[MUD-Dev] curses and grief players

John Buehler johnbue at email.msn.com
Fri Jul 28 14:50:36 New Zealand Standard Time 2000

> J C Lawrence
> Sent: Friday, July 28, 2000 2:21 PM

>   4) I open up a discussion on the item, possibly associated with a
>      poll, or several polls on various facets of the problem and its
>      intended solution.  Typically the voting and vote counting is
>      implicit rather than explicit.

> Are the people in #4 hoodwinked?  They are asked, they are polled,
> they may vote for their preferences, and they are (implicitly)
> requested to participate and contribute to the decision making
> prcess by adding their two cents.  Certainly all these things are
> true.  Equally, while there is an explicit promise that they will be
> listened to, there is no promise as to what will be done with their
> statements, just that they will be heard.
> You get the ear of the king, not his complicity.

  In the case that you're presenting, it looks like you're treating
your players with fairness and respect.  You're inviting their opinions
without setting the expectation that their opinions rule the day.  And
that's good because that's the truth.

  Note that if you know that your players WILL develop the expectation
that they control the outcome with their vote - regardless of what you
say - then I'm back to calling 'foul'.

> Further, there is often a useful implicit deception which can be
> constructively used with this technique.  Frequently merely raising
> the topic of the problem for discussion as a problem raises general
> awareness on the area enough that the problem alleviates.

  I'm not averse to using constructive techniques to help a player
community deal with the vagaries of being involved in a MUD.  It's all
about intent.  Is the admin's intent to manage his players as if they were
annoying children that the admin just wants to make go away, or is the
admin acting responsibly towards them to ensure that all operations are
conducted with that 'fairness and respect' that I mentioned.  That
doesn't mean that every thought that passes through the admin's head is
subject to his players' scrutiny and debate.  It simply means that
he sets up the rules such that they WORK for the MUD, for him and
for the players.  He doesn't set up rules that work for him and then
manipulates the players so that they don't get bent about the crappy
deal that they're actually faced with.

  Do all admins believe that it is impossible to maintain a desireable
player base by treating players with fairness and respect?


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