Friday, March 30, 2012

The Rise of Eve's Pajamahadeen?

Pajamahadeen - a portmanteau of pajamas and Mujahideen meaning bloggers who challenge and fact-check the traditional media.
I had a ringside seat in the summer of 2004 as a bunch of "pajama-clad" bloggers took on the powerful Dan Rather and CBS News over a story containing forged documents ... and won.  Are we about to see a repeat this year between the Eve blogosphere and the mainstream gaming press?

The Mittani, to hopefully no one's surprise, is mad as hell at the gaming press and yesterday began tweeting about their terrible posting, er, I mean reporting.  Just watching the Tweetfleet post I have the feeling we may be about to witness a barrage of blogs and podcasts backing up The Mittani's claims.  And reading the news I see several easily spotted inaccurate facts.

From The Escapist's Mike Kayatta:
"Alexander Gianturco (perhaps better known as "The Mittani") went on a five-minute-long bullying tirade against a recently-divorced player whom his group had recently blown apart in game. A 'dramatic' reading of the player's reaction to the death culminated in Gianturco muttering the following: "'Incidentally, if you want to make the guy kill himself, his name is [REDACTED]. He has his own Corp. Find him.'"
Sorry, but the offending comment did not come at the end of a "dramatic" reading.  It came near the end of the question and answer session as The Mittani tried to be cool in the way drunks will; with too much volume and thinking himself funny "ha-ha" instead of funny "let's lock him in the basement and not let him in public again."  In other words, the remark was a spur of the moment brain-fart, not a planned part of the presentation.  The worst part of the story is that Mr. Kayatta actually references where to find the remark in the video and still managed to get it wrong.

From xmediaonline's Andrew Smith:

"Possibly realising what he had done, The Mittani posted a heartfelt apology almost instantly to the Eve Online official forums. It wasn't until a few days later that the pressure of the media started to show and CCP was forced to act. Stating a breach of the user agreement and terms of service they placed a 30 day ban on The Mittani and forced him not only to resign his chairmanship, but to give up his place on the CSM."
Perhaps I should not include Mr. Smith since is not really a gaming site, but as the number #2 listed story on Google News I just have to point out that the Alliance Panel was on Thursday night and Mittens posted his apology after landing in Boston on Tuesday night.  The facts I mentioned, except for the part about Boston, were easily available.  I happen to know about the Boston angle because I flew back to the States on the same plane.

Mr. Smith also got the penalty wrong, but came a bit closer than's Eliot Lefebvre:
"Following harsh remarks in which he advocated finding and harassing a player who had expressed suicidal thoughts, Gianturco issued an official apology for his actions. But that isn't the end of it -- Gianturco has also been hit with a 30-day ban from EVE Online due to actions that violate the game's terms of service. He's also resigned from his position as chairman of the current Council of Stellar Management and forfeited the right to serve on the next CSM."
The actual sequence of events was that The Mittani resigned his position as chairman of  CSM 6, then CCP issued the 30-day ban for a ToS violation two hours later.  Because CCP does not allowed banned players from sitting on the CSM, The Mittani could not take his seat on CSM 7, which had not yet been seated.  But because he was not a sitting CSM member at the time he was banned, he is eligible to serve on future CSMs, starting with the 8th.  The way the moves were reported, it would lead people to believe that Mittens was barred for running for CSM 8. is a big gaming site that influences the reporting of others.  I believe that is the case with a piece written by Video Game Writers' Russell Jones:
"Later, Gianturco said he was drunk during the panel and issued an apology for what he said.  That wasn’t enough to avoid a ban for violating CCP’s terms of service, and Gianturco also resigned his position on the Council of Stellar Management, a group of player-elected representatives that discuss game issues and development with CCP."
Other reporters tried to provide background information for their readers.  For example, Develop's Seth Tipps wrote:
"The Mittani is the most famous player character in EVE, responsible for single-handedly bringing down 'Band of Brothers', one of the major factions in a conflict the community now refers to as 'The Great War.'

"A member of the alliance known as 'Goonswarm', The Mittani infiltrated the ranks of rival alliance BOB and, over the course of two years, worked his way up to the upper echelons of the faction's leadership.

"He then disbanded the alliance.
No he didn't, but that seems to be a recurring thread.  From's Martin Gaston:
"Gianturco was responsible for EVE Online's most famous and publicised moment, when he managed to infiltrate and disable Band of Brothers, the game's dominant corporation at the time. The event is referred to as 'The Great War'".
Poor analysis of The Mittani goes beyond why he is famous.  Alec Meer of Rock, Paper, Shotgun provided this startling analysis:
"Gianturco is to receive a 30-day ban from Eve – which is, I suspect, quite a handicap for a player as powerful as he ..."

Considering that The Mittani is famous for not logging into Eve for long stretches of time, his analysis is flawed.  But at least the article no longer shows an image attributed to Mittens that was actually created by a player outside of Goowswarm.

With the gaming media supplying such fertile ground for a potential Pajamahadeen to grow, what type of activity is occurring now?

Jester wrote a great post, Hats, that can form the basis for any intelligent counterattack against the barbs thrown by the gaming media, especially if they keep up with the quality they have currently displayed to date.

Voices from the Void podcast host Arydanika blogs about the hypocrisy at the gaming sites talking about cyber-bullying because of their silence about sexual harassment at Cross Assault in February.

Eve Radio's DJ Funky Bacon will cover irresponsible journalism on his next show scheduled for Saturday at midnight GMT/in-game (Friday at 8pm Eastern time). 

SynCaine at Hardcore Casual has already started making fun of Massively, even in a post about incursions.

I'm sure we shall see more if the gaming press decides they want to camp Eve Online.  Eve players tend to be ... creative.  Maybe someone should warn those reporters to stay away.


  1. No matter how much support Mittens gets from the blog pack, he is still a douchbag. And nothing can protect a douch from himself. Sooner or later he will show his true colors and then everyone who believed in him will look like a fool. Trust and betrail, I guess, is the true meaning of Eve.

    1. This is a terrible post and you should feel terrible.

    2. "You don't explain why he is a "douchbag". What? GSF member ganked you or did you lose a Mackinaw to ice mining. Get over it sunshine. Do you know him personally perhaps? Did he kick your puppy?"

      LOL, no he or GSF never affected me in game at all, Mittens just looks like douchbags I know in RL and those have never proved to be any good for anything. BTW look who is whining about me now? All of you should HTFU and stop your whining about how Mittens got the boot and put your money on something better.

    3. I couldn't care less if Mittens got booted or not. You are just a terrible poster.

      So you hate Mittens because of his looks? ROFL! Now there's a sound argument.

      (In case you didn't read above, it's "D-O-U-C-H-E"

    4. So you base it on that he LOOKS like a duche you know irl? Who is the real duche here?

    5. This isn't about Mittens. It's about journalists being accountable to their readers. I do not appreciate misinformation being stated as fact. This is unprofessional and unacceptable.

      Also, Mittens is a hero.

  2. Ah, yes. Blaming the media. The last refuge of scoundrels.

    1. So you're saying that the media shouldn't be held accountable when they get their facts wrong? Interesting.

    2. Come on Mord, you too?

      I don't have much love for Mittens, but if you can't get your facts straight, then you shouldn't be writing.

      You author an intelligent blog with facts and insightful comments with regards to those facts. Point is, you started with Fact. They base their stories on heresay and then make suppositions based on flawed information...

      Not good

    3. I'm not blaming the media for Mittens having the poor judgement of getting drunk and putting both feet in his mouth. I just want them to get the facts straight. That is what the pajamahadeen were all about.

    4. NoizyGamer, the Mittani may well have been drunk, but he prepared his presentation when he was sober.

    5. @Dàchéng - Your reaction is part of why I am a bit upset with the gaming media. If you read the article in The Escapist, for example, you would have thought it was part of his prepared presentation. But the comments were not made during his prepared presentation. They were made at the end of the Q&A session of the entire Alliance Panel.

    6. Mord Fiddle has been consistently wrong on things relating to Eve for quite sometime now. He was last posting about the the DRF even as the DRF was starting to come apart at the seams.

      So, don't worry about him, he can barely find his ass with both hands and a flashlight.

    7. Dàchéng,

      I love that. Everyone gets in a towering rage over this incident. Consider the following:

      1. My God! The Mittani wanted people to go harass this guy in game saying, "If you want him to kill himself his in game name is...."

      2. People point out that yeah, that was stupid. Very, very stupid and not good. The Mittani is one of those people.

      3. Some people point out that CCP hasn't taken their share of the blame. After all CCP did the following:
      a. Hosted the panel.
      b. Provided the booze.
      c. Provided the camera and live stream.

      I mean what could possibly go wrong here?

      4. And everyone laughed at the initial presentation.

      5. CCP saw the initial presentation and their reps laughed along with everyone else.

      6. There was no identifying information in the actual presentation, it was the comment during the Q&A portion.

      So, if this really bothers you...uninstall the game and Hello Kitty Online or whatever nice friendly game you want to play is ----> way.

  3. Could you clarify your position on a person suggesting that it would be funny to make someone commit suicide and suggesting that others join in the assault? From the tone of your post, you seem to be missing the central issue.

    1. Where did he say it would be funny? Because that's not in he video. Where did he say people should attack him (he simply said, if you want to harass the guy, here's his character name) because he never said that either.

      It's nice to make up statements that sound bold and damning, but they're not true.

      You're a perfect example of the problem

    2. My position on what Mittens did was that trying to cause someone harm out of the game is wrong. Yesterday I posted that I thought that the part of the presentation where The Mittani made fun of the miner showed no class. I believe that being prevented from taking a seat on CSM7 and being banned for 30 days is an appropriate punishment for what he did.

      Having covered the actual events yesterday, I posted about the media coverage and the possible reaction today. Why? Because the punishment has been applied and it is time to look at the other issues.

  4. Granted, Mittani did something regrettable. He apologized not because he was told to, but because he genuinely felt bad. The supposed victim has accepted, and has asked others to forget it. He has made every effort to accept the fact that he fucked up, but the continued pressure to throw him under a bus for something that has already been settled is another issue entirely. This is a manhunt for the sake of drama and the interest to watch someone of notoriety shamed.

    I am glad to see that so many people have nothing better to do than spend all their time reminding someone that they messed up. Tabloid politics clearly has come to eve, and I thank all the above comments for reinforcing that opinion.

    1. It's no manhunt. Journalists and corporations like CCP move on a slightly slower schedule than most. Articles and public statements roll out days or weeks later than the event.

      And besides, Alex can't have it both ways. If he wants to be a leader, build himself up to be "The Mittani's" and have his goons hand him the CSM chair, then he can't go crying to his momma that he's being pilloried in the press when he publicly screws up. "deal with it, Alex". He can't have all the glory and none of the responsibility.

  5. I feel bad for the guy, he screwed up. But perhaps his biggest screw up was providing plenty of fodder to those that would see the game burn to suit their agenda.

  6. Alex never resigned as CSM6 Chair (get your facts straight!) He attempted to decline the Chair of CSM7. CCP's ban precluded that from occurring. He didn't successfully resign from anything.

    "With CSM7's term beginning on April 4th, I now exercise my right as the winner of the election with 10,058 votes to decline the office of Chairman."

    1. According to CCP Xhagen, he did. If you had clicked on the link, you would have read this...

      Q1, CCP forced the resignation of the CSM Chairman.

      A1, As a part of the CSM bylaws, banned players are ineligible to sit on the CSM. This would have been an unfortunate side effect of CCP feeling that a temporary ban was the correct course of action in this case.

      However, prior to any notification to this effect, The chairman of CSM6 resigned of his own volition as he had previously announced that he would do. Since the chair resigned from CSM 6 prior to being banned and was not yet seated on CSM 7 he will be able to run for future CSMs.

      When it comes to the CSM, CCP Xhagen is the best source their is.

    2. So you're choosing to use Xhagen's interpretation of the rules & timeline rather than Mittani's ** own statement **? You sir, are no better than the gaming media you criticize.

    3. @Anonymous - Of course I choose to use the information that CCP Xhagen posted on the offical Eve Online forums. He is the CCP dev who oversees the CSM. Or, as Blog Banter 34 quoted him as saying, “the guy that gets yelled at when the CSM dudes do booboos”. As such, he knows all of the details.

      More importantly, what he issued in the blog post linked is the official interpretation of the rules and the official timeline of what occurred. What happens in the future if The Mittani chooses to attempt to rejoin CSM politics will be governed by what CCP Xhagen posted.

      So in effect I reported on what actually happened instead of what The Mittani wanted to do.

    4. What is this I don't even

    5. Here is the summary so far:

      1. I posted official CCP information in the article.

      2. I was told my facts were wrong.

      3. I pointed out that the facts came from CCP Xhagen. I made the mistake of assuming that everyone knows who CCP Xhagen is and did not identify him. I then quoted the official CCP interpretation and timeline of the events verbatim.

      4. I'm told I should ignore CCP Xhagen and the official CCP timeline and interpretation of events and use The Mittani as my source instead.

      5. I point out CCP Xhagen oversees the CSM for CCP and thus is the best source for what actually happened.

      TL;DR - My source is the dev who oversees the CSM for CCP. Thus my story is accurate.

  7. This comment has been removed by the author.

  8. SynCaine was actually making fun of Massively's commenters in the post you linked.

    But don't let facts stop you from fighting the man! Game journalists are evil! EVE douchebags forever! Lol.

    1. Game journalists aren't evil. They just need to work harder at getting their facts correct. And the link is to something that demonstrates the results of the facts not coming out right.

  9. Alexander needs to learn that there are consequences to everything, and by standing up and trying to get people to convince a man to kill himself, he is going to garner a great deal of unwanted media attention. For him to cry and whine about those consequences after doing the deed is sad. If he really didn't want the words "Cyber Bully" attached to his real name, he should never have put together that slide, gotten drunk, and said the things he said.

    1. The slide was never the issue. Ever. If it had stopped there it would have gone precisely nowhere.

      Bullying is a persistent act, not a one-off thing. Bullying is, and cyber bullying in particular, is usually geared towards children. It also is usually geared towards a person's real life identity, not an in-game one.

      None of this makes what the Mittani did right, or acceptable, but to raise it to the level of cyber bullying is a strong indicator that the one doing so either has,

      1. A grudge they are using this incident to further (and if true that speaks poorly of the person doing so).
      2. The person doing so is a retard.

      I'll let you pick which of the two apply to you.