Home > Impressions > FGC Soap Opera, Episode 391

FGC Soap Opera, Episode 391

Well this was a profoundly disappointing week, but i think it’s time to move on. People known for being rude were rude, reality show nonsense happened on a reality show, boys-not-men on the internet have no manners, and modern news media gets paid to stir up controversy.

Obviously the fighting game community has some growing up to do. We ought to accept the challenge because it’s the right thing to do, not because it matters what sponsors or gaming journalists think of us. It’s fun to hear top players talking trash, but we can all tell when lines are being crossed. If you see it happening in front of you, do something about it.

Being an instigator is easy, but you get nothing out of it. Anyone can be a stream monster. Acting as the voice of reason is far more difficult, but infinitely more rewarding.

Will the entertainment district of the internet ever become politically correct? Probably not. Online forums and anonymous chatrooms are always going to stay a little sketchy, so there’s no need to champion the fighting game community’s right to be grimy.

Let’s be honest – the FGC tournament scene will probably never turn squeaky clean, so it’s important to pick your battles. Just don’t forget or ignore where the real lines are drawn and don’t be afraid to speak up if someone goes too far. That’s all anyone’s asking of us.

As a spectator, i feel bad about what happened to SuperYan specifically because she seems like a genuinely nice person who was there to play the actual game of SFxT. It was entirely unfair to make her feel so uncomfortable. That’s the whole reason there aren’t more girls in the fighting game community, which in turn is the reason they get driven out like this.

It’s a pretty messed up vicious cycle, because it’s hard for anyone to cope with that much critical attention suddenly directed toward them. I don’t know how SherryJenix has managed to handle it so well, but it would be completely unreasonable to expect such restraint from everyone who simply wants to participate in our community.

SuperYan, if you still want to get better at Street Fighter, i’m down to help. When you feel ready, record a few videos against friends and post the links here. I’ll take one match per week and give you as much constructive advice as i can. Somebody from Australia once paid me $40 for feedback on two of his matchvids, and he seemed happy with the outcome. I’m pretty sure that makes me a professional Street Fighter tutor.

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  1. March 4th, 2012 at 04:40 | #1

    It’s probably a bad idea to post this at 4:30am right before i go to sleep, but this has been a crazy week. I don’t want to point any fingers at anyone specific though, because these problems have existed for a while.

    Since they’ve been brought to the forefront of our collective consciousness, now’s as good a time as any to deal with them. I hope we can move forward and start calling people out when they make anyone feel unwelcome in our community – or at least stepping in to support those on the receiving end.

  2. XSPR
    March 4th, 2012 at 07:47 | #2

    Kudos to inkblot and SRK/EVO for doing something about it (and dare I say, not overlooking/”moving on” so fast). The general unprofessional approach of representing ourselves- particularly on stream mics, such a public face for the FGC- has been going on for way too long now. Many feel it’s going too far to punish the LevelUp players and deny them seeds at EVO but I fully support the decision because it clearly states that SRK/EVO will no longer be an enabler. I hope this sets a precedent for any FGC organization to take the representation of the FGC seriously and take responsibility for their mics.

  3. March 4th, 2012 at 10:45 | #3

    Yeah, i agree that SRK handled it pretty well overall. Unfortunately, some of the reactions to this situation on both sides of the issue have been unhelpful. I think it’s time to calm down, stop reacting emotionally, and move forward as constructively as possible.

    This thing was guaranteed to spark a major debate within the FGC as soon as it happened in such a blatant, public way. We didn’t need Giantbomb or Kotaku for that.

    Seeing all these mainstream gaming news websites villainize and lecture us when they clearly have no vested interest in supporting the FGC isn’t helping anything. All it’s done is add more fuel to the melodrama that we have to move past before we can get anything done.

    We just need to figure out how to address these shortcomings on a fundamental level of conduct and get back to doing positive things. We’re talking about individual choices here. It’s not like we can pass a law that will fix everything overnight. It’s been a bumpy road, and i’m sure it’ll continue to be that way for a while.

  4. onreload
    March 4th, 2012 at 12:37 | #4

    I do feel that revoking seed points at WNF was a bit too harsh, hopefully it’s not setting precedence for any future commentary incidents (I would hate to be a player at one of these tourneys, worrying about what’s going on by the computer)…I’m confident it will blow over, and Final Round has so far just been a great tournament with no controversy…which I think is great, since prying eyes are probably watching.

    I think Matt and Capcom took a huge chance on this show, and the day long streams themselves were quite an accomplishment but, here’s a nitpick of mine: You really want to interview someone right after they lost? AND you make them wear a demoralizing shirt? Ouch…Just watched ReNiC’s exit interview from the finals and man…You would need to give me at least 20~30 minutes after a big loss for an interview.

  5. March 4th, 2012 at 15:08 | #5

    With regard to Evo seeding points, SRK took the only direct action in their power to express their objection to what happened at WNF. Personally i think it was the right call, provided that the next step is handled in a professional manner without damaging the relationship between SRK and Level|Up.

    The way i see it playing out – the guest announcers on the WNF stream slipped up, it wasn’t WNF’s fault directly, WNF will be given an opportunity to make amends, and their Evo seeding points will be restored in the next ranbat season, which isn’t too far away.

    To me, the real question is: If someone on a stream mic starts blatantly crossing the line, whose job is it to get them off the air? We have to figure out whose responsibility that is, because you can’t expect Valle to be standing next to the commentator’s table the entire time. That’d be ridiculous. If you’ve ever been to any tournament, it should be obvious how impractical that would be.

    But we have to sort this out, because it’s too easy to defer responsibility if it’s not clear who’s in charge of monitoring stream commentary. And it wouldn’t hurt to put someone in charge of moderating stream chat too (with clear yet flexible guidelines).

  6. XSPR
    March 4th, 2012 at 20:33 | #6

    Valle doesn’t need to be standing next to the table the entire time, but since that mic represents the voice of LevelUp it’s only the responsible thing to do to make sure nothing gets said over it that puts his organization/good name in a bad light. And if something _does_ gets said, to be upset enough about it to protect the LevelUp mouthpiece/brand more vigilantly (as I trust or at least hope he is already doing).

    If your blog starts getting lots of comment spam, is that your fault? No, and it sucks but who else is ultimately responsible for removing it? As fans, we’d remove it ourselves to save you the hassle but ultimately, your blog represents you more than anyone else. Maybe you hand over the keys to your car to a friend that’s not listed on the insurance, but he gets into an accident- who’s responsible?

    I’m grateful for Kotaku’s article actually- maybe this kind of attention/shaming is precisely the kind of teething pains the FGC has to go through as we mature professionally, especially when I see more and more money getting thrown our way year after year– and that wasn’t exactly the first time the line was crossed by words spoken over a stream’s mic at one of our events.

  7. LB
    March 5th, 2012 at 09:37 | #7

    hi maj, sometimes i get a lot of unwanted attention from the fighting game community and it makes me super uncomfortable. can i send you matches to get it analyzed for free too? :D

  8. March 6th, 2012 at 01:11 | #8

    XSPR: Sorry man, i don’t buy that. Everyone keeps claiming that stream commentary is the voice of tournaments nowadays, but it’s still only one aspect, and a minor one at that. The voice of a successful tournament is how smoothly it’s run, how intense the level of competition gets, how electric the atmosphere feels, and simply whether people have a good time.

    Anyone who expects everything to be flawlessly professional is delusional. And you should know that asking Valle to babysit the stream table the entire time is pointless. “Responsible thing to do” or not, it’s simply not a feasible demand, so it’s never gonna happen for purely logistical reasons. We’ll never make any progress without achievable goals and a realistic plan.

    This whole thing started over three individuals acting foolish. They don’t represent the whole community. Obviously they should be suspended or banned from the stream mic in the future, but Level|Up took care of that immediately, even before SRK got involved. Isn’t that a good sign?

    Somehow your analogy wandered from a couple people acting foolish on camera to comparisons with breaking the law. Exaggeration doesn’t help this situation at all. Just makes it harder to get anything realistic started.

    LB: Haha nice try, but my offer is for SuperYan only because the way i see it, she got shortchanged out of her opportunity to improve as a player on Cross Assault. I’m just trying to make that up to her with whatever learning experience i can provide over the internet. Wish i had time to do more matchvid breakdowns, but work keeps me pretty busy these days.

  9. March 20th, 2012 at 08:07 | #9

    Well, i contacted SuperYan about a week ago through u2b, but she never responded. Maybe she’s tired of the attention or maybe she’s still dealing with the aftermath or maybe she’s busy with whatever opportunities arose from this ordeal. Hopefully something good came out of it for her.

    In any case, i’m going to spend the time working on other things instead. Wasn’t i supposed to make Seth combos or something?

  10. XSPR
    March 22nd, 2012 at 06:22 | #10

    Hopefully she didn’t get an avalanche of other messages and is trying to filter it all. Anyway I think we pretty much see this the same way mostly. Over a year ago I tried rallying support for cleaning up the language on streams and there was a similar split along maturity vs. freedom of speech lines in the FGC.

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