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PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2008 4:58 am 
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Whilyam wrote:
So what if someone says "This game sucks and so do you". Are we going to reply with the equivalent of "you suck too!"?


Whilyam, my answer to that is NO, absolutely not. In fact, I'd do a whole lot worse to this person, and if you have any self respect or respect for this game, I'd be surprised if you wouldn't do the same as well. :lol: Let's not confuse theory with what actually takes place in the real world... :lol: :lol: :lol:

/end of todays lesson in human behaviour :wink:
/also end of teasing dear Whilyam :P
/and lastly end of my posts today *yawn* :?


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2008 5:19 am 
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Hi guys and gals can I ask a favor?

A problem that a lot of people are bringing up is that they don't trust Fan based oversight to judge their work fairly, and expect Quality issues to mean Artistic Quality. The people here in this thread have shown amazing frankness and honesty discussing the many causes of hurt feelings and I trust you all to notice the folks who read "Quality" as "Artistic Quality".

As far as the FCAL is concerned "Quality" means "Technical Software Quality", Things to look for are the software glitches and bugs that would take down a client at best or the whole server at worst. No one cares if the Age submitted is the next Teledahn or if it is a giant box to play Eddie golf in. While Cyan has not given a Copyright checklist yet common sense dictates you will need permission to use other peoples models in your Age submission, or make your own.

Please feel free to mention this information to anyone worried about it; "Its about basic technical stuff and making sure it complies with Cyan's IP and storyline rules. That's all."

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2008 9:24 am 
Whilyam wrote:
So what if someone wants to try and bring Uru down with constant disgust at what they see? You think they can do that? You think they convince over a thousand people that the game they believe in passionately is wrong and deserves to die? I don't. Because if there's one thing I know, it's that this community will never give up on this game.


This is the nub of what makes me yawp every time I see one of those posts.

If MORE can survive with just us, just the people who are in this community, then hooray. We're safe. But if it needs to grow in order to survive, or if we all want it to grow anyway (and I think we do), then we're not talking about just us in the community. We're talking about attracting floating voters, outside people. And if we are going to commit ourselves to doing that, then, hateful as it is, we have to think about how we present ourselves and our game to people who've never heard of Myst or Uru and frankly couldn't care less one way or the other. And, just like that, the posts of the whiners become a big problem, because nothing sticks like mud.

And here I have to fend off the obvious counter-accusation: "Well, how do you think your posts make us look to outsiders, eh? Answer me that, smartypants. Going around claiming Uru is perfect and trying to throw out anyone who complains about it--what would you think if you saw that, hah? Hah?" And I have no answer for you...except that I have never actually claimed that or tried that, and I don't think anyone else has either. It's what many people in these threads are reacting to with horror and disgust...but it never happened.

I asked if it was worth considering having a separate area for complaints of all kinds that was not visible to casual seekers after information, so that both the useful criticism posts and the outright whine posts could be considered and acted upon by the community among themselves without the chance of the latter kind prejudicing prospective new players, and I suggested that those who want MORE to succeed and grow might like to consider the effect of making negative posts outside this hypothetical private area before they make them and possibly keep them to a minimum during this vulnerable period. I suggested these things because I thought and still think that such posts had a negative impact on MOUL's intake of new players, and I believed and still believe that there were some people who made those negative posts in order to achieve just that. Sorry, but I don't think humanity is perfect any more than Uru is, and some people do just enjoy spoiling things for others. Call them trolls or whatever, but someone coming on one of their posts from the outside won't know that.

So yes, the reaction posts crying shock and horror and fascism and "wanting everyone to have the same opinion as me" will probably be putting people off, and I'm sorry about that. But I did not say any of it. And if Whilyam is right, and we can make a go of this with just those of us here, then we don't need to attract any floating voters, so I never need to say what I did say again. Which will be a huge relief.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2008 12:29 pm 
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The problem I see now is that people use the amount of emotion in a complaint/criticism as a way of dismissing it but in the examples Calam gave:

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Complaining: "How do you people even like this game/community/product!? It has problem X, Y, and Z! This is not worth my money. We should find a better game, like Game X. Game X doesn't have these problems. I'm leaving, just as soon as I finish making 1,900 other posts about why I hate it here."

Constructive Criticism: "This game has problem X, Y, and Z, and they need to be addressed for this to be a better game, and it needs to happen for this to be successful. (Here's how...)"

The fact remains that both see the game has problems x, y, and z. There's a very good chance that, if we show the complainer that we're interested in helping him or her resolve those problems, they will stay and maybe (slim chance) they'll bring in some friends. The danger is that we judge criticisms as complaints because we don't like to see those criticisms and that we spend our energies driving people away instead of making the game better or debating changes.

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2008 1:25 pm 
Whilyam wrote:
There's a very good chance that, if we show the complainer that we're interested in helping him or her resolve those problems, they will stay and maybe (slim chance) they'll bring in some friends.


Which is what we do when we ask "do you have any suggestions for resolving these problems?" "No" is a perfectly acceptable answer, but it's also an opportunity for the complainer to show that s/he is genuinely interested in resolving those problems as opposed to simply trumpeting them far and wide to anyone who might be listening.

The other difficulty comes when problems X, Y and Z are not susceptible of a solution either by us or Cyan, and I'm going back to rygynjupiter's "It All Well And Good But...You're Paying For What?" thread again because this is a prime example.

I don't suppose for a moment s/he thought we could solve the problem of MORE starting off as MOUL-at-shutdown, and if s/he thought Cyan could then s/he wasn't paying attention to the announcement.

As for the problem of fan Ages not being up to snuff, well, that isn't even a problem yet because we haven't started making Ages for MORE yet. I don't believe it's fair to judge what the GoW can do now on the basis of what's currently available on ULM.

Under the circumstances, it's hard to believe that that post was made with the intention of seeking a solution, as opposed to simply driving people away.

I hope that the number of "Yes" answers in the comment thread might have shown that enough of us believe in MORE to make it seem worthwhile, but casual onlookers seeing the thread will quite likely simply read the first post and be put off, and that's what's always worried me.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2008 1:31 pm 
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Sophia wrote:
It seems today's trend to say "There is no right and wrong, good and evil, intelligent or stupid, because everybody is entitled to their opinion and that makes whatever they say all right and don't you dare disagree because that is the only right opinion anyway."
Personally, that is the one thing I dislike the most in modern society, because it puts an end to all meaningful discussions and wholesome solutions. It implies that everyone *shudders* is equal.


Well... yes n' no. People are certainly entitled to their opinions and should have equal chance to present their opinion. Anything other than that is just elitism.

...it's simply the fact that the whole point of a "discussion forum" is to present your opinion and to be able to defend it in some meaningful way. Otherwise nothing particularly productive happens, and it's just a lot of squabbling. Yes, I know this is what the internet is founded on, but people should still make an effort.

It's not that I'm trying to say that people aren't equal. I'm just saying that some ideas have merit and others don't, and good ideas and bad ideas can come from anyone.

Destructive criticism is acceptable but has no merit if there isn't at least some call (implicit or otherwise) for suggestions.

Emotion in arguments is fine too, but you have to be able to separate the emotion from the point made, otherwise you could end up fanning the flames and such.

I'm also not trying to say that people need some kind of laboriously constructed academic argument to make a worthwhile contribution to a discussion. You simply need to be able to defend your position and realize that you can't make a big stink if your idea is shot down for good reason. ...simple as that.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2008 5:11 pm 
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And... as always, you said it better than I could ever hope to do :) You're quite right of course, I couldn't agree more.


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2008 8:04 pm 
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Kero wrote:
One of the best Graphic Design classes I ever had was also one of the most emotionally draining. It was taught by a prof. who had also worked as a Graphic Artist in some of the nation's major Ad houses. For the first three months he praised our efforts - gave us constructive criticism where needed and pretty much had the whole class thinking we were going to be the best Graphic Artists that ever lived. Then came the second three months. In his critiques he slammed everything we did, everything was trash, and nothing worth using as toilet paper to wipe his tushie. He actually had grown men and women leaving his class in tears. Then he sat us down and explained what he had done. The first three months were the college level crtiques while the second three months were the working world critiques - not too exagerated - that we could face when we entered the working world. Then he spent the remainder of the course showing us how to seperate our Ego from our work. That no matter how much blood, sweat, and tears we poured into a project there would always be someone who didn't like it - for whatever reason.


Thank you for sharing this. It is so true. Real-world criticism can be very harsh. We are such a complaint oriented society, too. I worked in retail for a long time, and the idea that the customer always gets what they want by complaining is true. Now I'm a teacher, and my students still try it. I sometimes have to remind them that complaining is not, in fact, going to earn them a higher grade even if they did pay tuition. They did not buy an A.

Quoting Romer Openfield
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This is such an old topic across all forums, and it implies that some people are superior to others simply by how they write their posts or "voice" their points. Often it is the people who deem themselves correct who judge others unfairly by expressing themselves in a condescending manner. I have acted that way occasionally, and so have most of you.

I think the major problem is that many of us lack adequate diplomatic people-skills here, in writing, in this forum. There is little way to make your points strongly, or wield enough authority to get respect for point of view. Some try very long posts, other try large words, some try bullying, and most don't know grammar, punctuation, or spelling. Plus the Ego often gets in the way. Some of you, even the most "seasoned" and level-headed, lace your comments with slight sarcasm or elitist attitudes and self-righteousness. And most of you cop to how long you've been with this game and how much you've "seen."

You know all of this. I'm as guilty as anyone. But we have to get over ourselves and focus on the product (Ages) and develop a more professional approach to it and to cooperative efforts. This isn't like organizing a parade. You need bosses and workers, and ultimately someone to hurt feelings by deciding what lives, what dies, and what needs to be rewritten.


This is very well said. There seems to be such a need to "be someone" that people are going overboard to make themselves known. It is all about ego, that thing that "makes us" need to be right or have the last word (another form of demonstrating that, in fact, you are indeed, RIGHT). I got to the same-old, same-old posts that picked the nits of several other posts, and yes, I was very much turned off. Worse, they aren't posts about the subject, but about what "you said" to what "I said" to what "someone else said" -- back and forth from one ego-driven person to another ego-driven person. I loved Nalates' first post and the two above, and others, but I could barely make myself read those that were responding to responses to responses. Whether those were defending positions, picking nits, or debating terminology didn't matter. They looked the same from the outside -- like squabbling.

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2008 8:22 pm 
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Whilyam wrote:
I've been thinking about this for quite a while and the recent announcement about Uru's fourth incarnation helped me consolidate my thoughts on this.

Nice hit Whilyam. TY 8)


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PostPosted: Sun Jul 06, 2008 9:23 pm 
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Then he sat us down and explained what he had done. The first three months were the college level crtiques while the second three months were the working world critiques - not too exagerated - that we could face when we entered the working world.
Management enlightenment is the first example at (the place of) work. It's so much more successful, especially if you want the best of your team(s) in stressful situations.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 07, 2008 8:46 am 
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Calling them complainers implies negativity. Call them critics. Some critics will be right, some will be wrong, but it's good people are not pressured to be unconditional fans.


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 07, 2008 9:21 pm 
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This is a most interesting and thoughtful discussion, and entering it at this point seems about as appealing as setting out barefoot across a floor filled with broken glass. When I hit that "Post Reply" button, my intention was to say "What Nalates said" and duck back out. Still, I can't resist putting my head in the door to applaud the distinction between complaining and criticism. And to agree that legitimate criticism does not always require a "solution."

Honestly, I don't even mind the complaining, though I am a militant non-complainer in "real" life. People are going to vent sometimes; it happens. It can hurt feelings, but I've seen little evidence that forum grumbling has done significant harm to Uru, which is bigger than all of us. Look at what this game has already been through. People have left, sometimes noisily, sometimes more than once, and Uru has survived. As for this (or any) forum, I can pick and choose what to read and avoid what's annoying/boring/repetitive/hurtful/whatever - or go ahead and read it because there's no way to know in advance what is annoying, etc. after all. (There's even an Ignore button. I've never been moved to employ it, but it is there.)

It's when it goes from "Here's what's wrong with Uru" to "Here's what's wrong with you" - that's where I draw the line. That's the kind of negativity that makes me wonder why someone keeps hanging out with all us losers. I'm not bothered by them hanging out; I just baffled as to why they do. Briefly baffled; there are too many far more interesting things to think about. And do.

/ducks back out the door...

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 07, 2008 9:36 pm 
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Leonor wrote:
Calling them complainers implies negativity. Call them critics. Some critics will be right, some will be wrong, but it's good people are not pressured to be unconditional fans.


This reminds me of something I meant to say in my previous post. I think we could probably add dissenting into the mix, here. People have the right to dissent without worry they are disloyal (or unpatriotic) or destructive, or disengaged from the process. Dissenting from within a community seems to take courage these days, as it, like the critiquing, attracts cries of (pick a word from above). It does serve a purpose even if only to slow the complete silencing of an alternative way of thinking.

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 07, 2008 10:12 pm 
Okay, I'm getting tired of this. Can anyone quote a post wherein any attempt whatsoever is made to stifle an alternative way of thinking? Has this in fact happened and I just missed it?


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PostPosted: Mon Jul 07, 2008 11:33 pm 
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ghaelen wrote:
People have the right to dissent without worry they are disloyal (or unpatriotic) or destructive, or disengaged from the process.


So true.

I think all of us, even those of us who forget it from time to time, agree with this notion. The problem isn't that people are intolerant of dissent (they are not), it's when they try to put qualifiers on dissent, as to say that "complaining" can only occur under certain guidelines, or else it's just petty whining.

The usual charge is "Well, don't complain if you don't have a better idea." To which I might say that if a person wanted to stick their tongue in a mousetrap, I would tell them that it was a bad idea. Do I have a better suggestion, not really, other than to not do that.

<<the following is a collection of quotes from different people>>

Quote:
Constructive Criticism: "This game has problem X, Y, and Z, and they need to be addressed for this to be a better game, and it needs to happen for this to be successful. (Here's how...)"


Quote:
Destructive criticism is acceptable but has no merit if there isn't at least some call (implicit or otherwise) for suggestions.


I've used this analogy before, but it is apt (in at least a rhetorical sense)... Hey, anyone have a solution for Iraq? No? Then it must be going swimmingly. How about Social Security? No, don't know how to fix that, either? Well, then your opinions clearly have no merit.

The problem with this odd definition of "Constructive Criticism" is that it is simply not true. Of course, it's always better to have a solution in hand, but constructive criticism is simply criticism that isn't intended to destroy. Is there anyone her who is out to destroy Uru?? Of course not, and no one truly thinks that, either, but some people need to have to stop using the "constructive criticism" fallacy as a shield against listening to others' opinions, or as a sword against the opinions themselves.

Quote:
Which is what we do when we ask "do you have any suggestions for resolving these problems?" "No" is a perfectly acceptable answer, but it's also an opportunity for the complainer to show that s/he is genuinely interested in resolving those problems as opposed to simply trumpeting them


This is a great attitude which I think a lot of people share, but we also have to be sure not be so quick to demand alternatives. If a complainer has one, they will offer it without prodding or scorn. If not, then go ahead and post your own. But to devalue the criticism because the critic doesn't have a "better" option, or a way to fix it, is just silly. How little progress would we have made in the world if we just kept silent when we had a valid complaint?

If you feel the criticism is unfounded, well then, all bets are off. And you can critique the criticism, too (that's what the Internet is for, after all), but.. not having an alternate suggestion does not make the criticism less valid, and is not itself grounds for "criticism-criticism."

Are we having fun yet? :lol: :lol: Just like old times! :wink:

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