In a socially-driven game environment such as EVE Online’s, everyone has an agenda. CCP promotes its products and has an army of volunteers to do the same; corporations and alliances deliver entertaining recruitment drives, CSM election candidates solicit for voter favour, bloggers and podcasters opine to their audiences.
In this intricate web of communication, influence and control; what part does propaganda play in your game?
If there’s one thing I can’t stand, it’s advertising; actually, scratch that, if there’s one thing I can’t stand, it’s MARKETING.
I find the very idea that I need to be told what I need is farcical at least, downright insulting at the worst.
Prove it? OK.
On some very rare occasions, I reluctantly sit and watch a show on commercial television; usually during a patch time when I couldn’t be arsed logging on to the Minecraft server.
First off, it is a hard and fast rule in our house that ALL television commercials are muted, so we never have to listen to them.
Second, during every ad bombardment (they occur between program breaks on Australian commercial TV), I deliberately turn to my wife and talk to her.
Whilst driving, I have my phone plugged into my car stereo playing my insanely large music collection – the amassing of which is a direct result of working in the music industry for twenty-seven years.
This aids me greatly in avoiding having to subject myself to commercial radio (AKA Bogans On The Airwaves).
Unfortunately, my wife listens to these splendidly terrible shows on her way to and from work. This means I am occasionally exposed to the very “best” of the subject matter for daily discussion, which ranges from how to deal with a dog turd on your front lawn to Poly amorous relationships, are they for you?
When making a purchase of any item with any significant monetary value, the procedure is simple: Google the item type, read reviews and comparisons carefully, isolate the most suitable item for the available funds, compare prices and call the winning store with an order, arrange pick up, gag and blindfold the wife before entering the store and pick up said item whilst giving the “Customer Satisfaction Officer” the necessary look to convey the subtle message that yes, I WILL kneecap you if you try to sell me something else.
Have I successfully conveyed my feelings on marketing? Excellent! Let’s move on then …
As previously discussed, I have recently left Null Sec for an indeterminately long care-bear holiday in High Sec.
Whilst in the area of Eve fondly known by many as “The Big Blue Doughnut”, I was indeed bombarded by propaganda.
This originated from many sources, including, but not limited to, the following:
Eve News 24 – a sort of badly translated, spelled and formatted Eve version of Fox News.
TheMittani.com – a sort of much better spelled and formatted Eve version of Fox News.
Alliance and coalition fanboi’s – a sort of organic, semi literate, semi sapient Eve version of Fox News.
Alliance and coalition leadership forum posts – a sort of Eve version of Women’s Weekly.
Alliance and coalition forums – a sort of Eve version of women’s monthlies.
Corporation forums – a sort of Eve version of a public toilet wall.
Oh yes, there is plenty of propaganda in Null Sec.
There is probably plenty of propaganda in Low Sec and wormhole space too; however, having never been in a corp in either of those delightful regions I am unable to enlighten anyone on that.
There is, however, a massive difference between my feelings for real world marketing and Eve Online marketing within the game; with the Eve version, I LOVE it all!
Whilst in ANZA, first stop of the day was the corp forums; do a bit of trolling, a bit of shit stirring, wind up the directors a bit and always be making sure to keep the laughs rolling along.
Second stop was the killboard, looking for the “Oh no!” KM’s, the “WTF???” KM’s, and the “Not again!” KM’s.
Then it was log in, check out Jabber, the corp chat and the alliance chat.
Every night was (still is, really) trawling the news sites, laughing at the awful spelling, the intense whining and bitching, the slap downs, the trolling and the E-peen stroking.
What part does propaganda play in MY game?
A massive part!
Why then, such a big difference in my view between real life marketing and the in game version?
Because the people doing the marketing in Eve aren’t killing the environment for profit, they aren’t attempting to coerce me to purchase shit I don’t need and they aren’t operating the real worlds politicians like a badly run Punch and Judy show.
Also, in Eve Online, nobody actually DIES for someone else’s profit.
It’s all in the mind, you know.