To Hell With Comments

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Smilomaniac:

I enjoyed your second comment as well, by the way. Just keep in mind that it is just a rant.

I know it's a rant. But I personally think it's a very selfish, self centered, stupid rant where he doesn't even really acknowledge that perhaps his stuff may be deemed by others to be a waste of digital ink and he should shut up.

That's the vibe I get from his article.

Yahtzee:
Of all the hideous manifestations of Web 2.0 ooh-let's-all-be-friends-together huggy-muggy your-opinion-matters bullshit, it is the most egregious and the most pointless.

Odd, the general attitude towards comments I frequently see isn't "huggy-muggy your opinion matters" but the opposite, in that they're worth less than bathroom graffiti. It's why that tired cliche "Opinions are like assholes...etc" is repeated so often it's practically the mantra of the internet.

Ignoring the incredibly rank "irony" of the article...
I really do not want to see any mandatory social media horse shit in any game I play.
At best, it will be useless "noise", at worst it will be spoilers.

I avoid social media already. It's a cesspool of endless fake-friend requests, tired memes, status updates and intellectually bankrupt jabber. It's just noise; digital social noise.

The only use I can find is that maybe someone could turn social media interaction into a gameplay concept as a form of self-authoring meta-commentary; that is, base a game itself on social media and comments.

-Dragmire-:
Well... um, nice commentary on the state of things displayed on the internet for all to see...

The hypocrisy of the article is delightful isn't it?
Then again, hypocrisy doesn't necessarily mean he's wrong either. (it's a logical fallacy to use hypocrisy alone against someone's argument, but nobody on the internet seems to remember that nor care.)

Kinda a long-winded way to say, "Here's something I don't like."

I mean, I'm not particularly fond of mayonnaise, but I probably wouldn't write an article going into the details of why I dislike it, or alternative condiments that I enjoy. Maybe a paragraph, if I were in the mood.

deathjavu:
I feel the same way about the comment sections on news sites. What, exactly, does a comment section add to a news story? The ability for random uninformed assholes to put their opinion on the same level as an actually researched story, and then for other assholes to have their shitty opinions reinforced by the first assholes.

Yes, yes, commenting on this article is ironic, let's get that joke out of the way early.

Commenting on news stories, is no different than having a discussion about a news article on the train when people used to read the same newspaper as everyone else every day. It's an outlet for conversation and reflection.

Yes, I agree that there is a lot of stupid on the internet, but to disparage such a wide swatch of people (as Yahtzee has here) is simply moronic.

And it's not the commenting on this article that is ironic, it's that the article itself exists in hypocrisy. It's an article full of comments about comments on articles.

*Time space barrier EXPLODED*

Yahtzee is essentially a one-man paid comment section occasionally presented in a video format.
Eh. Can't say this article bothers me. His work is centered around opinion pieces, not facts.

I'm used to insults like this by now but how long until we all can't take enough of others being egotistical and bullshit?.

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Bob is building an army of twats to comment on your articles, videos, and Mario 3D loading screens.

Feels like Yahtzee is trolling in this one and yet his sentiment matches my one when it comes to youtube comments. I wish there was a way to keep youtube comments on subject so we could discuss some of the videos in the same way we discuss things on the escapist.

Well most of my youtube comments are on LP videos and they mostly say: omg you are playing it wrong or you should have done this. I am part of the problem yay.

I always liked comments as an unfiltered barometer of public opinion.

I don't know. I kind of like it when I see someone with a powerful voice use it to self destruct on the little things. I should probably feel bad but I don't. The best part is that from my days of trolling I know that anyone upset enough to write two pages complaining about comments is also probably obsessed enough to read this one. I waste your time Yahtz I waste it!

Dragonbums:

Your entire article basically says- My words are more important than yours because I get paid to do it. Yours means nothing therefore I don't want to see it.

Thing is though, that view is basically correct. Journalism and criticism in general require a fair amount of qualification in order for it to have any weight or value.

What Yahtzee has to say automatically has more weight than any opinion of yours or mine simply because he has both a face and a name. By having both of those things he is made to be accountable for things that says, and he develops a backlog of opinions that qualify all his future opinions. So he has reason to avoid saying things that are tremendously biased or false, and we have a sizable backlog of information to go back to that might help us interpret his opinion and weight it appropriately in context to his preferences vs ours.

Earlier in the thread you mentioned that comments can be good because they can call the author out on a falsehood or bias, but the problem is that is you are choosing to question an author with a face, a name, and potentially something to lose based on the opinion of a person with no face, no name, and nothing to lose. Yes its good to question and confirm information for yourself, but you should be doing that with or without the input of some random who may or may not have any clue about what they're saying.

Hell take our own comments as an example, yours and mine. From the second half of your post I can see pretty clearly that you like Nint quite a bit, so I'm not really going to give much weight to your opinion on that particular company. Likewise when you read my comment you have to question the validity of the conclusions I'm drawing because I'm some faceless jackass with zero attachment to this account or place. I could be talking out of my ass for no reason better than "I'm bored" and you would never know.

Games having comments sections in them is pretty crap and a major source for spoilers.

Well, I may as well contribute to this growing scourge of comments by pressing the "Post" button.

...

We all remember when Sideshow Bob used a TV to convey the message that TV is crap, right?

I'm going to assume Yahtzee was aware of the irony of the whole article, but he has a vague point. If you look through comments sections, there's rarely much useful criticism and if developers did rely on comments boards to feedback, they'd end up making their games considerably worse then they already are.
Sometimes, something good does come out of comments sections, Miiverse included, but it does require some patients.

Duder Dudeson:
I don't know. I kind of like it when I see someone with a powerful voice use it to self destruct on the little things. I should probably feel bad but I don't. The best part is that from my days of trolling I know that anyone upset enough to write two pages complaining about comments is also probably obsessed enough to read this one. I waste your time Yahtz I waste it!

Ha the jokes on you, buddy! Yahtzee's already has us wasting our time by discussing this. I doubt he cares about what we have to say about anything and..

Aw man.. Now I just feel bad.

Hmm, I think it's sort of an honor to be considered a boring twat, beating things to death with my prick. It has a nice ring to it.

On a more serious note, I fully agree that the trend of having more and more of a social aspect to games is just dumb.

The only game I have seen handle it somewhat well is Dark Souls. Tips are always welcome in that game and there were several instances when I was actually helped by the other people instead of hindered. Part of what makes it work is the fact that people can't just write anything they want. By having all comments be a collection of pre-selected words, they are always in the context of the gameplay. Though "Need Head" and "Need Rear" would be the exceptions.

Part of my problem with the "inevitable" always-on digital future is the idea that seems to come with it for a lot of publishers: that "the community" is better at entertaining itself than the creators of the content you're all allegedly there to partake in. It's at turns bizarre, crass, lazy, and downright exploitative. If it isn't "This shooter has to have a multiplayer mode, so lop off a third of your team that's trying to get the final version out and get on that in the last three months", it's "Ah, everyone's going to play the multiplayer anyway, so who cares if the single-player story wastes five hours of your life and barely functions as more than a glorified tutorial?"

Lacking a feature? Someone will mod it in. Need some cheap publicity? Raise a storm on Facebook, or only give that skin to people who Tweet their friends about it. Don't want to log into some superfluous web-site to play the game you bought? Tough, we're building a "community". How can you possibly be against a "community"? Now go back to your single-player game, and if you've neglected to toggle the right hidden sub-menu, the "community" may be invading your game at any moment.

It sometimes feels not unlike we've paid to see a comedian, only to have him sit down on the edge of the stage, wave a hand, and say, "Aw, you look like a witty bunch. Why don'cha just talk amongst yourselves."

Now, for the record, I do think feedback can be useful to creators, and I almost think it's a warning bell when a group goes out of their way to make it clear that nothing the consumers have to say is in any way respected nor will in any way effect any future releases. Once you've released your child to the public, whether it's a game or a movie or a poem or a book, you've lost a degree of ownership. Specifically, the part that says only you get to interpret what it is any more.

But I'm almost starting to think there needs to be a hurdle or two in the way of giving that feedback. You didn't go through the interview process to find out if you were qualified as a game tester, after all, and many people who leave comments fail even the most basic tests of grammar, etiquette and logic that suggest they're worth listening to at all. I'm not talking about scaling some spiked iron wall; I'm just talking about the kind of effort that used to go into looking up an address and finding a stamp. (Consarn it.) It would be nice if both we and the creators could be spared the bile of people who barely know how to set their keyboard on "Caps Lock" and click "send"; I don't doubt there are people out there in games companies whose entire job amounts to separating signal and noise or wheat and chaff, and I suspect the burn-out rate is through the roof.

And I don't think the above applies to the partitioned forums of independent groups like the Escapist, so carry on.

Scrumpmonkey:

nickpy:

Scrumpmonkey:
This was true until those fucking Facebook comments were enabled. It undermines the accounts and community system. They were a horrible idea and they need to go.

This place is infected with facebook? really? I didn't think Escapist could stoop that low, I really didn't, and now I feel betrayed! Then again... I suppose it doesn't actually affect me since I have a plugin in my browser which forcibly removes all social media plugins from all websites, which is why I didn't know this place had succumbed.

The reason many sites feel the need to have these features is NOT for users. Having facebook, twitter, google plus, youtube etc etc plugins and buttons apparently increases your sites visibility on the web. It's a promotional tool websites feel forced to accept because if you don't kneel before the gatekeepers of the internet that there is a fear your site will magically turn into a wasteland unless someone can +1 your post.

You can't really admit to using and encourage using script extensions that block certain content on this site. So be careful :P

Blocking social plugins will not lose the Escapist any money, so I don't see the problem. Adverts, yes, but I do not block adverts as I know the Escapist is dependent on them for income. In any case, I am morally against facebook/google+/whatever tracking my activities across the internet via the cookies they place in your browser using the social plugins, and that is the core reason I block them. If the Escapist has a problem with that, then I don't want to consume the Escapist's content. Now, if only PubSub gave the option to remove social plugins...

Atmos Duality:

-Dragmire-:
Well... um, nice commentary on the state of things displayed on the internet for all to see...

The hypocrisy of the article is delightful isn't it?
Then again, hypocrisy doesn't necessarily mean he's wrong either. (it's a logical fallacy to use hypocrisy alone against someone's argument, but nobody on the internet seems to remember that nor care.)

He's had similar articles before where he ridiculed things that he himself has done but normally he acknowledges it with a funny one liner at the end. Without that, he seemed oblivious to his own hypocrisy which stood out as more strange than the hypocrisy itself.

I wonder if this counts as satire if he worded the article intentionally in that manner...

Wow, egocentric much?

You even acknowledge it's optional, so why the fuck make a fuss about it?

I actually like the comments and I'm sure I'm not the only one.

The World does not revolve around you and I'm glad it's that way, otherwise it'd be a boring world.

There are now 55 messages that the original content creator HATES... Lets keep it going..... Just how much vitriol can we generate in the man with the hat?

Come on guys, DON'T STOP NOW!!!

Whenever you let the Internet freely voice its opinion on something, you will get loads of bullshit.

Just look at user scores for games. There is a large group of people who only think in a binary "it's either 10/10 or it's 1/10" way.
I don't give a shit about the scores myself but I do know that there are people who won't buy a game if it has no stellar 80+ rating. And knowing that the developer of a game makes less money because of pricks who think that "I don't like it" equals a 1/10 makes me sad.

I respect Yahtzee as a game critic and writer, but on stuff like this he just needs to clamp his trap shut with an iron vice. I'm tired of the goddamn misanthrope gimmick and I'm not even sure where the threshold is anymore in terms of how much is "in-character." We get it, you're a wretched human being who abhors human contact.

Stop trying to drag everyone else down in your misery and take a friggin' Zoloft. You sound like House, for Christ's sake.

Well I kinda see yahtzee's point, Particularly with the rather intentionally trollish, meaningless and destructive most internet comments are.

I suppose that a big part of problems come from the fact that a lot of human communication is pretty unnecesary and redundant. But this is not limited for internet, it is simply accentuated by anonymity, its like Pub / Bar / Club casual conversations, rarely does anyone get involved in very significant interactions, and most of the times the communication is limited to very superficial popular knowledge niceties that could very well be fully ignored.

It seems a bit of a problem of CONTEXT more than content, for example, Shouts and general stupid behaviour seem fine if you are in a crowd at a stadium, watching some sport, but that wouldn't really be fine anywhere else.

Likewise, We all know that in general, youtube is not the place to find stimulating intelligent conversation... (just trying to maintain a conversation in Youtube seems nearly impossible). But even if we didn't know, after an initial learning period, we learn to expect the way things work within that context.

Here's where I find a problem though. It seems rather arrogant to dismiss all opinions as completely "twatty". I feel it is a bit rich for "internet personalities" to play that card. It's a pretty relativistic observation, I know, but for someone else everyone is potentially an opinionated twat on the internet. The only real difference is the coverage and the number of followers. The truth is that It's very difficult (and sometimes pointless) to verify people's credentials online, but that doesn't immediately make comments ( and feedback as a whole ) useless or unworthy.

Clearly Yahtzee feels entitled to consider other twats from his ideological podium, but the truth is that his particular skill is in the presentation of opinions in an entertaining way, and not on the side of very provable or scientific analysis and observation. So although it is surely very entertaining, he shouldn't assume every comment that he dislikes is just the work of an entitled twat that isn't respecting -him-.
Sure, a different experience or perspective can contradict his opinion or diminish his experience, in such a way that is as potentially offensive as Yahtzee's own rhetoric. But who can really say how valuable any person's opinion or input is universally? It is a moot subjective appreciative point.

Can Yahtzee scoff and call anyone contradicting him a twat? It's kind of what makes him "famous". But in time anyone else is very much entitled to find his opinion just as stupid. Didn't he get to where he is by kind of being an opinionated twat? Some people could even enjoy comments! Scary concept, I know.

So I guess this is an ouroboros of twatyness, Yahtzee is an internet commentator, saying comments are stupid and we are commenting on the dumbness of his comment.

In the end, with the type of interactions we find nowadays, we have to learn to discriminate what information IS in fact VALUABLE to us, and is WORTH the effort. And learn that whatever we say, someone will have a problem with it, even if we simply cant understand the reasoning behind it. Its probably the biggest communicational challenge we have in the near future, discerning what information we actually want.

You, Mr. Yahtzee are rapidly becoming decreasingly relevant.

Scars Unseen:
Damn right! Screw those scrubs with their vapid meme pasting and horrific pun generation. Not a worthwhile point to be made by any of them. It's you and me against the world!

(I'm the exception right?)

:D Come here friend!

Comments are fine if you seek them out. Then you can't lament their stupidity because you asked for it. It's when they're shoved in your face without your consent when the rage sets in.

Also I disagree with the fact that a joke cannot be added to. Referential humor is in my opinion the best, when you can call back to an earlier gag to multiply the comedy, either in an expected or completely unexpected way.

Thank you Yahtzee.
I couldn't agree more.

However there is another kind of "comment" that I truly despise.
You see, I'm Dutch. And our political system is the truest version of democracy.
Not the American version where it's simply a dictatorship shared between two political parties with colliding interests.
No, in The Netherlands everyone can basically form a political party.
Everyone can vote and all the votes are counted in total and distributed over all the parties.
Each party gets a number of seats determined by the percentage of votes.

As you can see, pretty fair and all, and I think most people would see this as a fair system.

However, you forget that about 60% of the population is of lower intelligence (basically, an IQ rating below 90).
And these people also vote. Without having the mental capacity to actually understand most of what is being said or understanding what they are voting for.
In the polls, currently, the biggest party is a rightwinged nutter.
All he does is shout and try to get media attention. There is no substance there except for vileness, megalomania and greed.
And we allow these people to vote?

I say, purge all comments and get someone to sort out democracy, sub-intellectial beings, nutters and megalomaniacs.

Dragonbums:

Smilomaniac:

I enjoyed your second comment as well, by the way. Just keep in mind that it is just a rant.

I know it's a rant. But I personally think it's a very selfish, self centered, stupid rant where he doesn't even really acknowledge that perhaps his stuff may be deemed by others to be a waste of digital ink and he should shut up.

That's the vibe I get from his article.

<.< Yahtzee is being a bit "nihilistic" in this article.

Though, I think he does know that. He did say in it; "And I know you can turn the comments off in 3D World, but if I'd done that I wouldn't have been able to complain about them."

That said, it still was a bit mean spirited.

Although I still had fun with it. I can understand why others wouldn't.

I do hope that Yahtzee realized that what he wrote basically says "All comments are stupid...except for mine."

Eh, comments can be useful. Constructive feedback is a very good thing, and even relevant questions are appropriate for a comments section. The fact that most comments suck isn't an inherent problem with comments, but an inherent problem with people.

For an example of Miiverse done correctly, look at Super Metroid.

P.S. Thanks

Wow. Congrats on being so important that you don't have to listen to your fans anymore, Yahtzee. You must get sweet cell phone reception in that ivory tower of yours.

Jesus Christ, how are old are you again Yahtzee? I reckon someone just needs to drink their milk and have a lie down.

I can't judge the comments on Super Mario World because I haven't played it and don't know how potentially distracting/intrusive they are, but it sounds to me like you're having a big bitch about nothing. Youtube comments are dumb? Yeah they certainly can be, but if you don't like them then why are you looking at them in the first place? I'm looking at one in the other tab right now, you can't even see the damn comments unless you scroll down, there's a split second delay before they actually start loading and there's enough space on the other side of the screen where the suggested videos are that you can avert your eyes if it would really kill you not to do otherwise.

Also, I like that you're arrogant enough to decry Internet comments when they are realistically your only means of receiving any form of criticism for your own work. Unless there's some paid, professional Zero Punctuation reviewer giving weekly criticism of each new episode, how are you supposed to know what you did wrong and what you did right without looking at online comments? Just because you've decided you're flawless and above reproach, doesn't mean everyone is, and plenty of Internet contributors can benefit from user comments. Just look at the Jimquisition; imagine if Jim Sterling hadn't originally listened to the people on the Escapist and used that feedback to make the show better. It wouldn't have been as successful as it is now, I can tell you that.

It's the same for games as well; yeah, Ubisoft aren't going to seriously evaluate every rating for every Assassin's Creed IV mission, but even the Metacritic-style five star/one star rating split can work as a binary way of telling what missions people liked and disliked. If the ratings are helpful, then they can use them to make future games and DLC better. If they're not, they'll just not put user ratings in the game, and you get to live a slightly happier oh-so-miserable Brisbane inner-city-trendy existence.

Sectan:
Isn't Yahtzee basically just part of the comment section that is Vidogamez Jurnalizm?

Exactly. It's unbelievably hypocritical of Yahtzee to put down comments when his JOB is for all intents and purposes to comment on video games.

Besides, it's easy enough to simply ignore the idiots and trolls and only focus on the worthwhile comments instead. I have seen plenty of comments on Youtube, the Escapist, or wherever that are just as good or even better than the video or article that it's commenting on, and for that reason alone I consider comments worth it.

Guys, don't get so seriously with Yantzee opinion.
Like he said in an old comment/post, he use a lot of comedy and irony to make things more interesting.
He hate comments, but it doesn't mean we are all twats.

Mike Fang:
Another EP where Yahtzee shows us that side of himself that proves that the hyperbole he uses to put down his own audience is, in reality, exactly how he feels. No, people, he's not just saying those things because he's trying to be entertaining, he really DOES think 99% of us are shit. He thinks it of me and he thinks it of you. Yes, YOU, whoever-is-reading-this-at-the-time, don't think your on his special not-shit-list, because you are, along with the rest of us. It's times like this I really feel misgivings about watching his stuff. He's entertaining and often informative, but by God, he can also be bitter and hateful.

So there's no reason to believe that he's generalizing and knows that he is? We should take this at face value that he loathes each and every one of us? I have to say I have been having a similar rant built up in me for a long time. I have this habit to downvote comments on Youtube simply being quotes from the video or bad jokes based on stuff from the video. More annoying is the ones who are deliberately making comments in the hope that they will get upvotes. We don't care about your hatred of justin Bieber and the fact that the dislike bar is as long as his dick (one I see repeatedly).

Does this article come across as excessively bitter? Well yes it does, but I can see where he's coming from. Maybe he hates all of us, maybe he's exaggerating I don't know.

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