D&D with Porn Stars and Canon Puncture

edited February 2010 in Story Games
Hello,

It's Zak from D&D With Porn Stars. People in the "Stuff To Watch February 2010" thread are talking about my little tete-a-tete with the Canon Puncture guys and the discussion has reached the 4-post limit so I'm posting all that here and then straightening it out.

If anyone has any questions, go ahead and ask me.

The original material being discussed is:

This post:
http://dndwithpornstars.blogspot.com/2010/01/how-much-do-you-want-to-be-wizard_15.html

This Canon Puncture podcast about that post:
http://www.canonpuncture.com/2010/02/canon-puncture-86-indie-games-with-pornstars/comment-page-1/#comment-1603

And my response to the Canon Puncture podcast:
http://dndwithpornstars.blogspot.com/2010/02/i-know-you-meant-well-but-circumstances.html

Here's the thread as it has developed so far in "Stuff To Watch February 2010"
I have inserted fact-checks and other information on specific comments in directly after those quotes in triple parentheses.
.
____________
* BastardToadflax
* CommentTime1 day ago
Is it in poor taste to link to Zak's recent post on Playing D&D With Pornstars, reacting to various responses to his comments about the Pool and other games?
___________

* Sam H
* CommentTime1 day ago

I don't find it in poor taste. In fact, I was going to link to it before I saw you had already.

Not having heard the podcast in question, I can't say how accurate Zak's take on it is, but if he's telling the truth this is a pretty embarrassing moment for the indie game community. Alienating a high profile gaming advocate? Never good.

_______________
*noclue
* CommentTime1 day ago edited

[D&D With Porn Stars 2] I think Zak's off-base. The podcast was very complimentary of him and his group.

(((ZAK SAYS:
I never said it wasn't, that's not the point. They were very respectful, they just didn;t read very carefully. I make that clear in the post, thus the title "I know you meant well, but...".)))

Judd spoke with tons of respect and praised him for avoiding identity politics and offering up interesting points to consider. The podcast may or may not have understood his post and the views of his players correctly, but that's a different issue.

(((How is that not the issue? That's the ONLY issue. Either they misrepresented me on or they didn't. If they didn't I wouldn't be having this conversation, if they did then they get to apologize. I'm not offended, I'm fact-checking.)))

I can't find anything reasonably objectionable or patronizing in the episode. Not sure why it all ended in flames.

(((It didn't, it ended in corrections.)))

Edit: there's almost nothing to get bent out of shape about in the 7 comments to the episode either.

(((Most of them, that's why I only commented on one.)))

Only one post is even remotely about Zak and his choice of games, which is well meaning but a little patronizing.

(((Whether it's a little patronizing or a lot patronizing, the point is it's patronizing, which is bad. Personally, I find it a lot patronizing. If you're confused, go read the comments left by 'Arnold'.)))

Even that though is hardly cause for "barring him from ever posting again!" What's wrong with a simple "Dude? Wtf?"

(((I am flexible on the issue of the appropriate punishment. Point is, he's wrong and promotes a stereotype about indie gamers y'all would probably do well to not encourage.)))

____________

*CommentAuthorJohn Powell
* CommentTime1 day ago

I think it would be cool for Judd and Zak to get together on the next Canon Puncture and talk it out.

(((Apparently this is going to occur.)))

_____________


CommentAuthorJohnstone
* CommentTime22 hours ago

Having read the original post and heard the podcast it inspired, I find that the amusing thing about the new post is that Zak misunderstands what was said on Canon Puncture in much the same way Judd, Mick, and Rich misunderstood his original post.

(((No. The people on Canon Puncture made several literal factual errors about my statements which are verifiable by looking at the extant printed text and listening to the recording.

I didn't make any factual errors about them.

If you feel I have mischaracterized their statements in any way, I ask that you please be specific and use specfic quotes.)))

Perhaps more so. It's like watching people speaking different languages at each other. It makes me feel bilingual!

(((Ok, you're bilingual. But I would like to emphasize--this is not a "Story Games vs. D&D thing" this is a "Zak made some very detailed and very specific comments about Shock and The Pool and games like them and the Canon Puncture guys thought he was "lumping all indie RPGs together" and that was a mistake" thing.)))

Comments

  • Hey Zak,

    I am looking forward to talking to you, on Canon Puncture show or in a private phone call to clear this up. Feel free to use the whisper function or my gmail to talk just to me.

    In my experience, internet forums are not the place to sort out miscommunications but good luck with this thread.

    Judd

    judd dot karlman at gmail dot com
  • edited February 2010
    edit: For those of you in the future, who are looking back at this thread (for whatever reason), I would like to say to you: This post of mine was a bad idea. I am sorry to have waded into this, and I regret my comments. They did not help the situation at all. If you should find yourself about to do what I do here, please stop yourself, like I should have.

    Hi Zak.
    So, here's my take on it. I had found your blog through other old-school blogs, and thought it looked neat. Then when the Canon Puncture guys started talking about it, I paused the show and went and read the post in question. Okay, I got it. I see why you don't play those games, I see what you like about DnD. Cool. Then I finished listening to Canon Puncture and... they didn't quite get it.

    See, this particular misunderstanding seems to be rather common amongst indie gamers. Many of them... shit, yknow... many of us had various frustrations with the games we used to play. Then we started trying different indie games, and discovered new ways to play that eliminated those frustrations. (Myself, I quite gaming for several years, though that was partly just due to bad group dynamics). When we see other gamers getting frustrated with the same games we used to get frustrated with, we want to help them out by introducing them to the games we like.

    So, when they read your blog post, they saw this: "I really, really want to play these shiny indie games, but I'm stuck playing frustrating DnD because my players don't want to make shit up."

    Did you write this? No, you didn't. But it sure sounds like that's what they saw (they can confirm or deny). Now, sure, Judd is trying to give you the benefit of the doubt here, but him and Mick and Rich are trying to think of how someone like you, in your position, would be able to get to play those indie games.

    So, do you understand this? Like, really understand it? I mean, yeah you get it:

    -All three of you seem to think I'm looking around for a new game and am frustrated that I can't find an indie RPG that I can play. That's not what I say. Here's what I actually say about the 2 games I mention "That sounds fun, I'd play that." Not "I'm dying to play a different game in addition to the one I'm already playing, but I just can't find one because of all my misconceptions."
    But that's all there is to it. To me, this is the kind of misunderstanding that deserves some eye-rolling and some gentle scolding. You seem kinda pissed. Why all the harping on factual errors? I can see how you might think they're misrepresenting you, sure. But a lot of that also stems from common ideas amongst indie gamers.

    Take "lumping indie RPGs together": Do we really have to get into this shit? (I say this for other posters who want to argue about it, as well). I mean, just saying "the indie games I have seen" is technically lumping indie rpgs together. Many people consider Shock: and The Pool to be totally different games and modes of play. Not different games like ODnD and 3.X are different games, but seriously different! So, from that perspective, even saying stuff about Shock: and The Pool feels like "lumping indie RPGs together," even while you think it's not. Arguing about whether you are or aren't isn't really going to help understand either your perspective, or Canon Puncture's perspective.

    So yeah, it would be nice if we could just say "Zak wasn't lumping anything together" and move on.

    To concepts about creative responsibilities. One of the things people really like about "indie games" (and there I go lumping them together! ha!) is that they have explicit rules concerning not only who makes up what, but how what you make up interacts with the fiction and other stuff you make up, that DnD does not have. And one thing that is common amongst indie games is that players are expected to be making a lot of shit up. These two go hand-in-hand. So when you write this:

    Here is what Mandy playing The Pool would be like:

    Me: "Ok, now you have to describe your character in 50 words. Anything you want."

    Mandy: "Fuck this."

    Somehow this request creates a social or mental situation in people that "pick a race, pick a class" doesn't. To some people these 50 words sound like freedom, to some people, it sounds like work.
    Of course people are going to think your players don't want to make shit up! Can you really fault somebody for reading it that way? Really?
    Then Mandy explains in the comments of post #2 how she's not comfortable putting her mental creativity out like that. I don't see how that can mean she "doesn't want to tell the story in the same way for three hours" and not that she doesn't feel comfortable being spontaneously creative (and nothing wrong with that, either). If I'm reading your original post wrong, well I'm here right now, let's talk about it. But if you don't want Judd or me to misunderstand you, you gotta work with us.

    So, I have a few more things to talk about, but ironically enough, I have to go play Redbox DnD. I like your blog, Zak. There's some cool stuff on there. I like Canon Puncture, too. And I definitely would like to hear you guys talk to each other on a podcast. I've seen plenty of miscommunication in gaming already.
  • Judd--

    You've got my number and my email. I'm waiting. This all goes away the very second you apologize.


    Johnstone--

    > Then I finished listening to Canon Puncture and... they didn't quite get it.

    yep.

    >Many of them... shit, yknow... many of us had various frustrations with the games we used to >play....When we see other gamers getting frustrated with the same games we used to get >frustrated with, we want to help them out by introducing them to the games we like.

    clearly. I am not experienceing those frustrations.

    >So, when they read your blog post, they saw this: "I really, really want to play these shiny >indie games, but I'm stuck playing frustrating DnD because my players don't want to make >shit up."

    >Did you write this? No, you didn't. But it sure sounds like that's what they saw (they can >confirm or deny).

    They aren't THAT clueless, but yeah, they read what they wanted to read.

    >Now, sure, Judd is trying to give you the benefit of the doubt here, but him and Mick and Rich >are trying to think of how someone like you, in your position, would be able to get to play >those indie games.

    Yeah, and they should stop doing that. They way I would get in a position to play the Pool is by waiting for my friends who WOULD want to play it to come around and saying Hey, let's play The Pool. 'Cause I'm a grown-up.

    >So, do you understand this? Like, really understand it? I mean, yeah you get it:
    >-All three of you seem to think I'm looking...

    >But that's all there is to it. To me, this is the kind of misunderstanding that deserves some >eye-rolling and some gentle scolding. You seem kinda pissed. Why all the harping on factual >errors?

    I don't like being misrepresented. I also think that writing a blog post about how somebody made some factual errors is hardly a nuclear tactic. I pointed out they were wrong in case anyone heard that podcast and thought I really was as oblivious as that podcast made me out to be.

    >I can see how you might think they're misrepresenting you, sure.

    That's like me saying "I can see how you think you're not 9 feet tall and made of grapes". They're misrepresenting me. That's it.

    >But a lot of that also stems >from common ideas amongst indie gamers.

    I don't see how that makes it better.

    >Take "lumping indie RPGs together",,,I mean, just saying "the indie games I have >seen" is >technically lumping indie rpgs together.

    No, you missed the CRUCIAL word that makes it a mistake. Judd said (this is recorded, you can go check) I was "lumping ALL indie rpgs together".

    "All".

    That word "all" is what makes it a lie.

    See that?

    I make a generalization about some RPGs that have something in common. This is ok, this is how we use language in order to communicate ideas:

    "Shock, The Pool, and games that are like Shock and The Pool (according to the sorting schema I am now about to lay out) require extensive world-building from the players."

    This is grouping (or "lumping") the rpgs together in order to make an accurate generalized statement about them. It is accurate and good and true.

    Saying I believe this same thing about "all" indie RPGs is a lie that makes me out to be dumber than I am. Which is not a good thing for a person to do. Even if they call me smart while doing it, like Judd and co did.

    >when you write this:


    > Here is what Mandy playing The Pool would be like:

    > Me: "Ok, now you have to describe your character in 50 words. Anything you want."

    >Mandy: "Fuck this."

    > Somehow this request creates a social or mental situation in people that "pick a race, pick >a class" doesn't. To some people these 50 words sound like freedom, to some people, it >sounds like work.

    >Of course people are going to think your players don't want to make shit up! Can you really >fault somebody for reading it that way? Really?

    Yeah, I can, because the post also says:

    "In D&D, as a player, you can (often, not always) choose to grapple hard with the scenario ("I look in the desk,""I write 'xvarts suck' on the wall with a rock", "I mix the growth and shrinking potions together to see what happens") or you can sit back and roll dice when it's necessary and just regard what the DM and the more aggressive players are doing as entertainment, like a movie where you have a choice.

    "In other words, D&D supports several playing styles simultaneously (assuming the DM's any good). In a good game, everybody's playing the game they want to play, even if it's eight different games.

    "Right here, I should say something: the 'passive player' is rarely forever passive.

    "You can't just go "passive players suck" because what happens is the table is an evershifting patchwork of active gaming, passive gaming, metagaming, snack-eating, etc. Most people move easily from one mode to the next and do it all the time--players have moods, and the mode fits their mood, and I can tell you that, at least in my game, the mood of a Los Angeles porn star can change faster than any observed phenomenon yet discovered. The only person who has to be steady-state is the GM."

    and, in fact, that's MOSTLY what the post is about. If you read the post, at least half of it is about how people, because of how comfortable or interested they are, move in and out of differne tkinds of creative engagement with the game.

    There's the whole wedding-conversation analogy right there:

    "There's a conversation going on. Everyone can hear it but not everybody has to talk. There's rarely an embarrassing silence, though, because there's at least one person there who just really wants to get to the heart of the matter of whatever this conversation is about and so will start talking if there's a lull.

    "Once in a while, no matter who you are, you will be called upon to perform simple, well-defined tasks. "Can you pass the peas?""Are you going to hit the rust monster or do something else?" This is easy for pretty much anybody and doesn't put you on the spot.

    "Nothing necessarily stops you from doing something mechanically novel like, say, putting olives on your pancakes, but the conversation and the meal will keep on even if you don't.

    "Nothing stops you from interjecting with your own ideas "Well I think Sigmund Freud was full of shit!""I think we should tie the displacer beast up before we try to sell it to the mountain gnome," and thus taking the conversation in a whole new direction, but the conversation will keep going if you don't.

    "This is normal, this is what all kinds of people do every day. They are shy and insecure or apathetic about the subject or the company they're in and when they become comfortable or the conversation moves to a place they have ideas about, then they talk."

    So yeah. There you go.
  • Hey Zac,

    This doesn't seem like a problem-solving thread. It kinda seems like a flamewar thread.

    I'm mostly noticing stuff like:
    Posted By: Zak SJudd--
    You've got my number and my email. I'm waiting. This all goes away the very second you apologize.
    So, let's give Judd absolutely no benefit of the doubt, and take the worst possible interpretation of what happened:
    That leaves us with: Judd is a stupid idiot who intentionally misinterpreted your blog post in order to launch his personal pro-indie campaign.

    Even if that's the case, I see nothing which demands an apology. Demanding an apology is pretty rude. Far less rude than Judd was, even if we go with the worst possible interpretation of Judd's behavior.

    Now, in actuality, I don't think Judd is a stupid idiot who intentionally misinterpreted your blog post in order to launch his personal pro-indie campaign.
    I think he's an intelligent guy who says lots of really interesting things about the roleplaying game hobby.
    Just like yourself.

    So, the podcast got some stuff wrong. No big deal, honestly. It was posted five days ago, and already several of the podcasters have contacted you and asked you to come onto their show and clarify what you meant, and re-hash the conversation. Further, they've followed your blog response. In other words, they're being amicable and doing everything that can be reasonably expected.

    Demaning an apology seems sooooo out of line, especially with this tone.
  • Could we downshift this thread down to neutral with the engines on while Zak and I contact one another in other avenues?
  • I'm suddenly reminded of the time I made a blog post all about what Ron Edwards thinks that was not actually what Ron Edwards thought.

    It was fun mostly because no one lost an eye.
  • edited February 2010
    From the other thread:
    Posted By: Zak S{D&D With Porn Stars 5]

    Hi. It's Zak. I gave this topic its own thread. noclue and Johnstone--if you actually stand behind the things you just said, meet me over there.
    Happy to chat. Not happy to argue.

    Downshifted
  • edited February 2010
    > noclue

    "Happy to chat. Not happy to argue."

    "The podcast may or may not have understood his post and the views of his players correctly, but that's a different issue."

    (((How is that not the issue? That's the ONLY issue..)))"

    Ok, let's chat.

    Again:

    What issue is there here OTHER than someone said something about me that's not true?

    You and Johnstone and joepub ALL seem to admit that the podcast made some mistakes and yet have a problem with me asking that those mistakes be fixed immediately.
  • edited February 2010
    Posted By: Zak SWhat issue is there here OTHER than someone said something about me that's not true?
    Whether they misread your blog is hardly the only issue. People misunderstand people all the time. Apologies are for when someone causes harm, either intentionally or unintentionally. Intent you've already touched upon. Was harm intended? You've mentioned that you thought they meant well. So, if harm wasn't intended but harm was caused unwittingly, what response is warranted? Demanding an immediate apology before "this all ends!" indicates that there's a "this" that needs to be ended. There's a conflict. Those are fighting words.

    By the way: Judd's actual words are:

    I think he's lumping a lot of indie RPGs together in a way that isn't necessarily true.
  • There is a podcast on the web--that's STILL up--full of people saying things about me that make me sound dumber than I am.

    People will listen to it and believe those things until they take it down, edit an apology onto the beginning of the podcast, or otherwise make it clear that they don't stand by what it says there.
  • I found myself getting a tad snarky myself. So I toned it down a bit.
  • Zak, I understand you're upset. But you really didn't come off as sounding dumb in the least.
  • edited February 2010
    Ignorant, then? Naive?

    Whatever it is, it's something I don't happen to be.

    Listen to that podcast. They are talking about me as if I have no clue about tons of games and features of games that everyone in gameblogland is sick to death of hearing about. And that I "might be underestimating" my players by not having them play indie games and that they have, I believe, "d&d damage".
  • ...and that I seek the "comfort" of the reduced choices of D&D and that this is a feature I value in games...
  • ...and that "what he's enjoying about d&d is there's a premise, there's a strong premise"

    Implying that I enjoy D&D because setting info was made up for me, which isn't true at all. Which is, in fact, largely the opposite of true....
  • ..oh, I'm sorry the phrase was "d&d brain damage"...
  • ...and that my players expect to be "fed the story"...
  • In other news:

    Condescending Arnold's comments have been removed--finally--so maybe we're making some progress.

    The Canon guys to seem to be trying to be good here but it's taking a rrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrreally long time.
  • They have jobs and families, and it isn't exactly a fire. It's Friday night. I don't think your reputation is really at stake, not from the podcast anyway.

    I really like your blog. I'm really impressed by your artistic achievement. I think you're an interesting guy who is giving something of value to the community. I also really like Canon Puncture's podcast, even though I didn't care for the last one.

    I'm sorry you've experienced some of the bullshit that this community is famous for excreting. But you're being kind of an ass about it now, and you're quickly losing your moral high ground because of this.

    Is there some way we can make this productive? Would you, I don't know, like to talk about some games or something?
  • Posted By: Zak S...and that "what he's enjoying about d&d is there's a premise, there's a strong premise"

    Implying that I enjoy D&D because setting info was made up for me, which isn't true at all. Which is, in fact, largely the opposite of true....
    Really? That's not the implication I take from it. D&D's got a great premise. Adventurers go on adventures in a fantasy land. That's a terrific premise. A lot of otherwise good games suffer from a vague or sometimes even nonexistent premise. Sometimes it's not an issue and it would be silly for the game to have a premise (GURPS). But sometimes it's kind of a big deal (Promethean is the one that stands out in my mind.)
  • I'm hesitant to wade in when Judd and you are having your own discussions. I think it's better to wait, rather than for me to keep parsing their words for them. Why don't we talk more after.
  • So I get accused of being as confused as them if I don't prove my point, and then when I do I'm being "kind of an ass".

    Rock.
  • I'm sure your intentions are good, but could you please take this shit elsewhere. Thanks!
  • The irony of this thread, at least for me, is that I had thought to invite Zak to post at Story Games because I thought he would have contributions of substance to add. I find his posts on the methodology of running D&D to be the more interesting ones on his blog. It never hurts to have one more thoughtful person posting here. Unfortunately, Zak's here because someone pissed him off. Not what I'd imagined or hoped for.

    Anyway, it seems like there's two ways to look at this. I considered writing in the comments section of his blog, but since we're talking here....

    On the one hand, the Canon Puncture guys said something stupid, and so did the commenters. Any time someone says, directly or indirectly, that someone's fun isn't as valid as someone else's fun, they're being goofy. Fun is entirely subjective, and if Zak's preference is for D&D then more power to him. There are some that would argue that he's missing out by not running 4e. That's as pointless an observation as one suggesting he'd be better off running Dogs in the Vineyard for his players. Though I have to admit the latter possibility is tantalizing.

    On the other hand, Zak may be taking this harder than he ought to. This is the internet, and people say stupid things all the time. I've had my share of flame wars — hell, I had a brushfire flame war just a little while ago right here on this forum — and now I at least try and steer clear. That doesn't mean I don't get upset (I'm human), but I also know that it does no good to get bent out of shape because of someone else's asshattery. When Zak brought his sex life into the picture as an argument against Canon Puncture, et al, I knew we were well into overreaction territory. Whatever else we can say about roleplaying is that it's just about playing games and games aren't important enough to get this upset over.

    I don't know if a full-on apology is forthcoming, though somehow I doubt it. I'd like to offer my own apology on behalf of our indie-gaming community, though, because I don't like being considered to be one of those kinds of people who crap on other people's fun just because it might differ from mine. And as it happens I don't even like D&D but I would play in Zak's game because he's a creative, dedicated DM and that's always a good time.
  • edited February 2010
    Retracted.

    Brand's right.
  • Zak,

    I apologize for evangelizing indie games when you had no desire for it. I read in Zak’s original post what I wanted to hear. As a podcaster and a gamer, I get excited about indie games and love sharing them with people who are interested.

    I mistook your comments as interest and I am sorry to have offended and bothered you.
  • edited February 2010
    They definitely never said anything close to "he'd be better off running Dogs in the Vineyard" just that maybe his group, that he said did not share his interest in Shock and The Pool, might like DitV and some other games. The podcast recognized Zak's, and his players, enthusiasm for D&D. They never even suggest that their fun isn't valid. They do challenge the assertion that his players wouldn't enjoy Indie games, which from Zak's response wasn't his assertion at all. It sounds like his assertion was just that they wouldn't enjoy The Pool and Shock.

    See, I'm incapable of shutting myself up even for a day ;).

    While I'm at it, this "D&D brain damage" thing...it's a conversational shorthand, and not meant as a pejorative. Last night I'm having a conversation with my friend about running FATE with stated failure conditions before the roll and he's like "But I think that's just my Burning Wheel brain damage talking." I've had conversations about my own Burning Wheel brain damage hampering my Mouse Guard play, and DitV brain damage messing up my game of IAWA. I know it comes out of the big kerfluffle with Ron Edwards and Vampyre, but it's been co-opted to mean something like "improperly carrying assumptions/skills gained from one game into another." But who speaks like that?
  • edited February 2010
    Nc,

    Seriously? Brain damage isn't pejorative?

    Like, seriously?

    I mean, shit, when you talk to your friends and its a joke and you're like "Oh yea, I've got stroygames brain damage" that's one thing. But when you say it about folks you don't know in public?

    Fuck. Seriously? Are we that blind to the connotations of what we're saying?

    Zak,

    It is possible to have a legitimate grievance and still be a bit of an ass about the way you pursue it.

    I started this thread off with a good deal of sympathy for you, as I know I've been more than a little pissed when similar things have been said about me on the internet. I think the speculative nature and identity politics around things that were said were foolish, if not actually harmful, and I can't blame you for being pissed about that, nor for seeking redress.

    However, the high handed tone and constant status games are putting me off a little. It seems less like you're actually looking to fix the situation and more like you're trying to recoup your lost status by attacking and reducing the status of those who wronged you. Which, despite the initial valid claim, is still a bit of an ass move and leads rapidly towards a zero-sum situation.

    Judd,

    Nice gasoline. Is it really needed?
  • Oh, I realize what someone might infer from it. Taken out of context it sounds particularly bad. I just was pointing out that it wasn't meant as a pejorative. I do believe it was intended exactly as I was using it in my conversations. We weren't joking (as in saying funny things to make each other laugh) in my conversation, just communicating. As you point out, shorthand phrases work between people in a conversation in a way that they don't work in a public forum.

    So, I agree it doesn't work so well in a public conversation. And yes, I do think there was a lack of awareness of how the phrase would resonate.
  • Brand, lover, I couldn't have said it better myself. I also started reading this with sympathy for Zak against those zany indie evangelists, but he is coming off so assholish that it's difficult to know what to think. (Luckily we don't need to have an opinion here, right?) I'm especially unsympathetic to calls of correction made in the form of withdrawal of already published material. That's just a personal ethical hang-up, though, so I guess that if Judd & all. can live with retrofitting their publications to accord with the pressure group demands of the moment, that's their credibility on the line and not mine.
  • edited February 2010
    Eero? Ethical?

    When newspapers make factual errors they're expected to print corrections as soon as they possibly can. That's ethical.

    Why am I doing this?

    People here on this site wrote a lot of things in the "Stuff To Watch February" thread that aren't accurate and I wanted to straighten it out. There's no point in writing things on the web if you don't want people to understand them.

    Plus, and surprisingly, after the first email they sent, the Canon Puncture guys said absolutely nothing until I posted here. At least one of them is responding to things here but not to email. It is apparently and unfortunately a necessary step in attempting to communicate with the party with which I have a legitimate grievance.

    No Love--

    Started a thread, feel free to ignore it. I need to get something done.

    Sam-

    "When Zak brought his sex life into the picture as an argument against Canon Puncture, et al, I knew we were well into overreaction territory."

    I went psycho on a commenter named "Arnold" not the Canon Puncture people. "Arnold's'" comments have since been removed, probably because--in someone else's opinion--they were worth going psycho over.

    On a side note--that's exactly the kind of thing I started this thread to correct. If you thought I was getting as pissed as I clearly was at the basically harmless Canon Puncture guys, then that's a misperception I might as well correct.

    That's how it works--someone types something inaccurate, I correct that. When people stop making mistakes, I stop posting. If you all want to say "Gee Zak, you're right, but you're an asshole" I am totally ok with that.

    Constant status?

    It's not a game, I just keep all the windows open on the machine I'm using.
  • edited February 2010
    Posted By: Zak S"When Zak brought his sex life into the picture as an argument against Canon Puncture, et al, I knew we were well into overreaction territory."

    I went psycho on a commenter named "Arnold" not the Canon Puncture people. "Arnold's'" comments have since been removed, probably because--in someone else's opinion--they were worth going psycho over.
    Just to make things clear: "Arnold" and all those who made comment (offensive or otherwise) would be one of the et al to which I referred.

    I get the impression from the initial explosion that the issue at hand was partly what was said as part of the Canon Puncture podcast and partly what was expressed by the commenters. Having been on the receiving end of some particularly vicious comments in the past, I can see how that can almost be worse than the original offense.

    That said, I still feel these are awfully low stakes to "go psycho" over. I'm not saying don't be irked, but just be irked. It simply not worth expending the energy being upset about because in the end we are talking about a game. If somebody wants to make this a referendum on somebody's life choices, that somebody ought to be roundly ignored, not encouraged through engagement.

    I'm not sure anybody's going to get any real satisfaction from this thread. The people who don't like D&D are going to go on disliking D&D. Zak will continue feeling the way he does. Somebody like me will chime in from time to time trying to take the hot air out of the whole thing. And then there will be others trying their damnedest to keep the issue pumped up because that's how they get their kicks. By all means, go round and round (and round) if that's what you really want to do, but I know I could find a better use for my time.
  • Well, Zak, I'd be happy to discuss the ethics of withdrawing published material over protests, because that's really the bit that stuck with me from this altercation. I guess it's not quite off-topic for this thread, although it'll be bit of a (negative) surprise if those podcasters choose retract the material instead of posting a correction of some sort. Not only is retraction a contentious policy insofar as it directly impacts our confidence in the Internet as a media, but it's also largely ineffective in protecting anybody's honor on the Internet. For instance, in this case removal of the original material would only make you look more of an ass to potential audiences that stumble upon this thread or other discussions of the matter - they wouldn't have any way of finding out what you're so upset over, after all, so it'd be easy to assume that you're just overreacting severely. Take this Arnold thing, already removing his part of the dialogue makes your getting angry about the matter more difficult to understand as a fair reaction.

    I have a sort of tenuous personal interest on this matter, as something similar happened to me recently, when a national radio program interviewed me and presented the interview in a somewhat misleading manner, introducing me as some sort of conservative game culture critic (when in reality I'm a nigh-militant agnostic humanist). I chose to ignore this arguably pretty embarrassing portrayal, maybe because that's the "high road" in Finnish media culture. I wouldn't give a very good image of myself if I started to nitpick about the details in a radio interview of passing interest; better to accept that wacky misunderstandings are a part of communication, and anybody truly interested can very well ask me for my real opinions instead of relying on a random interview made in passing at a gaming convention.
  • Dude...not cool. Relax.
    What, you think you waded into a cave of trolls and figured you'd poke us with a stick until we begged you to stop? No one is your enemy here.
  • I'm fact-checking. That's it.

    That's not a hostile act.
  • Rich just e-mailed me to say they're recording a disclaimer onto the beginning of the episode explaining that they misunderstood what I wrote.

    Which is wonderful and means that this was all worthwhile, at least from my end.
  • Posted By: Zak SRich just e-mailed me to say they're recording a disclaimer onto the beginning of the episode explaining that they misunderstood what I wrote.

    Which is wonderful and means that this was all worthwhile, at least from my end.
    For what it's worth, I feel the opposite is true. You just lost at least one potential fan.
  • memememememememememememememememememememememmememememememmemememememememe

    me
  • I deeply apologize for giving a shit about the stuff I write about.
  • Posted By: Zak SI deeply apologize for giving a shit about the stuff I write about.
    It's not that, Zak. It's that you were very aggressive about it.
    I, for one, am deeply turned off by your tactics. Not your mission (which I think was maybe unnecessary, but still won't fault you for), but your tactics.

    I'm unlikely to read your blog any time soon, because it'll be hard to sift this out of that while doing so.

    This is a statement about where I'm at.
  • The lesson that I'm going to take from this is that misunderstanding can be and should be a great chance for constructive dialogue.
  • If at any point anyone had suggested a more effective set of tactics for achieving the same objective, I would've used them.
  • edited February 2010
    Oh come the fuck on, everyone. What the hell.

    Zak, I understand your position, I really do, but, hey, this is the internet. People write crap about each other all the time. So I think this has generated way too much drama for what actually happened. Someone misunderstood someone else and published something based on that assumption, not the end of the world, you correct them, the post a correction, done, the caravan moves on. Instead, this has devolved into a clusterfuck which is getting way too much attention and creating negative karma for everyone involved, regardless of their intention.

    And for everyone else, tying to be a dick in this thread, that doesn't really help anything in any way.
  • You could have used the eloquence you show on your blog, for one.
  • The way I write on my blog obviously confused some people--the very people I was trying to talk to--so in correcting their confusion I chose to use short declarative sentences.
  • edited February 2010
    If you're just back from Dreamation and reading through old threads, welcome back! This is what we did while you were away.

    Graham
  • Zak, I'd never seen your blog until I heard about it on here, just now. I like it, and enjoyed reading it. I don't think that Canon Puncture's mis-representing what you said is in any way damaging your reputation.

    And, man, I do wish that RPG blogs/podcasts/the community as a whole would be a bit more opinionated about what they do and don't like. That I admire.

    But I fail to see how all this helps us - in any way - except perhaps to act as an example of what can happen in discussion forums, if we don't watch ourselves.
  • ITT: People are willing to stick up for other people , until those people make it abundantly clear that they can and will stick up for themselves, while taking none of the pretensious bullshit that caused this hooha to begin with.

    Rock On Zak,
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