways--some for the positive and some quite negatively.

    1. and is Eve operating in a vacuum? course not. There's WoW which is a household name where everyone knows that acronym. They've had more conventions than EVE ever will and did anyone go postal there? nopers.

      Has there ever been someone going postal linked to online gaming? yes.
      Notice a theme here? did you ever hear about this? does the media care beyond "wow, this guy was a lunatic regardless of video games"? First quote from forbes.com "It’s been awhile..." and the last quote, "Unfortunately, [he] was one bad apple in this crowd."
      Notice there's no panicked PR spindoctor from WoW being thrown hardball questions, let alone softball queries. I'll let you try to guess why they don't care.

      so please, before you go speculating wildly about shit you have no clue about, at least try to google something about your subject first.

      the only real thing the news cares about is the NSA snooping on wow players looking for terrorists.

    2. @Minorfreak Why did you comment without reading the post? You completely made my point for me. Thank you.

    3. really? let me quote the bit i figured your "point": "CCP would have a very hard time recovering from this type of negative media coverage."
      so, did WoW recover from the obvious negative media coverage? oh wait, noone remembers noone cares and well, wow has the same reputation of anyone i ask. you know...i the real world where the whole lot of us are seen as geeks/nerds.

      But thank you for proving you did not bother reading mine. at all.

  20. "What if"

    What if you're mom is a carnivorous space-alien and tries to devour you tonight? Do you have a plan for *that*?

    We can dream up "what ifs" all day, but what I'm asking for is a reason to believe that there's any particular liklehood of that "what if" happening and whether it would in fact be as bad as all that.

    Did you see the comment from the Harpa staff after FF X that CCP Guard mentioned last year, when they mentioned that the EVE players were the nicest, best behaved customers they had? https://forums.eveonline.com/default.aspx?g=posts&t=230698

    Hey, how about that time the media tried to get a shit storm going because World of Warcraft had an actual for real mass murdering terrorist playing? Do people now say "Hey isn't that the game where murderers and turrists play?" and then Blizzard had to shut it down? Nope!

    No, they do not.

    Play chicken little all you like. I can be fun on a gloomy march evening, I suppose. Just don't try and pretend to yourselves that you're saying anything useful.

    Some people make ridiculous fools out of themselves because they can't accept that they got outplayed in a damb game. Other people enjoy a good laugh at the expense of people who are too immature to stop themselves acting like ridicuous fools. That's all this is.

    To try to pretend that EVE is a nest of sociopathy that's in any way different from the rest of the internet is to wilfully disregard the vast bulk of evidence to the contrary.

    1. This. I would only add that EVE seems to me to have a major characteristic that innoculate it from this sort of thing; the graphics that aren't all that visceral or inspiring to most people.

      When people heard that DnD had the devil worship thing going on, there was the Monster Manual with Demons Type I through VI all laid out with (for the time) vivid and weird pictures thereof. A lot of those illustrators had a penchant for occult symbols that did have dark meanings familiar to those whose hobby was to feel paranoid about that stuff. So people watch the news tell them about iniquity and evil in a game, and they show the picture books along with. Add a touch of leftover worry from the Ozzy Osbourne case.

      By contrast, you might hear about devil whackery in WoW. The news wants to show pictures, but all they've got is the cartoony, bright-colored Azeroth we all know and loathe. Not much of a story there.

      Similarly, you hear EVE is a den of devilry, you see the news report, and they show you...spreadsheets in space. I'm sorry, that's just not going to get the public's blood up.

    2. You know Malcanis, sometimes I think that you are the one who is burnt out - your attitude is certainly that of someone who should try doing something else for a while.

      Of course, you've always been a massive jerk, so I can understand if it's hard to tell the difference.

    3. Any place on the internet that allows one to torment others while remaining anonymous is a den of sociopathy. The behavior stems from human nature. The difference between those areas of the internet and Eve is that for the most part those areas don't have creators that encourage sociopathic behavior, the behavior isn't institutionalized and the actors don't reveal their identities publicly in a celebration of their sociopathy.

      Those are three simple things, off the top of my head, that differentiate the situation with this game in comparison to many others. They also greatly increase the risk that tragedy will strike. The fact of the matter is that if a person feels like retaliating against any of these high profile players in real life, it would be incredibly easy to do so.

    4. I'm with Minerva and Malcanis as well. Eve simply doesn't have enough sex appeal for mainstream media to run with. It's a nerdy game for geeks, and that is so 80's (for the loser bracket) and 90's (for the dot.com bracket)

  21. Very good and usable post. Thank's to share your experience with us. I will try to remember these tips. I also provided this service. plz visit my bolg curly hair Some favorite things: percentages, biographies, numbers, baking, travel, philosophy, physics, shoes, boys with accents, and lucid dreams. Always stays awake past her bedtime.

    1. Kryten: We'll cease to be here, because none of this is ever to have happened. But we will exist back in Eve with no memory of these events, which of course never happened. And as these events never happened, we'll have no memory of them.

      [turns to spambot]

      Kryten: In which case, Ms. Mjyoti soni, Ma'am, I should like to take this opportunity to say that you are *the* most obnoxious, trumped-up, *farty* little smeghead that has ever been my misfortune to encounter!

  22. If you want to read exactly why TSR died the way it did read: http://forum.rpg.net/showthread.php?352786-The-Death-of-TSR notice nothing there about suicides or bad publicity, BUT entirely on not listening to its customers...sort of like what happens to most companies that stop listening (CCP included).

    1. You can't tell me this didn't have an impact. D&D books were getting pulled out of bookstores all over the country while this was happening.

    2. I don't know what the reaction was in the Northern US, but the South took the whole issue quite seriously. I stopped playing because of the "evil influence." My family wouldn't have it in the house.

  23. Most of you are missing the point by a country mile.
    This isn't a question of "if it'll happen", it's a question of "will CCP recover if it does". Furthermore, Ripard is illuminating the fact that EVE has a reputation that isn't exactly warm and fuzzy, and will only help feed a media frenzy.
    Personally, I think he brings up a scenerio that I couldn't see CCP recovering from, PR wise.

  24. Should CCP care? Of course! That isn't the same question as 'Should CCP act?'.

    You shot your own argument in the foot when you correctly pointed out there was no causative link between D&D and the events the media linked to it. The same goes for EVE- it's not making anyone do anything, therefore it follows that even if EVE was reshaped into a heavily moderated candy wonderland, it would have no effect on sick people doing sick things.

    That's why any effort on CCP's part is purely PR and purely responsive- the best they can do is put up a few signposts and make sure their staff (GMs mainly) are properly trained for the rare occasion they're in a position to help.

    1. I mean no insult, but you seem to have missed the point. Despite there being no causative link TSR got flamed & went under anyway. Accusations, baseless or not, are like shit they stick.
      The toxic & often needlessly agressive bullying that goes on in EVE-O has made me drop my account several times, maybe this time is for good.
      If anything did happen to EVE it'd take a journalist about 5mins to learn that this MMO is very well known for being full of trolls. Mittens & him leaving the CSM is just one example that could have gone very badly already.

    2. CCP can do more than just train their staff to deal with horrible sitations like the ones discussed. However you're right, it's a big job & i'm not sure how you'd reel in a well established culture of behavior which seems like the only solution that'd stick.

  25. Good topic, wrong focus.

    While I can see how bad an incident could turn in the press, I don't think this would impact much on CCP.

    For starters, their target audience is older than TSR was at the time.
    Eve-O players, for the most part, don't depends on their parents to get access to the game nor do they need their approval to keep playing it.

    Secondly, the world has changed since the 80s. The Net has given exposure to so many other forms of f*ck up behaviours that a mere game-related murder/suicide would not impress many people any more. We've all seen so much worse.

    'Wrong focus' because I think the impact of Eve players bad behaviours is mainly on subs attritions. Not bad publicity.
    I guess you don't really give much credence to the bad rep until you experience it first hand but when you do experience it, it's a darn good incentive to unsub.

    That's where it hurts most.

    Out of the millions of people a marketing campaign (like the BRB battle) can reach , only a tiny fraction will take action and get in the game.
    Out of these, a tiny fraction of registered players will have their expectations of the game fulfilled or surpassed and will become hooked beyond the trial stage.

    Then comes along the idiots (griefers, gankers, ect) and this rare new blood is turned bad.
    The sub is lost and the word of mouth cost the community even more potential subs...

    1. and the fact we've noticed alot less carebears applying to corporations since BRB.
      Attracting the 'killer' bartle type isn't what growing a company is about, never has been. Actively scaring away customers who are of the other playstyles, with crappy social grouping mechanics (corp fratricide/neutral RR; unwelcome duel popups you can't opt-out of and are on by default; freighter sized loopholes griefers have been exploiting in the corporate mechanics to spy and loot since beta) along with lauding BRB type battles and GHSC intrigue has been going on since launch to the point where CCP simply cannot tell the difference between "business as usual" and "why the hell are we stagnant?"

    2. [quote]the fact we've noticed alot less carebears[/quote]

      citation please. Who is "we"?

  26. There´s bound to be trouble at some point. For example, a GD poster (Lady Areola Fappington) has been impersonating a disabled war veteran turned nurse caring for leukemic children, in order to strengthen his forum propaganda.
    What if some real EvE-playing war vet got angry at this griefer?

    Said poster: http://i.imgur.com/sX0vX3z.gif

    1. you would probably find that this forum troll, who engages in grief tactics online (catalyst) has a 'main' who probably is on some kind of disability coverage of some kind (or lives in his mommy's basement) and probably couldn't afford to travel to Iceland due to poor money management.
      I mean, who would waste their time running around ganking just for shitsNgiggles, and then make up stories about it (irrespective of forum trolling)

      I don't think that (a) anyone in their right mind reads the forums other than occasionally (b) believes any RL cover story used as an "appeal to authority" as a logical fallacy.

      *shrug* I don't believe their will be "trouble at some point" because living your life on the forums is a waste of time, albeit a safety valve for your emotions.

      The point is that this game's touted ability to play the villain is a safety valve for stress so it doesn't build up. This isn't a training ground for psychopaths who like to torture small puppies, etc.

      It is not the ethics and morals of players i question but the mechanics of certain social aspects of this game that have been left to rot since beta. The juxtaposition of non-opt out duel popups and corp fratricide (with the ability to have neutral logistics not get suspect flagged) is clearly fucked up.
      It is the MECHANICS of this game that makes me the most angry, not being ganked or trolled by some dickbutt.

    2. Do you think it´s acceptable that an EvE player purposefully lies about his RL, pretends to be both a war veteran and a nurse caring for leukemic children, in order to portray gankers as really upstanding people?

      This is emotional manipulation, and it happens not in the game, it happens on the forum. It´s all RL-related.

      If I was a war veteran, I´d probably be quite disappointed, or worse, that some online jerk is pretending to have served in order to generate assent for his Schadenfreude-seeking gaming endeavors.

  27. What has Garth to say about all this?

  28. And we all know how all that caused DnD to be a horrible failure........oh wait........i mean when I was a kid magic the gathering was Satan worship lol.....that game also must have failed. Horribly because of bad public perception......oh wait.....ccp put it foot down when mittens crossed the line. And thats a pretty good place for the Line. This game is rated M we are all adults we dont need ccp banning ppl for behavior. Tbh giving eves niche status id ssay it would hurt more than help. WoW is a game based on marketing and player perception, ppl can go there if they need HKO lvls of babysitting

  29. It will happen at some point. I can't wait to see the clip of Alex Gianturdco on 60 minutes, representing the playerbase of this game. With his wizard hat, bragging about being drunk. Seriously, who brags about being "drunk" after leaving high school. Anyway, CCP will have to live with their complete lack of action and probably some legal problems as well (cue the international law experts to tell me they can't be sued).

    Fact is, the playerbase has needed an enema for years and this is probably going to be a wonderful catalyst to that end. In the end there will be some changes to the game that is has needed for years and I bet we see a net influx of players after all the shitbags leave.

    1. > Seriously, who brags about being "drunk" after leaving high school.


  30. I am very troubled by this post, Ripard. It strikes me as rhetorical fear mongering of the sort used for decades by morality police and “family” groups, right down to the hypothetical, “I’m just saying” tone. Whether it was your intent or not (and I sincerely hope it was not), this essay comes across as an attempt to sow anxiety among CCP shareholders (and other potential investors and industry partners) in order to apply pressure in favor of your preferred content changes.

    Frankly, a clarification (or a retraction) would be a good idea.

    1. Sadly, I find I agree that something disturbing is afoot.

      To imply that EvE may well gain a reputation for producing depressed suicides and real life psychopaths despite 1) discounting similar claims against other games and 2) a documented history that when EvE players meet face to face they're a placid bunch is very puzzling.

      That we’re both questioning his motivations attests to the fact neither of us finds his post satisfyingly levelheaded on its own.

      I suppose the fear mongering motivation you mention is possible but I’m inclined to think it’s something else. I suspect Ripard is publicly exploring an uncomfortable psychological relationship with a game that lets, even encourages, one to be the villain. Considering, even under the guise of a game, that one could be a bad person, that one could do bad things and what’s more, if one’s clever about it, one can profit from such sin is a difficult prospect. Little wonder we’re being taken on a long, twisted ride.

      And do forgive me Ripard as it appears I’m accusing you of projection. Chris H’s comment struck me as too perceptive to not comment on.


    2. I disagree.

      Jester's post presents a sample of 'bad behaviour impacting on a game company business'.
      That's an argument on why the players behaviour should be a concern of CPP.

      You guys decide to see that it is implied that Eve could follow the same path as TSR for the same reasons.
      I don't see that.

      If Jester has any agenda, it would be to get more bad players aware that their behaviour is destructive to the company business.

      I don't think harassment and taunting can be considered a play style.
      The scammers and the gankers are in the grey area but that is as far as the 'play style defense' can go.

    3. CCP already has policies against harassment and taunting. They’re in the EULA. CCP even enforces them. One could argue they aren't nearly restrictive enough and perhaps this post is supposed to do that but it's a damn curious way to go about such an argument. As I read Ripard's post he claims that D&D and WoW aren't genuinely responsible for the tragic deaths. Nonetheless, he still seems to argue that CCP should act is if a causal link is there. It’s a strangely mean spirited rhetorical move.

      I can play the same rhetorical game: I have no *physical* evidence you’re a pedophile Anonymous. Logically speaking this is entirely true. I have no physical evidence precisely because I have no evidence at all (physical or otherwise). Despite the statement's logical accuracy, we both know I'm accusing you of pedophilia.

      In similar light, it's difficult for me to read Ripard's post and not catch a drift of evidentially unsuppoted accusation that EvE harms people.


  31. As a CSM member you have been privy to data about eve's antagonists, is this a sign of you being worried about what you have seen ? Or will you say no comment, NDA.

    Regards, a Freelancer

    1. I agree with your train of thought. Something has changed this year, and my money is on his interaction with CCP. Nothing changes unless something changes.

      I'd love to hear Trebor's view. He was on CSM for several years longer, and is also not running again this year.

  32. Fearmongering or not, EVE has an image problem, and CCP would be foolhardy to ignore it. And when things cross over into the real world, Pollyanna-ish wishful thinking from the player base or our HTFU attitude isn't a viable legal defense for CCP if lawsuits come down the pipe.

    You may say things have changed, that games are mainstream, etc. True True True. And you know what? If the poop hits the fan, it won't matter how mainstream something is, because you can be sued for *anything* in America (not sure how things are in Europe).

    And the media (unfortunately), in it's pursuit for ratings, will take an angle on a story and run with it, no matter how minor it is. While you can find bad behavior in all games, you seriously don't have to look far into Eve to find it. It's EVERYWHERE. And they'll never retract it, because it'll be true - Eve players applauding bad behavior is on this blog, on TMC, on reddit, on Kugu...everywhere!

  33. A very interesting perspective.

    I learned about, and began playing D&D in 1979 when it was introduced to me through a friend in school. I had to have the books, the dice, everything.

    Then I remember my parents watching that 1982 (Tom Hanks) movie "Mazes and Monsters" and having my parents "look" at me. I literally had to watch that crap and then defend D&D to my parents. They had swallowed the KoolAid, but fortunately, I was a well adjusted student with good grades. My parents were never the 700 Club watchers but they DID watch it when Robertson did his big show on D&D. My parents literally came to me and asked if I was practicing Satanism. I had to defend the game again.

    A few years go by and two of the people in my gaming group literally freaked out from the game. One told me that he was having homicidal dreams. It was a surprise to me when he gave me all his stuff and went the path of religion. The other had suicidal dreams and gathered all his stuff, threw it in a empty dumpster and burned it. The first example was a very serious logically thinking tech-minded person, the second was a very gifted artist.

    For those that are poo-pooing this, keep in mind that just because YOU don't see the issues, that doesn't mean they dont exist for others.

    *puts on his headphones cranking Judas Priest and grabs for the d20's*

  34. "Isn't EVE that game where some huge alliance leader got up on stage at fanfest and drunkenly told the entire playerbase to drive another player to suicide?"

    ... Yes, yes it is. I have had this question come up once or twice myself. I hate having to answer it, but its still there.

    It wasn't that long ago, either.

    1. Yeah, I've had to have this conversation a time or two as well. It isn't fun.

  35. Its this simple the day they start banning for stupid shit like this ill quit again. I had a friend banned cuz he had seriously ill eat your babies as his title right after the whole mittens thing. That ggot ne to play darkfall for awhile even after they finally overturned the ban. its a slippery slope we need to stay off of. If a fucking video game is what pushes u to kill yourself u got problems out of game and u pry have needed help a long time. Players of mmos kill themselves everyday and those games don't get blamed. Its tragic but come on. I take my eve too serious but its still just a game im not gonna go gut myself with a sword irl cuz I have besmirched my ehonor...
    ..maybe ppl that dont know the difference between reality and a video game need to go outside and get help, I dont see how its ccps responsibility to be checking the mental health of every player that logs in.

  36. All I keep thinking as I read this series of articles is that art imitates life. I got into playing EVE because it is the most realistic game on the market. The ability for people to behave as selfishly and destructively as people do in the real world is what makes the game good. The problems are not with the game or the game community. They are the classic problems of human nature.

  37. I do share your concerns about the corrosive behaviour of some of the players, and how it may be pushing others away from the game. I think it's a real problem.

    ... but I don't think the examples you are giving are a real concern. I might have, a few years ago, but when a mass murderer like Anders Breivik can play an MMO and it barely makes a splash (as opposed to his actions, words and political leanings, where the focus *SHOULD* be), I think the world has moved on beyond the "OMG, video games are turning our kids into criminals/murderers/car salesmen" point.

    So let's focus on where the real problem is, impact on player recruitment and retention, vs media scares that probably not going to happen.

  38. For all intents and purposes, EVE can be anarchy online. There are SYSTEMS, but no rules really... concord? Please. When it comes to the real dastardly deeds, a highsec ganking is not what we are talking here. The true nature of players really come out with how we treat other players over and above the pixel spaceships where there really are no rules and the behavior is, generally fair to poor.

    I think Jester's point here is that at some point the outsiders Perception becomes reality, regardless of whether it is true or not. Once that perception takes hold, it becomes more and more difficult to attract new players and then the game dies.

  39. I'm in the army and also play Eve as an FC . If I ever shot a Human it should be legal under the current rules of engagement. The reason most people kill people is because they are either mentally very ill or are murdering criminals. You can't blame games or entertainment its just human nature. We are forgetting we are animals just like the rest of the other animals on this planet that kill each other every day. Survival of the fittest and all that. It's just laws, good natured communities and the the justice system that keeps us in line. Here is a question though. If we all had clones on standby in real would it be so bad to kill Someone? ;)

  40. Lots of vitriol here, the fact this many comments landed shows it's an emotional issue, J having an agenda or not is fairly unimportant, the discourse is worth it

    However you look at it, EVE has a reputation for being full of Sharks.
    & encourages the creation of communities of Sharks.
    The game is, for the most part, simply the real people in it.
    If a tragedy does happen, it's likely-not CCP or the game's' fault (entirely or at all)
    But if it ever is even a tiny amount a result of the game, then that small amount points pretty squarely at the players in this player driven game, and then at CCP for not having appropriate measures in place.
    If you're a player, employee or fan I'd like to think you'd call that a bad thing & if it's within your power to change it, then why not kick some ideas around.
    Naysayers, they say "Nay"

  41. i sure am glad that you aren't running for CSM again, cause if the latest blogposts are close to what you where saying in the CSM sessions. Then wow, you really shouldn't be there!

    There are alot of people that need thicker skin, protecting them and making them feel all cuddly and safe won't do them or you any favors.

  42. The only thing CCP should be worried about is that when it comes to their flagship title, it literally is more fun to read and write about than actually play it. All other issues are secondary.

  43. Maybe ccp should get a staff psychologist ccp headshrinker that messages you at random and asks about your day and if your depressed....i think all.mmo devs should be fully responsible for their player bases actions. Video game players obviously have no free thought. i say ccp owes us healthcare too while we're at it all that sitting and playing their game that I in no way chose to pay for and play of my own free will has ruined my health. Seriously tho if something happens in a y game and u want to kill yourself because of it get help its not the game thats broke.

  44. All I have to say is that short-sightedness has ruined enough of EVE already. A tragedy like this, would be further short-sightedness added to a fail mix.

  45. http://oldforums.eveonline.com/?a=topic&threadID=172561

    this is an interesting thread. check out how many players disapprove of corp theft. then compare it to any significant threadnaught of today. maybe the game itself has not changed, for me, this is proof the player base has become spiteful as time has progressed.

  46. Wow jester 94 comments at the time of writing this. It seems to me that not requiring approval has greatly increased you amount of comments! Is this the most commented on piece of yours ever?

  47. http://www.foxnews.com/us/2011/06/03/new-mexico-mom-gets-25-years-for-starving-daughter/

    Wow has had several of these and the only rep it has is as the game to beat. Not the game thats killed several children!!!

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