I’ve been mulling this over for a while, and finally decided to let the fingers dance along the keys. I love being a member of the WoW + community. I say WoW + because it encompasses so many more games now. SC2, SWTOR, LoL etc. We’re gamer geeks. We’re united under the wonderful banner of nerdery. To me, part of being in that community is not expecting anything other than to be a part of it and to support each other. Basically the old “treat others as you would have them treat you” thing again. Maybe an odd concept but follow me down the rabbit hole a little bit if you don’t mind.
Social media, blogging and expectations
Blogging is a passion of mine. I love writing. I love seeing my thoughts formed into words in digital ink. It makes me happy. I love reading other’s pieces as well. We all invest ourselves in our writing and knowing that other people read it, or draw inspiration from it or identify with it makes us all feel good about our writing. Well, at least that’s how I feel. Every time I see someone re-tweet a link to one of my posts, or every time I have a comment waiting to be moderated I get a warm fuzzy. I don’t expect it mind you, I don’t beg for re-tweets. I’m just happy to know people read and care about what I have to say. I also do my damnedest to share posts that I find inspirational, that I identify with or that I really just enjoyed reading. Case in point, look at recent posts by WoWExclusi, Nymphy and Apple Cider Mage. Their posts were amazing, inspirational and honest. They were ones I felt everyone should read and draw strength from, so I shared them. They in turn shared my post, for which I was honored and humbled.
See to me that’s what being a part of this community is about. About helping each other, sharing with each other and being excellent to each other. Some of my best friends I’ve meet because of the gaming community, hell I count my podcast co-hosts as brothers from another mother. I’ve gained a whole new family as a result of being a member of this community, and for that I will be forever grateful. That’s why it chafes at me when I see people with unreal expectations from the very same community.
There are those that demand re-tweets to drum up traffic for their site, but yet I never see them do the same for anyone else. I know life can be hectic sometimes, and even I don’t get to RT everything especially when it posts when I’m at work. But I try to make sure I do it as often as I can. I try to help people personally in tells, on aim, in email over RealID. I try hard to give back. The people I’m talking about though, just simply never help promote anyone else’s posts or products. I know I can’t be the only person to notice it. Again, my expectation is that you help the other members of your community, you share and help promote them when you can and you don’t demand it of them. There are those among us that take, and take, and take, and take and give little to nothing back. We have a word for that, it’s called a parasite.
Honestly it’s a pet peeve of mine, people who do that. Who seem to crawl over others in an attempt at their own stardom. I mean, I’m a jackass, I know I am, but I never forgot where I come from and those around me that supported me. Yes I write for WoW Insider, yes I’ve done some amazing things in the gaming community, but none of that would have been possible with out the support and friendship I’ve received over the years. Without that, I’d be nothing really.
Do you give as much as you take?
As I’ve said, this community is full of wonderful people. Smart, intelligent and emotionally diverse persons. Some of them, however, are too nice and I see them get taken advantage of. It’s hard for me not to just cry havoc and let slip the dogs of war. I have a bit of a crusader streak, a hero complex. I know that as much as I want to call someone out, it generally won’t do any good. So I support the people I see getting taken from, and taken, and taken. I try to give them enough to help compensate for those who keep taking. So this is behalf of everyone who keeps giving without getting in return.
Check yourselves. I want everyone of you who claims to be a member of this community to sit back and ask yourself “Do I honestly give back? Do I support other members of the community?” If the answer is no, maybe it’s time to consider being less self focused and give something back. A RT, a thank you. Acknowledgement to the folks who have given to you. Maybe someone who hosts your site and is looking for endorsement for one of their projects, maybe someone who guest posted on your blog but you didn’t for them. Now is a perfect time to repay those folks.
If you find yourself a giver, and you give to the point it hurts and you get nothing in return. Don’t be afraid to say the word “No” there is zero harm in using the word from time to time. Don’t just let yourself get used, at least not by a parasite. Not by someone who doesn’t give anything back. If you say no, I can tell you that you will honestly have my support.
Remember, it’s a community. Everything swings both ways. Give and take. Make sure you give and not just take. Just my 2 copper.