Numerous publications have been offered on the grammar of headlines. The basic trick is elliptical constructions, but let’s not get into that here. What this title alludes to is the phenomenon when a recipient of a positive event provides it with a negative assessment. When this happens, the situation is changed to the last thing it has been called, and the speaker, in turn, is colored by what he or she can offer. And a jerk… well, it’s a muscle twitch, an album, a play, a movie and an episode of a popular television series.
Now! What I want to draw your attention to with this post is a peculiar Shroud run where something along those lines happened. The healers, both from a very prominent guild, decided not to heal the raid because they wanted to have fun. And oh joy how fun it was. To spice things off, they both, from the same guild, had a language that, to say the least, displayed their highly trained skills in conflict resolution. When someone finally grew tired of listening to it and spoke up about it, one of the players delivered the full package of antisocial behavior starting from A going all the way to Z. Unfortunately I was too lazy to Fraps it, mostly because I had no idea it would get as extreme as it did, but also because cases like these already exist in abundance. Just go to YouTube and type Nerd Rage. Of course the current situation was colored by different terms than those found in WoW, but the basic structure of the argument was the same: My guild is [X] your guild is [Y]. I am [X1] you are [Y0], where X is a numeric value higher than Y and 1 is a self-estimation proportional to the value X is higher than Y. And 0, well… But the basic line of thought is that because X is 1, X can, according to those who believe to be X, legitimately go about offering A to Z bad attitudes towards all the Ys. Why don’t all the Xs buy a Ventrilo and sit there and talk dirt about everyone else? Because X wants to have fun and fun is an audience that X can believe to be Y.
However, before I venture any further into the MMO psychology 12-year-olds in the school yard, I want to offer a contention. I know this post will bring about a lot of replies from the answering machines that got nothing else to do than go around and call people babies, that they’re crying and whining. (People I suppose who didn’t catch the headline?) This is in itself a very interesting phenomenon because it is obviously something people do for several reasons. One is to justify behavior that shouldn’t be. Another is the same as the one used if you crashed your car: “I didn’t crash my car.” Or: “It wasn’t my fault.” The categorized projects the category. I guess the short version of this is that you are what you say/do, an American ethos that I believe is more true in virtual reality than anywhere else in the world because online this is all that people have.
It wasn’t long ago that I was in a group with this guy who said: “Bingo!” every time he saw something on his screen that he wanted to convey. I loved this guy because he was so conversational. Everything he said got translated into deeds that relayed nothing but a positive inclination, and he did a perfect performance at the same time. This guy really had a blast, and he did all he could to share it - while out-performing the rest of us (of course there are no meters in DDO that actually allow people to measure themselves against others, but it was easy for the rest of us to see that he took chunks of hp whenever he landed a hit). Those are the moments that I really want to remember: people showing superiority while not being ashamed of being a simple folk at the same time, a simple folk simply referring to people who speak in the common tongue and use language to cooperate and see that as part of having fun.
Troll-show-case: He wants your ears!
Troll-show-case: He does not type because he knows that if he typed what he said, he would get banned.
Troll-show-case: He advertises “have ears” in his LFMs. This is your first warning. Why would he need you to listen when you do The Shroud on hard?
Troll-show-case: He belongs to a very famous guild! Do not be mistaken, but famous guilds rely on their numbers. Not numbers of happy members, but guild numbers that are used to show narrow minded authority and immortality: “Ffs! What do I mean? LOL! That my guild is lvl 10 and yours is 2. Srsly. You got nothing to say to me and if you do, plz don’t come here like ur some Mr. know-it-all!” I hope you get my point. If you don’t: “I will make a post in the LFM beneath your post, looking for people for the same event, however, I will decline your application once I have drained your group – because, obviously, people will want to join the biggest number!”.
“Thank you for your inspiration. Without you, I would have been nothing.” (McFailure, 1973: 217)