Written by | Posted June 3, 2016 – 11:21 am First, Finest, Last (Anryl)

She was barely fifty years old* when she took her first – a contract handed out in Everlook, though how she’d ended up in that godsforsaken ice-sheet she couldn’t be sure. It was a simple thing to kill the woman listed on the paper she had signed. Anryl had no idea what Telwae Lightsorrow had […]

filed under Feature, Roleplay
Godmodding and Griefing
comment 116 Written by on March 16, 2010 – 10:49 pm

I very rarely take on other bloggers** around here, especially with bloggers participating in fun things like a new “bloggy” guild that’s sprung up over on Argent Dawn.

Unfortunately, I came across a post today, and (as I’m sure you’re going to notice) it’s made me rather upset.

Anyway, here is the post from the other blog:
(Apologies for the long quote, but I want this to be in full, so that I’m not accused of “taking it out of context”. The post has since been deleted, but the original post was titled “The Single Abstract Noun Bad RP Challenge”. If necessary, I can provide a google cache link for this, but I don’t think it’s needed. The point stands.)

Fun blogger event!
I’ve been hearing a lot about some… indecent or just plain awful RP that seems to be happening at select locations around Azeroth (such as the infamous Goldshire).  Denizens of SAN are both outraged and amused by these incidents.
Step 1 – Mock the RP
Note: DON’T mock poor saps who are minding their own business and really trying to RP legitimately.  Use your good judgment on whether the participants should be mocked or left alone.

Go into one of these locations of ill-repute, and, in character, find a way to confuse and annoy the terrible RP-ers.  Examples:

  • Azeroth Vice, here to break up prostitution.
  • The minstrel whom the paramour hired and then did not pay.
  • Repo man here for the mount (look, I don’t care what you’re currently doing, buddy, you are late on your frostsaber payment)
  • You’re the dude with the 2:00 PM appointment with the lady of ill-repute and you HATE to wait.

Anyway… the list goes on…  Be creative!  The important thing is to stay in character, and totally throw the RP people a situation they aren’t expecting.
Step 2 – Screenshot & Post on blog
Then we can all mock them together!  You might want to redact names or particularly gross bits of text.

And, if you don’t mind, drop me a note or pingback, because I want to see!

I’m going to say this plainly. I’m going to say it in bold text. And then I’m going to explain:

This is griefing.

This is godmodding.*

This is not something that should be going on, ESPECIALLY on an RP server.

I don’t care how bad the RP is. I don’t care if the persons involved are cybering a half-dragon, vampire threesome in front of your eyes. (If they are, ask them to stop OOCly and report them for a TOS violation – cyber in public places is against the TOS). I don’t care if they’re using aol-chatspeak and not using any punctuation. I don’t care if they’re talking about another game and pretending it’s WoW RP.

I don’t even care if they’re godmodding YOUR character and telling you that you now have to deal with it.

This is NOT how you “deal with” so-called “bad” RP.

This is griefing RPers.

It is taking control of other players’ characters and situations without their permission, and it is ruining something that they are enjoying doing for no other reason than that you feel like doing it (because it’s fun and you think they suck).

Ha ha. Isn’t that funny. Let’s mock the RPers.

This is no different than the people that mock/grief “good” RP, because they do the same thing.

It doesn’t matter to me that my friends and I have well developed characters and other people don’t. It doesn’t matter if other people are RPing terrible characters that bend the lore and make me want to smash my face into my keyboard. These are people who are not doing ANYTHING to anyone involved, and they are being targeted simply because they’re bad at something. Something they may very well be new at, have never done before, or are trying out just for grins to see if they like it. They might be very young. Or they might flat out be bad.

None of that matters.

“Using your good judgement” doesn’t enter into it. Those “poor saps” who are just doing their own thing don’t earn the right to be left alone because you think they’re OK, when those OTHER RPers are so bad it’s OK to grief them.

NOBODY gets to be the Good RP Police.

You know something? I started out as a bad RPer. My first RP character was a horrendous, nausea inducing, lore bending Mary Sue of unbelievable proportions.

And do you know why I still RP?

I still RP because nobody pulled this kind of griefing with me. Nobody ruined my play time for laughs because they thought I was bad. Nobody came up and took control of a situation I was RPing by “playing” that they were there to be the RP police and they thought my RP was bad.

This behavior is godmodding, griefing, and a reportable offense.

Just because it is being done in character doesn’t make it any less awful.

You want to reposess someones frostsaber? You whisper them first and get permission to join the RP.

Walking up and taking the situation, dumping it on their heads, and then posting screenshots on the internet for you and your buddies to laugh about? Approaches the point where I want to report you for griefing. And you know what? If someone tried any of those stunts with me? I would be reporting them for griefing, as well as putting them on ignore.

On an RP server like Argent Dawn especially, rules exist to protect people that want to roleplay, and within those rules are provisions that state “if you don’t like it, go away.” Nobody gets to ruin anyone else’s fun just because they don’t like the RP, even if the RP is “bad”.

There is no rule that says you have to be good at RP to enjoy doing it.

The only rule is that other people either ignore RP they don’t like or go somewhere else where it’s not happening.

Step 1 – Mock the RP

Step 2 – Screenshot and post on blog so we can all mock them together

If you want to have a good time and start a bloggy fun project, be my guest. I don’t have any problems with people having fun. (I don’t have any problems with people pointing out that some RPers are just /bad/ either. Because some of them are! I was one once, and I learned and got better!)

Everyone is entitled to the same enjoyment of their $15, as long as they’re not violating the TOS. There is no reason to ruin *someone else’s fun* because you don’t agree with or like it.


*Godmodding is what happens when someone takes control of another player’s (or players’) character(s) for their own gain, without permission – essentially they are “playing God” or “playing as a God.”

**This is an edit. This sentence SHOULD have said “taking on other blog posts” – as it is, it’s a little close to the line of a personal attack, and so I apologize. I’ve refrained from actually changing it, since the original should stand, and I’ll stand by what I said, but know that the intent of it (which doesn’t change what was said at all – and I know that) was “blog posts” and not to attack a person.

(EDIT: It has come to my attention that the blogger who posted the Bad RP Challenge may have done so without actually having any input from the guild Single Abstract Noun. While I don’t intend to change the title of the post on someone else’s blog, I will more than happily remove the links to the guild website if there is a disconnect here that I didn’t know about (not being a member of the guild, I can’t tell if there is anything on the forums). If the SAN leadership wants to get in touch with me, I’m happy to discuss this.)

(EDIT #2, after having spoken with the guild sort-of-leaders from Single Abstract Noun, I’ve done a bit of editing. This post isn’t any attack on SAN or it’s founders or members – many of whom are new and unfamiliar to RP and rolling on an RP-PVE realm for the first time. My issues, as I outline them above, are completely with the ideas presented in this post. As such, I’ve chosen to remove the link to the SAN guild forums – though not to totally remove the name – since there aren’t actually any guild sponsored events and this seems to be a one-off decision by a guild member.

Hopefully nobody takes from this an excuse to be nasty to YOU guys. Because quite honestly, a big part of the point of this post is “Be less nasty to each other”, and going to be trolls in your forum kind of defeats that entire purpose. There will be more in the future on this front, but for now, I think that’s enough clarification.)

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116 Responses to “Godmodding and Griefing”

  1. The behavior this blogging group is not perpetuating griefing. Hell, griefing takes some skill. This is simply trolling.

    DBAD: Don’t Be A Dick. If you’re being a dick, stop. If you’re not? You’re good! Done and done. These guys are being dicks. They should stop. Isn’t that easy?

    By Fellsabucket on Mar 16, 2010 | Reply
  2. This is just really mean behavior, plain and simple. Why would you ruin someone’s day/hour/whatever when that person has never, ever done anything against you? On top of that, “bad” is incredibly subjective. On top of THAT, “use your good judgment” is even MORE subjective.

    Congratulations to the people who participate in SAN’s challenge. You win the prize of being incredible jerks and the cause of potential hurt feelings. I’m sure they don’t even care, and that makes it worse.

    I don’t even RP or really play WoW, but this just smacks of pretentious assholeishness and THAT bothers me.

  3. Love how all of you get your panties in a wad so easily. You’re calling them assholes, but yet you’re being the same. Hypocrisy must be easy to ignore especially when you’re doing it yourself.

    By Anon on Mar 16, 2010 | Reply
  4. @awilbiste – That’s part of why I am so upset about this. Obviously, sometimes bad RP is funny. Whatever. Some people probably think MY RP is funny. But nobody has the right to decide that “this” RP is OK, but “that” RP is so bad we should troll it. What happens when they decide that my RP fits into the “bad” category? Or that simply all RP is bad and worth trolling? It’s the arm swing meets other guy’s nose argument, and in this case, I am firmly on the side of noses. Which is to say, as long as your RP isn’t hurting anyone and isn’t breaking the ToS rules, it is allowed and your “right” to continue it should be defended.

  5. @Anon –

    I don’t engage discussion with anonymous commenters. Leave your name and a real email and we can talk.

  6. It bums me out that there is so much less tolerance of people in WoW these days. Your article reminded me of numerous recent forum posts where new players were belittled for bad tanking, dps, or healing in instances even when they explained they were new and learning. Nobody was born a perfect role-player or tank; we all had to practice. Thank you for standing up to those who try to destroy the game for others.

  7. Oh because a name on the internet means something? Try just dealing with said comments. If you can’t handle them don’t ask for them. It’s plain and simple when blogging. You can express your frustration, but deal with the criticism and anons. If you cannot then do not blog.

    By Anon on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  8. Alright then Anon. Here goes.

    In your comment you said that I was a hypocrite and an asshole for pointing out that I fundamentally disagree with something that someone else is doing, because it is against the server rules of an RP-PVE server as stated by Blizzard. (Griefing is a reportable offense, and this is griefing). I fail to see how my choosing to express my disagreement and disapproval with a group of people deciding that being rude to other players is fun makes me anything other than another voice on the internet stating my disapproval. I can’t make anyone stop. I can only point out that what they’re doing is rude, mean, and not something that GMs will look kindly upon.

    If you are bothered so much by it, I apologize. Perhaps you should find other blogs to read.

    As it is, I’ve taken the time to put my name and what little reputation I have as a blogger behind this conversation. I have no problem responding to critical comments, I just ask that my commenters do the same. As such, I don’t particularly find your comment critical, so much as name-calling, which is something I have expressly refrained from doing in this post.

  9. Maybe you should remember your definitions are not that of Blizzard’s. That what you call griefing may not be griefing to them. I fail to see how just because you say it is griefing that it is griefing. I can call a cat a dog, but that doesn’t make that cat a dog. Perhaps you should understand you are speaking more of opinion than as a person of authority.

    By Anon on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  10. And just a thought most of these people you think that will be so pissed may more than likely ignore it. Or are you just going to go looking for the members of this guild that do this and harass them?

    By Anon on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  11. In these comments, people on the internet don’t understand the definition of “hypocrisy!”

    On topic – it is approximately eleventy million times easier to tear down the mistakes and failings of others than to do anything worthwhile yourself, and equally less rewarding. Why not try to contribute, instead? :)

    By Tarq on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  12. Half these people RPing could careless and wouldn’t listen to you. It’s just like the average 80 in a heroic. You can give them advice all you wish, but they won’t listen. They either have to be taught the hard way or they learn it by continually failing. Take your pick. Neither is nice. You live in a fantasy world if you really think you’ll be able to “contribute”. As previously stated very people are willing to listen to others or take their advice.

    And I doubt you understand the definition of hypocrisy yourself.

    By Anon on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  13. @Anon – I have no characters on Argent Dawn, no connection to this guild, and absolutely no reason to seek out anyone involved. I’ve never once said anything horrid about the people in this guild – nor do I intend to. This behavior is griefing, and therefore both obnoxious and against the TOS. The people in Single Abstract Noun may all be wonderful amazing happy people – I don’t know. All I know is that this particular behavior, as expressed as a “fun blogging challenge” is griefing. I don’t intend to say anything other than what I’ve already said here. (I don’t think that’s particularly surprising to anyone that’s read my blog with any regularity. As I had to approve your comments, I’m pretty sure you’re not a regular around here.)

    I also have no desire to continue arguing with someone that refuses to give their name about this. Sure, it’s the internet, and we can all be anonymous, but you seem to be particularly bothered by my post, and that calls your anonymity into suspicion.

    For what it’s worth, in the opinion of any GM I’ve ever spoken to (which is a small handful, and so maybe a non representative one) griefing is when one player intentionally disrupts what another player is doing. As the behaviors listed in this post involve intentionally disrupting what other players are doing for the sake of mocking them, that constitutes griefing. The presence of an ignore feature doesn’t make griefing appropriate any more than it makes harassment appropriate. Both are against the ToS.

  14. Love how the great Anna talks on Twitter. It’s laughable! You want respect? Earn it. Sort of sad to see how people who post one way, but then talk another. The hypocrisy is pretty clear.

    By Anon on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  15. There is an ignore feature. Last I checked that completely removes this form of griefing. Do you really think Blizzard is going to take the time to do anything about this if said person won’t take the simple measure of using the ignore feature? Griefing the ignorant is amusing.

    By Anon on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  16. Verbal/Physical Harassment Targeting Role-Players
    This category includes:

    * Players that specifically target role-players for verbal/physical abuse (not limited to offensive language).

    If a player is found to be targeting role-players with the specific intent to harass, he/she may:

    * Be temporarily suspended from the game.

    From the Blizzard Official Roleplaying Policy (the link at the top of this comment)

  17. Anna has earned the respect of many people. There is no hypocrisy here–you would do well to look up the definition.

    Here are some links to help you out:
    1) The Harassment Policy: http://us.blizzard.com/support/article.xml?locale=en_US&articleId=20455&rhtml=true
    2) The Harassment definition, as per Blizzard: http://us.blizzard.com/support/article.xml?locale=en_US&articleId=20226#defamatory

    And yes, one can utilize the ignore command, Blizzard tells you to do so, Anna herself has advocated its use, but one can still have action taken against them even past that point.

    Additionally: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hypocrisy
    “Hypocrisy is the act of persistently pretending to hold beliefs, opinions, virtues, feelings, qualities, or standards that one does not actually hold.”
    “If you accuse someone of hypocrisy, you mean that they pretend to have qualities, beliefs, or feelings that they do not really have.”

    So yes, you are misusing this word entirely.

  18. While it could be said that putting the griefer on ignore solves the problem and effectively stops the griefing, taking it to the next level and screenshotting it and posting it on forums or a blog is taking the griefing to a new level and leaves the RPer no recourse.

    It also validates appalling behaviour, the kind of behavior that I dare say most bloggers (and hopefully their readers) would find offensive and under normal circumstances would blog post in protest about.

    I find it disturbing that such a suggestion would be made within the same forums that are suggesting a “protest” event against the griefing I experienced on the same RP realm (or sister realm), while in the same blogging community guild.

  19. @Gnome – That’s actually a side to this that I’d not really even considered, though there was a suggestion in the original post (worded only as a suggestion – “you might want to”) to redact names. In such a situation, where things escalate out of game, it can get particularly nasty, since Blizzard GM’s have no power over anything that happens outside of WoW’s actual servers.

    I’m glad you picked up on that, and it should serve as a reminder to us all that no matter WHAT the screenshot is, other people’s character names are their business, and should probably be blurred unless they know about the posting of the screenshot. (I’m guilty of this one too.)

  20. Anna’s earned my respect and that of countless others. I’m not an RPer and I have no intention of being one but I recognize harassment when I see it.

    Don’t listen to that fool. You’re on the right track, Anna.

  21. I’m going to cut and paste a rant I had about this on my private guild boards some time back. It says everything I think I’d say in response to this:

    I will admit to being openly frustrated with people hunting other rp’ers down simply for the sake of mocking them. I understand that the anonymity of the interwebs allows for certain behaviors. I also understand I am not anyone’s mother. However. The idea of people I like/enjoy/rp with being so bored as to actually seek out a less-experienced (See: Bad) rp’er simply to be mean? Turns my stomach. There’s something not quite right about good people going out of their way to ruin someone else’s day and finding that entertaining. Yes, it happens. Yes, it will happen again. Will I like it then? No. Will I likely say something if I see it happening again? Yes. Will I probably find an officer and let ’em know? Damn skippy. It’s wrong.

    There was a time where I would go to town on the forums on people I considered beneath me. After a while, I started to question why. Was my own self worth tied to my ability to make someone else look stupid? The sad answer was yes. Realizing this, I stopped. It’s the same thing that’s stopped me from completely eviscerating Twilight Rp’ers (as they’re the latest incarnation of Bad). Something to keep in mind? Twilight books are aimed at a 14 year old audience. That being said, if you see that sparkling glittery vampire rp’ing, you – proabably an adult – are quite likely picking on a kid. If that’s how you get your jollies, go punch a baby while you’re at it. You have no idea who’s behind that avatar. If it’s some 13 or 14 year old trying on rp wings for the first time, imagine the kind of impression you’re leaving. Grats folks, you may have just spawned the next fucking PvP kiddy because the RP’ers were assholes.


    Anonymous? You use big words without having a bloody clue what they mean. Either you’re part of this “Griefing bad rp’ers movement” or your reading comprehension skills on the ToA are /that/ poor. The other option of course is that you wanted to be a prat and start a shit storm. Whatever the case, if you have so much time on your hands that you feel that griefing bad RP is worth your time, you have a very small, sad existence. I’d advise finding a newer, shinier hobby – one that doesn’t rely on you belittling others to make yourself feel like Big Dick of Cock Mountain.

    By Yva on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  22. PS: I just had a quick look and couldn’t see anything in the SAN forums (based of post titles anyway), so apologies if my comment suggests that this is a “SAN approved” activity…

    SAN is filled with good folk that have taken genuinely and respectfully to AD, so I don’t want it to appear this is a general attitude.

  23. @Gnome – Thank you for checking that out – I’m not an SAN member, so I can only see their one forum, and I have no idea if there are others or not. As mentioned, my issue is solely with the behavior as promoted in this post as a SAN “fun blogging project”. I have no qualms with the guild itself, and actually think that the premise of a guild full of bloggers is kind of a fun one.

  24. The whole situation seems, to me, to be something that has happened in jest, been written without thought, and unfortunately had something actually come of it. I guess I find myself uncomfortably tarnished as I have a character in that guild (although I was totally unaware of this until today when I saw it on your blog), and that’s why the whole situation has thrown me.

    It is a fairly appalling idea, and I honestly can’t think of anything that is MORE likely to get someone a bad reputation on a Role Playing server. I just think it’s a shame that it’s all become such a public mess, and now everyone is weighing in. Issues like this need to be discussed and talked about, most definitely. It’s an unacceptable concept, and should not just slip by. People who suggest things like this probably have no real understanding of Role Playing and how it works. However, I think this is going to degenerate into a mass of name calling, scandal and hatred on both ends of the argument, and I think that is disappointing and detracts from the issue.

    How do I wish this turned out?

    1. Some thought and conversation going into the original post. I’m pretty sure that it would never have occurred if people had got together and talked about the idea. It’s also a pretty bold (and unwise) move to throw a guild’s name on an idea when half the members are unaware.
    2. Some conversation had taken place about the post out of the public arena. I guess it’s all fair once it’s on the net, but it’s unfortunate for all involved that it has become so messy. It’s also no excuse, but I do believe the blogger in question is fairly new to the whole blogging game, and really did not know how this would play out. (I almost wish I could think the post was in jest… but I don’t think it is). They deserve to be called out. I just am really not sure if they were AWARE of what they were doing.

    TL;DR – situations like this just make me sad in so many ways.

    As for the anonymous commenter – I think we can all safely say that no one takes someone seriously who isn’t game enough to put a name to their writing, even a pseudonym. Sure, my comment is under my ‘game name’ – but it’s a name with a reputation that I have worked hard to build up. No name = no credibility. Attacking Anna’s (pretty amazing) credibility isn’t going to get you anywhere.

    Sorry for the novel length comment! Appears I have lost the ability to be concise.

  25. P.S. – upon re-reading… I don’t think I made it clear how much I disapprove of the whole ‘interfering in RP’ concept. I guess I was hoping people would infer that, but it’s easily missed.

  26. @Saresa – I think you’re pretty spot on, and I definitely understood that you didn’t really think that a guild project to grief RPers was a good plan. Had the poster in question not set it up as part of the Single Abstract Noun guild, I’d be more than happy to drop that reference. (I may still do so, as it’s both very soon after the post was made and I’ve not yet heard from anyone in any position of leadership with SAN). As mentioned, I’m not part of SAN, and have no access to their forums, so I can’t say whether it was or wasn’t discussed – or couldn’t say that before. You and Gnome have both said that it wasn’t, so I’m happy to chalk this up to someone that didn’t think before plastering their new guild name onto a personal project. I would prefer to talk this over with the actual SAN leadership – whose names I don’t admittedly know, if you know them, send them my way. If that part of this post is a misunderstanding, I will absolutely remove the reference to the guild website. (In fact, let me edit that into the post right now)

    Part of my issue stems from the comments already received on that post though, which were largely “THIS SOUNDS LIKE SO MUCH FUN”, hence the tone of my post. I don’t think griefing ANY roleplay is OK, no matter how bad, and it (quite honestly) burned my toast to see that touted as not only OK but as a fun blogging project. THAT’s where my post is directed, not at the guild in general, so hopefully we can get that cleared up.

  27. Oh, I can definitely see where you are coming from! It is an utterly appalling idea, that people unfortunately commented on in a (scarily) enthusiastic manner. I often wonder if people think before they endorse things, or say they are a wonderful idea. The problem with blogging is when someone spouts off, another dozen pay lip service to their bad idea – hell, I’ve written awful posts saying stupid things where people have agreed. Sometimes I suspect it’s because they either don’t take it seriously, or because it’s easier to not think and agree.

    At any rate, you did write a great post explaining why the whole concept is a bad idea, and is just outright mean.

  28. As a San member that bloggers challenge is certainly not in the spirit of the bloggers and members of the guild. Not what I would want to participate in .

  29. To all of the Single Abstract Noun members – Thanks for sticking up for you guild so tactfully :) I appreciate it, and I’ve contacted Medicina and Tamarind to get the “official word”. As such, I’ll remove the guild website link if this has been a misunderstanding.
    (Though I can’t change the unfortunate blog post name, I will disclaimer it so that there’s no further mixups!).

  30. This poor world. You’ve shown me another example of the average weak minded people living in this world. Thanks for lowering the standards of humanity and its own strength just a bit lower. We will cry over anything and every thing it seems because we believe it to be unjust and so mean. Jobs must be difficult for a lot of these people commenting. What do they do when they get told they are completely wrong and laughed at by their boss? File a lawsuit? Only to then be fired and Tweet about it for days. Guess that’s the world and what it is headed to. Thin skinned children claiming to be adults.

    By Anon on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  31. Hey Anna, As a long time reader of yours I would hate to see you upset by this. From what I can see on the SAN board, this is not something that has been touted as a project for SAN members. I see it as a reaction from someone who is ignorant about RP and has only experienced bad versions. As a member of SAN and a non-RPer I was initially scared to see RP, but am gradually opening up to it. I love reading people’s impressions of and enjoyment of RP and am slowly (very slowly) thinking about taking part myself (madly trying to come up with a back story, etc.). Personally I will keep clear of all forms of RP until I’m happy to put my toe in the water.

    I think this is basically borne of misunderstanding and a lack of knowledge. I’m sure the original poster (who has not posted this on the SAN boards, but on her own blog) if confronted would behave rationally and with understanding and I would suggest you comment on the blog post, linking your concerns. The SAN board you can see is all there is – there are no secret member only boards where we laugh at or ridicule people. For me SAN is a place to grow as a blogger, to have fun with people who blog (or read them), somewhere to escape from my “main” and for me to try something new – like a horde character and a bit of RP.

    Come join us – teach us, help people be less ignorant :) Share with us your joy and passion for real, proper RP.

  32. Aye, I remember reading this and dismissing it in my head. I’ve done RP by forums, so I recognized the godmodding, but I’ve never done live-RP like WoW. Most of the RP discussions I’ve seen in SAN(-US) are respectful of but afraid to mess up RPing. So this appears to have been an attempt to get into RP (since it suggests RPing a mocking response to the “bad” RP) while still being afraid of it. It disappoints me that one of my community would suggest bad imitation instead of good imitation.

    Yep, we have only the one forum. Though I wish we’d have more, maybe an actual RP forum to distinguish from the general chat going on. Or an event forum for the separate realms, because the EU side has some fun topics already planned.

    That said, I’m perusing the RPing blogs like some of the rest of SAN (we have a forum thread of intro to roleplaying) for some beginning roleplaying guides. My confusion mostly is the guides say to just start RPing and go do it. Which is cool, because it’s the same advice I’d give for coding or writing, but I still feel a little in the dark about how to go out and roleplay with characters I haven’t dreamed up and planned out. The forum-RP I did a long time ago had mostly an RP event (like a festival) that both or all of the posting characters responded to.

    But that gives me more incentive to sit in on this Horde Loremaster Festival that’s apparently going on on AD-US Hordeside. Because it’s kind of the event-type RP I’m used to, but still comfortably in the WoW live-RP form.

  33. As one of perhaps many SAN members, I must say I do feel ashamed somewhat that such a thing had to happen. While I do wish to engage in RP from time to time (hence the secondary reason for joining the guild besides socializing with other bloggers), the public exposure of this guild in a shameful manner has left me not wanting to RP with that particular character due to his guild tag. It sucks, and I truly wish it never turned out that way.

    Perhaps I’ll just lay low or something for now. The guy needs more rested xp anyway, right? You certainly have my support anna, regardless, and I hope this issue gets resolved behind closed doors those who have read the post are not swayed negatively towards the guild because of a few bad apples.

  34. I back you 100% on this Anna. It’s occasionally very tempting to do something like this when you see “bad” RP, but it’s never the right thing to do–that temptation needs to be resisted. This has popped up on Feathermoon time and again…somebody decides that they’re going to go on a “crusade for ‘good’ RP” and they gather a pitchfork-and-torch crowd to mock and belittle what they consider bad roleplayers. It NEVER works; in fact, it always ends up causing more of a backlash and contributes yet more to the slow death of RP on the server.

    If “bad” roleplayers won’t listen to constructive attempts to bring the quality of their roleplay up, then you just have to leave them to sit in their own stink. Move on. If they’re not breaking the TOS, they’re doing nothing technically wrong, no matter how bad they mangle the lore. Laugh at them in your guild chat and your private forums? Sure. Disrupt their RP in public and attempt to shut them down by harassment and humiliation? UR DOIN IT RONG.

    I wouldn’t hold this against SAN as a whole, BTW; the guild sounds like a very fun concept and I’ve been meaning to create a character over there, just haven’t had time.

    And as for “Anon”…I don’t know what your malfunction is, or who made an angry poo-poo in your Wheaties, but there’s a lot of us out here who don’t consider common courtesy and fair treatment of others as “weak-minded.” And judging by the replies, that includes the majority of SAN as well.

  35. @Krizz – I’ve done some editing to the post after talking to Medicina and Tam, and though I’m not going to spoil any big surprises, there will probably be some involvement with Too Many Annas in the future with SAN (on friendly, helpful terms). One person’s ill advised (and kind of creepily well accepted) idea does not an entire bad guild make, and hopefully my tinkering with the post and adding in a bit at the end will make that very clear.

    The point of this post is to make it /safer/ for new RPers and to show people that there IS a line, and that being griefed isn’t fun. I hope you’ll continue to RP – and to RP with whatever guild tag you have. I’m a little fish in the great big wide internet, and I doubt that one blogger’s post will have much if any effect on actual in game goings-on for Argent Dawn. :)

  36. @Sephrenia –

    If nothing else comes of this, there will be teaching, fun, and hopefully a dismissal of some of the initial fears about RP. Hopefully my posts here, posts over at Arrens blog (http://arrens.net) and posts at WTT:RP (http://wttrp.com) will suffice until actual personal interaction can be had though :) I know it’s scary to face something you’ve never done before, but well… RP can be a lot of fun, and I hope that even those who choose not to play the RP game (for they are absolutely entitled not to like RP) can find maybe a little “RP Moment” every now and again, or at least live in mutual tolerance with RPers.

    (… I sound like such a carebear! )

  37. @Poneria – http://toomanyannas.com/roleplay/rp-fears-and-first-steps/ this is a good place to start. Otherwise, think of RP like going to a place and meeting new people, and your character like… a hat (it’s early in the morning, forgive my terrible metaphors). You put on your hat – which you’ve designed and made – and go out to interact with other people and meet up with their hats.

    Ok, so maybe hats was a really bad choice – still, once you get past making a character (which is NOT nearly as complex as people want to think, and doesn’t involve an elaborate backstory – or even any backstory at all), it’s a matter of taking that character and pretending to be them for a little while, and asking “What would JanieBeth the Warrior think if someone came up to her and did X, or said Y or danced the hokey-pokey.” It’s a little bit like acting, only you get to make the character up yourself!

  38. Such a carebear! *grin*

    Uh, yeah. I read through the edits and the comments; glad to see this was cleared up. I haven’t ducked onto AD as much as I would like over the past few days (in fact I was going to make a post for AD RP resources for folks that wanted to give the RP scene there a whirl) but things like this do make me a bit ashamed to wear the tag. There’s good folks there, and I doubt the original poster meant to be so incredibly tactless, but… yeah.

    Story time! When I was in SWG, we had a guild (Imperial aligned, so I guess if you’re being really generous, it made a tiny bit of sense) that was keen on enforcing their way of RP. We started calling them the RP Gestapo for a reason. Sad thing is, the people generally criticizing others’ RP are… not terribly great at it themselves. And they draw attention to that by being dicks.

    We mostly ignored them, and in fact we even banned them from the cantina and city hall for a time, until the guild leaders sat down and discussed how to act less like five year olds.

  39. @Krizz… lay low… step down? It’s a big step for a little Gnome like you (and me)..

    No I think for a Gnome like you, with such a big RP heart, you need to stand up.. go on, stand up… errr here’s a stool… and be counted…

    40+ BR Destructo-Gnomes… well even I have been edumakated on how to incorporate them into worthwhile RP rather than crying in a corner (it was a big corner for a little Gnome.. kk?).

    But truly, we need to stand up and show that even Gnomes can roll Paladins.. bursting with the shining light of faith in our church (SAN).

    To bystanders… SAN is a wonderful collective of bloggers and their community, If you read us, join us.. but join us on the RP world.. a world that belonged to someone else long before we sought refuge, a place where we can share the love of blogging and blog reading, while extending ourselves into that scary world that relies less on RNG and more on RI (random interactions).. stretch your mind, not your keybinds!

  40. I didn’t like that SAN was popped on an RP server and now I really am. I joined to be with the people I know and admire in the blogosphere, not to (no offense meant to anyone personally) engage in something I don’t enjoy.

    Oh well … /leave 1 should cover it.


  41. o.O

    I just need Anon to say “The lurkers support me in email” and I’ll have troll bingo!

    Actual, constructive stuff: RP griefing is never cool. Have many of us stumbled across RP that’s made us privately /facepalm before? Absolutely. But, as has already been said by several people in this thread, actively trying to disrupt that RP just because you think it’s bad doesn’t make you cool; it makes you a jerk.

    One comment from our anonymous friend that I will address:

    And just a thought most of these people you think that will be so pissed may more than likely ignore it.

    I really doubt that. When someone walks up and starts disrupting your conversation, it’s distracting at the very least. Maybe those RPers are thick-skinned enough to ignore the trolling and griefing and godmodding that’s going on, but a lot of them won’t be. So, grats, you’ve taken someone’s fun and, while you may not have ruined it altogether, you’ve certainly diminished it.

    And yes, there’s an ignore list, but it only ignores text. It doesn’t make the avatar go away. Which means that if two people are trying to have a private RP conversation, there’s still some blood elf standing right next to them (or right between them) gesticulating wildly.

    This is also the point where OOC griefers, once they realize they’re being /ignored, usually get naked and /dance on tables or start hopping around in circles casting AoE spells. RP griefers are really only a step down from that. And from some of the suggestions listed — “You’re the dude with the 2:00 PM appointment with the lady of ill-repute and you HATE to wait.” — something tells me we can’t rule out the whole getting naked thing as part of the RP griefing.

  42. At the time, people were going to goldshire and laughing in guildchat about the stuff going on. When I floated the idea of doing something silly like being the minstrel in gchat in SAN, people thought it would be funny to do so and get screenies. I didn’t get any comments in gchat that it would be awful.

    Honestly, I didn’t think it would be such a big horrible deal, and I’m taking down the post if that many people feel strongly against it. My e-mail is on the site. You could have just presented your objections, and asked me to take it down, instead of escalating it on your site, which has far greater readership than mine. It was fortunate that I even happened upon this post, since I did not get a pingback.

  43. @Grimm – I have never, and will never suggest that people who dislike RP should be forced to engage in it. If you don’t like it, don’t do it. (Same goes for raiding, PVPing, farming herbs, and dancing naked on mailboxes.)

    My point is that, should you come across RP – something you dislike, but which you recognize (being on an RP-PVE server) will happen – the appropriate response is to ignore it and walk away. Leaving General? Totally OK (though I think you’ll find that once you are out of the starting zones, General Chat will be come pretty much exactly the same as any other server) :)

  44. Dear Anon:

    If you can’t “sign” your name to something on the internet, don’t hit publish.

  45. @Crankyhealer – Not sure why you didn’t get a pingback – I should have them turned on. Very weird. (I’ll go digging in wordpress and see what’s what).

    The reason I didn’t just go to you in comments is that this, quite simply, is WAY bigger than your post. This kind of stuff happens all the time – and it happens in groups of good RPers. I’ve seen it happen with groups of people I’m involved with. I’ve seen it take really nasty turns (where people will go to the opposite faction specifically to grief bad RP). It’s sad, and as Lauren mentioned, there’s something bigger at stake here than just one blogger’s post. Griefing is a problem, and in the slew of stuff that gets addressed about OOC griefing, IC griefing doesn’t get covered very often.

    I very much appreciate your taking down your post – though I’m not going to take mine down. I will remove the link (as it doesn’t work anymore), but I think the basic message needs to be heard regardless. As you mentioned – when you brought it up in guild chat it was seen as funny and not as problematic. IC griefing often doesn’t get seen as such, and that makes this all the more important a message.

  46. @Anna — Thanks! I started there and then spotted RP Resources. Now I have a notebook open with a pencil (I don’t know, there’ just something more awesome about brainstorming by hand) and a whole window of Firefox tabs on the RP Made Simple site. I’ve already got a personality in my head! :)

  47. @Grimm – For the record… being on an RP server doesn’t mean you have to RP. =) I’ve also never, ever seen RP in General chat. Ever. In any case, a lot of folks roll on RP servers because it’s generally a more mature playerbase. Though The Scryers is… not exactly a shining example of that, sometimes. =P

  48. Anna…

    I have considerable patience when dealing with trolls. Yours has outstripped mine. I bow to your incredible powers…

    For what it’s worth, your original point stands. Further, stating, on your own turf, that something is Wrong is in NO WAY the same as invading someone else’s space to interject yourself into their experience.

    I suspect your “anon” is the OP, since their behavior is perfectly analogous. Don’t like someone else’s RP? Intervene and derail it. Don’t like the discussion on someone else’s blog? Intervene and derail it.

    It smacks of Privilege, immaturity, and a certain predilection to make up for rhetorical shortcomings by putting others on the defensive.

    Team Anna,

    By Wynthea on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  49. @Wynthea –

    To stand up for the original poster. She has commented here, and her IP address is not only not the same as Anon, but she is from an entirely different region of the US.

    That said, I think your analysis of Anon is probably pretty close, given that s/he mentioned that “Griefing the ignorant is amusing.” It’s frustrating (and admittedly a little strange to have comments regarding my twitter feed), but on this post, it was not unexpected.

  50. There is bad RP and bad RP. I’m totally OK with Twilight or such RPers. I’m not ok with cybering RP though.

    A long time ago I rolled a character on an RP realm and found people cybering in Brill. It was rather awkward. They were right next to my profession trainer, role-playing things I didn’t want to think about, and speaking about it in /say.
    Well, if you want do RP such things, do it as your character would do it : not publicly. And whisper. You generally don’t want everybody inside and outside the inn to know about your activity. (Is it that hard to choose the room without a PNJ in there ?)

    If you do it publicly, then I assume you’re roleplaying an exhibitionist or something like that. And I suppose I can interfere.
    I think interfering IC as Cranky Healer suggested with such RP is not a bad way to deal with it. That, or just blacklist and report them.

  51. Thank you for this article, Anna. RP on Argent Dawn (particularly Alliance side, from what I understand) is already a rare thing (We’re a day 1 server) and I’d hate to see it being griefed by those who don’t think the RP they see is “good enough.”

    And I mean honestly? If you don’t want to see ERP, don’t go to Goldshire. That’s a given on any RP server. I’m at the point now where I think it’s better if roleplayers accept Goldshire as a loss and just leave it to the people who want that sort of thing so that it can stay concentrated in one spot.

    To the members of this guild that rolled on AD, welcome. People will tell you we’re full (we are) and to get out. But honestly, if you play nice and don’t act like jerks and actually, gasp, work to help the RP community as a whole in a positive way, we’ll be happy to see you. There are sources online to help get into the AD RP community. Come get to know us, and I’ll /wave to you from my Horde side characters.

    By Julie on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  52. I am sad to say that I was someone who read the offending post, and even commented that it did indeed sound like fun. I never actually went and did it, but that doesn’t change the fact that I didn’t really think it through and how it impacts anothers person’s gameplay. I want to thank Anna for her response, because it made me stop, and think about it, and remind me that everyone has the right to play however makes them happy as long as it doesn’t interfere with someone else’s fun. As always, you are insightful and well-spoken. Thanks for being the defender of RP.

  53. Griefing is still griefing, even if they are doing the nasty in the bushes outside the inn.

    I’m sorry the poor little anonymouse got his knickers in a bunch because Anna decided to not simply ignore this “fun blogging challenge.” Where others do not see the harm, I do.

    When some RPers decide they get to enforce arbitrary rules about what is good RP and what is bad RP, they cross a line. They become no better than the asshats who run their mounts over people trying to hold an RP guild event. Or dance on tables and spam the stupid flute. That IS griefing and GMs will intervene.

  54. I have to put a little lol at Anon here. I’ve actually had several lols thanks to him, and my coworkers are starting to look at me funny. I’m going to call him Pat from now on, because it’s a) gender neutral, b)St. Patrick’s Day, and c) exactly what I want to do to his adorable angryface head.

    I feel so sorry for griefers. I mean, really, people with so little productive activity in their lives that they engage in public displays of obnoxiousness for the sole purpose of making other people angry deserve our pity. Incapable of writing a story, planting a tree, or hijacking an alien spacecraft for a joyride to Jupiter, these people struggle through frittering away precious moments of their brief, fragile lives with all the social acumen of a papercut.

    Won’t somebody please think of the griefers?

    By Shad on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  55. I’m amazed that anyone over 15 years old would think this is OK.

  56. I am a new blogger (I think my blog is now a month old!) and a member of SAN, but I started out playing WoW on an RP server nigh upon 5 years ago. I was in a small RP guild and RP’d for a good year, year and a half-ish. I don’t do it much nowadays, but if I happened to find some, I certainly would perticipate. I’ve seen alot of RP, both good, bad and….ew. I once had 2 guildies accused on the realm forums of ERP, screenie provided, and I came to their rescue, because knowing them and the sort of people they were, I felt justified in saying “No, I’ll bet they were just RP’ing having a private chat.”

    So when I saw Cranky’s post, I neither cheered it as a good idea nor got frothingly angry. I just frowned, shrugged and carried on. I took it as an idea intended to be fun and born out of joshing with guildies (I was not online when any of the events that inspired the idea were going on, just speculating), but was not…in good taste. Sometimes we all do/say things that once someone points out “Hey, you know some folks might take that the wrong way” or “Yeah, their RP is cringe worthy and makes me wanna /headdesk, but don’t be mean about it” you go “Oops, my bad, didn’t think about it that way.”

    Cranky has struck me as a nice, fun-loving individual, both in reading her blog and seeing her in guild. No, the idea probably wasn’t thought out from all angles. I personally would never mock ‘bad’ RP…though ERP might be tempting, (why some folks can’t take it to party or whisper is beyond me), but I’m not ashamed to be a member of SAN and really enjoy my time chilling with really nice peeps.

  57. ToS violating RP is not “ok” to grief any more than any other RP. If someone is doing the nasty in /say, you ask them to stop or take it to party, and if they don’t, you use the ignore feature and the GM report feature.

    I don’t expect anyone reading this post to be “ashamed” of being part of SAN. I don’t expect people to assume CrankyHealer is some horrible awful person. She made a post that I think is problematic, and that I think showcases a problem that exists well beyond the scope of her blog or any one RP server. This is a problem faced by the community in general, and as such, I addressed it very openly. That she’s taken down the post is admirable, and I’m glad to know that other members of SAN disagree with the sentiment and aren’t planning on participating in (or never even knew about) the post.

    None of that changes the fact that IC Griefing is still griefing and needs to be dealt with, and I do not plan on changing my post at all because the original people that made the mistake know it was one. (It’s not an uncommon mistake, and it’s one I’d like to see made less frequently, hence my sticking to the post. If I thought that the only person who had ever made this mistake was a single blogger, I’d have had no reason to make a post about it, and could – instead – have left a comment.)

  58. Can we change Anon’s user picture to a red herring, or perhaps an adorable straw man?

    By Fellsabucket on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  59. “ToS violating RP is not “ok” to grief any more than any other RP. If someone is doing the nasty in /say, you ask them to stop or take it to party, and if they don’t, you use the ignore feature and the GM report feature.”

    Oh, agreed. Avoiding Goldshire seems to help me avoid some of the nastiness. I thankfully haven’t come across much of it. Guess I’m lucky that way.

    This whole issue (and ones like it, such as name reporting and such) is something I haven’t seen as discussed lately. When my original server, Scarlet Crusade, was young and people RP’d much more, I was alot of these kind of posts and arguments on the realm forums. It does bear repeating every once and awhile, for those who are unfamiliar with RP or are new-ish to WoW and haven’t thought about it all.

  60. Whilst I think you are an amazing blogger, and from what I can tell a lovely person, and I do agree that Cranky’s post may have been wrong.. I honestly, honestly think that it might not be the best idea to quote it without Cranky’s permission when dealing with a negative aspect of it. Writing a post about it and perhaps referring to the idea by all means is a brilliant post, and a well needed one, but it’s just a shame that this has escalated so much when I like both of you, and I’m sure many other bloggers do too :(

  61. @Jaedia – the reason I chose to use it this was was simply to address the bigger issue, as I’ve stated in comments several times. I have no qualms with Cranky as a person, and I certainly am not “angry” with her or any of her commenters. This situation made me upset, because I see it repeated so often, and so I addressed it.

    As for quoting without permission, quite honestly, that’s very common practice on the internet, and looking around her blog I didn’t see anything that said I needed to get her permission to quote what she’d said in a post. I ruthlessly link back to the original authors, and in this case I also quoted the entire post, expressly because I didn’t want to pick and choose and wanted it to be able to stand on its own. (And no, I don’t expect someone else, wanting to quote something that I’ve written, to get express permission first, as long as I am credited for the writing and not misrepresented. And I’ll even take misrepresentation most of the time.)

  62. There is also no reason for personal attacks against each other in the comments to this post. It’s just as bad as the behavior that Anna is trying to suggest we not do. I think some people may need to take a step back, BREATHE, relax a little bit, and not be so nasty to each other.

    The comments in this thread really need to not have personal attacks against other posters. Crankyhealer, Anna, & Anon (and probably all the rest of you) are all good people. There’s no reason to say or imply otherwise.

    Keep it about the topic, and don’t direct comments that are defamatory towards the other people who are commenting on the thread.

  63. I’m not attacking honestly *raises hands* just sharing my opinion. It IS definitely a topic that needed to be addressed, I am not doubting that, and it is a good post. Something that you’d hope would be fairly obvious, but isn’t always. So, thank you for pointing it out.

  64. after reading this post and the comments i feel really sick. i’m a member of SAN-EU and so i didn’t meet the involved blogger, and i actually never read her blog besides her goodbye post today.
    still i feel really bad for CrankyHealer, who i hear is rather sensitive and did not in fact mean to inspire anything horrible with her article. was it a well-thought-out post? probably not. did it deserve the wrath of a well-known blogger towards a not so experienced one AND her guild, without checking out all the facts first? you seem to think so.

    sure if you want to write about griefing and all that you must have a culprit, a recent case of said misdeed, otherwise your post wouldn’t turn out so bloodthirsty but would be only academic, maybe even dry. maybe that’s what hindered you in handling the situation better?

    All for those SAN members that are now ashamed for being associated with mocking RP even if they did nothing like it: don’t be, please. Don’t strut around on AD mocking the people trying their best (or worst) to RP, try to fit in, play along if you like to, but don’t feel bad anymore, because a blogger you read and respect decided to point fingers.

    By Chiana on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  65. I wasn’t initially going to comment, but after seeing a few people disagreeing with you, I’d like to chime in with them. I’ve read this entire post and all of the comments, and while I think you may have had a valid point, the way you approached this was handled poorly. In your attempts to make people feel more welcome in RP, you’ve managed to tear down someone’s attempts at blogging and damage the reputation of an entire guild over an event that wasn’t officially sanctioned by them.

    It’s fine that you felt you needed to make a post, but by publicly naming and shaming the people involved in the event, you drew unnecessary attention to a mistake that wasn’t even made with bad intentions in mind. You could have made this post about the same general subject without specifying who was involved, or you could have made an honest attempt to contact her before posting this, but you chose not to. Why? What gives you the right to make your point like this? I realize her post was public, which opens her up to scrutiny. Still, if you were hoping to make people feel welcome in the RP community, you should have kept the blogging community in mind as well. You’re obviously well-loved and widely-read. I think the least you could do after this debacle is apologize to Cranky and the guild for bringing things to this level.

    I know you probably didn’t mean to hurt anyone, but I don’t think the people that wanted to participate were intentionally being malicious, either. Having a bigger platform and a valid central point doesn’t make you any more right than they are, if your methods were just as harmful as theirs… if not more so.

    By Gyugyuroon on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  66. @Chiana Here are the facts: The original post encourages people to grief other people’s RP. That’s a dick move. Anna, who follows the DBAD policy far more closely than most of the people I know on Feathermoon, points it out sternly and assertively. That’s not wrath.

    I’m having a terrible time trying to wrap my brain around your defense of post that ENCOURAGES dickish behavior, and your odd attack on Assertive behavior..

  67. If there was an attack on Cranky’s person or character, an apology might be due. Thus far, Anna doesn’t owe Cranky, or SAN, anything.

  68. @Chiana & Gyugyuroon – Your looking out for Crankyhealer is admirable and perhaps not without cause if you believe anything malicious was done by Anna posting this. The fact of the matter is, there was no malicious intent. It was simply a matter of Anna seeing a problem and addressing it. Could she have done it without referencing the OP’s post? Sure. Would it have generated any kind of discussion the way it has? Not likely.

    To say that someone with a bigger audience shouldn’t call out someone just because they don’t have that audience is…well…nonsense. For one, that’s utterly against how the world at large operates, blogs be damned. And second off, there were no comments from Anna suggesting that the Gestapo should be called out and haul the offending parties away to the gulag. She merely stated that, hey, this is a problem and it’s against the terms of service. Please don’t do it. That people are up in arms about this and that it resulted in a blog being stripped to near nothing and people hiding from the internet is not at all Anna’s fault. Rather, it’s someone that didn’t like being called to task. Which, in and of itself is neither unreasonable nor unexpected. But to ask for Anna, who simply asked that this not happen, to apologize for…well…doing nothing wrong? Borders on absurdity.

  69. I agree with your sentiments on this in SO many ways. Publicly humiliating and griefing people who are trying to role play is NOT the image any role player should present to the world. It’s this sort of behavior which gives our community a bad name. Anybody who thinks this is acceptable needs to seriously reconsider why they’re playing on a role play server.

    By Zhàlar on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  70. Anna I’d like to point out that you are being a hypocrite in this matter. Your goal, which is admirable of preventing griefing, is done in let’s be honest a griefing manner.

    By all accounts you did not contact Cranky to tell her that you had a problem with what she was doing, though multiple avenues of contact were available.

    When Cranky deleted the original post after realizing it was a bad idea (see her comments above), you did not remove the original post replacing it with something that addresses the issue in a reasonable and thoughtful way, instead you left it up there like a bloody corspe while taking umbrage at anyone who claims you are in fact attacking Cranky. That is like some one proposing a bad idea, being told it is a bad idea, them realizing it is a bad idea, and you reminding everyone “Hey this person had a bad idea! But I’m not attacking them, even though that idea they had was totally bad. PS they had a bad idea.”

    So yeah should people grief RPers even bad ones? Probably not. But you taking up the crusaders sword and goring the dead is just as bad. And unlike in WoW, cranky has no recourse to report you for griefing. And not giving her a pass with a minor slap on the wrist, and maybe working together to address the larger issue seems in my opinion pretty tacky.

    And to all the people who said nothing when the idea was originally floated in SAN guild chat as an idea, way to preach moderation in the aftermath. And to all the people who are dogpiling about the issue, I hope you are happy with the way you behaved because if compassion is a virtue I have seen barely any of it on the comments in this post.

    By Veritas on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  71. Whether she was right or not, I feel it goes against the spirit of her post if she made someone so uncomfortable that they chose not to participate openly in the community anymore. Isn’t that a large part of the issue at hand? Shaming bloggers is not so much different from shaming bad RPers, even if her methods were much less “fun” (or ToS-breaking).

    While her post may not have made the same effect if she didn’t call out the OP, I don’t think that would make it any less valuable. Is preserving feelings worth less than making a point? Do we have to choose between being right and being nice? It’s true that she didn’t tell people “Hey, go attack Cranky”, but I would argue that she didn’t discourage it. Yes, I read the comments and I see that she said “I’m not angry with cranky” and so on, but the fact of the matter is that a lot of her commenters are and apparently acted on it. The comment accusing cranky of being the anon poster was particularly harsh, and I’m glad she disputed that and will give her credit for it. I would still say that the post could have been amended to point out that this wasn’t an official guild event as soon as guild members started saying as much in the comments. Waiting for the leadership to respond may make it more official, but it also gives more time for tempers to flare. At the very least, I think that encouraging commenters to be polite and respectful to Cranky in Anna’s post may have prevented or at least cut down the eventual result. Yes, griefing the bad RP is not a polite or respectful method of dealing with it… but if she would take the RPers’ feelings into account, why not Cranky’s?

    I agree with Anna’s point. I agree that Cranky’s post was in the wrong. I simply think her argument against it was overly clinical and somewhat accusatory and caused a lot of grief that could have been mitigated if she had approached it differently.

    By Gyugyuroon on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  72. But nowhere in the post nor in the comments did Anna suggest in any way that people should attack Cranky or that she should take all her toys home and call it a day! In fact, Anna stated quite clearly that she was not at all mad at Cranky.
    Look, I have been called to task a LOT since I took up blogging in the mid-90’s. There are really only three ways to handle it. You either defend your stance with facts and prove the ones yelling “Liar, liar pants on fire” wrong, you make an edit to the post or a new one stating that you were in the wrong, or you pack it in because you don’t like being called out. And if you take the last option? Maybe putting your thoughts & ideas out for the public to read isn’t for you. And THAT’S OK! Honest! I’m not here trying to get on Cranky’s case about how this whole thing was handled. Honest. But the only recourse Anna has at this time? Would be to turn off comments on this post and hope it all fades away. And knowing Anna as I do, I don’t think she’ll do that provided this doesn’t turn into a flame war. Thankfully, as far as I can tell, it has not.


  73. to Gyugyuroon: While I agree with your sentiment of not wanting people to be hurt by callous action, the fact that Cranky did post what she did on her blog is the catalyst that brought about this post from Anna and the comments which followed. If you are worried about something which you post for the entire internet world to see causing you discomfort then you should first question if you should be posting it, or posting in general. If you put something up and attach your name to it then you and only you are responsible for what may follow.

    There will always be over-reaction from some quarters to anything upsetting, even if it is not something upsetting. Just as there will always be those whose tempers flare and who lash out without thinking their responses through. The balance is in looking first at what you are saying, stop before you say it, approach it from a different line of thought and question if what you are about to say will possibly bring you flak and if you are prepared to defend your position from others disagreements with your stated position, and to defend it from people both larger and smaller than yourself.

    Anna has stated numerous times that she has no problem with the blogger themselves, only with the attitude in general that it is ok to belittle someone else and to interrupt the fun they are having, which causes no harm to you, simply because their ideals of fun and what is “good” are not the same as yours. I would give Anna praise for not only stating what she thinks, but actively defending her position, and being proactive in making sure that any misrepresentation from her post are removed, and corrections not only made, but pointed out for everyone to see.

    By Melryn on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  74. “If you are worried about something which you post for the entire internet world to see causing you discomfort then you should first question if you should be posting it, or posting in general. If you put something up and attach your name to it then you and only you are responsible for what may follow.”

    Ah, but she didn’t realize that it would be so inflammatory or that she didn’t want this sort of attention until after this entire affair had happened. My concern was whether it could have been prevented, or at least lessened.

    I suppose that Anna couldn’t have known that this would happen, either. It still makes me unhappy to see this sort of thing happen, and I wonder if anyone will even learn anything from all this. If you don’t think an apology is necessary or relevant, I suppose that’s your right, but I think it would be worthwhile to take a look at the results and have a serious discussion about it and about how to react to it other than just writing off the initial author as too thin-skinned.

    By Gyugyuroon on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  75. The fact that all of you jumped on me thinking I was Cranky is pretty sad. Leave the mob mentality some where else. If you want RPers to be a respected group what was done to Cranky was not helpful. It just gave many of us more ammo.

    By Anon on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  76. Veritas–I disagree. If Anna had wanted to “grief” CH in a manner equivalent to what CH suggested be done to “bad” roleplayers, she would’ve suggested people go to the blog and start posting comments about random other topics, or spam large amounts of posts in order to disrupt the normal functioning of the blog. THAT is griefing, and it’s a much more direct equivalence to the original suggestion. Saying “holy crap this is a bad idea” Is. Not. Griefing. It’s an opinion. Everybody has them, everybody is entitled to them, and in this wondrous digital age, everybody has the means to express them if they so desire.

    Nobody set out to shame Crankyhealer or run her off the Internet. I LIKED her blog and was probably going to blogroll it on Achtung Panzercow the next time I went through and updated my roll. But if you express an opinion, you’d best be ready to hear other people express their opinions of your opinion, if that makes any sense.

    This was not a witch hunt or a griefing. This was Anna responding passionately about something she really likes–roleplay in WoW–because she has seen (as have I) FIRSTHAND what happens when you let something like this suggested “fun event” happen. It causes nothing but drama and hard feelings, and will turn more people off of roleplay than it will turn on to it. How people choose to respond to what Anna said is on them, not on her.

  77. @Anon – Who’s this “all of you” of which you speak? CH had the courage to show herself. Who are you?

  78. Arrens, that would be #1 on the troll bingo list.

  79. @Anon. The person responsible for spreading the suspicion that you and CH were the same is in fact you.

    The thought crossed my mind, but I thought CH would be big enough to identify herself… and she was.

    However posting comments as Anon serves no good.

    My blog was once savagely attacked after I complained about blog scrappers.

    After a little investigation I discovered the Anon was actually the owner of the site stealing my content for comercial purposes. My follow up post devistated that person when I revealled all.

    The thing is if that poster had identified themselves up front we could have taken it offline, there would have been no doubt about their identity.

    It is your fear of identification that in fact left only one person in mind.

    Shame on you for being to pissweak to back your words with a name, to let someone else take the blame for your trolling, then to blame the community for what you caused.

  80. I am not interested in getting into an argument with anybody (least of all anonymous Internet trolls). I would just like to say that Anna, as usual, has written an insightful post that states her point of view eloquently and passionately. I’d also like to commend most of the commenters here for doing likewise in their responses, since this is clearly a topic that people feel very strongly about, for various reasons. I’m sorry to hear that some people (including the original blogger) took this post so hard, because I’m quite sure Anna would never deliberately try to make someone feel bad.
    And if there’s one thing I think we can all take away from this experience, no matter what we might feel about the situation itself, it’s the importance of thinking through our actions and taking into account how what we say or do may affect other people — and also understanding that sometimes, despite our best efforts, we may not realize how someone else is going to react.

    By Corise on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  81. Melryn put my sentiments on the subject very well with this:


    While I agree with your sentiment of not wanting people to be hurt by callous action, the fact that Cranky did post what she did on her blog is the catalyst that brought about this post from Anna and the comments which followed. If you are worried about something which you post for the entire internet world to see causing you discomfort then you should first question if you should be posting it, or posting in general. If you put something up and attach your name to it then you and only you are responsible for what may follow.


    She posted her Bad Idea for the world to see, to digest, to mull over. It’s a public medium, and the public is EXPECTED to react. Those faulting the audience for not liking what she put out there? Are very silly. If the OP wanted a zillion people to just nod their heads like a bunch of mindless sheep, she probably ought to have found a new medium . . . like maybe a cow pasture so she can present her ideas to entities that won’t argue with her. Net readers are not mindless drones.

    Of course I recognize that it’s not easy to be publicly chastised for blog fuck ups, but it’s happened to me – on my blog not one week ago, in fact, by a pretty good friend. Have a modicum of grace when you’re schooled, learn from your mistakes, and move on. Flouncing off, throwing tantrums, and hyper linking with DEAR GOD THEY’RE SO MEAN TO ME pretty much equates to “You do not have the maturity to post on the internet, so you should probably stop now and spare yourself and everyone around you.”

    By Yva on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  82. Gyugyuroon: I can certainly appreciate not expecting a statement or idea you have to snowball into something so huge and monstrous that what it becomes is an out of control avalanche racing down the hill to pound you into little bits before smothering you under its cold crushing weight. Few people are fully prepared for what it means to put yourself and your idea’s out there for public consumption. Even fewer can handle the stress from the fallout some of your thoughts and ideas might cause.

    I doubt that if Cranky had put an idea out with the intention of causing intense thoughts and emotions that it would have upset her as this did, but it is the unintended consequences of our actions that usually prove our undoing. Looking at the results (and admittedly my viewpoint is rather narrow on this) of the original post and what came of it, I hope that Cranky can come back, see what she said, how she said it, and what the results were and use it to learn from and grow. Painful lessons are the worst to endure, but often the best teachers we ever have. From the reaction I have read of others who know Cranky and regularly followed her new blog I personally hope that when she does recover from the emotional blow she took over this that she uses it as step up higher, and comes back better prepared for what the reactions of others might be to a thought or idea posted out for the world to see and pass judgment on.

    By Melryn on Mar 17, 2010 | Reply
  83. My 2 cents (for what they’re worth!). We have all said things in haste. Thinking it sounded like a good idea but after some thought realized “oh…not such a good idea”. All of us….every last one. I know that if I said something incorrect, poorly thought out, whatever, I would appreciate a comment to my post clarifying/correcting my error (or in this case ignorance to how RP works). I think for the writer of a very well read blog to make an entire post out of it is intimidating and not the least bit helpful to the person in question. A smarter and more positive way to handle it would have been to make a comment to the post in question. “hey cranky. I know many of you are new to rp. It seems odd and funny to alot of people, but we take it quite seriously and really enjoy it. While on the surface, your idea for teasing/fooling around with the rp’ers seems like it would be funny, I can assure you there would be people who would actually be hurt/bothered by that. In addition, it could be seen as griefing and a violation of TOS.” Just a thought, but it seems both of you had a moment of poor judgement. It is unfortunate that cranky feels poorly enough (not surprising coonsidering your position in the blogosphere) to have left blogging and the guild. A sad situation all around.

  84. A month ago (or was it longer? I’ve forgotten) the big thing with the blogging community was to post about their fail-pugs. After a while the community decided that naming and shaming was something that they shouldn’t be doing so the posts stopped or if the group was SO fail, then names weren’t mentioned or were blurred out.

    I fail to see how this is not naming and shaming of a far greater magnitude than posting names or screenshots with names about our fail-pug runs.

    I enjoy your posts and your writing style even though I stay as far away from RP and RP servers as possible. Given your interest in RP and aptitude with the written word, I would expect to see a post on the subject of griefing with regards to others who are RPing as a result of her post hitting a nerve. I didn’t expect to see naming and shaming. You could have easily written a post that was just as articulate and as strong a defense of RPers without having to go this route.

    Clearly lots of your commenters support your actions and feel that Crankyhealer “flounced off” by shutting down her blog, but when we all write blogs for the personal enjoyment of doing so and (in the beginning) trying something different, having a whole bunch of people zero in on you and how you’re a terrible person isn’t really conducive to wanting to spend your time “sucking it up” and continuing to blog. Much like your illustration of the “bad” RPers abandoning RP because of griefing, I’d guess that the end result of this post is that a relatively new blogger abandoned blogging after being targeted so mercilessly; how different is that from your illustration?

    By Imalinata on Mar 18, 2010 | Reply
  85. I guess we all agree that going to some guy who claims he’s the son of Illidan and jumping around telling him that he’s stupid is a dumb idea. But.

    Cranky makes a post. It’s public, on the internet. Everyone’s free to comment.
    RP-guy /says something. It’s public, on the internet. Everyone who comments is a griefer?

    Er what? I’m new to RP, but if you’re doing it in /say, doesn’t it mean you… want other people to see it? Otherwise you’d be doing it in /p or /w, wouldn’t you? So why would you be annoyed if someone ‘interfered’? I’m not talking about people calling you a noobzor or spamming emotes or whatever. To me, going to Goldshire and pretending you’re the morality police seems very funny. I wouldn’t do it in an organized manner because I think it’s silly (‘Hey, today we’re looking for bad RPers!!’), but I seriously don’t see what the huge problem is. If I’ll see ‘bad’ RP (whatever I deem bad that day) and I cba, I will post it to my blog and make fun of it, just as I’d do with a bad tank or bad GM. Oh wait, everyone’s posting about their bad PuG experience and no one is throwing a fit… why make an exception for RP? I repeat, as long as you’re IC and not breaking any rules, why is interfering in a public conversation wrong? There wasn’t even one example of someone doing it. Maybe it would have been fun, maybe it would have been annoying… point is, you jumped on a short post with an idea and chewed Cranky a new one without even considering anything else.

    The result of this was that (as far as I know) no RPer was harmed in any way, but a good blog closed down because of all of you. Feeling happy now? Is the RP community better or safer in any way? Don’t you think, you know, actually *talking* to her and explaining could’ve been more useful?

    As I said, I’m not a RPer, and I’ve met a couple of nice people who were friendly to newbies, but so far my RP experience has been rather sour. When I x-realmed a character to a(nother) RP server I got flamed for asking about non-RP guilds, and now I see a bunch of people banding up on someone just because she had a bad idea and that’s omg hurting RP we’re all gonna die. Seriously.

    Oh, and everyone who considered feeling ‘ashamed’ for being a part of SAN: if a person actually, seriously thinks that the idea one member had, on her personal blog, is somehow sanctioned or adopted by a whole guild of people who met 2 weeks ago… well then that person has a problem and I can’t take their opinion seriously, therefore there’s no need whatsoever to feel ashamed.

    By Jen on Mar 18, 2010 | Reply
  86. Okay since I am the main one that was reporting in /gchat what i was noticing while trying to quietly quest with my wife.

    Cybersex in the house of Marshall Haggard, a naked female gnome and a naked female draenei using /say to roleplay bsdm. The draenai had bsdm in their name. Both of these violates the TOS if I am not mistaken. So how many of you support cybersex in open channels as appropriate?

    Lets not forget Gnomergeddon’s own post about the invasion of gnomes and the drek that filled all channels. You can see more of it on his blog.

    The third thing was people jumping off the inn in Goldshire. Now I know I am not in Aion and we don’t have angel wings. I guess they thought they were God.

    Yes I was online in the area affected at the times this took plate, and I know majority of the time Cranky was one of those that I vented my frustrations to about these things. Its late I have a lot more things that I saw that would make your head spin. Buts its 1:30am if you want more posts about what happened I would be more then willing to write a guest post about the inappropriate things that goes on there and I can tally all the violations I send into Blizzard in 1 given night.

    By Michael on Mar 18, 2010 | Reply
  87. RP is srs bzness.

    By Gx1080 on Mar 18, 2010 | Reply
  88. @Imalinata

    “Much like your illustration of the “bad” RPers abandoning RP because of griefing, I’d guess that the end result of this post is that a relatively new blogger abandoned blogging after being targeted so mercilessly; how different is that from your illustration?”

    How is it different? Well I guess it is different because it isn’t “griefing” when RPers do it.

    By Veritas on Mar 18, 2010 | Reply
  89. Alright folks – here’s the thing. I had no idea that Crankyhealer had deleted her blog until this morning. As it is, I’m very sorry that she did that, and wish that she hadn’t. I have been a subscriber to her blog for awhile (otherwise I’d never have seen this post), and I think that it’s too bad that she chose to leave.

    I have never once said anything beyond “this post illustrates behavior that is wrong, kind of mean, and against the TOS.” I don’t know cranky, and I’ve never said anything to or about her that would suggest that she is a horrible awful person. My issue is with griefing, and with griefing alone.

    As other commenters have said – when you push publish on a post, you open that post up for like, dislike, criticism, agreement, and occasionally outright mocking on the internet. If you care to back through all of my comments, you’ll see that I have my fair share of people that think I’m too dumb to keep writing (which I certainly DON’T think of Crankyhealer, and I hope she changes her mind). Blogging is about give and take – if I see something I like, I’ll post about it. If I see something I don’t like, I’ll post about that too. I understand that some of you are upset because Cranky decided to delete her blog – and I’m sorry about that. But those things are her decision, and not something I even knew about, let alone would EVER suggest. My writing on the internet exists here – and that’s my sphere of influence.

  90. And Anna instead of talking to her, you decided to make an example out of her. Basically you did the same thing she was suggesting for the event. Yes you have been very careful to carefully through disclaimers around, but in essence you made this your cause in a rather ironic way. Your process in effect griefed Cranky.

    Hope you are happy with the results because you did this.

    The only difference is you griefed in the blogoshpere and not in game. Hope you are happy.

    By Veritas on Mar 18, 2010 | Reply
  91. Veritas ~

    As others have pointed out, repeatedly, no one griefed CrankyHealer. Speaking strictly as someone who read Anna’s post alone and clicked none of the links involved, I had no idea who the OP even was until I got deep into this comments thread today and did not, at any point, detect any explicit criticism of that OP in Anna’s post. She was discussing, and criticizing, specific cruel and destructive in-game behaviors, not personally attacking any given person.

    That CrankyHealer cannot accept even indirect criticism speaks more poorly of CrankyHealer than it does of Anna. And, as others have said, if you can’t hack having something you’ve written being quoted and discussed on the internet, you shouldn’t be posting openly on the internet.

  92. @Nagaina

    And yet When Cranky removed just that post (realizing it was a bad idea), Anna decided to keep it up, presumably forever because “the issue is too important”. Anna never posted on the original post’s comments to say “hey maybe that is a dick move”, never emailed cranky to show she was upset. Instead decided to make an example of Cranky. And even after Cranky realized the error of her ways STILL has the original post up.

    What none of you have been able to justify in any coherent argument presented so far is why /say in game is different than open discussion on blogs. If it is inappropriate to mock, scold, shun, grief people in game when they are communicating in public space (ie general chat or /say), why is it appropriate to do the same thing on the blogs.

    Quite frankly all of you should be ashamed of yourselves. As people have noted before and as we see on wow.com, there is an abundance of blogs out there complaining about fail pugs, lousy guild masters, horrible guildies. There are screen shots of drama bombs in guild chat, ninja looting, and crap in trade or general. Yet I don’t hear any strong voices condemning those blogs. But even suggest the same type of scrutiny and parody be applied to Role Players, oh no, that is out of bounds. Either it is okay to have public voices be up for scrutiny or not. If you can attack someone in a blog, you should be able to attack them in game. If you can’t do one, you shouldn’t do the other.

    By Veritas on Mar 18, 2010 | Reply
  93. I just wanted to say that, although I am more of a lurker and rarely comment, my first introduction to your blog has indeed been a negative one for me. Cranky has recently become a new friend of mine and I know for a fact that she is a very nice person who would not have wanted to hurt anyone. I think it’s a shame that you didn’t go to her personally first as you say to do when coming up on ERP. It would have been very easy to say “this is a problem for the RP community, this is why, how can we band together and put something out there that will help others see this and handle it correctly?”. I’m a member of SAN and I remember the talking in guild chat about the ERP going on. Everyone avoids Goldshire as much as possible but how is someone new to, and actually interested in, RP (such as I am) supposed to know that “it’s a given to avoid Goldshire” as mentioned here in the comments? If you have quests in Goldshire, you will see the ERP and if it’s your first experience in WoW and you are offended by such, you will probably leave before the trial is up. If I walk through my RL local town, I am not going to see people going at it in the bushes or the post office and yelling out what they are doing. Why should I have to just accept it because it’s WoW? I know that’s not what you are saying but I think that’s the attitude of a lot of people here. “Just avoid Goldshire.” I think people who feel the need to broadcast their pretend sex need to 1) get a life 2)find another game where it’s universally accepted or 3) take it to party chat…. but they don’t and I consider that a form of griefing and it DOES interfere with my WoW experience. I don’t think it’s ok to make fun of people because they are just not good at RP (I’m sure my first attempts will be pitiful) but I don’t think that was what Cranky was really wanting, either. If anyone had contacted her personally on neutral and friendly grounds (ie. not yelling at or accusing her), they probably would have realized that as well. My 2 cents anyway.

    By Melanythe on Mar 18, 2010 | Reply
  94. She griefed CH? Are you serious?

    How can you possibly equate a post on why what CH advocated was wrong with encouraging people to mock others? Anna mocked no one. Nor did she encourage her readers to go to CH’s blog and make mocking posts. That would have been griefing and you would likely have seen a note from me to Anna saying that was uncool.

    Instead Anna made a post saying why she disagreed with what the poster was doing. That doesn’t make Anna a griefer. Sorry, someone disagreeing with you on the internet doesn’t make them a griefer either.

    Nor does her disagreeing with someone on the internet make her a hypocrite. Once again, Anna did not encourage anyone to go mock CH, to disrupt her blog, or any of that griefing stuff.

  95. If you go with the stance that griefing is any unwanted communication or action, then yeah it is griefing. Anna enjoys a larger following than Cranky, this by staying up brings more unwanted attention to Cranky. If I did that to someone in game “Hey look guys this person is naked and having sexxxy times!” you would report me for griefing for unwanted contact and communication. By making this post the way she did, and by keeping the original post up the way it is, Anna is using her position as a widely read blogger to promote unwanted communication and or action (attention) to cranky.

    I have no problem that Anna doesn’t like the post. But I am extremely disappointed that she didn’t take one of a dozen other ways to get a different outcome.

    So yes. Griefing. Keeping the original post up now after Cranky has left the scene completely. Griefing.

    By Veritas on Mar 18, 2010 | Reply
  96. I must have missed a post. This post about godmodeing and the like seemed very level headed and explaining why the suggestions of a blogger were against the principles of an RP realm. Besides the initial “take on other bloggers” which could be a little confrontational I thought you were just explaining why you thought this was wrong. Which is what a blog is for right? To express your opinion.

    I am a little surprised anyone would quit over this post. I assume it was because of the comments she got more so than this post?

    On a side note: I do not even want to know what cybering is do I?

  97. @Sirfwalgman

    Probably not. Cybering is usually the practice of “cyber-sex” in RP. Basically RPing that your toons are doing the rumpy pumpy of various sorts. Comes in just about every kinky variety you can think of, and if done in public or with underage players, it’s very much against the TOS you agree to when you first log into the game after a new patch.

  98. At NO Point did Anna Grief CH. At no point did ANNA make a personal attack on CH. Anna DID point out how she was encouraging Griefing.

    CH put a bad, no a stupid idea, and then deleted her blog. Those were her choices.

    What is going on now: The attacks on Anna, distorting the facts of what occurred, the complaints of “unfairness,” the totally illogical cries of hypocricy!, is flat out disgusting, ill informed and stupid.

    You’re not making any points or convincing arguments. This is just another example of the Greater Internet Dickwad Theory.

  99. The difference, dear Veritas, is that in-game griefing is [i]actually against the rules of the game and ToSable offense.[/i] CH’s decision to flounce from the internet after getting enough backdraft from her poorly-thought-out idea for “happyfuntimes” isn’t the same as being publicly humiliated for someone else’s amusement. Sorry, but your tender-hearted friend wasted none of that tenderness on the people she suggesting mocking and I have no sympathy for those who want to dish it out but can’t take it, even backhandedly.

    More specifically: I am the sitting officer in change of roleplaying for my own guild on Steamwheedle Cartel US. Had a guildie of mine posted such a suggestion to a website or blog associated with my guild, that guildie would be explaining their behavior before the Guild Council so fast their head would spin and, if the explanation did not amount to more than “but but but IT WAS A JOOOOKE!” or “FOR THE LULZ!”, that guildie’s ass would hit the curb so fast they’d be halfway to China before they stopped bouncing. Not only is such behavior explicitly against the ToS and the rules governing in-game harrassment on RP servers, it tarnishes the reputation of the individual player and also that of the guild that countenances such behavior or attempts to defend it. Perhaps CH should have thought about [i]that[/i], as well as the feelings of the people her little joke would have inevitably hurt, before she posted. Perhaps she’ll grow up, put on her big girl panties, and own the mistake she made. We’ll see. But, as of now, I have no good impression of either her or SAN.

  100. @Veritas: “What none of you have been able to justify in any coherent argument presented so far is why /say in game is different than open discussion on blogs.”

    I’ve been trying to think of a way to explain the difference, and I’m still feeling my way around it, but here ’tis.

    I believe that most players, be they RPers, raiders, puggers, or just plain questers, don’t anticipate seeing the things they say and do in-game screenshotted and reported to the world. I don’t know exactly what to call it — an expectation of privacy, maybe? While it’s absolutely true that anything you do in-game can make its way out to the internet, I’d bet very few people expect that it will.

    So people who are RPing in /say generally aren’t doing so with the idea that their conversation may wind up on someone’s blog, any more than the people acting badly in PuGs expect to end up on the front page of WoW.com. There’s a feeling of “What happens in WoW, stays in WoW,” even if it’s all too easy for that to be proven wrong.

    When I RP in /say, only the people who walk into /say range can see the conversation, and once the words are said, they fade out of the chatbox and that’s it. The only way those words are going to be seen by other people is if someone’s running a chatlogger or taking screenshots.

    A blog’s a different animal. It’s public, it’s searchable, and it can be seen by so very many more people — pretty much anyone with an internet connection. Blog posts can stick around for years and years — even if the blogger deletes his or her material, if it was cached by google, it’s still sort of there.

    I would guess that CH made her post thinking that only a few people she knew would see it and respond, but the truth is that unless someone sets their blog to private, it can be read by anybody. It’s kind of shocking, the first time you realize other people are reading your stuff. (It’s happened to me once, actually.)

    With conversations in WoW, you mostly expect that the only people who will see what you’re saying a) have an active WoW account, b) play on your server and c) are in the same in-game location as you. Which, even if you’re RPing in Goldshire, is probably no more than a handful of people — 20? 30? In most cases, RP is in less-public places — in a tavern, by a lake, at the meeting stone by an instance — and that number drops drastically.

    That’s where I see the difference. A blog post is an invitation to discussion, because the blogger is putting his/her ideas forth on the internet where everyone can see it. A conversation in WoW, even though it can be ported out-of-game, isn’t usually intended to be seen by the world.

    Does that make any sense?

  101. @Veritas

    “What none of you have been able to justify in any coherent argument presented so far is why /say in game is different than open discussion on blogs. If it is inappropriate to mock, scold, shun, grief people in game when they are communicating in public space (ie general chat or /say), why is it appropriate to do the same thing on the blogs.”

    The difference between in game and blogs is an authority. In game Blizzard, the authority, has set a standard or rules by which players agree to act. To the best of my knowledge beyond activities that break actual laws, which this by no means does, the blog community does not have any such authority.

    Regardless if it is “Bad rpers” or gold spammers, in game there is already an established method of reporting these issues. Adding to that, using the activities mentioned by CH are violations of the TOS and can get the person doing them “in trouble” and do absolutely nothing to the person that actions were being taken against in the first place. Blizzard says the way to handle these issues is to report them.

    In the blog community there is just that… the blog community. There are many ways to handle an issue ranging from the way you would have preferred it to be handled in comments and back channels, to handling it out in the open as Anna did. There is no authority to say the way it should be handled. There is nothing short of personal opinion to decide the way something should be done.

    By Zilyanna on Mar 18, 2010 | Reply
  102. This is a good post.

    Regardless of the venom of some folks, this is far better handling of the issue than some may even realize. There’s no name-calling in Anna’s post, no personal attacks, nothing of the sort – simply an analysis of the situation and an explanation of why the approach is wrong.

    It is not an attack.

    Anyone that has been on the internet longer than a year ought to know what an attack actually looks like, eh?

    Keep on truckin’, ma’am. /salute

  103. @Nagaina

    I have actually had to do this. Yva posted a bit she wrote from a guild we both share. The results of the incident in question forced me to confront a guildie over that issue, even if he wasn’t wearing my guild tag when he did it.

    I have a no tolerance policy for crap like this.

  104. If she didn’t want PUBLIC SCRUTINY of a very PUBLIC MEDIUM . . . she shouldn’t have put it on the /internet/. A blogger puts themself out there with every post they make, and that means for better or worse. Veritas, your ‘defense’ is honorable, but incredibly short sighted. “She was griefed for her post!” No, she wasn’t. She was taken to task for something she put out there. Not every blog post is going to be taken as shiny happy bunny fodder. And for all that there are those here saying “Well it sucks that she’s gone and felt the necessity to delete her blog and gquit” . . . I’ll say if she’s gone THIS far over someone reacting to a post she put on the internet, she likely couldn’t /handle being on the goddamned internet in the first place/.

    I’ve just suggested that Anna close the comments for this thread. We’re going around in circles between those who say Anna approached the topic well (which I tend to agree with – to be frank? I’d have absolutely eviscerated the OP. If THIS post made her delete her blog and flounce, what I’d have said probably would have made her swallow razor blades) to the others who are trying to “Support a friend” by playing the U HURT MA FRIEND’S FEELINS ON INTERNETS AND ARE BAD PERSON debates. Neither of those “groups” are going to persuade the other one that they’re right. It’s time to move on with our lives and, in some cases, learn to grow a thicker skin. If you don’t want public scrutiny, don’t put yourself in the goddamn spotlight. Not all attention is good attention. Deal with it.

    By Yva on Mar 18, 2010 | Reply
  105. Alright folks – I need to step in here for a minute. Some of the discussion happening here is good, and I appreciate it. However, some comments have gotten a little close to flamey for my personal comfort level (and not so much flaming me but flaming other commenters). Let’s keep it civil please – discussion is totally fine, even if it’s a little heated. Name calling not so much.

    (And yes, I should’ve probably said this way earlier in the thread. mea culpa on this one)

  106. Okay. Still not looking for a fight, but I think some people need to look up the definition of “griefing,” because it’s being tossed around very casually here. Per Wikipedia, “a griefer is a player who does things in a game to deliberately cause grief for their own enjoyment.” In Blizzard’s definition, harassment “is not necessarily limited to the type of language used, but the intent.” Going by those definitions, it seems pretty clear to me that what was originally proposed in the blog post that’s since been deleted was griefing, pure and simple; the intent was to mock and embarrass “bad” RPers in game for no other reason but fun.
    Anna’s post, by contrast, was a firmly-worded but well-reasoned argument about why that sort of behavior is not acceptable. She didn’t write this post to make fun of anyone, but to address an issue that she clearly takes very seriously and has witnessed happening in game before. Her purpose was not to make someone miserable for her own entertainment. I think it’s a shame that the author of the original post was so upset by Anna’s post that she stopped blogging (and it’s evident from Anna’s comments that she feels likewise), but that does NOT make Anna’s post “griefing.”

    By Corise on Mar 18, 2010 | Reply
  107. Look guys, it’s done.

    As you know, I chose to quit blogging because this post and subsequent comments made me realize that the community itself is not what I thought it was, and I don’t want to be part of it anymore. Guys, gals, blogging is a hobby. There’s no burning reason to “stick with” a hobby you find out you don’t like, any hobby, like book club, scrapbooking, or whatnot.

    Anna has the right to post, and to leave her post up. And I have the right to not post anymore because of what I’ve seen here. With every escalating post, on either side, it makes my choice to walk away from the hassle more clear.

    I have already posted on my blog about this, and the only reason I’m deciding to post here is not to fan the flames but FFS to get people to move on. Whatever lessons that can be learned about researching your topics, roleplay, and interacting with other bloggers have been hammered into the ground.

    By crankyhealer on Mar 18, 2010 | Reply
  108. So, let me get this mess right:

    Someone responded an attempt of naming and shaming fail RP’ers by….naming and shaming first. Sure, that isn’t hypocrisy. Or being a self-righeous ass *rolls eyes*.

    And I don’t know too well WTF godmodding is, but telling people by RP’ing that their RP is fail is not different to tell people that stop making out in public.

    Finally, I LOVED how many of the SAN members that have high readership sticked with anna or covered their asses basically because they have high readership too. That’s with all of you Gnomer, Krizzly and Matticus.

    BTW, the name is Gaussar or Garvious, SAN-US. Any critics can be done here on in game, kthnxbai.

    By Gx1080 on Mar 18, 2010 | Reply
  109. Ok. So this didn’t get any better. Cranky’s responded here, and asked it to be dropped, and so I’m going to close down commenting. At this point, I’m almost not even involved in this anymore, since everything I’m hearing about it is second and third hand, and as such, there’s no reason to leave the comments open. I’m not going to change my mind, and I’m pretty sure that’s not going to change for any of you folks.

    If you absolutely must get a hold of me, you can use the contact form (look at the navigation bar at the top of the blog header), or email me at toomanyannas at gmail dot com.

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