Government > Conference Hall

My thoughts

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The last 40 something days have seen bubbling away in the order of several concerns particularly by a newer group of players. I'm not going to name names as I've the feeling that I'm about to get an absolute pile on. I've been very vocal about my concerns with the region to those in positions of "power" and got nothing so I, like many others feeling down about things, have retreated to my own little clique where we feel comfortable. We essentially have two "leaders" in TIO, Beatrice as Grand Chancellor and Dave as RP Mod. I've been in touch with both of them continiusly since this first came up. If I give you a run down of my time in TIO you'll see where the big issues are and why others, who I hope will be more open, feel in the same way.

I was recruited in so to speak by Dave, the region had no formal "Hi welcome" type thing no clear or obvious way to get started, that wasn't a problem because I'm an experienced RPer and had got chatting with Dave over in NS so knew I could message him. The first impression when you join is no one gives a shit. I've seen it happen with other new people since, they introduce themselves and you can literally guess who will respond to them. Now I have reasonably thick skin but others don't. We've seen people being massively critical of things as soon as people start posting. Most recently "Oh not another Teuton" , or "Wow another monarchy not like we haven't got enough" or things along those lines. Straight away you feel like this is a community that has limits and constraints and you ask yourself if this is really the region for you. It becomes especially worse because you have no idea about the pecking order, geopolitics etc in the region when you join and you see that quiet often its people with masks on the forum or discord such as "Mod" or "Noble" that are involved so immediately you question your choices. If people stick with it though we have people like Rob, Dave, Nova and Markus that go out their way to help you get your direction and feel like you've some understanding of Mundus.

This then leads to the second issue. There is a very definite pecking order in the geopolitics of Mundus. That is how it should be, obviously in the real world their is too and so if we're simulating life there should be on Mundus. Just as in real life though that pecking order changes just in a RP region it should and must change quicker than in RL. We haven't got the 100 or so years to watch an Empire slowly crumble or the 15 years or so for election reforms. The problem is you very quickly get the idea that this order must be preserved in Mundus. Its backed by two alliances that since I joined just under a year ago have done nothing constructive. The CNN might as well not exist and the CSTO/CSU is fluffed with people who don't contribute anything to RP in the region. I could, and probably should just ignore them, but I want to be a good RPer and as such it would be impossible in real life not to take them into consideration. When I informed people that I'm in the middle of a plot that would create a kind of global network that could potentially stand up to both these established systems its prompted a message to the whole region that "Individual decisions, or actions of groups outside the RP leadership, will be reviewed and catagorized for what they are. There will be no gaming of the Orderian RP." I'm not gaming, I'm seeing the CSU/CNN etc as a problem for nations in the world and as a nation that wants to be seen as a global player I've started trying to do something. Now I'm not expecting a mega 20 nation alliance to spring up tomorrow but the very fact that I trusted someone with these details and rather than watching it happen the leadership have seen fit to send a message that the world order must be preserved reinforces my issue that we have a pecking order and I should know my place. I've been in touch with Beatrice and seen that she's offering to get rid of Rokkenjima etc, and while thats comendable thats not what I want. I asked Dave about the quality of RP in this region before I joined and he linked me to two people's RP stuff, quiet a bit on the old forum. One was Beatrice's, I think she's an amazing writer and story-teller, the other was Markus' Tamora stuff. Both those examples are what we should aim for as a region creating stories in reaction to others and not as we're becoming to preserve a position. I think the Rokkenjima of the old forum deservedly held a place as a super-power that nations respected. I'm now not of that opinion of Rokkenjima and as a result I think I should be within my rights to RP that Altona would perhaps do something about it, and that I should be allowed to RP that without being accused of gaming or told that anything I do to disrupt canon will be vetod.

Canon is also another issue. Its based on stuff involving nations that are long gone. If they left TIO they left, get over it move on. Yesterday I saw my friend and Teutonic buddy Hassfurt leave because they felt ostricised by a region where on Discord people had been critical of their writing both because it was hard to understand (their Portugese and German is their 2nd languge, English their third and part of being here was to try and improve their English. So imagine how it sucks when people say they can barely understand you. I'm amazed at the quality that Markus writes when I believe he's Romanian, his RP writing is better than mine and I'm a native speaker) and because they had a RL negative view of the nation, probably correctly so. Hassfurt was an interesting concept that could have lead to so much cool RP but everytime anyone mentioned their name someone followed it with Nazi and people refused to interact with them. All RP doesn't have to be at the highest level of government and we shouldn't be expecting people, especially people new to the region, to be the ones instigating RP. Its up to the existing people in the region to help and nurture them. We all are here because we're interested in story telling, help people write stories. One of the most intriguing RP's to me at the moment is Nova and Lijiang's smuggling RP. Its something moving forward we can all have fun with but hardly anyone is doing anything in RP beyond diplomatic stuff and as a new nation it becomes hard to get involved. As a result you do something like a coronation, and two people turn up, which means you're vision of hierachy and cliques is reinforced. Now I don't think we should force people to attend but if we're going to encourage people to stay we need to make time to involve them in our worlds and we have to take that step not them. I think of TIO a bit like a house share, if you're the new person you don't want to steal someone elses place on the sofa so you wait for everyone else to get settled before you sit down and then after a few weeks you've found your feet.

Next we've the issue of the the RP rules. I've been accused of gaming because I'm trying to put together a group of nations that could work together to challenge the perceived intolerance/injustice/hypocricy etc that IC exists on Mundus. To me this is not a bad aim for a nation to have. I'm not forcing anyone to join, I'm not going to suddenly post an announcement that I've signed a treaty with three other nations. I intend to RP it out and quiet likely in the process if I'd pulled it off I'd have been seeing Altona being called quiet manipulative, which is what I aimed for. I jokingly the other day said Altona was going to try and buy all the uranium because its trying to monopolise the nuclear power industry and we kind of noticed during a discord chat a lot of uranium producing nations were not members of the MAEA. This sparked an arguement about the importance and history of the MAEA during this I jokingly messaged Maes and said "betting by the end of the week the CSU/CNN have a new source of uranium." Soon after its found in Clysperis. I get new resources can just be discovered in RL but to me as someone who had found a little niche in the world that could have made interesting RP it looks very suspect. Gaming is already taking place on Mundus people say something on Discord and suddenly something happens IC that puts someone in a better position to either take advantage, counter it or one up it.

Another concern is that we seem to be obsessed with arguing. A good example here is the Cool and the Dodo arguement. Dave had to go to bat for a good half an hour on the behalf of Cool who had written something interesting. The first thought on that should have been a) is it damaging RP b) is it likely to be doable c) is it interesting. For all I care Cool could have brought back the Mammoth as it'd have no impact on RP for me he'd just have some stupid looking elephants. Could he bring back a dinosaur, no cos that's just bizarre. Meanwhile we've navies and air forces rocking improbable looking equipment. I honestly believe we have people on discord that if someone said the grass was green would demand you open your window and take a picture with a copy of todays newspaper next to it. Some of the arguements don't even make sense. Yesterday I witnessed an RP post, or the poster I couldn't tell which, get called "Pathetic" with no more feedback given and then when asked by the author politely for some just ignored. The fact anyone would call either a poster or their work "pathetic" is awful. It was clear lots of research, time effort and thought had gone into the post. Now these issues are bad enough but when they come from people with titles of nobility and mods it becomes worse because they are, rightly or wrongly, seen as the government of this region. They are the people the Grand Chancellor has effectively given some form of power to which makes our region work.

Finally we have the manner in which I think this has been handled. I exchanged messages with Beatrice when this began, I know Rob did too. We engaged with consultations on the forum. We made suggestions. Now I've seen today I've effectively been told to go make my own region, that my RP will be blocked and that the GC's door is "always open" well I stepped through that door around 40 days ago. The problem with an open door policy is that if you only ever expect people to step through it and don't leave your office to go and speak to people you'll find people stop stepping through the open door.

Now Tytor said people need to make suggestions. He's right and I have several times both on the forum , in private and on discord. Here having reached this point is what I would do.

1) Have no GC involvement in determing what RP is permitted. The post today saying "Individual decisions, or actions of groups outside the RP leadership, will be reviewed and catagorized for what they are. There will be no gaming of the Orderian RP." is for me saying their is a non-changable RP hierachy that must be maintained. I now also no longer trust Dave fully to see to the interest in the community in terms of what RP is allowed in terms of a hierachy. I think Dave does a great job and frankly without him TIO would be dead. I think though for any RP to be veto'd now he's lost trust I'd want to see two of Nova, Markus or Rob in a position to work alongside Dave to make sure RP is fair. Dave should remain as RP Mod and does a great job checking realism, supporting players in terms of IC involvement.

2) The nobility must be scrapped. It means nothing and everything it did mean is irrelevant. It gives the impression a person is important or significant in the region and while at one time they may have been the set up now requires three roles. A Grand Chancellor, A RP Mod and someone for if the rules outside RP are broken. I have no issue with keeping the people in the jobs that currently do them. Beatrice has at times been the gold standard for what this region can be, Dave works tremendously hard and Achkaerin has a good knowledge of the rules of the region. They could be a solid team if they get the RP side of the region right and frankly thats why we are here.

3) Sort the mods out. If your new to a region you see the word "Mod" and think they are the people who will be supportive and helpful. We have Mods who are not actively engaging with people in the region. Now the arguement will be "their discord mods and are just people active to make sure no problems are happening on Discord." well we get once chance to make a good first impression and when the mods are inactive in the main reason why people join the region then its not a great look.

4) Consistency and being pro-active - We've seen huge knee jerk reactions to things. Today is a prime example. "Rokkenjima is a NPC", "I'm giving up my powers that'll show em."........moments later "Can someone mask me back with my old powers." When something happens we need to take more time before doing things. 40+ days on consulting on a change though isn't acceptable. Its no use saying my doors open and leaving it at that a good leader is someone who is pro-active. Beatrice has known for 40 odd days I'm one of those annoyed with the region. Never in that time has she asked if I've seen any improvement.

5) We need a community that isn't living in the past. Rayyu the other day calculated that we have just shy of 40 active nations, that activity ranges from people just active on Discord, to people posting maybe one RP a month and then Dave who posts several times an hour. I've seen more mention of SANE on the Discord and people discussing ideas with them despite none of them being active for a long time now. Meanwhile we've got things and groups actively trying to do things and no one cares. That is fixed not by some rule change but by people getting outside their clique. Once a month Dave, or someone helping him, should post a global incident. We could then post on NS maybe the response to it from various nations in like a news round up. So I've seen one of the Celts has  a volcano thing erupting, why not see if we can have like the Icelandic one that shut down air stuff, maybe get some tourists trapped etc. Instead though what will happen is it'll likely just become a news post thats interesting while people discuss what colour uniform boots their soldiers had in 1963.

I joined TIO hopeful of amazing RP. I've seen absolute gems of stories and ideas. If we want the region to last please change.

6) Make Altona mod.

If the RP Mod is backing this government actively reviewing Rp with their view of "gaming" then we need to replace Dave.

I appreciate the help you've given me Dave but your role is to support RP not block it.

Fully agree with what's been said. TIO has potential to be awesome. Its not going to be if we bounce from one reaction to the next. Get a group of mods who respect people who aren't in the in crowd and don't live in the past.

First I'm going to hold my hands up on the "pathetic" comment, it was me and certainly not the appropriate way to describe my opinion of something and I apologise for the comment it will not be repeated.

On Altona's points:

point 1 - I will remind/inform everyone that the core point here of "Have no GC involvement in determining what RP is permitted" already applies. The GC does not have any authority over the RP alone so any statement/rule change made or proposed by the GC on RP is invalid unless the RP Mod has agreed to it. The only two Mods with any authority in RP terms are Dave as RP Mod and myself as firstly Cartographer and secondly as the appeal body.

point 2 - Only commenting on the nobility point here, most of the people who have that role got it as a reward for good RP, but I do think it probably needs to either go or be reset or we find some other way of acknowledging good RP.

point 3 - wholeheartedly agree

point 4 - wholeheartedly agree

point 5 - Again I agree

Final point - Conduct in RP does have a line, taking an alternative view, RPing a contrary approach and so on is fine - Samantra is a fine example. However unnecessary digs and writing another nations history isn't on - there are three players all of whom have in one way or another rewritten aspects of Achkaerin's history without asking me for details. People need to get into the habit of checking things rather than making assumptions. The less "angry RP" the better.


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