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TigerLord
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Gaming Etiquette, Griefing & Schadenfreude

There's been a lot of discussion about cyber bullying and gaming etiquette on many gaming platforms and within many gaming communities lately. There's currently a big debate on the ED and SC forums about what length developers should go to to preserve the integrity of the community.

The big discussion in question followed a post that Ben Lesnick, head community manager and dev at CIG, made about Something Awful, a gaming community of like-minded players that have presence in many popular games. In EVE, they're called Goons, and in SC Goonrathi.

Essentially, you could say SA demonstrates with near textbook perfection the tribal tendencies of human beings, and how in the presence of a particular dogma, critical thinking becomes absent, including an ability to introspect and evaluate one's behavior against the ethical or moral standards they uphold in real life.

Extracting tears from the nubs, as they call it, is their favorite past time. That kind of behavior is rampant in games like Day-Z or Rust. Because of their sheer size and the amount of simpletons Something Awful controls, they can usually impact a large player base with their action. Their justification or rationalization is usually something along the line of:

1) This is a game, we're not assholes in real life, we can separate the two
2) The game mechanics support it so griefing is legit behavior

or a combination/derivative of the above.

Although in theory I agree with point #2, point #1 rarely holds true. The idea that all internet users live a dichotomy in their life between their online persona and their real-life counterpart is a delusion. The reality is that anonymity and a lack of consequence for their actions will usually bring out the true character behind that persona. I do not believe that someone who enjoys griefing others in online games aren't at least a little bit asshole in real life as well.

Which brings me to schadenfreude, the one thing that fuels Something Awful.

quote:
Schadenfreude: pleasure derived from the misfortunes of others.
There's something incredibly pervasive about schadenfreude. We all experience it. It's why people enjoy watching people roast celebrities, or watching ridicule happen in front of their eyes, such as when you're humiliated in a forum thread, on reddit, or by your wife on Skype as you play League of Legends.

In EVE, camping gates was only fun if the people you killed raged in local chat. Extracting rage, or to elicit any reaction, is the real prize. Camping gates (or any spawn points in any game, the analogy holds true in BF4 as well AFAIK) wouldn't be remotely as fun if you only got to kill NPC. It's knowing it's an actual person that pays the price of your actions that gratifies the behavior.

And that's a problem.

I was thinking about that the other day and there is really nothing to gain for a community by allowing that behavior to even exist. Something Awful will often, in chorus, argue about freedom of speech, liberty (and justice for all?) and the necessity of groups like them to keep it interesting, because if everybody is good and pure, that'd be boring.

I agree with this to some extent, but I don't think the price we pay as a community is worth the interesting stories that behavior can generate. Sure, we all enjoy reading about the drama that occurs in EVE Online, but as someone who played it for years and got to work with CCP even in small parts, I can vouch for the toxicity that has now become the accepted norm, and the game isn't better for it.

I'm willing to accept that schadenfreude is an innate behavior that we will never get rid of (the same way we will never get rid of murder, rape, etc.) but I do not think it should be tolerated in any shape or form and CIG is right to take pre-emptive actions against groups like Something Awful, even if they could be discriminatory. My position is that if the modus operandi of your community is to piss people off to experience joy, you relinquish your right to fair and equal treatment.

I'm especially interested to hear about Praxian Theories members who will be playing SC. Do you think our organization should tolerate trash talking/griefing?

/Discuss.


Snakeoil
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Trash talking is one thing, griefing/bullying is something else.
For example trash talking to get a person to fight you, is ok in my book.

Though I've seen players that just got killed start talking smack to their killer. so the killer turns around and kills them again. Is that griefing? I think it's just getting the point to the sore loser that they need to be a bit more respectful.
Though maybe if more games were like EVE or UO where players lost gear when they died, people would be a tad more careful in who they pissed off.
--
Is a person a failure for doing nothing? Or is he a failure for trying, and not succeeding at what he is attempting to do? What did you fail at today?.


El Quintron
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reply to TigerLord
I'm completely torn on this, because on one hand I love the idea of PvP especially in a universe the size of EVE (and hopefully SC) but by the same token, group dynamics hate power vacuums so someone is always going to end up on top.

I think in this case CiG has a responsibility to ensure that the Goons (or a like minded org) don't end up on top for any substantial amount of time.

Beyond that, I'm OK with "Lord of the Flies" style outcomes.
--
Support Bacteria -- It's the Only Culture Some People Have

asdfdfdfdfdf
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reply to TigerLord
griefers are the gaming equivalent of trolls.

There was recently a study, that got quite a bit of attention, showing that trolls exhibit high sadistic and sociopathic tendencies, which shouldn't surprise us, but it does act as an antidote to claim 1.

»beta.slashdot.org/story/198219

The claim that game mechanics support it is related to these tendencies, and is a perverse way of viewing the situation. Sociopathic people generally believe that if they can get by with something, or if people can't stop them from something, that they have every right to do it. No one would accept the argument that restaurants support murder because, theoretically, I could leap up from my table and plunge a steak knife into the chest of diners sitting at the next table. The fact that there is nothing, physically, stopping me from swerving into oncoming traffic, to drive people off the road in my car, doesn't mean that the highway system supports reckless driving. Of course in games the punishment that can be dealt out for destructive behavior is much more limited than in real life. At most you can kick someone out of the game and they will go on to another game to grief. There are always constraints and trade offs to the lengths to which we will go to deal with the very difficult problem that it is almost impossible to stop people, who are hell bent on hurting others, from doing so.

Trash talking is driven by the same impulses and should therefore be viewed as part of a continuum. I don't think either should be tolerated but there is the question of what punishment should be meted out. In the same way that we wouldn't tolerate someone on the street taunting passers by, we shouldn't tolerate trash talk if it is obviously intended to hurt or enrage people. We wouldn't punish someone who taunted others in the street with the same severity as we would punish someone who threw acid in someones face on the street, but we wouldn't tolerate it. If it was just good natured ribbing between people who truly like each other, such as friends calling each other buggers, we wouldn't punish it but it is pretty clear when the trash talk is among friends and when it is about driving away or brutalizing strangers. It is another tendency of sociopaths to try to blur these distinctions or to pretend that one can't tell the difference. Normal, decent human beings can tell the difference.

Any organization, that doesn't want to ultimately be dominated by sociopaths, has to enforce some graduated response with respect to such behavior. I don't believe in a "zero tolerance kick them out at the first sign of such behavior" approach. If you don't let griefers get a rise out of you, but simply make clear at the outset that there are rules and consistently enforce them with all people, then the less extreme cases will often start behaving better. Many gamers are young and their moral development is not yet complete so many of them are not unremitting sociopaths and their behavior can be pulled back toward the decent. It is crucial, when enforcing rules, not to act as a troll oneself or mouth off to the person who is having rules enforced against them. You simply explain, dispassionately, what rule is being enforced and what has to change to correct the problem. In cases where it is clear they will never stop you ultimately have to weed such people out of your group or it will head down an inexorable path where the decent people will leave and only the troublemakers will be left.


Archivis
Your Daddy
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1 recommendation

reply to TigerLord
As an expert troll, I'd like to comment about my experiences over the last two decades of online gaming.

Griefing will always exist. I think it's important that games don't remove the ability to grief because it always results in removing the ability to legitimately play. I think it's something that people have to understand and accept as a part of life.

There is also a difference between griefing and trolling. Griefing is a destruction of property or person's time (usually, both). Ganking someone repeatedly at their corpse in WoW meant the person would lose time, maybe lose gold, who knows. Trolling is a battle of the minds. There's usually nothing physical (in the virtual world) lost and you only lose as much time as you're willing to give it attention to.

In both situations, griefing and trolling are usually temporary in a player's lifespan. You get ganked or someone makes fun of your mother and in 10-15 minutes, you've moved on.

What SA does is uses a coordinated hivemind attack to exploit game mechanics that a single individual could not otherwise exploit, and rob an entire community of a resource, or put the entire community under their thumb. The sheer amount of people committed to these exploits means that they can keep this rolling every hour of every day. This is where things take a turn for the worse.

Whatever they use to rationalize their behavior is irrelevant. It ruins the game for countless others who stand no chance and will never stand a chance. Players quit and that's money that's lost.

In PRAXT, I think that a "justice served" mentality is the one that appeals to me the most. There are ways that a smaller group of 20-50 individuals can put a dent into large groups like the Goons where they have thousands. I've seen it done and I've been a part of it.

One thing to understand is that they use their forums and whatever communication methods they have to summon the hivemind to their services. This means that their coordination and reaction is slow. If there's a pocket of folks camping the gates. Let's say a dozen of them. You swarm in there with four times the amount of forces, pillage them for everything you have, set a timer for five minutes and continue to pillage them and then leave, in unison when that five minutes is up.

What you're doing is unnerving the very folks who like to unnerve others. Nothing infuriates a griefer more than being griefed and then denying them the ability to retaliate. The little action of destruction you committed against them pales in comparison to implosion that takes place by denying them the ability to retaliate.

You say nothing to these people. You do not threaten them. You do not respond when they communicate with you. You do not respond to their threats when you leave. You go in, do your thing, and pack your shit up, because you've got 10-15 minutes before hundreds of them show up and everyone gets raging boners at how they conquered you.

And you continue these attacks on a regular and unpredictable basis. You scout the area and look for another group of griefers that you can completely overwhelm and you do it again. They will fall apart and unnerve themselves. They will feel like the hivemind doesn't work and some of them will start infighting. If I can't summon the hivemind to troll on my behalf, then what the fuck am I doing here.

You'll never take down the Goonies with this. You won't even put a dent in them, but over time, you'll unnerve hundreds of individuals who think that ruining an entire game for sheer entertainment. You never need to know how they react. They all react the same.

This is how I envision PRAXT's future.
--
A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong enough to take everything you have. -MLK


Savious
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reply to TigerLord
Ill add in a few pennies from my perspective. I like griefing in games, I like trolling and being trolled. It adds a little spice to life.

For example, in D2 when I played Hardcore exclusively, you could only hostile other players in town. I figured out that you could cast several hydras during a Baal run, go to town and hostile someone before the hydras dissapeared. If built correctly, your hydras could wipe out several people before they could get a chance to react. My level 31 Sorceress had 20/20 Hydras with 20/20 fire mastery, due to a ridiculous amount of +fire skills. All the leechers were wiped out in one shot. I laughed. I really enjoyed it. It was a clever way to get around a game mechanic, and it made people realize that they were playing Hardcore and monsters werent the only thing they needed to be afraid of.

I got hours of entertainment from that, and eventually Bliz fixed it so that your hydras dissapeared immediately when you went to town. I find it fascinating that a group of players are getting together to create strife and wreck havoc in a game. Reminds me of the WoW funeral or wedding or whatever it was. That was awesome.

Without the Goons, who would you hate?
--
From the ashes of Tristram, I am reborn. The #1 fan, again.


Ghastlyone
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reply to TigerLord
I griefed so many people in WoW in the Halls of Reflection dungeon back in Wrath.

That was the dungeon with the timed intro and once it started, enemies would start spawning.

I would queue on my Death Knight and tank. I would port out of the instance the second the event would start and say something in chat like "BRB need to repair" and the whole team would proceed to get killed.

The rage in chat was hilarious.

That's really the only time I griefed people in WoW. I did the occasional corpse camping, but nothing too crazy.

Halls of Reflection though...I laughed my ass off.


Goggalor
Psychonaut
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reply to Savious
said by Savious:

blah blah blah I have no/little skills and used an exploit in game blah blah blah

Why does hate need to be a part of a multiplayer game? It is supposed to be a source of entertainment for a large population, not just a singular individual, hence the multi- part.


Savious
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First, there is very little skill involved in Diablo PvP. Its all about bigger numbers.

Secondly, any sort of emotion that people evoke through a video game is a good thing in my book. We play video games to pass time and have fun. Emotions go hand in hand with that. I look back on my times being corpse camped outside of Duskwood and Southshore fondly. It just made me want to play that much more.

As long as things dont reach a personal level, I feel that briefing and trolling enhance the gaming experience. We get to act in ways that we wouldn't in our real lives and stroke different parts of our ego.

Cannon rushing in Starcraft, camping rockets in Quake and AWPing in CS. All of these invoke rage and anger in our opponents, and we revel in it. We love to dominate our opponents, were competitive by nature. Taking it to a psychological level is just another step in utter dominance.
--
From the ashes of Tristram, I am reborn. The #1 fan, again.


Kilroy
Premium,MVM
join:2002-11-21
Saint Paul, MN
reply to TigerLord
It all boils down to - "All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing." (Edmund Burke)

The griefers will be around until the community as a whole does something about it. If all the community is going to do is whine and complain to the developers and forums the griefing will continue.

Corpse camping would be much less fun if all it took was a message to the general channel that you were being corpse camped and a group of sufficiently powerful people took out the camper, rinse and repeat as necessary until they get the idea that the practice is not acceptable.
--
"Progress isn't made by early risers. It's made by lazy men trying to find easier ways to do something." - Robert A. Heinlein


Savious
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Waaah. I'm being electronically inconvienenced. Its really hard to be corpse camped for more than 5 minutes in WoW. People complaining about it boggle my mind.
--
From the ashes of Tristram, I am reborn. The #1 fan, again.


ekster
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reply to TigerLord
For grieffing/trolling/exploiting, I never liked it and never cared for it... but neither did I let it get to me.

I enjoy PvP and MP, and I like to stay away from exploits and cheap game play myself even if the game allows for it, but I know that others will use it and pretty much expect it from them. I just see it as a challenge for me to improve myself, and I make sure to completely ignore anything stupid someone might try to tell me. They're only there for the reaction... so if you don't give any, they just get frustrated themselves.

And if they go overboard to the point where the game is no longer fun... it's just a matter of going elsewhere to ignore them. They can say or try to justify whatever they want... but they will always be dickwads to me and I'll always treat them as dumb bots.

As for trash talking, I don't mind it if it's in good spirit. Hard to have any sort of PvP without it... just as long as everyone keeps it in good humour.


Snuffbox
nice irl
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reply to TigerLord
I am a practiced griefer and troll. At times I will play a game with the sole intention of trolling.

While you can attempt to label these actions as sadistic, perverse or schadenfreude - it would be inaccurate. At least as a blanket statement. I'm sure some trolls have sadistic, or perverse tendencies as I'm sure some of the "victims" do as well.

This is by no means a justification, or a clearing of my name. I troll, and will continue to heavily regardless. I have thought on why I personally have enjoyed griefing/trolling.

I believe it stems from the "victim" giving you a level of control over them. Control is the key word. They become your puppet. Intellectually you've turned them into a tool. Sometimes trolling doesn't even instil anger.

Anyways, by no means do I expect people to read this and say "Oh, okay I guess trolling is innocent".

My point being simply that labeling someone that griefs others in an MMO as having sadistic/perverse behavior IRL is a fabricated projection in my experience.

Good topic though, miss having things to discuss recently.


Kilroy
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join:2002-11-21
Saint Paul, MN
said by Snuffbox:

I believe it stems from the "victim" giving you a level of control over them.

This, I'm sure is a part of it. When the victim stops reacting the fun goes away.

I don't PvP, because I don't want to deal with it. That's my personal choice. If you have a choice and play on a PvP server then you chose to be ganked and corpse camped. If you have a problem with it then you should be playing on a PvE server.
--
"Progress isn't made by early risers. It's made by lazy men trying to find easier ways to do something." - Robert A. Heinlein


TigerLord
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reply to TigerLord
I'll comment in more details later. I just wanted to say that being turned on by initiating control over others is an integral part of sociopathic tendencies. Sociopaths are undesirable candidates on an evolutionary basis, I don't think it's a good benchmark to evaluate one's behavior.

Arch is right that we have to accept that behavior will always exist but I don't agree it should be accepted or even tolerated in certain contexts.

Athough generally speaking I agree the proper etiquette is not to engage the trolls and beat them at their own game.


Archivis
Your Daddy
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Yeah, I think that where perhaps corporations are going to make a name for themselves, the kind of idle griefing and game exploitation is what will set damaging reputations for many people.

There's a time to engage trolls, and there's only certain people who are qualified to handle them.

quote:
Arch is right that we have to accept that behavior will always exist but I don't agree it should be accepted or even tolerated in certain contexts.
What's dangerous about this comment is that the logical path towards not accepting or tolerating something usually requires outrage and public action. If there are people who are smoking near a day care playground and you're upset over it, you can get confrontational, get upset, take it public and get the authorities to do something about it.

In the goonie situation, drawing attention to it is exactly what they want. They win by following the standard approach. You need someone qualified to handle those with varying levels of psychopathic tendencies. Quite simply, it's the Rorschach approach. It is quick, discreet, unmerciful, disruptive, and targets people on an individual level, with no chance for recourse. Quite often, the Rorschach approach could even be considered overboard, but I disagree.

The problem is that everyone finds it unacceptable and they end up just giving these people exactly what they want. Many people have learned to just walk away and cut their losses. I'm teaching people that there is a way to actually counter these types of people.
--
A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong enough to take everything you have. -MLK


Snuffbox
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reply to TigerLord
If someone would rather drive their car then be a passenger in their car does that equate to initiating control and therefore correlate to having sociopathic tendencies?

You're still projecting mental evaluations based on one word relationships.

Someone that dominates animals abusively establishing him/herself as the alpha may qualify as having sociopathic need to control others.

But attempting to make a correlation between a MMO griefer and mental instability is similar to labeling all gun owners as criminals or all hunters enjoy killing.


TigerLord
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said by Snuffbox:

If someone would rather drive their car then be a passenger in their car does that equate to initiating control and therefore correlate to having sociopathic tendencies?

If you experience pleasure out of asserting that control, yes, it could be.

said by Snuffbox:

But attempting to make a correlation between a MMO griefer and mental instability is similar to labeling all gun owners as criminals.

The correlation is there, science has established it, the link to the study is up there in the thread, and considering the sample size, it's accurate.

Causation need not even be proven since it isn't the point.


bionicRod
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reply to TigerLord
I remember one instance with griefers (not necessarily on par with the Goon squad) in an MMO I was beta testing, but I'll be damned if I can remember which one. Anyway the unfettered world PVP was touted to be a major asset of the game, and once you left the starter zone on a PVP server you were fair game outside of town.

So of course in the first lowbie zone where world PVP was permitted a ton of max level players camped right outside of the only entrance to the town and ganked any level appropriate toon that tried to leave. I remember seeing a group of level 10s staring over a bridge at a group of level 50s, and the ones that crossed got murdered. There were no high level toons in our faction in the town, for all I know they were doing the same thing to low levels in the other faction. Chat was epic QQ and nerd rage.

I was one of the level 10s but I thought it was pretty funny and interesting, but only because I already knew I wouldn't be playing the game past that day. I do have to wonder about people that would go to a zone 40 levels below their toon's just to ruin someone else's experience.

As to whether something like that should be allowed, I honestly see both sides of the argument. Lowbies that are seriously trying to level will have their experience ruined. But for meaningful world PVP you have to take the good with the bad, and there are other games that don't allow it, so maybe those lowbies would be happier somewhere else...
--
The world was movin' she was right there with it and she was


Archivis
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And to my point, bionicRod, what happened if a group of max level players came in and slaughtered those level 50's, confiscated whatever they could (In WoW, that meant nothing, but in Star Citizen, it doesn't seem that way), camped them for a few minutes, and then disappeared without saying a word or giving them a chance to retaliate?

Would it stop them? Maybe not. Would it have them screaming at their monitor as they desperately try to scavenge more people together to get back at the griefers? Yep.
--
A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong enough to take everything you have. -MLK


bionicRod
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said by Archivis:

And to my point, bionicRod, what happened if a group of max level players came in and slaughtered those level 50's, confiscated whatever they could (In WoW, that meant nothing, but in Star Citizen, it doesn't seem that way), camped them for a few minutes, and then disappeared without saying a word or giving them a chance to retaliate?

Would it stop them? Maybe not. Would it have them screaming at their monitor as they desperately try to scavenge more people together to get back at the griefers? Yep.

Yeah that would have been great, and I agree that is the proper response. Once SC releases I'm in for that kind of counter-griefing operation, sounds like a blast.
--
The world was movin' she was right there with it and she was


TigerLord
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reply to Archivis
said by Archivis:

And to my point, bionicRod, what happened if a group of max level players came in and slaughtered those level 50's, confiscated whatever they could (In WoW, that meant nothing, but in Star Citizen, it doesn't seem that way), camped them for a few minutes, and then disappeared without saying a word or giving them a chance to retaliate?

Would it stop them? Maybe not. Would it have them screaming at their monitor as they desperately try to scavenge more people together to get back at the griefers? Yep.

That'd be fun for us, that is for sure, but it doesn't solve the core problem. The griefers will come back once we're gone, ruining other people's experiences, until they quit. Which is business lost.

As a game developer, it wouldn't be a desirable outcome.


Snuffbox
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reply to TigerLord
said by TigerLord:

Causation need not even be proven since it isn't the point.

Causation is crucial in this discussion.

Yes, griefing demonstrates a trait that some claim is also seen in sociopathic behavior. In my example, control

Hunters demonstrate a trait that some claim is also seen in sociopathic behavior.

Movie watchers demonstrate a trait when enjoying a horror movie that some claim is also seen in sociopathic behavior.

I enjoy the control I have to make my own decisions for example, what I eat for lunch. I would not enjoy if that control was taken away from me and decided for me every day. That enjoyment of control is a trait that some claim is seen in sociopathic behavior.

I do not believe you can make these statements in terms of any kind of materiality based on one word relationships logically or "scientifically".


Archivis
Your Daddy
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Earth
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reply to TigerLord
We're a group of what will probably amount to 50 people... maybe 100 tops, against a group that's in the tens of thousands. Swift counter-griefing operations ruins the game for people in the same manner that regular griefing ruins the game for others. If someone is going to quit, who do you want to go?

We're not the game developer. They solve the problem with their own methods. We are players. We can only do our part to put a dent in the situation with the tools that we have.

I can promise you that if you use my method, you will get counter griefers to leave the game. There are other means to fully unravel an individual to the point where they wouldn't even dare log on. I care not to share those methods in public. It's the "extreme" approach of the Rorschach method that a lot of people don't agree with, but it is effective.
--
A government big enough to give you everything you want, is strong enough to take everything you have. -MLK


Savious
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Archivis, Space Age Robin Hood and part time psychologist.


TigerLord
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1 recommendation

reply to Snuffbox
said by Snuffbox:

Causation is crucial in this discussion.

It is not. We're not debating whether such behavior leads to creating more sociopaths.

We are looking to dissuade the excuse that behaving badly in a virtual environment is OK as long as you are a good person in real life. The idea that people have two sets of personality online and off is an illusion.

The point is not to determine whether you are an actual sociopath, it's to establish the hypocrisy of the argument.

You certainly can establish such relationships, it's what anthropology is all about.


bionicRod
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said by TigerLord:

We are looking to dissuade the excuse that behaving badly in a virtual environment is OK as long as you are a good person in real life. The idea that people have two sets of personality online and off is an illusion.

I.E., if you're an asshole in game but a nice guy outside of game, you're still at least partly asshole.

I knew it I'm surrounded by assholes!



--
The world was movin' she was right there with it and she was


TigerLord
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reply to Archivis
said by Archivis:

We're a group of what will probably amount to 50 people... maybe 100 tops, against a group that's in the tens of thousands. Swift counter-griefing operations ruins the game for people in the same manner that regular griefing ruins the game for others. If someone is going to quit, who do you want to go?

The griefers, obviously. It remains to be seen if the game mechanics will even support anti-griefing in a satisfactory manner.

said by Archivis:

We're not the game developer. They solve the problem with their own methods. We are players. We can only do our part to put a dent in the situation with the tools that we have.

That's true, but for games like ED and SC where player input is seriously considered as the games develop, it's a good idea to have that kind of discussion now so the devs know what we want or expect. Though I expect consensus would be impossible, because people like SA members will never accept being tamed.

said by Archivis:

I can promise you that if you use my method, you will get counter griefers to leave the game. There are other means to fully unravel an individual to the point where they wouldn't even dare log on. I care not to share those methods in public. It's the "extreme" approach of the Rorschach method that a lot of people don't agree with, but it is effective.

There is a lot of satisfaction to be gained from beating trolls because you're not beating an opponent, you're beating an asshole you think deserves punishment even more. It becomes a comeuppance instead of just a regular dogfight, and it's the delivery that makes it so sweet. It's a great source of entertainment and I'm game for it, but I would still want us to maintain a certain etiquette.

For instance, in EVE, smack talking in local chat could be unbearable. "Im gonna fuck your mommy", "Loltrolol you suck noob", "QQ more", etc. It's childish and uncivilized.

I would much rather know people are shitting their pants when they pick up PRAXT squadrons on DRADIS because our presence is synonymous with losing instead of them thinking "best smack talkers and anti-griefers in the PU"

As you say, drop in, impose carnage, jump out without uttering a single word, and do so repeatedly until the mere sight of a PRAXT ship would make them rage. That'd be a victory, but I'm not convinced it will make them go away.

Whether we even want griefers out of the game entirely is a discussion in and on itself.


Tirael
BOHICA
Premium
join:2009-03-18
Sacramento, CA
kudos:2
reply to bionicRod
I will be the first to admit that I troll people. It doesn't matter if it is unintentional, how I am in real life, how frequently I do it, or the price of tea is Tanzania, it still makes me part asshole.

Griefing (or trolling) does not have to be accepted by the community, the developers, et al. However, it will exist as long as people who do not care how others feel (read: the definition of sociopathic behavior) exist.

We could discuss how sociopathic tendencies are an integral part of group dynamics and go into great detail about the psychological tendencies of the hivemind. These things have been studied numerous times and a correlation has been established. Online games are just another example that proves the correlation exists. Causation is pointless because we are not discussing causality (A implies B or A happens because of B, and vice versa), only how two things are related (A happens, and B also happens at the same time).

Arch is right (part of me just died). You cannot defeat the hivemind at their own game. They want you to play their game, because it validates what they are doing. It "proves" that their way is the correct way to do things. You have to subvert the rules of the game and make your own.

People who are viewed as criminals are an integral part of society. Communities need someone to punish (read: a group of people to dislike) in order to function. It gives people a reason to say, "I am better than X". It also breeds societal acceptance of others who are not like those that have undesirable social behavior. The old saying, "Without X, there would be no Y" applies.

TL;DR

A community needs trolls, if only to give examples of unacceptable behavior. This gives birth to what a community believes is acceptable behavior (read: societal norms). Right or wrong, every society in the entire world works on these very principals. A community in a game is no different.
--
“Reality doesn't bite, rather our perception of reality bites.” - Anthony J. D'Angelo
»www.chaoticconfused.com


Jehu
Hodor
Premium
join:2002-09-13
MA
kudos:2
reply to TigerLord
This is an interesting topic. I'll add that I believe the discussion is missing 2 key elements: anonymity and distance. When "superdude123" griefs or trolls or spews various epithets, he is anonymous to the world let alone the "victim" and can't be held accountable for his actions.
In addition, anonymity coupled with the distancing of the internet, the "victim" isn't able to kick the living shit out of said griefer.

Think of it this way, if a game required you to broadcast your name, address, telephone and up to date picture, I would wager griefing would not exist, as there is someone out there who would drive from Florida to Seattle to kick a griefer's ass.

That said, I don't get off on it, but I kind of like that there are outlets for these kinds of people with pent up ...urges. Far better they express them in online games than in real life.

Just like the "hive mentality," online anonymity is an enabler of somewhat disturbing behavior, but it's just a game in the end.