Monday, January 30, 2017

What I Look For In A CSM Candidate

On Friday, the second CSM 11 summit will end and the application period to run for CSM 12 will begin. Upon the end of the summit, the incumbent members running will make their intentions known and we'll have some idea of the size of the field for the next council. Now comes the next question: how do you judge the candidates?

First, I try to judge a candidate's character. Members of the CSM need to work with CCP developers. Perhaps more importantly, members of the CSM need to not drive off CCP developers with really bad behavior. If the devs don't want to work with the CSM due to one or two asshats, that reduces the effectiveness of the CSM as a body.

CCP takes a dim view of extremist views. The classic case occurred during the CSM 8 elections when Fon Revedhort, a player who not only expressed white supremacist and racist views, but included neo-Nazi songs in his YouTube videos, was not allowed to run. The post by the CSM coordinator at the time, CCP Dolan, explained the reasons:
"Being supporters of free speech and free and open elections, CCP undertook internal debate about whether or not to deny Fon Revedhort’s candidacy for the Council of Stellar Management, careful to take all aspects of the discussion into consideration. It became clear we could not allow him to continue his candidacy past the initial electoral phase. While he is entitled to his personal opinions and to the ability to “roleplay a character” within reason, CCP does require certain standards for those representing the EVE player base which are not met by the views continually expressed by Fon Revedhort. The presence of such a player on the Council of Stellar Management (CSM) would only serve as a distraction to other elected Council members and developers they would work with both virtually and at in-person summits. Furthermore, it would reduce the overall efficacy of the institution itself and harm future iterations of the CSM, which would be counterproductive for each and every player. As such, with the Council being a vital part of our development process and a representation of our players both internally and externally, we have made our decision and removed him from eligibility."
If CCP takes such a dim view of such views, I figure I should when evaluating candidates as well.

The next criteria I have for judging candidates is if they have an agenda. CCP devs can quickly tell when a CSM member is pushing an agenda to benefit himself or his alliance. Those members become ignored and ineffective. A player can have all the knowledge in the world, but without the devs believing the advice the member gives is for the benefit of the game, the member is just taking up space.

Finally comes what many people would probably consider the most important factor, player knowledge. I like candidates who have a wide breadth of knowledge and experience. A one-trick pony is okay if CCP plans on working on features related to that candidate's area of interest. But what if that subject is not on the roadmap? For example, someone passionate about fixing wardecs is great, but what if the focus of the next year is null sec and the introduction of player-built stargates? If our wardec expert also knows a lot about high sec other than high sec warfare, then that member can meaningfully contribute to some of the discussions. If not? Then that member will just sit about looking for things to do. Depending on the person, that could prove sub-optimal. Or as The Bible states:
Idle hands are the devil’s workshop; idle lips are his mouthpiece.
An evil man sows strife; gossip separates the best of friends.
Wickedness loves company—and leads others into sin.
Somehow I always think of DariusIII when the subject of idle CSM members up to no good comes up. For those candidates running, DariusIII is a warning, not a guidebook on how to act as a CSM member.

If a candidate can pass these three criteria, then the candidate most likely will serve as a good member of the CSM. I have other areas I look at, but those are aimed toward my biases and designed to rank candidates, not determine if a candidate is not qualified.

No comments:

Post a Comment