why write that feat

Monday’s article about a seemingly out-of-date “warning” that free-to-play games can cost money brought up comments I see a lot of – not just on this site, but on several that I read – along the lines of “Why are you writing about this?” Other forms include “pointless article” and “no one cares.” The idea of the article was to get a bit of a laugh, and while I may have leaned a little too strongly on the anti-Canadian sentiment, it’s something I’ll keep doing, no matter how “pointless” it is.




(Side note: I really don’t have a problem with Canada. And I’m hardly the only one to evoke an anti-Canadian sentiment for the sake of humor – or is it “humour”? South Park does it all the time, as do a lot of other mainstream entertainment properties.)

I think a lot of the hostility comes from people who expect MMOBomb to be a news site, and nothing but a news site, and lash out at nearly anything not perceived as “hard” news. Again, I see this on other sites, like a baseball site I read, whenever the head writer talks about something other than stats and signings. I saw it just the other day, when a Major League umpire came out as gay. While that’s obviously a heady issue, far more so than anything we talk about here, it got the usual “Why is this news?” comments with an underpinning of “This site should just stick to talking about baseball.”

The thing is… pure news is a) boring and b) not unique. We could just report blandly on the news and not inject any of our own personality into our coverage, but you can find that anywhere. A million gaming sites out there can report that a new game was announced or that there’s a shiny teaser video for a new class. Why should you read MMOBomb instead of one of those sites? What reason is there to draw you to us over them?

One way to do that is to provide something unique – in this case, our perspective on things. Sometimes this can be serious, in the form of an editorial, or sometimes – especially when, to be honest, there isn’t much to write about – we’ll just let our imaginations go off a bit and try something funny. That doesn’t always work, but the point is, if you expect nothing but SOOPER SRS BZNESS from this site all the time… well, you’re going to be disappointed.

Sp_canada_image

But all that aside, even if I hadn’t tried to be all snarky toward Canada, there would have been people who said that the article was dull and pointless, that it didn’t belong on a “news” site. So why write it in the first place? Obviously, the reason we write articles is to get people to click on them, view the ads and whatnot, and bring in money so we can keep doing what we’re doing. Monday, there wasn’t much to write about – you can thank the Thanksgiving news void for that – so I looked around a bit and found that. It wasn’t stunning news, but I thought I could craft something out of it.

The alternative would have been that I wrote nothing, thereby providing no income to the site and, I like to think, not providing any entertainment value to the people who did like the article. Did I rub a few people the wrong way with the anti-Canadian messaging? Maybe. But if you’re offended by that attempt at humor enough to quit the site, well, you’d better avoid the Internet in general.

In the end, the article was designed more as entertainment than news, just like we do with a lot of editorial pieces and even the Free-to-Play podcast, which generally covers older news – the sort of thing you’ve already heard about – but provides an entertaining take on it from me and Magicman. We’ll cover the serious stuff, too, and treat it with the respect it deserves, but games are meant to be entertainment, and we think reading about them should be entertaining too.

the author

Jason Winter is a veteran gaming journalist, he brings a wide range of experience to MMOBomb, including two years with Beckett Media where he served as the editor of the leading gaming magazine Massive Online Gamer. He has also written professionally for several gaming websites.

7 Readers Commented

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  1. Hantzie on December 4, 2014

    People on internet tend to be mad and complain at the smallest things… i am the one who reads the title, decide not to read the article and move on. I won’t complain about articles i don’t care. Maybe someone will care and enjoy reading.

  2. Nashah on December 4, 2014

    Honestly your article was fine. I wasn’t expecting anything profound from it. I read it having only one question in mind “how stupid will this other news article sound?”

    Which while being a bit of a no duh topic it sadly seems as if they did put some effort into their article, they didn’t blow things out of proportion.

  3. Tyson on December 3, 2014

    (Side note: I really don’t have a problem with Canada. And I’m hardly the only one to evoke an anti-Canadian sentiment for the sake of humor – or is it “humour”? South Park does it all the time, as do a lot of other mainstream entertainment properties.)

    “I’m not the only guy punching cripples! So it’s okay!”

    >stupid author wrote a stupid article and now has to try and cover it up

    • tolshortte on December 3, 2014

      Jason, take this guy for the example im about to use.

      some people are just unhappy. they come to the internet to be mad about the smallest things. they have this idea that being judgemental and overreacting about every little thing makes them better somehow.

      now do you really care what someone like this has to say? even if you wrote the worst article that game editorials ever saw, it would be more interesting than what these people offer.

      in short, while I understand what your point of this piece is, some people can’t be reached. no matter what they will only see the negative. just let them be how they want to be and ignore them. giving them attention will only make it worse.

      I enjoy your writing as do many others. stay true to yourself and your opinions and all will be well. thanks for your efforts and time for our entertainment.

  4. Bic Boi on December 3, 2014

    A wise man once said “Silence is golden”.

  5. Saegan on December 3, 2014

    When I first began to get into online gaming I would come to this site to try and find something I felt like playing. Then I found out that this site also provided news about games and related events in general. Over time it has become clear to me what MMOBOMB’s true power is. The power to help a gamer tear away from a game, if just for a moment, to learn about more gaming. I have a hard time describing just how terrifying beautiful that power truly is.

    *Insert heartfelt song and dance number about the beauty of the game*

    In the end I have come to enjoy this site for what it is: a bit of news, a bit of opinion, a bit of fun, and a whole lot of gaming. So when you feel the call to tell us your opinion (complete with trademark frankness and insight), say it I say! Fear no evil; fear no whispers from dark basements! Soldier on and fight the never ending battle against stupidity. Take up the cause of the millions of gamers out there and champion the cause of the informed individual. Give us the news sandwich with sarcasm sauce and a double helping of humor on the side. I expect nothing less. In the immortal words of Sgt. Ernie Calhoun, “It’s all about the game”.

    You stay classy Jason Winter

  6. Apoth on December 3, 2014

    The reason why I said it was pointless cause it was just a short 2 paragraph nothing with an obvious answer. No real insight or interesting tidbits to read. It felt like a waste of time.

    I don’t usually say negative things … on this site at least… and yea sometimes I like to release pent up anger on the internet (which netted me several permanent bans on various forums). My point is, and I’m sure you know, don’t take it personally.

    That said, thanks for the explanation. I enjoyed reading this much more and enjoy reading your guys’ opinions on fiascos (like archeage of lately) and other things.

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