First, the definitions. I called articles that praised or otherwise supported actions taken by developers and/or administrators “good,” including opinions implicit in news reports (like this or this). “Bad” essays disparaged actions taken by developers and/or administrators, including opinions implicit in news reports (like this or this). The “neutral” tag went to bits that expressed opinions both positive and negative about actions taken by developers and/or administrators, ultimately balancing out (example here). “Community news” expressed no feelings on actions taken by developers and/or administrators (like this), and “other” pieces addressed AC, but were not posted with the AC icon (like this update, or this example).
Out of a total of 57 updates devoted to AC, the majority consisted of “community news” — 42%, or 24 updates. The next highest percentage went to positive coverage; “good” came in at 25%, or 14 updates. The lesser count of 16% fell into the “bad” category, with 9 updates. Only two articles fit the “neutral” definition, taking 3%, and eight were left in the “other” bin, with 12% of the total.
For personal attack ammunition, I’ve also tallied writer scores. Lum wrote the most updates: 21. 14% (3) of them were “good,” 9% (2) were “bad,” 66.6% (14) were “community,” and 19% (4) were “other.” He dealt mostly with general issues — the writings I’ve labelled “good” and “bad” were implicit news pieces, not manifestoes, with one exception I’ll get to later. Delusion came in second with 19 updates, 47% (9) of which were “good,” 5% (1) “bad,” 31% (6) “community,” and 5% (1) “other;” nearly all of the opinion pieces are about game content. I’m next, having written eleven pieces: 18% (2) “good,” 45% (5) “bad,” 9% (1) “community,” and 18% (2) “other.” The majority of those opinions have been recent, and have dealt with exploitation (to go further, three on exploits, one on content, and two implicit “bad” pieces of “community” news). And Myschyf wrote three: two “community” notices, and one “other.”
These findings can’t be understood in vacuum — remember changes here, follow the arc of public opinion. Lum started covering the game, while not playing it, earlier than I started the tally; Delusion came on as staff in late January, when everyone was hailing AC as the next best thing to the second coming of Christ. He started playing and writing less as time went on, and then I started playing in June, after an aborted attempt in early January.
While writers’ beats were changing here, the AC community was undergoing a fundamental change in thinking on their own. No longer seeing the game as the next best thing to the second coming of Christ, but without words to explain it, they coasted through the summer and early fall, discontent and mostly silent. As the game’s content continued to follow the patterns they disliked, the vocal masses became more articulate, coming to a head this month — thank Musashi for giving words to many, but don’t give him credit for revolutionary ideas.
It’s no conspiracy that AC’s flaws are being exposed with a greater frequency now than in the past. Look at the difference between Delusion’s early writings and what he’s saying now — there’s emotion there. It reflects what I see in the game’s community at large, and it’s not an attempt to smear a company or scandalize events for hits. It’s a genuine attempt to communicate. The 24 HOUR NEON HOUSE OF LOVEY LOVEY POSITIVE COMMENTARY wouldn’t contribute to any solutions; it would contribute only to continuation. The time to ask for continuation is over.
To return to a more expected tone and to the original pace, note that the very first article posted about AC this year was by Lum, and addressed the banning policy. I put it in the “bad” cagegory.
For the full count, complete with links to each and every update, their categories, authors, and cute titles devised by me, see my notes. If you’d like to do a recount, feel free; no court will slap your hand and tell you to stop. Math corrections are encouraged. Thank you and good night.