Wednesday, 1 August 2018

Writing for Crossing Zebras

I'm going to make what will probably be a somewhat half-assed effort to keep other writers company with this Blaugust initiative.  Not sure I'll write a post a day but ho hum.

Blogging tends to be both reflective and personal and proper journalism is less forgiving of either. Writing for someone else's website falls somewhere in-between.

I put out a piece on Crossing Zebras last week which sparked a somewhat hostile reaction on /r/eve for two reasons. The silly reason is that I was rude about Barcode Alliance, well blunt perhaps rather than deliberately rude. I thought they were over-hyped and some of them took great offence. They all shut up though once they lost their first match to the unfancied Japanese language alliance Samurai Soul'd Out.

The more significant issue is that some people felt I hadn't done enough background research.

Now here's the thing - people who do significant levels of background detail on the AT teams are usually spies working to give advantage to their alliance. The information they find is not for public consumption - it's an edge for their own team. Had I put the work in to track the pilot movements and sisi matches that other teams revealed I would not be using that information for a public article, I'd be my team's Master Spy.

Instead it's an appraisal based on past form and I got 12 out of 16 calls right.

Now this does highlight an interesting dilemma about the Tournament. Anyone who really knows their stuff keeps it private.

There are some exceptions: Apothne, Elise Randolph, Nashh are all focused on the event and the community rather than a particular team. CCP Fozzie has previously been knowledgeable and forthcoming although he's unfortunately become much less outgoing with the community since a section of it decided to blame him for the perceived shortcomings of the new sov system and try to get him fired.

So we're in a This is why we can't have nice things situation. The determination of the Eve community to be hostile towards content providers and obsessively competitive to the point where leading AT players would rather keep under the radar even if it kills off their tournament is clear.

There's no obvious route in for new captains. Where do you start? 

I'll still write anyway but one of the things I miss from the days when we all had blogs and there weren't these professionalised sites was that readers were polite. If someone rage posted their comment would get deleted and they'd get banned. Truth be told it virtually never happened (except to Gevlon). Commenters didn't feel the sense of entitlement that perhaps shapes the modern Eve commentariat.


  1. I don't think Blaugust is on Anook this year. Perhaps better to link to Belghast's event post here:

    As for Reddit, it does suffer from the whims of the mob. It is very easy for somebody to lob a tomato at a post and set the tone for the comments to follow. You didn't do enough research, said somebody who likely did none at all.

    Ideally the voting system should recognize the good and hide the bad. And I've seen that work in some subreddits. But a lot of them end up more like a sports radio call-in show where people just want to support their team and call out their rivals live on the air.

    1. Good catch, I've now fixed the Blaugust link.

      I have good news regarding the research front. The player who was most cross with me suggesting that Barcode might be over-hyped spent 10 minutes finding out the hard way how true that was. We can now consider him informed ;)

  2. This is why I continue to maintain my blog despite being pulled in a million different directions. It still provides a quiet place to write whatever I want.