Just a really quick comment about the story on Mittens and his comments at the Fanfest. I had watched the panel stream for 5 minutes and when I realized that nothing of value will be said and that it will only be a display of frat-boy bravado, turned the sound off. I just thought “uh-oh what will The Mittani do, he is last in the panel and by definition has to top everything”. And he did – I turned the volume back on and wish I had not. It was a deeply disappointing performance of someone who rode on the good will of 10k+ EVE accounts into a leadership position bringing nothing but stale jokes, pretend drunkenness, exaggerated swagger and nothing substantive to say about the Goons, himself, the game or anything that mattered. I had expected him to be outrageously funny, dark and brutal but in a controlled and measured way – the way leaders need to be. Instead I saw a pathetic, sad little man with ugly beard and stupid wizard hat doing its best to insult all who voted for him.
The rest of it is narrated far better by Jester in one of most thoughtful posts. Go read that – I agree with him 100% (thank god, we have the intelligent Jester back, not the prissy girl waiting to be asked to dance/ run for CSM).
Mittens was caught between the roles he embodies. Drunk or not, he has to present himself in different ways to different people. Within the Goons he has to be the outrageous, foam-on-mouth, cussing villain. To CSM and the rest of the EVE players, he has to be a somewhat rational leader. To CCP he has to be a solid negotiator and most certainly not another liability. If CCP needs something now after the Incarna disaster and before DUST launch, they need a very rational playerbase who represent the company to the next player communities. The Mittani so royally screwed that one up that it seems hard that the can stay in place – and indeed he offered to resign.
This would be a terrible thing to happen. The Mittani is a product of his environment and went only ever so slightly beyond the filth that lives on FHC or EVO-O forums. He simply slipped out of one role and into another at the wrong place, maybe due to alcohol, maybe due to having had too much performance pressure going on for weeks and culminating in this panel. His failure is serious but so is his apology and self-reflection.
Go, read Jester’s post for a much more comprehensive and balanced view on the incidence but to me, EVE fosters role play. Pressure, role-play and alcohol will inevitably cause slippage eventually. This is what happened. The question is not what happened but how he – and the community – responds. And in my opinion, Mittani has responded better, faster and with far more poise and grace than I had expected. My hat is off – it takes guts and self-confidence to admit to your own failings and mistakes. I just wish he would present himself far more as a leader than as a drunken tool – then he could really be the King of Space.