Thursday, March 10, 2011

CSM advocacy, mostly

Mittens' CSM thread is an interesting read. Especially the first six-ish pages, in which some anti-mittens posters made a variety of criticisms which really made me think. For example, one accuses mittens of lying all the time. Another accuses him of being a prolific scammer (and when mittens says that while he is fully in favor of scamming, he does not do it because he doesn't need the money, accuses him of scamming with an alt). Others say that he is in favor of the technetium situation, and that he wants a supercapital buff. It reveals a really fascinating divide between people who know anything about mittens and/or 0.0, and some sort of low information demographic who I assume are npc-sov dwellers.

Also it prompts me to give a meaningless endorsement to a CSM candidate, which I never thought I would do had I been asked yesterday. Somebody made a post that prompted me to look at the election forum thing. Grumble.

Back on topic.

Anybody who has been following mittens for a length of time can tell you the accusations listed are patently ridiculous. Not because mittens isn't a sadistic, metagaming bastard, which he is, but because he doesn't operate the way they describe. Of course mittens lies. He also bluffs, spins and trolls. But he knows when to lie, and when to spin, and he usually does it with a goal in mind. By examining his history we can see that his strategy has been to be honest when seriousposting, building a reputation for truth and accuracy, and then using that reputation to give immense weight to his words when he needs to use spin or trolling to manipulate morale or public opinion.

(he also does a lot of less purposeful trolling just for luls; forum warriors know what is a seriouspost and what is not)

I happen to have a perfect example of this on hand. I started following mittens back during delve war 2 (early 2009 IIRC) toward the end of the war, when bob (kenzoku) was trying to gain and keep a foothold in the east of their former territory. Mittens was posting daily war updates in goon forums to keep the rabble up to date. The 4/14 update was rather negative, and hostiles stole it to use as forum porn. Mittens noticed this (4/20), and proceeded to post it and all subsequent updates on CAOD.

(notice the politics here -- now the hostiles, whose alliance culture provided them little information as to the progress of the war, are getting accurate information from the enemy. This by itself is a cultural victory and hurts enemy morale, and when goons achieve something mittens can add trolling to the mix to further undermine the enemy's faith in their leadership)

I happened to save all those updates in a text document. They show mittens being honest (4/14 and most other updates), spinning hard and causing a massive turnabout in the war (5/21), trolling at the optimal time to undermine enemy leadership (6/5, 6/6) and undoubtedly lying at some point that I will never know about. The text file is here; it's an interesting read, and invaluable for anyone wondering about how mittens rolls. Copy-paste it somewhere with line wrap.

As well, if you haven't read his TTH articles you should probably just unsubscribe now, because you have already lost at eve; they are the seminal works about how successful corporations and alliances are made, how wars are won and lost, how and why failure cascades happen, and more.

The above I am providing as supporting evidence for my conclusion, which is this: Mittens is an astonishingly talented politician. Of all the people in eve he is the one who best understands how organizations are made, how they work, and how to galvanize them to achieve goals. He knows how to make things happen, and not just internally in the CSM.

His stated goal is to transform the CSM into an organization which can actually get things done, then use it to get action on the feature backlog -- those features which are broken or half implemented, or which were promised and then abandoned.

If that were to happen, it would make the game better. Mittens is our absolute best chance of pulling it off, and this is why he needs to be the CSM chair.

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