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Video Set Up To Fail: Being Real About World of Warcraft & Blizzard Outrage, Positivity & Negativity
12:46   |   01/21/2019 at 19:58


  • hey everyone and welcome back to another
  • video so today we are going for
  • something a little bit matter I don't
  • this to take away from the like the main
  • content that I do so it's not going to
  • be massively added and it's totally
  • something that is okay for just
  • listening to now look battle for Azeroth
  • has been a bit of a funky time for the
  • game and we really don't need to get
  • into why that's not why this video
  • exists and really this video exists
  • because I kind of want to address the
  • the state of the community my part in it
  • and the challenges that we all face at
  • least how I see them and to be clear
  • this video has literally nothing to say
  • about the content of the game it's
  • entirely agnostic to the state of the
  • game and all that stuff and it's not
  • speaking to any particular narrative
  • that said if you don't agree with me in
  • this video please tell me I would
  • genuinely love to hear the discussion
  • that said this one could spark off so we
  • live in a world where it's increasingly
  • hard for nuance to exist once the battle
  • lines are drawn up and the narratives
  • are solidified and the hivemind of the
  • social media you know along with the
  • pollutant incentive mechanics of social
  • media we're left with really little
  • crossing of the streams we're left with
  • little conversation between people who
  • hold disagreements and that all sounds
  • like mighty lofty stuff and it might
  • seem a little silly to apply it all to
  • video game drama but I really do think
  • that the current expression of our Wow
  • predicament is that is something that's
  • echoed across the world in other
  • contexts so first of all I want to take
  • just talk about the state of human
  • communication and kind of tear down the
  • concept of positivity and negativity
  • because they're really really messy
  • nonspecific terms and I don't think they
  • do anyone any favors what is a positive
  • opinion is that an opinion that's in
  • alignment with Wizards thinking is that
  • an opinion that any one individual
  • agrees with is it used in reference to
  • something that somebody said or is it
  • used as a long term you know assessment
  • of their character so these are I think
  • sloppy words the play into a larger
  • problem which is a lack of specificity
  • we kind of live in a world where like
  • it's all narrative and it's all emotion
  • they're what our king those things
  • matter because there are powerful tools
  • and they do not matter because they
  • correlate to the truth and that's why
  • living in a world of specifics and
  • details is really what's important be it
  • in alignment with blizzard
  • or not online Blizzard I think that this
  • lack of specifics in favor of playing
  • into a narrative is one of the
  • prevailing issues that we face
  • defaulting to either narrative as the
  • lens through which all information is
  • processed is just not that useful
  • the thing is though we often only
  • recognize when we slip up in retrospect
  • and I think that's something that
  • happens now more so than ever why is
  • that well emotional manipulation and
  • modern technology so gamification is
  • when mechanics and rewards are assigned
  • to something as an example Twitter likes
  • gamification is a tool and it's a really
  • powerful tool because it plays into the
  • weak spots of human psychology now while
  • we probably all wish we were able to
  • think and then feel I think most of the
  • time we feel and then we think our
  • release more often than we'd like to
  • admit I know it certainly is like that
  • for me it's a totally natural response
  • but it is a response that's the primary
  • target of many of the mechanics by which
  • our modern means of communication
  • actually works
  • even if it's as simple as measuring
  • retweets or likes or even being worried
  • that somebody has you know not read a
  • Facebook message or maybe that they've
  • read a Facebook message but not responds
  • it it's pretty unlikely we're all going
  • to wake up tomorrow as Stoics and
  • therefore be able to deal with all this
  • stuff but I think it is best to
  • understand how all of this plays a major
  • role in communications and the eroding
  • impact that this really has where often
  • you're not engaging with people's
  • thoughts you're engaging with people's
  • feelings put out into the world at a
  • time where they are they're being felt
  • at their highest magnitude they
  • definitely might bear resemblance to
  • what you know anyone thinks and but
  • might maybe not as good as say if you
  • you know have them write an essay and
  • their viewpoint certainly it won't be an
  • ideal representation that means that
  • we're just not really engaging with
  • people at their best we're engaging with
  • people at their most feral right when
  • the primal emotions the drivers all can
  • take hold now look I'm guilty of this
  • tweeting dumb things reacting too
  • strongly to things you know engaging
  • with people and myself you know and like
  • my worst portrayal of myself and you
  • know just veering into the territory of
  • communicating with people in bad faith
  • all these things I think happened to
  • everyone and really I think all of this
  • is
  • it's kind of the it's the big downside
  • of many aspects of the modern age so
  • these are some of the fundamental
  • communication problems that I think lead
  • to things being really messy be it World
  • War Craft politics which I'm not going
  • to be touching here or anything else now
  • these same failures of human human
  • communication as facilitated by the
  • power of gamified growth driven
  • technology platforms seem to just be
  • wreaking havoc across the world in
  • general
  • perhaps by better understanding how all
  • of these mechanics impact us and world
  • warcraft on we can actually be a little
  • bit better prepared for the real world
  • now with all that said let's go let's
  • get on to world warcraft starting with
  • this channel and yeah we're gonna go for
  • thumbnails and titles cuz come on
  • they're probably what you're thinking
  • about right now it's certainly what I'm
  • thinking about and and it's not like my
  • thumbnails are subtle the thumbnails
  • have a relevant World of Warcraft
  • character pose with an emotion that I
  • think will resonate with the viewers
  • based on the topic be it something that
  • is hopeful or something that is you know
  • a reaction to a pretty shocking you know
  • headline take the thumbnail of jail and
  • brac destroying the heroes of the storm
  • logo when creating that a newer public
  • opinion walls in the issue and what the
  • immediate reactions would be so I made a
  • thumbnail who would resonate with that
  • after all it is in line with my own
  • personal need jerk reaction which was
  • kind of like what now that said is it
  • clickbait no it's not clickbait is when
  • a thumbnail is not in line with the
  • topic of the video what the thumbnail is
  • though is it is a thumbnail that is
  • absolutely aware of how it's going to be
  • perceived now once the actual visual
  • video rolls then I see it being my job
  • to start off with a knee-jerk reaction
  • that everyone myself included has arm
  • you know many people and then progress
  • that to the more slow down and reason
  • position on the issue the goal of video
  • like that is to interest somebody based
  • on the wide narrative and then take them
  • towards a more reasoned out position
  • least that's the primary reason why I
  • script my content instead of just
  • flicking on the camera and speaking my
  • mind because yes everything I do is
  • scripted I know that what comes to my
  • mind immediately is probably not the
  • true form of my reason dialed opinion
  • now I know that running the channel that
  • way is a bit of a high-risk operation
  • and the downside you're not lost on me
  • the channel seems to be particularly
  • good at
  • taking off people who hold a strong
  • opinion on either site and I mean as
  • compared to most of YouTube this channel
  • actually does run at a statistically
  • high dislike ratio now to be up from the
  • business side of things
  • not doing those thumbnails and those
  • titles would decrease video views
  • probably an average of about 30 to 50
  • percent more importantly would also kill
  • the potential of videos to go viral
  • really that's just the way it is with
  • the YouTube how I'm algorithms how the
  • algorithm works and when this channel is
  • supporting the income of six people by
  • funding the early stages the game studio
  • it would be foolish and irresponsible
  • not to do that that's kind of the mo of
  • the channel the titles and thumbnails
  • basically are kind of mirroring my own
  • knee-jerk reaction to something and then
  • the actual content is basically me
  • sitting down writing out what I really
  • think and trying to come to the the more
  • complete you know version of my thoughts
  • and that's generally why you'll see my
  • videos be you know this is a big
  • shocking bit of news and then as we go
  • through the video it kind of moves
  • towards a more reason than sometimes
  • more hopeful position now this leads me
  • on to a bit that I'm going to call the
  • explanation problem so they say don't
  • shoot the messenger well in the modern
  • day I'd really like to say don't shoot
  • the explainer now you know my goal for
  • all of these videos is to tackle the
  • more dramatic topics and in a way that
  • is kind of explaining why people think
  • what they do and what can be done based
  • on that so yeah this bit of the video
  • will definitely seem self-serving
  • basically I worry that increasingly
  • explaining something is seen as having a
  • really strong opinion on it for an
  • example explaining common criticisms on
  • azurite that can be done in a non biased
  • non narrative driven way that I think is
  • extremely useful but one problem is that
  • it will often be seen as adding fuel to
  • a fire when it's actually in attempts to
  • kind of you know rescue good ideas from
  • the firestorm and then share them so
  • across the board I think we see this
  • conflation we're talking about an issue
  • is by default seen as taking a site and
  • speaking of taking a sites I just want
  • to talk about narratives and Wow because
  • they're binary positivity and negative
  • negativity problem is something that's
  • really noticeable from my position now
  • of course my ability to see this is
  • because you know of all of you
  • supporting my content and what I have
  • noticed is as an example you know I'll
  • do news and I'll be dislike bomb for
  • being negative then I'll do a video
  • where I'm genuinely excited about the
  • lore and that will be disliked bombed
  • because Wiles dead and why am i
  • bothering at least according to the
  • comments I think it kind of highlights a
  • problem of binary narratives because
  • from my perspective I can be highly
  • critical of aspects of world of warcraft
  • but I can also be highly excited about
  • others nothing's a singular entity but
  • the power of overarching narratives is
  • such that many people do just really
  • reduce things down and really that's the
  • thing about hopping on a big positive
  • your positivity or negativity train you
  • know you get to think a single thing I
  • they're a good thing or a bad thing and
  • you got a built-in set of allies to back
  • you up and it's not really not that good
  • and obviously I find myself falling into
  • these traps all the time as well now
  • with World of Warcraft specifically I
  • think there's a few more factors that
  • play into it there is a bit of a sunk
  • cost fallacy at the end of they were all
  • dinosaurs here being in this game for a
  • long time I also think the game is a
  • part of many of our identities and you
  • know indeed this game got a lot of us
  • myself included through some pretty dark
  • times so it definitely holds a special
  • place and to be clear I can't blame
  • anyone for that but I want to move on to
  • a section I'm calling digital monk
  • because sometimes I see people say that
  • they think I have like a level head and
  • things and or the my analysis comes off
  • as being kind of reasonable or a bit
  • hopeful now I think the most helpful
  • thing that I've done to allow that to
  • happen is a disengage because I kind of
  • know I'm really you know I can be prone
  • to you know getting on the train so to
  • speak so I only checked Twitter once a
  • day and I've been muted all social media
  • notifications on my phone bar slack I
  • barely watch any World of Warcraft
  • content in YouTube and I never watch
  • content about a topic that I've not yet
  • covered and until after I've written the
  • video nothing's been better for my
  • mental health and also I think my
  • ability to be kind of balanced as
  • basically disconnecting from the click
  • economy as much as I can and and I think
  • that's probably a good thing now what
  • this is all taught me is that when I
  • engaged heavily online all the time it
  • just served to strengthen my own
  • existing opinions and you know fanned
  • the flames of my emotions in a very
  • predictable way it wasn't useful so I
  • suppose I mean if you ever feel like
  • something's taking up too much headspace
  • I'm a personal recommendation from
  • experi
  • would be the disengaging with that media
  • could actually be the good thing to do
  • so for me the key thing about this video
  • is I just want to get across why I think
  • things are the way that they are and and
  • just you know help a little bit I guess
  • and I think it's it's becoming very hard
  • to have an idea based discussion and I
  • think these are some of the core reasons
  • why I think that understanding this
  • stuff is really helpful if you don't to
  • be driven mad by the state of online
  • communication these days a lot of the
  • time it just seems like there's a kind
  • of a lack of understanding between
  • people and when that happens the default
  • is the Lampoon the other person's motive
  • and not to understand what they think so
  • my hope is that through talking through
  • my own experience with this from running
  • the channel and you know I think of all
  • this stuff based on the pretty large
  • amount of data that I get through the
  • likes and the dislikes and the comments
  • and I can just kind of help explain why
  • things are the way that they are so
  • that's my take on the state of
  • communication in general and how it
  • impacts world warcraft specifically as
  • well as my own experiences of how it's
  • been with the channel and how I have
  • tried to am you know deal with all that
  • so I'd love to hear what you've got to
  • say about this that's really all that I
  • have today the third part of my Wrath of
  • the Lich King documentaries coming up
  • super soon I also have a map reparation
  • guide for season two coming up really
  • soon as well so there is actual content
  • coming of the channel and not just
  • bizarre thought pieces like this so let
  • me what you think thank you very much
  • for watching this video I'll see you
  • next time
  • [Music]
  • [Music]

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