Friday, March 9, 2012

An Open Letter to Robert Woodhead

Warning: TLDR

Dear Sir,

I was not surprised when I logged on around a week ago to an alliance mail from Hans Jagerblitzen asking us to take a look at a good post you had made on the EVE forums. Ever the community builder, Hans is never shy about promoting something that is good or meriting discussion, even if it comes from a candidate he is running against. Though we all support Hans here at Late Night Alliance, many of us were willing to go take a look, and offer an encouraging word to another CSM candidate, specifically yourself.

What did surprise me was the solicitation I received several days later, where it was obvious that my character's name, and the names of fellow alliance members and pilots had obviously been stripped from this post. (This was a different mail then the one sent to the EVE community at large the following day.) In this mail, you solicit our help, stating that you "need to grub for every last vote."

The following day, I received the second spam, and must admit that I became somewhat irritated at this point, and concerned that CCP was allowing this spam to continue. What will be next? Recruitment spam every morning? Contract solicitations? By setting the precedence on this matter, CCP is opening a huge can of worms. I'm afraid that based on your example, people are going to realize how easy it is to spam, and that our inboxes will someday resemble Jita local chat.

I could argue that your spam is indeed in direct conflict with the Terms of Service of EVE Online.

I could explain how spam in general, specifically the precedence of your solicitations that will eventually cause additional solicitations, directly interferes with the ability of other EVE Online subscribers, as a whole, to enjoy the game. Spam interferes with other, legitimate communication between players. It is also extremely frustrating to pilots who cannot easily filter such unsolicited communications -- filtering that most companies readily, and eagerly offer their clients in this day and age.

I could explain how your mail could be considered as a promotion of solicitation, and that your open urging to forward this spam mail on to my corpmates and friends resembles the making of a chain letter--a practice specifically prohibited by the ToS.

Instead I'm petitioning your good graces. I am petitioning that you do not contradict the very things you state in your mail.

For, how can I believe you when you say:
"I have spent countless hours pushing CCP to improve the game for the benefit of the entire EVE community..."

  • When you send spam that most decidedly does NOT improve the game, and does NOT benefit the entire EVE community, but instead frustrates and annoys pilots?

How can I believe you when you say:
"I am the guy that thinks your opinions matter"

  • When you defend your spam mail, even though a large number of people have expressed their opinions against this act?
  • When you knowing took a 'calculated risk' knowing full well you would be going against the opinions of a large portion of EVE pilots?
  • When you blatantly shoved the interests of EVE pilots aside for the benefit of your own interests?

How can I believe you when you say you want to push for us...

  • When you openly disrespect the EVE player base by openly 'grubbing around for votes' and spamming, instead of using that time to engage the community in honest, open discussion about game mechanics and players' issues?

Not even the troll voters want spam in their inbox.

How can I ever again engage you in conversation on the EVE Online forums without the fear that the very act of posting on one of your threads will lead to another spam mail?

Even the Mitanni built his name recognition through game philosophies, reputation, and action. Not by sniveling computer programs and scraping macros that smell of desperation.

So, I petition you:

  • Please stop unsolicited mail sent to the EVE Player base at large, and petition CCP to have this considered an exploit, to prevent it from happening in the future.
  • Please take the time to build your own mailing list, as other candidates have done through hard work and community involvement, where you can openly engage with people who desire to hear from you.
  • Please start listening to us again.
  • And please, please stop spamming me with your desperate, contradictory propaganda.

Susan Black

Please direct comments on this matter to this EVE Online forums thread.