Clarification: Get Lost

Day 2,787, 09:59 Published in USA USA by Gnilraps

Get Lost (Mandatory listening)
Day 2787 of the New World
July 8, 2015

Well so my last article (which I admit was pablum) did exactly what I expected it to do. It brought out three types of responses in the comments section.

1 - raving stupidity in the form of illogical counter-attacks. There are some citizens known for this, and their mechanistic responses are a thing to behold.

Here's a classic gem from Franklin Stone:
"The point of any good argument is pointless, otherwise there would be no argument...."

You are welcome, eUSA, for my public service in creating the opportunity to read such as this.

2 - politically motivated thoughtful disagreement. These responses are usually fairly boring, though I realize this makes me the pot calling the kettle black. My article itself was dreadfully boring (except for the line about aramec not playing the game anyway... that was funny) and politically motivated. And as pointed out by one of the better posters in this category, I tend to write very crappy politics articles. (I'd estimate that 95% of my political pieces over my 5 years of publishing this newspaper were written after consuming 3ish adult beverages. Since I am not given to consuming strong drink in quantity, 3 pretty much sends me into idiot mode.)

Here's an excellent example of category 2 from Josh Frost:
"With all due respect, instead of grand standing you probably would have been better served just messaging the POTUS. This accomplishes nothing."

See what I mean about boring?

3 - Honest comments which get right to the heart of what I had written.

This poster wins the comments thread ("You have successfully donated 1 Gold. If the user accepts, the amount will appear shortly in the citizen account.") by first summing up my entire article in one word, then stating his opinion of my writing in one word, then offering the only possible rebuttal - once more in just one word.

And so I was quite pleased with myself, having raised the bar on opportunities for all of this madness, while lowering the threshold of quality in the Media.

Buuuuuut now I feel compelled to clarify my position on people like Wooky Jack who, as one commentator suggested, is having a ton of fun playing this game.

What I hope to do with this article, actually, is begin a sensible discourse with all of you (carried out in your own newspapers, of course) about this game we share.

There is a prevailing idea among many players from all walks of eLife that when you oppose someone, especially if you have the audacity to do it publicly, you are expressing your desire that they would do one of the following things:

quit the game,
change their opinions to match your own, or
shut up altogether and crawl into a hole never to be heard from again.

There is an additional thought process that subscribes to the notion that if you disagree with or oppose someone publicly, it means that you hate that person and/or you can't stand his "game".

Nothing makes public debate less scintillating than puerile swats.

So I'd like to offer the following guidelines for understanding what it means if I write an article attacking you in eRepublik, such as what I did with Wooky Jack.

1 - If you are mentioned in one of my articles, I respect your game. This is true whether I am criticizing you or supporting your ideas. This would be a dreadful game if everyone were just like Gnilraps. Nothing makes this game more entertaining than adversity. If I want a boring victory, I'll play chess with my 6 year old son. I can kick his ass in chess and you probably think I love that.

2 - If you are from a party which is politically opposed to mine, too bad because you are totally wrong about nearly everything until it is time for us to ally for some politically motivated reason and then you are probably still wrong but I am far less likely to complain about it. I mean, that's part of the political dynamic for me. OK? Do you hate that about me? GREAT!!! Write an article about it for crying out loud.

Believe me, there's a solid 50% chance that I would have ended up in your political party anyway, considering this is a game and I picked my party for GAME reasons. I dunno, maybe there are some legitimate socialists in the SFP. There are probably a solid number of capitalists there too but when they log on to play this game they are socialist freedom party members. You think I'm USWP because of some deep-seated-personal-convictions-that-perfectly-align-with-my-real-life-views-on-oh-I-don't-know-gay-marriage?


Look, sometimes my kid wants black, sometimes my kid wants white. When I play chess, I don't HATE the blacks. And if I do, that doesn't make me a racist. (Aside: I am so tired of hearing people in this game call other people in this game racists. Grow up people. You want to know what racism looks like? It's a white kid shooting 9 black people in Charleston South Carolina... because they are black.) When the white queen checkmates the black king... it's neither sexism nor racism... it's called a game.

Am I making my point? I'll be more direct:

Wooky Jack. He's an ingame political enemy. Thus I write a piece attacking him. Thus half of the tin hat brigade loses its mind. These are the roles we play. What I am saying is this: I enjoy you playing your role. Yes, even you Wooky, you traitorous anti-eAmerican, you.

(2.1 - And yet what I really grow tired of is when people get so wrapped up in this game that they lose track of the difference between the game character they are playing with {or against} and the person at the keyboard/mouse who is controlling the player they are playing with {or against}. I am desperately opposed to any and all of this crap. So when RGR threatened to break into my RL house after I PTO'd his stupid Political Party, that crossed the line. He permanently lost my respect. Wooky Jack, as far as I am concerned, would never do this. There have been a few other players in this game who have crossed this line. They've permanently lost my respect as well and I do well to ignore them.

I suspect many of us have experienced the emotional crossing of this boundary line. I would guess that if you have been at all active in this game, you've run across someone who has pissed you off enough to want to knock them over the head with a rubber mallet {or at least fart in their general direction}. Most of us know how to handle these emotional reactions. We identify them, perhaps step away from the computer for a while, and they pass.

And in the best of eWorlds, we return to our keyboards and we attack them ingame with ingame arguments. And people get outraged.

And for the record, I almost always put into this category a confusion of Real Life USA with eUSA... As if eUSA can't have a dictator because rah!rah! Democracy! Or because of something Abraham Lincoln said while sitting on the shitter, we need to fear using certain game mechanics to the best of our ability. The only known exception to this is Phoenix Quinn who has made an eCareer out of adapting RL philosophies into the eRepublik world. But his adaptations are for entertainment purposes. That is why they are exceptional. But the rest of you doing this are, in my opinion, advocating stupidity.)

3 - Nearly every "issue" worth arguing about in this game is a virtual construct. We play a game that mimics reality, but it is not reality. And so our Military Units are neither military nor units. Our eCountry is all e, no Country. Our factories, inventories, energy bars, Soldier of Fortune Medals (you suckers!), and every other thing in this game are VIRTUAL.

Therefore all of our debates are virtual. If I am attacking you, I am virtually attacking you. If I am supporting you, I am virtually supporting you. If I hate you, I virtually hate you. If I shoot at you because you are pig-disgusting??? I am virtually shooting you, but it is because you are actually pig-disgusting. cf. eSpain.

Why have I belabored this point in another blah, blah, blah article (yes, Shiloh, I see you coming!)?

Because I am asking you to step up your damn game.

Stop crapping in my comments thread with your idiotic responses that fail to respect the activity I am trying to add to the game by writing my garbage articles to begin with. Here's a Gnilraps protip: The purpose of every article I write in this game is to generate activity.

And I would trade 115 comments in one of my articles with a dozen decent articles published by you EVERY TIME.

So quit treating me like I'm your enemy and start treating me like I'm your... "enemy".

And trust me, if you're ever in my neck of the woods (think greater Philadelphia), I would jump at the opportunity to hang out over a beer or coffee. Because we play a game together, and that makes us friends.

Now get lost unless you agree with me.

(Custom) Tracker courtesy of Mike Ontry's Hit Tracker.

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