Yesterday I was kicked out of my guild raid before liftoff. I will say, the kick was entirely deserved. I get tired of sitting around outside the raid zone waiting on the last 1/3 of the raid to show up. But now I’m just making excuses: I was being a dick, I got kicked for being a dick, end of story.

Anyways, I spent my newfound free time snooping around rival guild sites and rediscovered an internet phenomenon that is both amusing and disturbing: oversharing.

Contemporary example from gaming: “It figures that the day some girl is in my bed wanting me I can’t even perform. Thinking about it today I thought it was kinda funny, so I just figured I’d share. On a serious note though I believe I am going to have to take a break from WoW.”

I blame social networking for the steep rise in oversharing. Honestly, I have deep thoughts maybe a couple of times a day, the rest of the thinking is just noise and doesn’t even hold my own interest. Social network sites encourage people to share absolutely everything and I think people should self-censor the more graphic details, PARTICULARLY when one is speaking to one’s guildmates or servermates or the internet at large.

And yet, people share it all. Anonymity grants courage, I suppose.

What I want from you are your own examples of gaming friends or acquaintances oversharing — or, if you’re feeling clever, invent an example of gross oversharing in a game environment.

I’ll go first. Back in EverQuest, raiding Vex Thal, one of our female priests left the raid after a few hours because she was pregnant and her hemorrhoids were bothering her. My opinion, then and now, “I’m not feeling well” would have been sufficient. The bright side: she didn’t detail HOW they were bothersome.

Another example, also EQ, one of our druids announced that she had asked her husband for a divorce earlier that day. The story could have ended there. She explained, however, that he had gotten home late from work and when she went to kiss him, she could smell another woman’s **censored** on his face. I had no response to that.

Your turn to share … but not too much.

A Bi-Curious Double Life

I was checking on 60 Minutes‘ schedule yesterday to see if it was a rerun or good (rerun), and I stumbled upon CBS News’ archive of real! life! murder mysteries, which I love because I’m quite an accomplished armchair detective, if I must say so myself. I was well on my way to solving this murder, Love and Lies, when I got to Page 5 and the story got a whole lot crazier. I won’t spoil it for you, go read. Come back in a few minutes and share a WTF moment with me.

Corporate Virtual Currency

When you first read about this new corporate email system (game, really), whereby workers spend virtual currency to send email and earn the same currency for received email, you might think it’s stupid. In fact, given five minutes to think about it, you already know how to game the system, don’t you?

Ya, me too.

First, if my company tried to float this idea, I’d say, “I’m not doing that.” Then, when they’d insist (as they ALWAYS do), I’d either approach it as A. Fine, I’m never sending email, fuck that, I’ll use voicemail, or B. I’m not changing my habits at all and if I end up short on email currency for the week, then bummer. Guy walks down to my office and asks why I didn’t email that we were critical on some production-whatever, “Man, I was tapped out for the week. Great game, isn’t it?”

UNLESS … unless … I could convert my email currency into real virtual currency, like Warcraft gold or EverQuest platinum, then I’m on board. And by the time that little experiment was over, I’d be the GOD of email currency.

And no, I don’t want to buy little pencils from the office store with my email currency — I want something GOOD.

My real life self-centeredness aside, I do like thinking that’s outside the box, whether it be work strats or game strats, and while much of what we learn in gaming translates well to real and work life, there’s plenty we learn that we shouldn’t bring into real life … like gaming the system, exploiting the mechanics, duping currency, perching the office supply room, or, forming uber guilds to farm the currency. These are the things that a gamer would excel at and a non-gamer would be noob fodder under our boots.

Every multiplayer game requires policing, not an immaterial cost either, I imagine — not just for out-and-out cheating, but also: is the game encouraging the behaviors we want it to encourage? I’m sure my Corporate Overlords don’t want me to drain Accounting’s currency allowance each week just cuz I can, but if the reward involves a better LCD monitor on my desk, then look out Accounting.

Corporate Overlords shouldn’t buy an email game and think that’s the end of the cost, be prepared to rake in savings! Policing is an ongoing, neverending, costly process because the strong will always exploit the weak and players will always choose the shortest, easiest route to the reward.

Interesting real world idea, anyways, even though I could game that system hardc0re.