I read a book called the Bloodletter's Daughter a few months ago. I’m not often into historical fiction but it was fascinating The story has a lot of medical technical discussions about bad humors and blood letting for health. It frames a time when blood was understood to be important and considered so important that it carried all sorts of interesting extra things inside of it.
There is a concept of bad blood. Blood is the stuff that feeds and fuels our body. It is the stuff that wells out when you cut yourself (causing you to attack your own flesh in a vampiric feeding frenzy). It is important stuff. Its importance is significant enough that it is used to add depth and meaning to social interactions. Often negative. While blood is positive our interactions with it are normally not for positive reasons.
I was looking over the CSM candidate list. The dev blog came out about how the voting system is going to work this time around. I was promptly confused. They are trying to be fair and balanced and such things. I simply walked away with the impression that I had to pick fourteen candidates to vote for. When I looked at the list I realized that I had exactly one candidate that I had any interest in voting for and I could not honestly muster fourteen people out of the list of people who have said they want to run.
I had a mild panic attack. Thankfully, Detta explained it to me slowly and loudly for maximum understanding. I can vote for just one person if that is all I want to vote for. That relaxed me a bit. I'm not into blind voting. I want to have some clue about who I vote for and why and then if they disappoint me make sure that they know it quite clearly. I'm not asking CSM to change the world. I'm simply asking people to hold to the standards that they are running on.
It made me look at people. I realized that one popular candidate was not on my list. One of my numerous rather personal reasons, had to do with a bit of bad blood between his past and my own. Not my personal past but other peoples pasts that I was not a part of the current future. That is what dragged my mind into the area of bad blood. It is contagious. I, automatically, dismissed someone based upon a history from years ago that I was not a part of. I was a bit disappointed in myself.
I made myself looked past that. That candidate will probably be a good candidate but I personally do not care for them. Is that reason enough to vote for them? Is it one to not vote for them? I don't really know. Politics are not my thing. like religion, I don't discuss it with people. I normally do not pay attention to them but many candidates have been vocal on twitter and the forums.
If CSM is to mean something the player base must vote and help it to mean something by their interaction. Yet, watching and reading the meta game drama as well as some people turn from players to politicians is distasteful. I know that some people feed off of this. I find that it makes the process harder to promote. It makes it harder for me to get people who are relatively disinterested to become interested enough to vote when all they see is the political smile and the sharp edge of the drama.
But I said I would be active in this, this year and I shall. I don't do interviews and critiques and breakdowns and analysis. I'm just trying to rally people into an awareness to vote on the topic when the time comes. Yet, I do not even know what I will do fully. This new system is one that I do not wish to approach with casual ignorance. I'm not sure who is officially running and who is not. The troll posts do not help but they are not there to help they are there to amuse their authors.
And then there is bad blood. The hardest part about the process is distinguished personal likes and dislikes for the players vs their actual in game abilities and platforms. You can respect someone you dislike and dislike someone that you love. It is incredibly hard to create that separation of rational and emotional. At least for me. Others may be less flighty in nature but I believe that many will have problems separating individuals from associations. People are not always their group and sometimes people are only their group.
I'm not out to argue about the CSM being useful or not. I'm not running around arguing about their impact and its perceived value or lack of it. As long as it is a body that CCP has established to interact with itself based off of player input (voting) it needs to be approached with the attitude and temperament that one wishes to approach CCP with. At least in my opinion. I'm sure plenty of people will be amused enough with trolling for it to compensate them over any other perceived value.
I guess I am an idealist. I think I shall put the CSM election season in a box beside the Alliance Tournament season as something I dislike but due to its nature cannot ignore. And like the alliance tournament, I doubt I'll say much more on the topic then reminding people to vote when the time comes.