Culture and Choice

Welcome to the tenth installment of the EVE Blog Banter, the monthly EVE Online blogging extravaganza created by CrazyKinux. The EVE Blog Banter involves an enthusiastic group of gaming bloggers, a common topic within the realm of EVE Online, and a week to post articles pertaining to the said topic. The resulting articles can either be short or quite extensive, either funny or dead serious, but are always a great fun to read! Any questions about the EVE Blog Banter should be directed here. Check out other EVE Blog Banter articles at the bottom of this post!

This month’s banter leans a little, OK a lot, on the academic side. It comes to us from xiphos83 of A Misguided Adventurer, who asks the following: ” Victor Davis Hanson argues that western culture, comprising of ideals such as freedom, debate, capitalism, and consensual government, are what make western society so successful at waging war. These ideologies create a warrior who’s direct participation in government, ability to think freely, and desire to remain free, fights harder and is willing to suffer more than his conscripted foe. Though a military must remain a structured oligarchy to fight a war effectively, why in a world where military conflict is as familiar as breathing are there so few alliances that embrace these ideologies when governing their members?”

The first answer is fairly simplistic dealing with EvE “culture’:

EvE is not just western culture it is a mix of both European and Western culture with additional Asain other various type conutry political leanings thrown in for good measure.  We have the freedom to login or not login it is not compulsory ( when it becomes compulsory I tend to abandon that game).  It is after all a Game. We can choose differently in a game than we might in real life without any consequences

The Second answer is perhaps at a deeper level , but deals more with choices. To start with let’s look at some other bloggers out there:
Is Mynxee a bloodthirsty pirate in RL? I highly doubt it, yet she chooses to be in-game. I believe that her Corp is fairly democratic with more of a military leaning to it. As the CEO she sets the tone style of government, and after reading her writings I bet she lets you know about the Corp up front.

Is Galen a nomad wandering around planet Earth? Probably not, yet he does wander around a bit in EvE. I am unsure about his alliance ‘political’ classification, but might guess that his Corporation/Alliance might lean a little more militarristic Oligarchy type of government although that is just a guess.

Is CrazyKinux a clearinghouse of information for planet Earth, No, {although he does a great job for EvE}. His Corporation ( or old Corp if he moved and I do not know) was/is socialist in their mechanics, and while tremendously generous of him to offer me an interview with them, it became clear to me during the interview, that this type of Corporate structure was one I could not play well with. ( at the time I was dirt poor in eve terms, but am way too independent minded to accept so much without bringing anything to the table) but it remains to this day a very nice thing to be interviewed, not to mentiona real eye opening thought as to how others Corps are run.

Do I sit a doorways waiting to pounce on people at his home?  No, but I do defend my ‘home’ along with some of the rest of my Alliance. I chose this Corp (Ceptacemia) due to it’s democratic like structure and that structure has carried us into a Democratic Alliance.  We are represented by Directors who speak to Alliance leadership and relay information back and forth. ( very much a representative republic IMO)

I think you’ll see the point.  All of us are players, in a game,  separate and distinct, all  have personalities that we may perceive some of, in-game.  We all come from different countries with different political leanings.   What we do in game can be  different from what we do in RL.  Trying to compare EvE to RL kind of falls on it’s face.  Granted that is just my muleish opinion but it is one I strive to maintain.  Real life is 100 times more complex.

So, what is perhaps, the real question?  Perhaps it is why don’t more people choose to fight?  Perhaps why don’t they choose more democratic Alliances?  My assertion is that many people actuality do fight,  and many alliances are Democratic, and people choose to fight with them. Systematic-Chaos is a democratic group of players.  The Alliance leadership does embrace the ideologies about freedom, cooperation and defense. The corporations then filter this down to the underlying players. Perhaps it is less about democratic Alliances than democratic Corporations? I think that people do whatever is most fun for them. PvP in EvE is voluntary ( granted I do not run away from it but you could if you wanted to) but many choose to not fight. Some log in just to explode themselves or others(horray!).  Some log in to explore the ‘unknown’.  Some log in to build items or make things.  All of them do it because it is fun.  Parallel’s to the RL world conflicts are fraught with much peril.  Death in an internet spaceship is nothing, compared to death and destruction on a real battlefield. For many, EvE can be an escape or a disconnection from the real world issues and problems focusing their attention elsewhere.  If they fight for a living ( many soldiers do play EvE, perhaps they want to try building or running missions. Some people wish to try Socialism, where they do not have to think about the larger more complex ideas about governance  but just do what they are told, and where in RL they would abhor their limit of choices( that’s a simplistic generalization so don’t beat me up on that ok?).  I have flown with two larger sized alliances.  One was based in Tribute/Vale of the Silent and was governed by a joint group of corporations whose ideas, and ideals all lined up with democratic thinking.

So, how can we say that only a ‘few alliances’ meet these ideals as set forth by Xiphos83? I do not think we can. Then again I’ve been in 2 Alliances , 4 Corporations and  under 5 different leaders as far back as 2004, and always played with democratic minded people.

Two big Alliances that come to mind that may indeed also be Democratic are Morsus Mihi ( 2692 members ) and Atlas (2566 members)

Do I know for a fact that they are democratic, No, I do not, the idea that they are democratic comes from flying around in their respective areas and how they behave towards ‘blues’ or friendlies in game.  While not a true investigation of other Alliances it leads me to believe that they might fit into one of the more simple classifications.

Three others come to mind as well, that I know are democratic:

  • Systematic Chaos, (SyS-k, 11th in population rank on Dotlan with 1781 members)
  • C0ven (46th in Rank with 528)
  • Stain Empire (48th in rank with 468)

So that is roughly 8500 ppl that roughly do exactly what Xiphos83 is asking…is that a huge number, no…but as for me I know of only 1 socialist corporation in EvE, much less 1 Alliance.

Hopefully some of you will enlighten me as to some Alliances/Corporations he describes that are as he describes. To that end I will be adding a Poll so ppl can vote.

To that end, please look below at the map and choose one answer based on the colors in each answer box. (i.e. if I live in a  military dictatorship, or a republic who grants only 1 single party I’d choose the last answer)

Form_of_Government

forms of government

http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/commons/e/e9/Form_of_Government.png

[SURVEYS 2]

As soon as I get the link for the other blogs doing this I will include them in this post.

Links to other Banter’s   http://delicious.com/crazykinux/blogbanter10

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~ by Manasiv5 on July 27, 2009.

13 Responses to “Culture and Choice”

  1. Asked my Achernar {I do not know why it would not appear in the comments so I cut and pasted is here for ease}

    Lacking any direct experience in null sec I assumed, by reading various forums and articles, that there were no democracies there. I am very interested by your post. Do the pilots of the alliances you mentioned go as far as elect their CEOs/directors according to various platforms? Do they have assemblies that mimic those of our Western countries? Really curious about how far they went towards achieving democracy and if you can point me to any source about the topic, I would be much obliged.

    Are directors in our corp elected…yes they are. Do we have an assembly, sort of…. we are all on one voice server. Personal experience with MM ( morsus mihi) and Atlas lead me to believe that they are roughly democratic …by roughly I mean from they outside they look it. Never having been in any except the two I ahve belonged to I cannot tell you for certain As for platforms we ahve an unusual mix of guys all interested in PvP as that is our corp nature. Each director has taken certain responsibilities ( recruitment, industry, PvP operations, logistics) and that is generally where they focus their efforts. As for all the others alliances out there my first hand experience with how they are truly governed is limited.

  2. Lacking any direct experience in null sec I assumed, by reading various forums and articles, that there were no democracies there. I am very interested by your post. Do the pilots of the alliances you mentioned go as far as elect their CEOs/directors according to various platforms? Do they have assemblies that mimic those of our Western countries? Really curious about how far they went towards achieving democracy and if you can point me to any source about the topic, I would be much obliged.

  3. Nicely written mate!!! Please do share the results of your poll as I think it will give us a better idea of how alliances are run.

  4. Nice post Pormetheus, I read it…. and added a comment. You and I can disagree, but I'm glad we can keep things civil 🙂 Game play is just that game play. I did learn about Austraila having compulsory voting which I found fascinating, so hey not all the word weer wasted on me 🙂 It certainly would be interesting to see how members of even the same corp woudl view it if they were asked.
    Thanks for your comment!

  5. Well I have to disagree with you : ). I dont find what you describe as truly being a democracy. It has elements of a democracy but is not a democracy in of its self. Also I disagre with the whole premise of the question. I cover it more in my blog. Other than that I do agree with what you say about comparisions with real world to Eve can be good in some ways, but are otherwise not very good comparisons. Also the fact that we all log into have fun does effect the whole real world comparison.

    http://podlogs.com/thecaptainslog/2009/07/28/blog

  6. "Do I sit a doorways waiting to pounce on people at his home?" Don't lie…you know you do! lol

    Of course I agree with you on pretty much everything you said, though you did put quite a bit much more explanation into your post than I did mine, lol…I always try to get some long, detailed opinions…but I always end up with just a few short sentences! Gotta work on that for me.

    Enjoyable read and me a little to think about. Never really thought much about socialism in Eve, quite the interesting concept.

  7. Whoa, that's a lot to get my head around on a Monday morning. You could have a extensive debate over your simplistic generalization on socialism alone. I would ask if you intend to say that a socialist alliance wouldn't be democratic, by definition – I got that implication from your post and wasn't sure if that's what you intended.

    I'm not sure what the map poll can really do for you. There are so many presidential republics (blue) that are night and day different from each other that you can't make any conclusions about the number of people in the blue, green, yellow category. Some of those blue countries are effectively dictatorships while others are strong democracies; some are strongly socialist, and others strongly capitalist. So saying you live in a presidential republic doesn't say much, really.

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