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The lost art of decency
Written by VelvetLies

     There's no rule that says you have to be nice. There's no policy on basic considerations. Anything that has been specifically outlined as a conduct regulation tends to be presented in a very extreme example. Yet it's beyond the comprehension of this reporter as to why we see so much jerkery in our pleasant little game world. Now I, as much as anyone, appreciate the outlet, the opportunity to do stuff that just isn't possible, or likely, in the physical world. I'm not the kindest person in the game. I don't grant every request for help that's posed, and I don't always keep my opinions to myself. But I don't understand the degree to which some people execute needless and obnoxious behavior.

   For example, say you were out shopping at the grocery store, and overheard a conversation between two strangers. Would you be so eager to jump in and correct their grammar? Or to belittle the speaker because of a minor verbal faux pas? If you did do this, few in that store would argue that you would be a prime example of a Big Fat Jerk. Yet this type of stuff happens on our channels virtually every day.

   Say you were sitting at a bar, and you noticed an inviting bowl of nuts. So you scoop out a few and set them on a napkin in front of you. Another patron sidles you, disregarding the nuts still in the bowl, and starts popping the nuts on your napkin into their mouth. 'Sorry,' they say between bites, 'I didn't see that you were sitting there, all I saw was some nuts on the bar. Looks like there's some more over there in that bowl, so you can go get more if you want some more.'

   Or imagine you're somewhere like a public library, where you witness what is probably an otherwise fine, upstanding college student cornering a seventh grader, loudly mocking 'HA HA, YOU'RE 12! AND YOU ACT LIKE A 12 YEAR OLD! WHAT, ARE YOU 12?!?'

   These are actions that we probably could get away with in the physical world, if we tried, but within the first few times of trying it, we'd be met with outrage and possible physical injury. So why do we see it so prevalent in our game? Is it simply just people acting out their own insecurity and entitlement issues? It's a tough issue to tackle, for many reasons. Some people claim a defense of roleplay, and others may claim that ignorance is a crime, and should be punished by mockery and public humiliation. Perhaps it's an underground effort to get the more helpful people to turn off their channels in disgust at the spectacle. Certainly the well-intended should have a chance to serve their purposes without being exposed to Ego Masturbation? And, for the love of whatever your diety, if it doesn't swell the ego to engage in this conduct, then why do it in the first place? If there isn't a valid reason, let's cut the crap already.

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