Saturday, December 14, 2013

Griefing, Harassment, Bullying, and the New Order, Part 2

Previously, on MinerBumping... We explored the carebears' claims that the New Order and other fun-loving highsec-dwellers are bullies, etc. Today, we dive right in and get to the bottom of this question. Is highsec PvP just a bunch of bullying?

WARNING: Real talk incoming, beginning after my face.

Let's begin by taking a look at the traditional "sandbox" argument. We all know that the carebears claim "sandbox rights" to mine in peace, and that they dismiss the idea that a ganker has "sandbox rights" to gank. At times, it seems you can support or dismiss any opinion about EVE by inserting the word "sandbox" into it. However, this isn't the case. When it comes to EVE, some people are right about some things, and some people are wrong about some things. Even if they all use the word "sandbox".

For example, thousands of miners and assorted carebears have filed petitions against the New Order. They've claimed all sorts of nasty things about us in their petitions. But do you know how many of those petitions have been granted? The total number of New Order Agents who have been banned, to date:


Consider the wasted effort of all those thousands of carebears. None of them could pin anything on any of our Agents. Zero cases of harassment or bullying. It comes down to this: If the carebears were right, then some or all of us would be banned for our supposedly inappropriate behavior. But because 100% of those efforts to ban us have failed, it's pretty clear that we're right and the carebears are wrong--at least from the perspective of the people who designed the game, came up with the rules, and enforce said rules.

The carebears then argue that although we're not breaking any rules, that just means the rules themselves are flawed, because we're doing bad things to their sandbox. They disagree that EVE is a "spaceship combat sandbox", claiming that it's a more generalized "sandbox sandbox". After all, you don't have to shoot at spaceships. You can build them, or trade them, or whatever.

EVE does grant players the ability to choose from a wide array of different activities. That doesn't mean, however, that there are no limits on what kind of game EVE is. There is a "wrong" way to play EVE. You're doing it wrong if you pilot an untanked, blinged-out ship that you can't afford to lose--on the assumption that you can't die--and then file a petition for harassment when you get blown up. To call that a legitimate play-style requires you to voluntarily surrender all common sense. EVE is a PvP-based game, in highsec, nullsec, everywhere.

If EVE isn't a PvP-based game, then neither is Dust 514. In an FPS (first-person shooter) game, people engage in PvP. They don't have to, though. An FPS server has just as much potential for PvP-free zones as EVE does. The soldiers on each side of a battle could call a truce, admire the amazing 3-D graphics, and prance amongst the daisies. Some FPS'es include roles for building things, or supplying or healing other players. Yet the games remain first-person shooters just as EVE will always be a spaceship combat sandbox. You don't have to shoot at other spaceships, just as you don't have to shoot at other soldiers in Dust 514. However, in EVE and Dust, the other players will shoot at you because that's the game.

Nevertheless, the carebears will tell you that we have impure motives in shooting spaceships. They might point to our collection of carebear tears. MinerBumping, for instance, has 394 posts affixed with the "Tears" label. (Actually, 395 now, because rswfire's tears in Part 1 got the label attached to that post, too.)

There's no denying it: Many carebear tears can be found on MinerBumping. It's the single largest repository of carebear tears to be found anywhere. The critics will tell you that this is proof that the New Order is playing EVE for sadistic reasons, that we're propelled by our sociopathic tear-collecting activities.

Let's look at this another way. Imagine you've embarked on a mission to climb Mount Everest. Suppose you've documented your journey with copious photographs. Some of those photographs are of yourself in the environment, while others are of the scenery. Now suppose you share these photographs with other people, some of whom are interested in mountain-climbing, and some who are merely curious about your experience. They will immediately notice that there's a lot of snow and ice in a lot of those pictures. Should they conclude that the reason for your journey was to take pictures of snow and ice? Of course not. There's snow everywhere because you're up in the mountains.

The same principle holds true for MinerBumping. Carebear tears appear in hundreds of the posts for the simple reason that this is a blog about highsec. If you go to highsec and engage in PvP, there will be tears. As any New Order Agent or other highsec professional will tell you, carebears shed tears. We don't go through 9 polite, rational encounters with carebears and then document the one time out of ten that a carebear goes nuts and rants about how shooting his Retriever is something Hitler would do. Quite the opposite. The vast majority of the time that a carebear speaks at all, he's foaming at the mouth. The average highsec miner gets more upset about losing a 40 million isk Retriever than a nullsec player does about getting kicked out of a region.

MinerBumping broke new ground because it shone a light on highsec. Most EVE players never leave highsec, but until MinerBumping, the highsec carebear culture was almost entirely unknown. And if you don't believe that the experiences described each day on MinerBumping are a representative sample, then I cordially invite you to come to highsec and gank or bump a miner or two.

Finally, this brings us to the issue of PvP in highsec. Remember that The Nosy Gamer had no qualms about miners being shot in lowsec, but instantly categorized all PvP against miners in highsec as "harassment". This puts the New Order in a sticky situation, because highsec is our territory. How else can we enforce our rules?

At this, the carebear scoffs. "How can you claim highsec?" they say. "You can't hold sovereignty in highsec. You have no territory to protect, so all you're doing is senseless griefing."

I've covered this point before, but it's worth saying again and again. True, we can't claim sovereignty in highsec systems. Claiming sov can only be done in nullsec. Correction: It can only be done in part of nullsec. In fact, vast tracts of territory in nullsec cannot be claimed by players; they have NPC sovereignty. The EVE influence map doesn't show NPC sov, though. Where possible, it applies player sovereignty to surrounding areas, filling in the gaps and making it appear that more of nullsec is claimed by players. Even then, some nullsec regions are so NPC-sov-heavy that they're left blank on the influence map. In the older EVE maps, cartographers would use their best judgment to show various alliances claiming the NPC-held areas--even if those alliances didn't hold sovereignty in any systems.

In addition, territory is claimed by alliances even when a different alliance owns sovereignty. I'm not only talking about wartime, where territory is disputed. In many cases, large areas are "held" by renter alliances who don't really own the territory. The territory is owned by the host, which forces them to pay rent and can kick them out at any time. However, the renter oftens holds sovereignty, with some renters being big enough to show up on the influence map. There are also alliances who take the opposite approach, claiming territory in nullsec but not getting involved in sov mechanics at all.

Then we turn to wormsec, or w-space, as some prefer to call it. Players cannot claim sovereignty in wormholes. Anyone who visits wormhole space will quickly discover that players nonetheless claim wormholes as their own territory. The same holds true of lowsec. No player sovereignty exists there, but players claim territory.

When you add it all up--NPC null, sov-in-name-only renters, sov-spurning PvP'ers, wormholes, and lowsec--most territorial claims by players in EVE are not actually accompanied by in-game sovereignty.

Viewed in this light, isn't it obvious that the same holds true for highsec? Logic does not merely allow, but demands, that players can claim territory in highsec.

The carebear protests, "But players outside of highsec can back up their claims with violent force!" They can in highsec, too. The New Order has inflicted trillions of isk worth of damage by suicide ganking. We inflict more damage each month than most nullsec alliances. "But CONCORD!", they say. Who cares? In any event, not all violence in highsec is punished by CONCORD. Wardecs certainly aren't. Nor is awoxing. When you bump miners, CONCORD will punish the player who attacks the bumper.

As you can see, it makes perfect sense for the New Order to claim highsec as our territory. You might object that we don't do enough damage to make a credible claim on all that territory. Fine, but that's a reason for us to inflict more damage, not less. To make our claims to rule highsec all the more credible, and to make compliance with our Code all the more common.

Thus, the carebear becomes the ultimate advocate of the griefing, harassment, and bullying he accuses us of. Oops!

In conclusion, it's time for the carebears to get real. In PvP games, there are kills and there are deaths. You win and you lose. If your ship is blown up and you get podded, you lost. Somebody beat you. Congratulate him or learn from him, but don't hate him. He's just playing EVE.


  1. A very good read as usual, but i expect a river of tears after this post just because you know, is hisec and it should be 100% safe, griefing of noob players etc etc.

  2. Miners mine and gankers gank. If miner gets ganked, it's pretty easy to see who's claim to highsec is valid.

    On a sidenote, I checked out rwsfire's blog and it's scary.

  3. Oh dear, I hope I'm not going to be made out to be some sort of spokesman for miners. At my worst I perhaps averaged 3-4 hours per week. Nowadays I maybe mine for 30 minutes at a time when I need kernite for storyline missions. Just because I'm a carebear doesn't mean I mine a lot.

    I also don't think that all ganking of high sec miners is harassment. Hulkageddon is a great example. It brought a diverse group of people together to do an activity, which is what's supposed to happen in MMORPGs. Also, people got prizes, which is totally within the spirit of EVE.

    Another great example are the ice interdictions. From everything I've read, CCP intended for players to be able to disrupt supplies like that. The ability for a group to do a mass market manipulation that requires the involvement of hundreds of players while some people get stupidly rich is one of the draws of EVE. Where else are you going to get that type of game play?

    A third reason for not removing the ganking of high sec miners is what James315 does here. Why shouldn't someone be able to extort money from people in the form of mining permits? The fact that someone's come up with a protection racket is probably one of the reason's that CCP put the war declaration system into high sec in the first place. The fact that a role play element has been added to the marketing of the activity that adds a sophistication to the effort that borders on genius. And James315 has collected 168 billion reasons to explain why it is genius.

    I guess what I don't understand is why so many people find what James315 and the New Order does so amusing. Then again, I find a lot of what happens in high sec to be baffling. James, if you want to be king of high sec, you're welcome to it.

    1. When I was primarily a nullsec player I didn't really get it either. Spend a day or two bumping and ganking miners and you'll understand pretty quickly what's so amusing about it.

      Believe me, no harassment occurs on the part of the New Order agents. The miners, on the other hand, do plenty of harassing. Fortunately for them, we just find it funny and write blog posts about it, rather than petitioning them.

    2. "That's part of the reason for asking the question. When I read it I feel sorry for James315 and those he writes about. He makes everyone involved in harassing miners look sad and pathetic." -- Noisy Gamer in a comment in the linked post

      Genius but sad and pathetic. Must be some nuance I don't get.

    3. Don't worry, no one will make you a spokesman for anything you smug clown.

    4. @Malcolm - That's part of James' genius. He's able to hit the emotional strings of his target audience and pull them into the world he's created. And he profits nicely from his showmanship. But if you don't belong to his circle, or don't share those views, then the inhabitants of that world come across as sad and pathetic.

    5. @Noizy I guess I sort of know what you mean. To the people they've pulled into their world, they seem like artistic and musical geniuses. But I personally find the aficionados and performers of Italian Opera to be sad and pathetic if they think that stuff is even good. Actually I don't. I just understand that people have different musical tastes than me. Much like I understand that MMORPG players have different ways of playing than me. I don't even think of hisec miners as sad and pathetic. They are adult players that make choices, sometimes bad, in a competitive PvP video game. When they make bad choices and compound that with rants in local and emails, that makes entertaining reading.

    6. ^ Previous comment was aimed at NoizyGamer, in case it wasn't obvious.

    7. "When they make bad choices and compound that with rants in local and emails, that makes entertaining reading."

      Let's be honest, someone ranting in local and evemail because they're bad at EVE is sad and pathetic. This isn't a one dimensional comparison, though. There's the "skilled and knowledgeable vs. ignorant" axis, the "ready and expecting a fight vs. not ready and not expecting a conflict" axis, the "outnumbered vs equal vs outnumbering" axis, "outshipped vs. equal ships vs undershipped" axis, etc. Most people who look down on someone for deviating from equality on one axis, deviate on another axis just as much--and that goes across all of EVE, not just for comparisons involving the New Order. It's all rather amusing, and when I poke fun at people who don't realize they're doing it, that's not fair either. To live life ignoring the sad and pathetic is to turn a blind eye to the world as it is, in EVE or out of it.

      I'll poke fun at Noizy for this, knowing that someone who spends so much time writing about gold sellers must on some level know that he's not the kind of person to turn a blind eye to the sad and pathetic happenings in this world.

    8. "Most people who look down on someone for deviating from equality on one axis, deviate on another axis just as much"

      p.s.--Everyone does this to some extent, because if you refuse to deviate on any axis in any interaction, you end up f&%^ing your clone and reproducing via parthenogenesis. Treating others as an equal in respects where they aren't is a skill that's valuable, except when it's not, but no one is perfect at that either, and that's life. Excuse the bluntness, but hey, real talk.

    9. pps. If you want to consider how a deeper understanding of greatness arises from the true knowledge of the pathetic nature of the world as it is and how that concept has been explored by the geniuses of human history, start with Shakespeare, especially his greatest dramatic tragedies which center on that topic, move on to Freud, whose observational skills were much greater than the psychological techniques he developed which have fallen out of favor, and end with James315. ;)

  4. Okay, real talk time...This all makes so much sense, yes you don't absolutely have to shoot other ships, but it's one of the most fun elements of the game and an excellent way to get the big stuff done.

    Plenty of examples of typical carebear traits outlined, which is assuming the behavior shown in-game is the same as RL, and of course trying to play an MMO as a single-player game.

    Went over to rwsfire's blog and it is pretty much drivel as has been said on part 1 I think. He thinks mining and ganking are both 5 step processes, I mean come on.

    Anyway, it is posts like these that make me appreciate coming to read this blog.

    ---Friendly Neighborhood Scoundrel

  5. Hey, James. As much enjoyment I get out of the posts I feel I should at least post once in these wonderful articles you do on the nature of EVE.

    Back when the Mittani first started his articles on Ten Ton Hammer, I got linked it by a friend and ended up following him even as he's had less time and gone through his good stories due to his heavy insight into the psychology and fun within the game. I think if nothing else you're an amazing spiritual successor for the zeitgeist of EVE.

    I don't play EVE. I read about it, and while it tempts me, I'm not very good at calculations over words and creative writing, but I'll say this- EVE has given me stories I'm jealous of, particularly from people like James and The Mittani. I'm more than a little confused how, when reading his posts and disseminations anyone can mistake him for unintelligent when he's such an eminently compelling writer. I hope people can appreciate your posts rather than trying to derail it, but I think your point in and of itself says you'll be wrong. Maybe I might hang out on the New Order TS for moral support. Why do people hate having conflict in a game about conflict? I think it's telling that your biggest and most active 'rebel leaders' (HMQ, Skull) realized that you made an absurdly fun entity. It's a bit hyperbole, but I think you're doing a good thing in hitting these highsec players with the fun bat, even if they're crying out about it.

    Thanks James, it's people like you who make actually keeping up with an online blog worthwhile and always thought provoking. Who woulda thunk spaceships could be so deep?

    1. /\ Well said good sir, well said, I feel a manly tear forming.

    2. miners cant have the decency to remain at their computers while logged into the game, but Mittani and James can keep people who dont even play interested.
      praise to them both, and shame on afk & noncompliant miners!

  6. The gloves are off, miners take your seats, the lesson has started.

    Here are the facts: you are, as a majority, uninteresting punch bags that don't get it the first time you get ganked. You fly max profit zero tank mining barges, you keep alts in untanked orcas like this is some kind of hello kitty online spin off and you cannot see the outside world farther than your mining lasers go.

    So long as this game allows me to act like a douche, i will do so with all my heart. The funny thing is, you will never see me whine on local on a failed gang and neither will i swear because 10 carebears lawyered up on local and sprout nonsense and trash talk. The more you cry, the more you sustain me. I'm like the fucking evil interstellar cloud from The Fifth Element. You keep throwing at me tears and i get bigger every minute. My ego inflates so hard and my skills are getting better just because you cannot comprehend this games' nature. Well, news flash: not my problem. So you better start getting a clue sooner rather than later for your sake.

    I will be stalking your mineral belts, your ice belts, everything you hold dear in your boring afk mining time. And when you will be alt tabbed watching the latest shitty anime episode, that is when i will strike you and punish you for your impotence.

    Time to man up high-sec. Prepare Uranus!


    1. "So long as this game allows me to act like a douche, i will do so with all my heart. The funny thing is, you will never see me whine on local on a failed gang and neither will i swear because 10 carebears lawyered up on local and sprout nonsense and trash talk. The more you cry, the more you sustain me. I'm like the fucking evil interstellar cloud from The Fifth Element. You keep throwing at me tears and i get bigger every minute. My ego inflates so hard and my skills are getting better just because you cannot comprehend this games' nature. Well, news flash: not my problem. So you better start getting a clue sooner rather than later for your sake. "

      Really awesome bio material.

  7. Rebel miner and long time fan of here. It's the fact that drama like this can happen in the first place that makes EVE the amazing game that it is. While i'm still a long way from compliance with The Code, i fully acknowledge the New Order's right to bump and gank as they see fit. That's EVE. And that is why we love it.

    Ada Kilndown

    1. Update: RlgorMortls contacted me today and convinced me of the benefits of becoming code-compliant. No longer a rebel. Still a fan of AK.

    2. \o/

      Another one brought to the light!

      That might have been extreme.

  8. "Your claim that EVE is a PVP game is true, but EVE has high security space for a reason."

    You neglected to provide that reason. I'll fill in the blank: so James and the New Order would have a region to rule and save.

    "the fact he killed an ant while the rest of the village is killing bears and deer to provide food and clothing"

    If you look at the facts of prehistoric life, or real-life survival training, insects and grubs are an incredibly important source of calories for both. That is why miners are important, they are the ant collectors. Gankers and pvpers are the real hunters of deer, bear, and lions, of course, that much is obvious, you're quite confused on that point.

    Overall, your dislike of the bottom and praise for the top is commendable, and once you take your head out of your ass and realize you're looking at the hierarchy upside-down, I'm confident you will see the light and embrace the Code.

  9. This is the best article on the site (and I say that having loved so many of your other articles.) James, you are an excellent writer and possess a brilliant mind. Never have I seen the issue so well explained as here. Thank you for helping keep highsec dangerous.
    -Angus Adalwin

  10. And there we go, just like I expected. It's an analogy. For the love of... Can't you just go with it for once? It wasn't meant to be historically accurate, or whatever accurate. Now you think my point has been disproved, I'm just a crying carebear blah blah blah. You guys are so damn quick to assume you're right. Listen you twit, I am not a carebear, I live in null sec (AND NO, before you even start to think of this, I'm not gonna "send my null friends to kill you", I'm just stating that I live in null). And by "killed an ant" I meant he fucking stepped on it and claimed to be an excellent hunter. EVEN SO, your rebuttal does not aid your point as, yes they may have been important in prehistorical diets, they don't have the same level of difficulty it takes to track and kill a deer or bear. I'm not confused, I'm right. You people are the worst of the worst, so low you aren't on the totem pole. Kiss my ass, if you ever stop carebearing and leave high sec to do so

  11. Also, you missed the point of my post. it wasn't about hierarchies or the like, it was a fact that James is a bully, that the New Order is an association of bullies. Since you made no attempt to refute this, I am going to assume you agree. See ya when you get the balls to PVP instead of carebear

  12. I don't know about prehistoric ant diets, but your copious tears are doing wonders for my diet. Please cry more, and don't skimp on the impotent rage.

  13. Claims not to be a miner. Claims to live in nullsec. Leaves screed with shoutout to the High Priest of Gamis, Kalorned. Seems legit. Tells us more how the NO doesn't affect you.

  14. "It wasn't meant to be historically accurate, or whatever accurate."

    You succeeded, it wasn't accurate. Yes, the fact that insects were an important historical food source was a side point; I included it as an educational way to soften the blow of the main point, which is that everything you said was wrong, your point was disproved, your analogy failed, etc. While you failed to say anything of informative value, your tears were indeed delicious; do come back again.

    to answer your addendum:

    "Also, you missed the point of my post. it wasn't about hierarchies or the like, it was a fact that James is a bully, that the New Order is an association of bullies."

    The point of your post was obvious; just as obvious was the fact that your point was wrong. the hierarchies you mentioned were not your main point, but were your only attempt to support your main point. Since you didn't understand how they worked, this failed, horribly. Your inability to understand that your point was refuted was predictable, and you can assume whatever you like; we'll keep enjoying your tears either way.

  15. Thus why I say you people are bullies
    Thanks for proving my point

  16. Reading your angry threatening tears is bullying you? If only there was a way you could stop people from reading your words, thereby bullying you horribly...some way you could not have your posts displayed on public forums...there must be something you could do.

  17. If you're not smart enough to make a decent argument, don't go crying when people laugh at you.

    Similarly, if you're not smart enough to take measures against gankers (dscan, local, not being afk), don't go crying when your barge gets wrecked.

    Taking advantage of someone's stupidity in a competitive game isn't bullying. After all, they chose to compete.

  18. BeBopAReBop RhubarbPieDecember 17, 2013 at 12:43 AM

    learn to seperate rl from the game man. The draw of eve to much of its playerbase is that this syle of play isn't just allowed, but encouraged. Scamming, Awoxing, Safaris, Corp theft, Ninja Salvaging, Extortion and Suicide Ganking are all allowed. There are plenty of games that prevent or ban players from engaging in these activities, most of which have far better PVE than eve does. I recommend looking into those if you truly have an issue with our activities.

    And no, I'm not trolling you.

  19. mmmm.... James tears best tears

    1. Except what people like you don't realize is, if you try to point at someone's tears when there are none, you are just betraying your own tears welling up inside you.

      Take it from an expert in tear phenomena, it's true. I am currently working on my thesis in Quantum Tear Superposition, which shows that sometimes the tears you see in others are your own, and the probability of this effect increases exponentially with the observer's Carebear Coefficient.

  20. These hypotheticals about how ridiculous this would all sound in any game... really aren't that hypothetical. I remember when roleplayers took over The Isle and tried to create a Safe Space roleplaying server where carnivore players got banned for hunting. It was possibly the cringiest gaming community I have ever seen, including forum roleplayers.


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