Guest Writer: Common Courtesy

I am frequently reminded by just how wonderful our community at TSA is. This article from Death_in_Flamez is yet another reminder of just how silly people can get on the Internet at large, and how lovely TSA normally is.

I don’t like to be angry, I’m sure many of you don’t either. However, there are just some situations that get me right underneath the car bonnet. Most of these are to do with my ‘real’ life; events which really do matter. There are a select few though that are to do with gaming.

Mostly the anger is directed at myself for messing up, and at other times it’s a laughable annoyance as the AI does something silly (looking at you F1 2011 Narain Karthikeyen). Yet there are situations, few and far between it must be stressed, in that I will get annoyed at another gamer.

Surprisingly the last time I felt this anger, it came from a news post as opposed to an online match, and sees the gamer being rather obnoxious following my fun video in the aftermath of the recent Motorstorm RC competition. I’ll let you read:

“Just thought I would stop by & inform you that the title is wrong. I saw this thread & video & decided a new #1 was needed, I spoke to ‘X’, set a new #1, 5 minutes later ‘X’ set a new #1 again. New title should be ‘Only ‘Z’ & ‘X’ are better at Motorstorm RC than this guy’”.

‘Z’ created an account specifically for this purpose and went on to discuss the matter in a less than respectable attitude and I was really left wondering why I put the time and effort into putting a comment there to attempt to put him right. What was worse then, was that ‘Z’ pursued his point grabbing lots of attention and bad reputation. Sad thing is it made him laugh.

[drop]I see online as a chance to chat to people all around the world and to play fairly with them.

My friends list is a testament to this as I have friends around the world from the USA, Canada and South Africa even; all fantastic, lovely people who were a pleasure to get to know and still play with.

Yet as we all know there are certain characters that ruin this social arena. The “COD Noobs”, the “F1 ragers” whatever you wish to name them, all have the same objective which is to ruin your experience whenever they begin to lose or dominate; both are valid starting points unfortunately.

So this is where I stand; if this was real life would you act the way ‘Z’ does towards me? I’d hope not given that you’ve never met me before and want to give a good first impression. Why should online be any different? We should all be here to have fun, so why be obnoxious and cause conflict instead of being courteous and getting to know and befriend new people? Answer is to me at least is quite easy, wouldn’t you agree ‘Z’?

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30 Comments

  1. A nice read and something I’ve been wondering myself a lot lately. When I add someone on the Friends list on PSN I usually try & at send at least one message to get to know the people I’ll be playing with. Sadly it seems more often than not, people online are not interested in engaging with others and you are more of a means to an ends which is a shame as we all have at least one common interest: gaming! I’d love to know how many people have genuine “friends” on their friends lists and not just random letters and numbers that pop on and off without ever truly getting to know them.

    • I have a few from an online forum I’ve been a member of for 10 years, and a few real friends, but ever since I got Motorstorm RC I’ve had approximately 250 friend requests from random people with “From Motorstorm RC” or some regional variant in the message box.

    • I have ten people on my friends list that I actually know in real life, approximately sixty or so from TSA (most of whom are more than willing to spend time messaging) and a few folk who are friends of friends or people I’ve had a good laugh playing online with.
      As with Poolie though, recently I’ve been inundated with random friend request via Motorstorm RC, all of which have been denied … If they even went to the bother of adding a simple comment to the friend request, saying something like ‘I saw your times on the leaderboard and I’d like to add you’ then I’d be more receptive.

    • The only people on my friends list are friends in real life. But then there are only about 15 people on my friends list! I ignore any random requests I get sent.

  2. I missed that first time round. At least I was courteous towards you (I hope!) when you beat me!

    • You certainly were! The fantastic thing about you and I was that it was more a friendly rivalry than pure hate which unfortunately ‘Z’ was producing.

      • I hate losing (don’t we all?) but I can recognise when someone is just better than me.

      • Well here turns out ‘Z’ was better than me at the game but wanted to me bit arrogant about it :/

      • Seems to be a common problem with some gamers, though, doesn’t it? From mocking messages if you lose on FIFA, to teabagging in FPS games, people are just desperate to act like an asshole at any given opportunity.

  3. My kid brother runs into this all the time. He does video reviews on you tube and often gets comments left on his vids that are purely attempts to provoke an argument.

    Stuff like “you’re s**t at this game” has no point when he’s playing the game with a camera in the way and trying to give a review commentary at the same time.

    The Internet is an amazing thing and has allowed us to progress in many ways, unfortunately it also gives total idiots anonymity to act like complete tools, knowing they can get away with it.

  4. I’m sure there must be psychologists out there who have an explanation for this sort of behaviour, it’s been going on since the early days of Usenet and is probably never going to change :(

    • There is. It’s called a “bad upbringing”. Most of us are mature enough to know better but there are plenty of children and teenagers that are barely supervised and it means they can get away with the sort of thing they should’ve been taught otherwise in the real world with their parent(s) and peers.

      The anonymity that the internet brings means we can bump it up to the next level.

    • Yep. The psychological term is “Being pathetic, but not having the b***s to show it except behind the anonymity of the internet.

      The guy is actually hilarious. He fails to get that the “you” in the title refers to the TSA community, and DiF is still better than everyone in the community (because Z will never be a member, it takes more than creating an account). Then when he gets comments on his “politeness” instead of applauded for how “good” he is he attacks everyone.

      • I was thinking of “dissociative anonymity” or since we’re talking about games, “dissociative imagination” but yep it does basically come down to bad manners and maybe lack of real life interaction/experience.
        It’s not acceptable behaviour, but I’d suspect a lot more of us have been guilty of it at some point than would be prepared to admit to it.

    • This Penny Arcade comic sums it up well:
      http://penny-arcade.com/comic/2004/03/19

  5. Lovely article for Sunday. I’m currently hammering Dungeon Defenders (PC) and two lads popped across to a game recently. They said “the community here is awesome. No hassle whatsoever and everyone’s so kind” which I think has something to do with the genre/game-type. There’s nothing hugely competitive so there’s great team-play or you die. Simple as that.

    I guess the twitch-based (and competitive titles) bring out the frustration and anger and then we truly get to see people’s true colours. I can get angry with a game (it’s usually very funny with my colourful smack-talk) but barely ever with someone in person or over Skype.

  6. sadly some people feel they need to come into a discussion for the sole purpose of insulting someone.

    • Someone like SCEE? ;D

      • Lol!

      • only if you don’t kiss their arse. ^_^

      • Heh. I agree that SCEE deserves quite a but of ridicule, but I couldn’t resist that response.

      • Haha, touché.

        Although they probably need it sometimes. :P

  7. I never quite understood why people choose to use their internet-anonymity as an excuse to act as assholes. People who enjoy acting as such, as opposed to nice and friendly… My only guess would be that they’re less intelligent, I don’t know.

    The degree of anonymity the internet and also online gaming allows for can set the stage for a lot of positive things I’d say, as social status, nationality, age and gender takes the back seat. It’s how you behave and what you say that affects how fun you have playing and how interesting discussions can get, just a shame most people choose to waste it.

  8. Add FIFA quitters to that list of people who like to ruin your experience. Grrrrr!!!!

    • Sorry meant to add…that was a good read mate, spot on

  9. A good article and one of the reasons I like TSA, for the rational and mature community. Funnily enough when I checked who ‘Z’ actually was, I did recognise the name from Motorstorm Apocalypse forums back when I played, and he was a massive turkey in there too (this is me being *cough* mature *cough*).

  10. I had this earlier whilst playing SSX.

    I got into the diamond bracket on a global event and beat the rest of them by about 4 seconds with about 5 minutes left. I decided to carry on playing that event and my time got beat with about 2 minutes left. Once the event finished i received a message off the guy basically calling me shit in as many different ways as possible and using every swear word known to man. Didnt bother replying as he was such a childish prick who was probably about 11 and it would of been a waste of time and effort.

    • And in writing my story i forgot to add good read mate.

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