21 October 2009

Gamer Drama, how much is self-inflicted?

The term Gamer Drama comes from my wife. But yeah, it's there, whether it's the group that acts like six year olds that makes you embarrassed to know them, or the internet forum where people take jokes out of context, or worse yet, make insane accusations?
Yeah, we've been there.

But is it all really necessary? Is this being part of a passionate hobby full of people who do get interested in topics great and small? We're a small hobby demographically. And, if the statistics I keep hearing are any guide, then we're not getting any younger either. And that's the sad part. Must we as a hobby turn on each other because of issues great and small? Look, I'm guilty too. There are games where it's "wind him up and let him go." But, I am trying, maybe it's the wisdom one begins to get in their 30s as one realizes, this hobby has good and bad..but must we let our experience with the bad be the deciding factors in our treatment of each other?

This isn't a "let's all get along" speech. That'll never happen, and if it did, we wouldn't have much to game. The fact really is this: We're too small a hobby to let grudges carry on for long. Don't like a game or somebody in particular? Don't game it or don't play with that person. It's a hard lesson to learn, and it can leave you lonelier in the end. But at least you have your respect. Or, as my wife puts it.."arguing on the internet is like winning the Special Olympics..you might win, but you're still retarded." Perhaps that's not the most PC way to make the point, but I like it blunt myself.

And what the hell is this hate specifically for one website or another? A twisted form of marketing? Don't like a website? Don't go there. Sorry but this one just mystifies me. Isn't the internet the limitless frontier? Lately all I've been seeing is a lot of "this town ain't big enough for the both of us."


  1. Wait till your nearly 50 like me - then you'll hate EVERYONE!

    Heh. Just kidding. I'm SOOO much mellower in my 40s than I was in my 30s that there's really no comparison. I used to be the guy that always jumped to his feet and proclaimed, "You realize that this means WAR!" Now I'm the guy that sees that guy jump up and think, "Sheesh. There goes any chance of doing something productive tonight."

    The internet is infinitely dangerous to one's reputation and self-esteem. There are people out there who are more than happy to take advantage of a cloak of anonymity to make the most outrageous accustions with little or no provocation. This sub-class of web denizen doesn't care if his slanders and the damage they may cause are disproportionately damning compared to what ever real or perceived sleight that punched their red Launch button - they're only interested in doing as much damage as possible and smiling smugly at their handiwork.

    These folks can't be reasoned with, apologized to, or placated by a "Live and Let Live" approach. They're utterly consumed by their own fantastical accusations and convince themselves that their fabrications are true, but also that they are too important to allow to languish without the widest possible exposure. Worse, they have a tendency to attract the attentions of similar birds who are more than happy to have their own feathers ruffled - and thus are born "venomous roots campaigns."

    And what is the target of their assault to do? If they defend themselves, they're labeled as "aggressive and strident." If they remain stoically quiet, their attacker is encouraged to new levels of enthusiasm for his cause and the attacks themselves gain a slight luster of credibility. Why wouldn't an honest man defend himself from slander, after all?

    Because to do so is to risk further damage to one's reputation and to waste hours of fruitless effort to reason with the unreasoning.

    The only real hope one has when locked in the sights of one of these character destroying missiles is that others will let fly with some chaff of their own and counter his negative comments with positive remarks.

    The same is true of "site haters." They're not motivated by logic or reason, they're motivated by a feeling of marginalization brought on by who knows what insult - most likely a demand that they follow the same rules as everyone else - and so they cannot rest until the person or group of people who have failed to hold him in the same lofty esteem with which he holds himself have been laid low.

    For the largest acrection of computational power and intellectual participation ever dreamed of by man, the internet sure feels like third grade recess sometimes . . . sad bullies roam around, constantly affronted by other's who have developed the ability to enjoy one another's company in peace and awaiting the next opportunity to trip someone or keep the ball till the bell rings . . .

  2. Wow...speechless, damn fine points both of you have put across.

    Total agreement on all points covered. For our hobby the internet has created an amazing boost...but of course this has also lead to a few people acting like children that we find in all arena's of life.

    I just give these people a wide bearth and let themselves trip and fall by their own comments and actions.

    Nice Post.