The other day, I stumbled upon a reddit thread that gave me pause. It was on whether or not the XIV community was one of the worst of the MMO communities out there. The person’s reason was mostly due to the official forum, which our podcast (Sequence Break XIV) has constantly bemoaned due to the few vocal members that have taken up a role that may not always be sane, kind, nor the voice of the majority.
Some have mentioned that most official forums are often a cesspool of the more vocal minority versus the majority, some the defensiveness due to the failed launch of the 1.0 client, and a smattering of other reasons that make sense to me. I also I know it gets annoying to answer the same question that could be answered by using google or reading either the official XIV site or any fan site out there. As someone who is fairly busy, even I am flustered when I am asked a question that could be answered if someone put forward the effort to search for it on their own.
Trust me. I KNOW.
Just because I know and am able to relate to the grouchiness of the community, however, doesn’t mean that its ok. Now is not the time to be snarling at the new and returning players showing interest in XIV. It is easy to be snarky, sarcastic, and crude, but it sends the wrong message about our community that isn’t true when you look past the rocky surface.
I know there are many helpful, interesting, and wonderful people in the community. I know this because I have talked, laughed, and played with some of you. I see what people have done for the community, both small and large. But what if you are a regular person? What if you aren’t someone who has a way of making yourself heard over the cacophony of b.s.? Here is what has helped me take note of some of the people in the community:
1. Be active. But don’t just post meaningless drivel. Quantity is easy. Quality is what is harder, but helps a person stand out even further in the sea of noisy naysayers.
2. Make yourself known. I’ve started to follow certain people because I see their name everywhere! Not only do I see them in the other places I have frequented, but they make thoughtful comments that draw me to take in what they are saying and digest it thoughtfully. They either tweet, blog, podcast, guest, or just comment in other places with the same name. People remember. Give them a reason to remember you, too!
3. Be mindful of your actions. I’ve seen and distanced myself from fairly insane people in the community because of their actions inside and out of the XIV community. Another member of the Zantetsuken team (Hey, Kumo!), also made me aware of this myself when I realized what I was doing was probably as bad as the person I was talking about. I’m not a saint, and I know I have work to do but I would like to think I am at least trying to help better myself not just for myself but for others as well.
4. Ask to participate! Find ways to help! Over a month ago, we asked for help with our site. The response was both surprising and refreshing. I also know for a fact that there are some other sites out there that need help: either monetary, with their wiki, or what have you. Help them. They really do appreciate the help when its given, as Orophen and I have found ourselves continually blessed to be given the opportunity to not just get help but make friends with really awesome people who like XIV.
I am a no one of course. I am surprised if someone knows me, because I don’t expect to be known. I’m just a gal that likes XIV, and just wants to have fun with her interest. I am also terribly shy, but love talking to people about the things I love (and maybe hate). It makes me feel connected to people, when I am normally in such a disconnected state from everyone else. It is why I do what I do, with the passion that I do it with; I get to talk to the people I love and have a whole lot of fun while doing it. In the end, that is what matters most: passion. Have the passion, and people will be able to tell whether you write, draw, talk, or bat your pretty eyes at the lens.