Posted by: Smash Daddy | October 7, 2011

Power Grab 2011

Red October

There are few people who have touted the proposals from Make Your Move 7 and now, only a select couple of members dare to mention them. They were a real disaster and showed off just how bad an idea unnatural change is in leadership – whenever we have tried to force change in the community, it has always failed. Only when the entire community is united by an idea, will it ever succeed – this is why I vehemently oppose any actual changes suggested by the initial Bunker group. Their ideas are enlightened, generally smart, fit a niche; you need more than a good idea to make something work in practice and without the backing or understanding by most of the contest – amplified by the conflict between these ideas – I dread to think of what kind of consensus these sorts of ideas would bring us to.

I’m glad that people can finally express themselves and feel that these changes, to allow everyone to post articles, is still a good one. This is the one element from Rool’s attempt at forcing change to benefit himself, that I feel can actually stick and will be better for the community as a whole. The rest of it, simply attached on the back of this good idea, is completely outrageous and Rool doesn’t have anywhere near the support he claims. Just as proof, The Stadium gained almost ten more “authors” than The Bunker did in less than a day. This is not the revolution that apparent warmonger Rool wants, or anything like a rebellion – and that is never how things actually change in Make Your Move. Despite some people’s best efforts, this community will not, and does not want to split in twain to be picked apart by two warring parties.

There has always been a consensus because we’re all, at our cores, peaceful members who care about the future of whatever Make Your Move is now, and don’t want to see everything we’ve worked toward savaged by the most egotistical “leaders” who think that their way is the only way. The fact of the matter is, even if a majority comes to the same decision most of the time, this is still a consensus – it shouldn’t matter what the majority wants, but how the majority is forged. So in leadership, if Kupa, Warlord and I do share similar opinions, it is not the leadership you need to question, but rather the leaders themselves. Are any of us not qualified? Is there a better candidate for leadership? A minority may say yes, but I would go out on a limb and say that most people are not opposed to our leadership.

This is why I back the current system of leadership. It doesn’t discriminate against people for their ideas or their allegiances, it bases its membership on the performance of those within it and the willingness of its members to spend time being active in the thread or generally acting responsibly. This isn’t a perfect system by any means – the way in which leaders are elected is flawed and will inevitably involve a level of bias on the current leadership’s part. This bias is only exaggerated even further in the “democratic” process suggested by Agidius, which does not solve the problem, but rather exponentially increases its significance so that bias decides everything.

Newcomers and members alike need a goal or purpose beyond simply the top fifty to aim for, to further motivate them. By setting goals for people to achieve, we can motivate them to stay in the contest. Lest we not forget what happened in the contest where leadership died – in Make Your Move 8, the whole community came the closest it has ever been to complete collapse, with Wiz, DM and Kupa [for a time] entirely dying out for long stretches. We need active leaders, and members want to be in leadership… it’s a partnership that keeps anyone from outright selecting their friends, but also keeps leadership on their toes. For whatever reasons, if we become less active – like MT and Junahu did this contest – then historically, we do drop out.

I hate to pick on people like this, but one example I will bring up against democracy is very relevant. Junahu just recently quit leadership, he was an excellent OP in Make Your Move 9, but very inconsistent in Make Your Move X. At the time of voting, Junahu had Victini and Krillin out to his name, but also around twenty comments in total, compared to almost a hundred movesets – this being near the end of the contest. And yet Junahu didn’t only perform well in the “democratic” process, he came out at the absolute top, proving that even with a weak showing, he is almost guaranteed to be in leadership. The same could be said for MT and MW (though they didn’t have extremely weak showings), creating an apparently impossible block of three leaders that would only possibly be voted out if they completely bombed in a contest. Why did Junahu get “elected?” Bias: for his sets and comments, sending the message out to newcomers that people like Junahu don’t need to be active, as they are popular amongst the already established membership. And what a wonderful message that is, no?

If I had my way, I would make the system self-sustaining, electing members solely based on their activity. But the fact of the matter is, to me at least, this kind of change is not worth it when we already have a system which has elected nominally popular and successful members into leadership. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. It has achieved exactly what it should aim to do, so there’s no need to change – sure, you’d think there would eventually be an impasse in which new members couldn’t get into leadership, but that has simply never happened. Every time we think we’re full, someone leaves and this is just proof of how a system works differently in practice to how you expect. We’ve had newcomers in leadership in every Make Your Move. It may be illogical that we keep getting these spaces, but the system works in mysterious ways.

As far as the picks and shifts system goes, it’s again simply a sign of the times with the most active and prolific members in leadership having their say on what changes to make in the top fifty, but the role we play is very exaggerated. I think that’s a problem that has passed into leadership itself, as leaders feel the need to use all their shifts and simply go against sets that they have a passive dislike of, rather than taking the system for what it should be – formed by necessity. It’s a self-fulfilling myth that can be solved just by me mentioning it now. That individual leaders are so influential is a problem solved by beating the leaders – the change starts at a regular member’s level by being more active and making a difference to the contest, and being elected to leadership themselves.

So, what can be improved without totally demolishing the whole system and hoping an entirely new one works better? Leaders do need to be less elitist in general and actually start being outgoing when it comes to previewing newcomer sets, taking part in community activities and generally just being helpful. Comments are one area where leadership has excelled due to the meritocratic nature of things, with every leader [bar the mystery fifth leader] having at least fifty comments each. It also makes leaders more consistent – MT and Rool [highly polled by Agi] are good commenters, sure, but in MYMX their comments were very convenient in catch-ups, not being as helpful to the set authors as they came out months after the sets did. Leadership should not be about when activity is convenient, it should be about consistency.

That people like MT, Rool and Junahu polled the highest in the “democratic” vote, shows that there are people who simply don’t value activity in leaders and that they will gladly vote on their own biases, even if it means that a more deserving candidate is passed over. This could mean that we simply aren’t mature enough as a community to elect ourselves, or that the idea is flawed in of itself. I’ve heard people say that absolute opinions on sets is wrong: fine, but objectively, we currently have the most active members in leadership. Unless there is an absolute opinion that discriminates against their movesets, comments and general activity, how can they not be the right people for the job? This is the crux of why I feel the alternative laid out by Agi and Rool is completely unrealistic and would be the wrong change for the leadership.

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