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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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Saturday, May 10, 2014

CSM election results

I want to get into an analysis of the CSM9 election results, released yesterday by CCP Leeloo. Before I do that though, I think it worthwhile to fill the historical record back in. CSMs have only been getting elected for six years now and already the past record is getting a little obscured by the fog of war. So here they are, the results of all past elections:

Results     ElectedVoters     Turnout   Enfranchised   US Vote   UK Vote   Rus Vote
CSM 121/May/20082465111.1%64.3%32.8%15.6%4.9% (5th)
CSM 224/Nov/2008201128.6%66.2%34.4%12.8%3.4% (6th)
CSM 328/May/2009278489.7%71.7%37.0%13.1%2.0% (10th)
CSM 402/Dec/2009211587.4%61.4%35.6%11.7%5.2% (5th)
CSM 526/May/20103943312.7%64.0%34.8%12.3%5.7% (4th)
CSM 626/Mar/20114909614.3%68.6%36.2%11.5%8.0% (4th)
CSM 724/Mar/20125910916.6%75.0%37.4%11.2%8.1% (3rd)
CSM 827/Apr/20134970212.2%?85.1%38.0%11.6%5.4% (5th)
CSM 909/May/2014     312948.2%??85.4%40.2%?12.6%?2.9%? (7th)

Various notes:
  • CCP Veritas published some analysis of the CSM8 election results.
  • "Enfranchised" represents the percentage of votes that was cast for winning candidates. As a metric, this is somewhat loose and inaccurate. For instance, it does not take into account "wasted votes" for CSMs 1 through 7, i.e. over-votes that were cast for a candidate that were unnecessary to that candidate's victory. This was most notable in The Mittani's victory in CSM7, in which he had more than double the votes of the second place candidate and triple the votes he needed to secure a top seven spot.
  • Still, enfranchisement does reflect the changing nature of the CSM vote, particularly the impact STV had on making sure as many votes as possible count toward the outcome.
  • Germany and Canada are typically competing with Russia for 3rd and 4th most votes cast. However, since Russian CSM candidates tend to stand apart from the remainder of the CSM, it is interesting to to track the changing impact Russian votes have on the process. Their impact was maximized in CSM7, where there were two Russian CSM members and minimized on CSMs 3 and 9, which had and has none.
  • CCP stopped officially reporting the nationalities of the winners with CSM6.
  • CCP stopped officially reporting voter turnout by percentage with CSM7. CSM8's voter turnout percentage is an estimate based on voter make-up by country.
  • CCP stopped officially reporting exact voter make-up by country with CSM8. CSM9's voter make-up by country is an estimate based on printing the pie chart of voter make-up by country and then measuring the circumference of the circle using hand tools.

Finally, CSM9's overall turnout was estimated based on the following criteria:
  • CCP had previously announced that they had passed 500,000 subscribers on 1 March 2013.
  • Does that number include Chinese subscribers? It probably does.
  • There has been no announcement since then that the number of subscribers has increased significantly.
  • Indeed, there's good reason to believe that the number has gone down somewhat. Had it gone up, there almost certainly would have been mention of EVE keeping up its unbroken record of increasing subscribers at one of two points:
    • either at Fanfest during the CCP Presents presentation; or,
    • during the marketing blitz surrounding the battle of B-R5RB.
  • There was no such announcement at either time.
  • Of total EVE players logged in over the course of a period of time, Tranquility represents 80%, Serenity 20%.
  • If the 500k number includes China and overall EVE subscriptions are down 5% since then, then there are around 380k Tranquility accounts that were eligible for voting. The 31294 that voted represent 8.2% of accounts voting. If the 500k number does not include China and overall EVE subscriptions are down 5%, then there are around 475k Tranquility accounts that were eligible for voting and the 31294 that voted represents 6.6% of accounts voting.
  • I've chosen to go with the higher turnout number.

Whew! On to analysis of the CSM9 results themselves.


  1. Will the analysis be up later today?

  2. 31294? so not even the whole CFC block voted this time tho im sure its a majority of voters. only 8% of the population felt the CSM was important enough to vote for. I'd guess a lot of this is fueled by the go goon or lose profit summer expansion.

    1. It is not necessary for the whole CFC bloc to vote. Someone did the math and figured out that only 1/3 to 1/2 of the CFC needs to vote, in order for the CFC candidates to be elected. This only works because of STV.

  3. Pretty much conclusively proves that STV doesn't do anything to dilute the voting power of the null-sec blocks, nor to encourage higher voter turnout. Fail.

    1. STV also doesn't cure cancer or turn Jupiter purple. These are all examples of things it's not intended to do.

    2. "STV also doesn't cure cancer or turn Jupiter purple."

      No, but it *was* intended to be a more "fair" method of voting, for individuals who don't belong to a block, and thus encourage more eligible voters to actually vote.

      The numbers prove that, for its intended purpose, STV is a complete failure.

      It probably does have a better chance of curing cancer and turning Jupiter purple.

    3. So STV failed because there weren't enough non-nullblock players who voted?

      There isn't an electoral system in existence that can compensate for people not voting. Nullblocks tend to dominate because they get organized and they vote. If other groups want representation, they need to get out there and vote. Why is this such a difficult concept for some people to get?

    4. Yes, Steph, STV failed because the majority of players did not vote.

      CCP might as well use the popular vote method instead - one person, one vote. Simpler for everyone and the results are generally identical to STV.

      It is not a difficult concept - you are just too stupid to understand the very simple point of the OP.

    5. Glad we can have a civil discussion about this without degenerating to playground name-calling.

  4. By the time CCP announced 500k sub, my estimation was that about 150k were from Serenity. I can't remember how I got to that conclusion, but it was not entirely out of my ass. By lowering 380k to around 350k you'd slightly improve the turnout.

    Either way, I'm positive 500k is not just from Tq.

  5. 380K to 475K Tranquility EVE active accounts?

    In your (and CCP's) dreams, buddy. The number is well below 300K, and closer to 200K.

    Your numbers fail to account for the fact that DUST accounts are included in all totals, although they aren't subscriptions. And since DUST accounts don't unsub, the DUST numbers include every account ever created, even those of people who signed up, but never actually did play, and those of every player who has long since quit playing.

    1. From the CSM 8 (last years) results:

      Country: United States
      Votes: 18894
      %of Votes: 38.01%
      voters as % of subscribers: 12.72%
      % of subscribers: 36.25%

      So, let's do a little math:

      18894/12.72*100 = 148537 eligible for voting subscribers in the US
      148537/36.25*100 = 409759 eligible for voting subscribers total

      That doesn't include DUST players or players on the chinese server as both these groups aren't eligible to vote in the Eve-CSM election.

    2. The very math I used to get the 12% estimate for CSM8.

    3. @Andreas & Jester - and, you'd both be wrong. When quoting total numbers, CCP execs take great care not to differentiate between EVE, DUST, and EVE China. This is why you will NEVER hear them give you a breakdown of the numbers between the three different groups of players.

    4. @Anon530 - Don't bother arguing with them. It is utterly futile.

      Null-sec players live in a self-delusional, lollipop land, where CCP's decisions to focus on a null-sec game play, at the cost of every other part of the sandbox, have resulted in more players subscriptions, higher PCU counts, and a more profitable CCP over the past two years... despite all evidence to the contrary.

      Subscription rates can drop by 80% and they will still be saying that "it is better for the long-term health of the game", right up to the point where CCP goes out of business.

    5. @Anon 5:30: The percentages are based on the number of eligible voters. Since only tranquility Eve players are allowed to vote for the Eve CSM, this number can't possibly include Dust players or players on serenity.

    6. @Andreas - your calculations are based on (incorrect) assumptions.

      The numbers can, and does, include Dust players, since they all have accounts on Tranquility and this is where CCP pulled the numbers.

    7. But Dust players are not eligible to vote on the CSM elections, so why would the they be included in voter turnout percentages? You are making assumptions here and Occam's Razor suggest that Andreas is right.

  6. It seriously annoys me that people are still using the Trebor definition of "enfranchisement." To be enfranchised is to have the right to vote, and the ability to exercise that right. Saying that you've been disenfranchised because you voted for a candidate that didn't win means that you don't understand the word.

  7. Based on your numbers the amount of eligible voters dropped 6.32 % (!) between 27/Apr/2013 and 09/May/2014.

    I do not question your numbers, because in the past your posts and the sources you used were accurate.
    Since you need to have an active account to be able to vote for the CSM I can say there is a very strong correlation between the 6.32% eligible voter drop and potentially Eve Online Subs dropping.

    as previous stated:

    In regards why we have not seen the same data we got from the CSM8 Election devblog check the forum post: https://forums.eveonline.com/default.aspx?g=posts&m=4573030

    (The number of Votes, the % of votes, the voters as % of subscribers and the % of subscribers metrics are obviously missing from the CSM9 election result dev blog.)

    Regards, a Freelancer

    PS: will you still do the Snapcount Data analysis for the future ten point releases per year and how successful they are ?

    source: http://jestertrek.blogspot.nl/2013/04/go-tell-it-on-mountain.html

    1. Actually, he suggests an 8.2% turnout, which means a 4% drop since last year.

      There's definitely not 475K subs on Tranquility, so the 8.2% number is the percentage to use.

    2. https://forums.eveonline.com/default.aspx?g=posts&m=4573030#post4573030

      CCP Leeloo: "CSM8 was by far the most productive council yet and it has been a pleasure to work with them. We have released the raw data on voting, and if people want to speculate or run math on it then that's fine by us."

    3. oh for those who can not do math, 12.2% - 8.2% is indeed 4% poe.


      Total eligible voters for CSM8: 49,702 / 12.2% = 407,393
      Total eligible voters for CSM9: 31,294 / 8.20% = 381,634

      The amount of eligible voters dropped between 27/Apr/2013 and 09/May/2014: (407,393-381,634) / 407,393 = 6.32 % (!)

    4. PS: this also gives you an indication how many Capsuleers there are on Serenity, and with the current Plex price there of 3.6b isk, and the knowledge that a plex cost 600 Tiancity points or 60 Yuan ($9.37) how CCPgames should never compare the "largest" battle on Tranquility (B-R5RB) and the "largest" battle on Serenity (http://killboard.nl/cn/?a=home&scl_id=26&scl_id=26)

      In my opinion there is something seriously fooked up economics at work on the China server, for them to "create" so many titans, unless large amounts of players can play for free ?

    5. Just realized CCPgames next metric for eve online will be "Accounts Made".

      Reminds me of some EA staff damage control for SWTOR earning calls.

      Also INB4 a(ny) eve blogger says: You can not see Eve Online is Dying based on one metric.

  8. Nice. I didn't think to use the pie chart as a method of ascertaining the voter turnout percentage. But your 8.2% matches my own feelings on the subject:


    EVE Online lost about 30K subs since last Fanfest.

    (And the 500K that CCP was announcing includes China. The Monument has 480K names on it, which include China. I'd say there's about 385K Tranquility subs and 95K Serenity subs at the moment.)

    1. poe, just curious, but do you still have a paste bin or something from your interview with CCP Explorer ?
      I would vey much like to see an active link again about that as he is the current CCPgames Development Director.

      source: http://i.imgur.com/abgBUok.png

      Regards, a Freelancer

    2. I believe I have it archived somewhere. I'll see about getting it posted up to that Nerd Soliloquy account. I'll post here with the link when I do.

    3. That's too bad. I was sure Eve had a little over 400k accounts just before I quit just prior to the elections in 2013. Disheartening to see a number estimated well into the 300Ks now. When Selene, I think it was, let it slip that there were about 160k actual players in late summer 2012, I wonder what the current player count now is?

      The lower voter count not only might show a lower subscription and player count, but I think it also shows that players aren't believing that CCP is paying much heed to the CSM and treating it as little more than a PR gig. Seeing these numbers coupled with what current and ex employees are saying about CCP management - not inspiring news.

    4. At Fanfest 2013, Tranquility had 410K subs. And now, whereas we can't be sure, it's looking like they lost ~30K subs in the last year.

    5. @Anonymous (Freelancer)

      Here's that interview (the images are gone though):


    6. Much appreciated poe, just a (loose) quote from Mike Azariah on Eve Radio:

      "Just because CCP has not announced a(ny) Executive Producer for Eve Online yet, does not mean there can not be a(ny) Executive Producer for Eve Online yet. Why CCPgames has not announced it yet is up to them."

      Now keep it mind Mike Azariah (he is a school teacher :) is a grad A+ forum poster, this has so many levels of innuendo it's f-ing amazing.
      Hope he we see this kind of messaging for the next 47 weeks of the CSM9 term :)

      Regards, a Freelancer

    7. PS: just to put stuff in perspective within CCPgames organization.
      source: http://i.imgur.com/1fRRscf.png

      Producers are responsible for task lists, backlogs, planning, scheduling, execution, etc. They oversee the What and the When.

      Senior Producers (like CCP Seagull) are Stakeholders at CCPgames, as is the CSM (!)
      source: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mA-7d27_0xQ#t=5m20s

      Directors are responsible for all tasks being carried out according to all relevant best practices. They oversee the How.

      CCP Explorer started at CCP in March 2007. His title was "Software Director" and I have kept it to May 2013 even if his role has changed since then.

      Managers are personnel managers and are responsible for hiring, performance management, salary negotiation, soft skill training and continuing education. They oversee the Who.

      CCP Explorer also started as the EVE Software Personnel Manager and was responsible for various aspects of the software development as well the live operation of EVE Online. Later he also took over personnel management of EVE Quality Assurance. About a year ago, before May 2013, he handed off all personnel management roles to dedicated personnel managers, leaving him currently with four defined roles up to May 2013:

      EVE Universe Software Director
      EVE Online Software Director
      EVE Online Senior Live Producer
      EVE Online Technical Director (one of two Technical Directors)

      Technical Director is responsible for code quality and coding practices (such as code reviews) with a group of Lead Programmers and Technical Leads.

      Live Producer is responsible for deployment scheduling and the deployments themselves with DUST's Live Producer and New Eden Services' Live Producer. New Eden Services is responsible for EVE and DUST's joint/shared services, such as Tranquility itself, but only at the level of managing the hardware and identifying what group needs to tackle live issues. The Live Producer is also responsible for all live issues on Tranquility being tackled.

      Software Director is responsible for software project management.

      Technical project management and live operations have long been my passion and as roles and responsibilities have been redefined as business needs changed then I have trended towards those roles.

      CCP Explorer is currently clearly shown as the CCPgames Development Director, source: http://i.imgur.com/abgBUok.png

      I wonder if a(ny) interim Executive Producer is currently appointed within CCPgames ?

      Regards, a Freelancer

    8. I covered the bulk of this in the Introduction section of the Summer Summit Minutes, too. It's worth looking at.

      There IS an interim EP for EVE Online (it was David Reid until fairly recently, but he announced he'd be handing off the responsibilities). The CSM was briefed on the replacement but I'm not sure if it's public knowledge.

    9. Thanks for the reply, I hope for the next 4 years the NDA will not restrict you to much commenting a bit more specifically and elaborate on current issues.

      Regards, a Freelancer

  9. So, we have someone with an inside knowledge of CCP actually acknowledging that subs went down.

    And now we see CCP losing it, and attacking their largest subscription demographic.

    I ask again, if the paradigm worked for 10 years, with uninterrupted growth, even during Incarna, what has suddenly changed to drive what appears to be at least a 5% drop in subs.

    1. 15% of the Casual Subs will sink in CCPgames Titan(ic) release 3rd June.

  10. One thing that might be happening with subs that also might not be bad is if a fair percentage of players consolidate their accounts and just use PLEX to train a second character.

    1. That's a good point. I consolidated 7 (training) accounts to 3 accounts with multiple training.

      Also any anti-botting measure will have an impact on accounts.

  11. I'm not "the sky is falling" type, but it seems like everyone here is agreeing that subs are actually down 5% from last year.

    That is pretty significant, considering that, up to this point, it seems like everyone here, incl. Jester, was trying to deny it to say that subs were at least flat, if not growing.

    Are we certain the number of lost subs on Tranquility isn't even higher?

    I don't keep exact track, but the number of players in the areas that I frequent in high sec seems a lot lower than just 5% down. I don't think I'd even notice a 5% drop, it often feels like more around 20-25%

    1. We have no way of knowing what EVE Online subs are unless CCP tells us. I base my guesses partially on PCU data, which IS public.

  12. after the Red Wedding, you'll find that no one is playing Dust, it's hard to get a match going let alone a squad up.

  13. Acetech Software should be your first choice if you are looking for a software development company India for your web designing need.


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