Author Topic: We're all in this together  (Read 2810 times)

sparkletwist

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We're all in this together
« on: September 22, 2012, 03:17:46 PM »
OOC: Disclaimer
This post is not written in my official capacity as an administrator of this site, the "wiki queen," or whatever other official job description I may hold at any given time. It's simply my opinion as a loyal user and member of the CBG.

Want to chime in, but not sure where to start? Take a look at the Water Cooler.

I've noticed a certain unfortunate trend in some creative communities on the internet. Rather than talk to each other about their work, they tend to talk at each other. All of the members have their own project, which of course is of primary interest to that person, so they're all interested in talking about their own work. Of course, the end result of this is that everyone talks pretty much exclusively about their own work, and there is little actual conversation, positive feedback, constructive criticism, or anything else that actually allows a creative community to thrive.

The CBG tries to avoid that, but, to avoid this effect, everyone needs to help avoid it. Rather than simply self-promote, we all need to remember that comments on our own work are, in turn, generated by someone else-- and we can take that same role for others, by commenting on their work as well. Everyone likes to share their stuff, but the sharing is much nicer when there's a receptive audience rather than a chorus of the self-absorbed. It takes a lot of work to put a setting together, and comparatively less to read it over and make an insightful comment, and it always makes the creator feel good. Constructive criticism, while not as overtly positive, is actually even more valuable, because it provides a concrete suggestion for improvement in a way a rather bland "hey nice job" does not.

Some newer members may feel intimidated. They may feel like they may not have anything to offer an established setting, which, of course, is not true at all. So, in addition to working towards commenting more on other people's work, we should also make sure to remain a friendly community, and gently draw new users into this positive pattern of sharing and commenting as well. People shyly retreating into their own little niches instead of joining the community at large only fragments it. Things like the contests, which provide a gentle cue for people to get involved, are really good, I think-- I just wish more people entered the contests using settings other than their own.

I'd also like to go on a brief tangent about gaming itself. In many groups, the GM is sort of a lackey, and is the job nobody wants, but things generally work a bit differently here; being the GM and running the game is instead an opportunity to present one's setting to a  group and get some real experience in how players react to it. It's as such another opportunity that should be shared-- people who GM in games should also play in them, allowing others to see their own settings in action as well, and give their feedback as to how the game went.

This thread isn't meant to be hugely negative. Things are still pretty good around here. I just see a trend that could become unfortunate, and I'm looking to arrest it in a quick, positive fashion. Basically, if you're going to take from this community, please give back as well. There are many opportunities here, but those opportunities only exist if everyone continues to provide them. As cheesy as it sounds, we are all in this together.
« Last Edit: October 10, 2012, 12:51:24 PM by sparkletwist »

Seraph

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Re: We're all in this together
« Reply #1 on: September 22, 2012, 08:03:19 PM »
This is very true.  I think we are better off here in this regard than a lot of places, but it is something we need to keep working at.  I've noticed that every so often we make a big push to get people comment on each other's settings, but this usually only lasts for a few weeks at a time.

You know, we have contests pretty regularly now.  What if we tried to make more regular incentives for reviewing other members' work?  Something along the lines of the monthly contests maybe?
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sparkletwist

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Re: We're all in this together
« Reply #2 on: September 23, 2012, 12:30:17 PM »
I added a new paragraph based on stuff discussed on IRC as well as points raised by S_H.

beejazz

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Re: We're all in this together
« Reply #3 on: September 24, 2012, 11:23:18 AM »
I'm ashamed to say that I'm neither pimping nor producing even my own work lately. Semester's in full swing. I do still lurk, and if there's anything specific I feel I can help with I'll try and contribute.

At this point I'm more likely to jump in for the not-setting-specific discussions, or those at the earliest stages of a project. Just based on the time I have available.
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Seraph

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Re: We're all in this together
« Reply #4 on: September 24, 2012, 01:07:50 PM »
And I have not necessarily been creating a lot for MY setting(s) either, though I do have the new Cad Goleor IRC game.  But the rest of my creativity is tied up in my book.
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Matt Larkin (author)

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Re: We're all in this together
« Reply #5 on: September 24, 2012, 03:41:06 PM »
Quote from: Seraphine_Harmonium
And I have not necessarily been creating a lot for MY setting(s) either, though I do have the new Cad Goleor IRC game.  But the rest of my creativity is tied up in my book.
Oh! Are you writing a book, Seraph?

Yeah, some of us haven't done any setting creation stuff here in a long time. I sort of drifted away from RPGs in general, from lack of time and opportunity.
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Seraph

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Re: We're all in this together
« Reply #6 on: September 24, 2012, 04:07:53 PM »
Quote from: Phoenix
Quote from: Seraphine_Harmonium
And I have not necessarily been creating a lot for MY setting(s) either, though I do have the new Cad Goleor IRC game.  But the rest of my creativity is tied up in my book.
Oh! Are you writing a book, Seraph?
Yeah I am.  Still on the first draft.
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Humabout

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Re: We're all in this together
« Reply #7 on: September 25, 2012, 12:48:52 AM »
It sounds like we are all in a bit of a lull, on the creative front.  Frankly, I've been lurking a lot lately because I've not seen a ton to comment on.  And not having much to toss up of my own stuff, I've had little to post at all anyway.  I'll certainly post when I can on what I can if I can contribute more than "cool idea."
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SA

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Re: We're all in this together
« Reply #8 on: September 25, 2012, 09:35:21 AM »
I'm on something of a "contribution kick", and I've been feeding Superbright tons of questions over at The Black Chamber. My favourite part of other people's design process is right at the beginning (after the very first or second post) when there are a lot of uncharted territories for me to plunder with enthusiastic interrogations, so if anyone else wants me to harass them just point the way.
« Last Edit: September 25, 2012, 10:22:32 AM by Exegesis »

Seraph

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Re: We're all in this together
« Reply #9 on: September 25, 2012, 11:55:30 AM »
Quote from: Exegesis
I'm on something of a "contribution kick", and I've been feeding Superbright tons of questions over at The Black Chamber. My favourite part of other people's design process is right at the beginning (after the very first or second post) when there are a lot of uncharted territories for me to plunder with enthusiastic interrogations, so if anyone else wants me to harass them just point the way.
If you like things that are in the early stages, you could take a look at Camulus.  It's still pretty "beginning stages" at this point.  I've got a map, some preliminaries on various kingdoms, and pantheons.  Not much else.  Intentionally "DivSet," and it has a bit of a "cloud" motif going.   
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sparkletwist

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Re: We're all in this together
« Reply #10 on: September 26, 2012, 12:38:33 PM »
It probably wouldn't be a bad idea to add a list of "things that could use a look." I'll take Camulus as the first entry. :D

Cheomesh

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Re: We're all in this together
« Reply #11 on: November 01, 2012, 01:59:35 PM »
Saw this on the news post.

Have not really been posting regularly for a year or two, been busy with the S.O., new job, house, life, etc.

Sometime in Summer 2011 I started trying to get RPGing back into my life after multiple failed attempts (interestingly, I hadn't run one since shortly after joining this site) by trying to run a Conan d20 game.  It quickly turned into a Conan GURPS campaign that is 15 (16 tomorrow) sessions in and has only been running since late January or somesuch.

Unfortunately it isn't in my own setting - the Conan 'verse being REH's creation.  I have, however, perverted it to my own ends, so I suppose I could post information that I have fleshed out, or maybe some of the locations my players have visited.

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