In the wake of the email leak by EN24, I want to highlight onto one point that I already touched upon in my previous article: Quoting out of context and sensationalism are making things a whole lot worse than they should have been. Let me start by outlining two real world examples that are important to know before I elaborate on this.
People jumping off of buildings to end their life. It’s a most horrific way to choose to go, as it leaves many innocents who happen to be around possibly scarred for life. What is less known however is that when the person considering the suicide is discovered, for example standing at the edge of a roof contemplating the decision, or just so caught up in fear he can neither go back nor go forward, there is a phenomena that keeps repeating itself: The gathered crowd may start to cheer on the person and encourage them to go ahead with the act. WTF, you think, who in their right minds would do that? Well, the truth is, many of us who feel we are very rational thinkers outside of crowds can get caught up into the anonymous power state that a crowd brings. When waiting for a time, often not allowed to leave because this could jeopardize a possible rescue operation already underway, irritation can reach new heights and people may resort to the only “solution” they see. And people have this thing for doing what the rest of them around them is doing, because only few like to be the outlier. This is what can cause a crowd to force a person to do something that later on, when the act has been done, and the crowd disperses, they feel very guilty and wrong about. Luckily, experienced teams know of this phenomena and will split up and remove a crowd to keep this from even starting.
Another example is that of sensationalized TV. You take something, and you leave out some details, or you make use of the flaws and uncertainty, and you put it on screen. I don’t even have to give examples because it happens all the time, even on the most reputable of news stations. Or, a related case, that of the reports on the EHEC bacteria, causes misinformation or acts not being thought fully through to result in major damage. Just look how many vegetable farmers are now in money problems because someone said “oh it was a cucumber” and the next day we blamed something else. I kept buying cucumbers all through it, because the ones suspected were of Spanish origin, and the ones at my local store happen to come from Dutch soil. So why would I suddenly stop eating cucumbers, if we’re not even remotely sure that’s what causing it, and the whole infection is so isolated to an area quite a ways away from me? Because the news said so? Because everyone went “OMG cucumbers will kill you”? Bah, I can still think and decide for myself, you know!
Ok, why are these examples important? Because I feel that EN24 is deliberately blowing the whole situation out of proportions for the sake of more readers, and people are following into the trend. Now, there is a chance they didn’t remove pieces from the newsletter. And they did say they are not 100% sure of the validity of the email. But they are still publishing their articles in an very anti-CCP way. They could have handled this very differently. They could have urged for calm, or rationalized upon what was written, but instead they continue to feed into the hysteria that is gripping our beloved internet spaceships game and the belief that “EVE is dying, so we best all quit right now”. Of course, there is also the chance that they too are in turn getting sucked up into this hysteria wave. But this is not what should be happening to a news site. Imagine the bigger and respected sources like Massively or Kotaku to do this. I’d instantly take them out of my daily reads. Because true or not true, that is not what you should be doing. You should keep an objective and neutral stance, consider all possibilities and most of all urge for calm.
That is what I want to ask of the EVE community as well. Calm the fuck down. The world is not ending. As for EVE, we will just have to wait and see. And if you really must go and quit, well, I’ll take your stuff. I’ll be here another while until we have a final verdict. And should it be all bad, well, then I’ll pass your stuff on to the next generation. But honestly, unless at this time you really mind some people are spending a stupid amount of ISK on a monocle, EVE is still very much the same as it used to be. And if they ISK of a few is going to keep the company afloat, well why the hell not? Again, as outlined in my previous post, as long as CCP only sells vanity, which at this time is the case, I don’t see any particular reasons to panic.