Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Broadcast 4 Reps

There's been a lot of buzz lately about Coffee Rocks and the "Broadcast 4 Reps" project. It's an effort to assist EVE players who are struggling with depression and suicidal thoughts. As Coffee Rocks put it in his stickied EVE-O thread,
"We talk a lot of crap to each other. We gank you. You pod us. We blob you. You take our Sov. We post losses on the forums and subreddits and laugh at each other and go off in local chat. That's all in the context of playing the video game. The trolling ends when you Broadcast For Reps. Carebear or ganker; Sov Lord or wormholer; LS pirate or HS roleplayer; brave newbie or bitter veteran - We are all part of the same community, and it is as awesome and diverse as it is because you are part of it. And we are here for you in your time of need just as you would be there for us in ours."
Though Broadcast 4 Reps has been around for a while, it got a big boost when CCP employees and notable EVE players teamed up to create this YouTube video about the project.

CCP's official EVE twitter account tweeted about it, and CCP also aired the video during EVE Vegas. Our own Agent Tengu Grib is among the players who speak during the video.

If you watch the video, you'll notice that there's no attempt to downplay the uniquely cutthroat nature of the competitive PvP sandbox that is EVE Online. Quite the opposite, in fact: The players promise to burn to ashes all that belongs to their enemies. They'll scam you for everything you own, destroy all your ships, and yes, maybe even harvest some of your tears. But that's all within the rules of the game, and it's completely legitimate--as evidenced by the participation of the CCP employees in the video.

This is an important point, because it's only after we accept what is legitimate gameplay in EVE that we can draw the distinction between EVE and real life. Without the distinction, groups like Broadcast 4 Reps wouldn't be able to offer real-life help to those in need. That's something the "Ganking Is Bullying" movement never understood.

To emphasize the point, the video concludes as Agent Tengu Grib wishes everyone farewell with a hearty "Praise James!"

Among the "Ganking Is Bullying" crowd and their sympathizers, there's a hope that the New Order is illegitimate, or exists in a gray area, or that CCP simply hasn't gotten around to banning all of the suicide gankers, wardeccers, "extortionists", etc. So was it a controversial choice to include a New Order Agent in this video--one made with the assistance and endorsement of CCP, no less? Coffee Rocks explains:

A worthy project and a point well made. If Coffee Rocks comes to highsec, he still needs to buy a permit, though.


  1. Knock, knock...

    (Ha HAH, knock knock guy! You fail to deliver, so I am bumping you!)

    1. This made me LOL. (yes I am totally immature)

    2. OK! So....

      Who's there?

    3. MINING WHO?! (Biting my nails in anticipation!)

    4. Mining? Mo' like whining!


    5. YES! CLOSURE!

      Also, wow, even horrible jokes become good when they're code compliant!

  2. Why didnt AG make it on the video.


    Thats right they are the ones complaining XD XD

    1. Lol not all of us complain. Also hugs. We have seen each other in game

  3. I really wish that whole Reps thing hadn't started on Reddit. Why does the /r/eve sub need to play host to suicide/depression threads when there are a half-dozen better equipped subs out there designed specifically for that purpose?

    Just another form of shitposting, I guess.

    1. Actually, it didn't start there. The channels came out first after a couple Brave guys asked for them after I sent an alliance mail about B4R. B4R just .... well it took on a life of it's own, and player Andrew Laferriere crowdsourced the reddit wiki shortly after player Mustang33 (one of their fellow redditors) was lost to suicide quite publicly on the subreddit. Granted, B4R is not normally a popular topic on the subreddit, but even keyboard cowboys need reps occasionally.

    2. Are you sure Mustang33 wasn't a troll? It very much seemed like it was.

    3. I left Eve due to my father's suicide. I also was on b4reps. I wasn't impressed, honestly I was actually pissed off. Not their fault, not my fault. I didn't tell my dad to shoot himself. I'm also not going to shoot myself. I want to live forever, despite my dad's choice.

      It was nice to talk to them though. if only briefly before I sacrificed my entire Eve Uni to shoot for CODE, which also led me to quit briefly.

      I'll be back. Not CODE, sorry James 315.

  4. Dom: --Links minerbumping article--

    Me: Oh god....

    Me: Oh. Outstanding. You guys actually get me. Daw, you crazy .... wait i mean *cough* grrrCode.

    Thanks, guys.

    1. You're welcome.

      Now buy a permit and hyperdunk a freighter.

      Ya know ya wanna.

      Mike Adoulin

    2. @Coffee Rocks
      Of all the community initiatives I've seen, yours is by far the best. Fantastic work.

      You may be joking, but what you say can sometimes help. When you're chronically down it takes quite an effort to start mentally functioning once again.

      Ganks are set piece acts of violence that take time, logistics and fleet coordination, yet with the right FC is simple to do and gives quick repeated gratification as the criminals go pop. When you're down in the dumps it can be the tonic. A bit of a giggle, and a small confidence booster that helps prove to yourself that you're not yet lost to the world. Black Abbott describes this below in better words than mine.

      #gank4reps anyone?

      - Dr Tyler

  5. This is noble but I don't think it's going to work well, because every player on the losing side of a fight is willing to fake depression/abuse/whatever else they think will engender sympathy. I think many of them would be quite willing to carry the charade outside the game if they think it can get the winner vilified/banned. It's the internet, how do you verify someone is actually in need?

    And, well, remember Mittani's little incident? The culture of the game tends to root out sympathy as a weakness to be exploited.

    I'm not saying this shouldn't exist, but Eve is really the wrong context for it.

    1. Having fought the Depression Daemon twice, you can't really fake it for very long.

      Anyone can claim "I'm Depressed." after a loss and that's normal. Losing hurts, and Eve doesn't sugar-coat it.

      B4R is for the chronically, clinically depressed, and that's a whole different beast entirely. Where Eve or some other escape can easily become your life, and nothing, not bills, not work, not your friends, not your kids, not your spouse, not your hobbies, seems to matter. Nothing does. You live your life on auto-pilot, not because you care, but because you don't really have any better idea of what to do.

      Lost a frigate: "Ugh."
      Lost a carrier: "Ugh."
      Lost a titan: "Ugh."

      Anyone can fake that for a few days, but for weeks, or months? They're either depressed, or a great method actor.

      The ONLY criticism I can level on this is that unless there are trained psychologists in the channel, a well meaning person can easily do more harm then good. Depression is a nasty bastard, and there are specialists for a reason.

    2. Adressing the "The Mittani incident": Well, some people write or say stuff before they think. He was drunk, he said he was sorry for saying that. He might be a sociopath who doesn't care. But believe me, this kind of retoric isn't unusual. Ever heard some executives/managers talk? They spew out this stuff when they think the room supports it.

      The outcry of the community should be enough evidence, that there are many people who disagreed with what he said...were shocked and angry. This is a good sign of a healthy community.

    3. @ The Black Abbot

      Well said. Much agreement.

    4. The Mittani's comments were way out of line - he admitted as much once he sobered up and worked to rectify his mistake.

    5. @Black Abbott

      "You live your life on auto-pilot, not because you care, but because you don't really have any better idea of what to do."

      Perfect words sir. When the black dog is sniffing around that's exactly what happens to me. I'd add that despite the best efforts of your loved ones who try so valiantly to lift you up, resentment can creep in and so multiplies the misery.

      The cruelest part is they suffer more than you.

      - Dr Tyler

  6. None of this would be a problem if people didn't fly what they can't afford to replace, take sov they have no way of holding, were more selective in recruiting... or bought a permit.

    1. @Malcolm Shinhwa I wish I could upvote this! It's really not about EVE as a game. It's about EVE-Gamers trying to help those in our midst who suffer from depression and/or suicidal thoughts. I would love to see this expanded to other on- and offline communities.

  7. Taking a Zen approach to Eve and accepting it for what it is, not what one wants it to be is a good way to help calm one down. Parole normally get upset when they don't get their way. Admitting that they give up some control over the outcome of their gaming session the moment they log on will help alleviate some of the suffering.

    Yes, depression and suicide is a real thing. I get that. However if not having the desired outcome is enough to send one over the edge, there's probably a long list of potential catalysts (no pun intended) that could also send one over the edge. Don't blame ganking/griefing/etc. for it.

  8. Having seen the outrageously supportive attitudes in many places within the Eve Online community, from the small acts of kindness - New guy asks how to avoid being targeted in future and follows the advice of their ganker, fitting a tank, not being afk, awareness of local, how to set up overview, joining a new player friendly alliance that actually helps you learn the game through wiki guides and training fleets - to the large acts of kindness, the PLEX for Charity drives, the individual gifts of real life cash to help save a single father keep the roof over their head when being evicted and made homeless through very little if any fault of their own.

    This community will at the same time kick you when you're down and pick you up out of the gutter. Some people will do both while maintaining their hard ass reputation.

    Yes there is a need to get professional help, but getting the first pick-me-up in order to recognize that you need help in the first place is very very important and if the best way is via a community of practical strangers or impersonal avatars then so be it.

  9. "Praise James."



    Everyone at EVE Vegas.... pfffffflolololololol


  10. I'm glad there is such a thing as this in Eve. I read the forum post where people who suffer from RL depression recount their experiences and the support they received from in-game organizations that reached out to them as real people and provided what help they could.

    But the truth is that we mostly don't know each other as real people the way our RL friends, family and co-workers do. The limit of being able to recognize the truly suicidal from the "too attached to their Retriever" miner is real and, as James has pointed out in many of his posts, space psychologist isn't a thing. My main fear is that the people who, through their desire to help the fellow game players, participate in the endeavor discussed here are as unqualified to diagnose mental illness as they are to operate spaceships in highsec. No big deal when they mine untanked in a .5 system... if someone turns to them for help in a RL suicidal state the stakes are much higher. Should a person who knows you only as a voice on Team Speak and a ship with a portrait of you hanging inside it really be the one to tell you what to do when you reach such an extreme moment? For most people, the most important thing they can do when someone tells them they are suicidal is to tell someone else... a parent, a spouse or a superior in the organization. Who do we tell? CCP?

    I'm a player who has, on occasion, been accused of going too far in how I treat other players and its something we should all think about. But there is a difference between the person who is suicidal who happens to be a fellow Eve player and a person who is capable of being driven to suicide because of what happens in the game. The first person has problems way beyond the ability of most of us to solve and we shouldn't think we can. Yes, encourage them to get help. Yes, let them know they are valued. Yes, tell them things will get better. I hope the people beind this initiative follow through and develop something that gets suicidal people the professional help they need.

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