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Thesis on *Gaming* Forums

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This is a little thesis I have written on the cycle of how gaming forums go. I did not write this with any specific forums in mind. This is actually something I have put a lot of thought into writing, as this is compiled from information I have gathered from many other forums.

First, some unknown Joe steps up and makes a forum. His idea is new, fresh, and sounds like a good deal. People come to spectate this beautiful thing, and see it as a beauty. It does not matter if this forum is for Nintendo, Microsoft, Sony, or even Runescape. It just has that new forum smell that attracts everyone. Then, a couple months later, when they've reached quite a bit of people, the people begin to try new things. Some may think of clans for online gaming, others may think of going into graphics to make the forum look prettier, and others may just stick with the old system. But to be put simply, the people, without knowing it, are trying to find ways to keep the forum from dying.

Then, something different happens. For once, a bout of seriousness strikes them. It may be a raid, a personal problem with a member, staff personnel, or any of the sorts. But now, the people are suddenly starting to speak more rationally and with more thought. At this point, a few people may realize that the forum is dying, but will either slightly deny it or not tell anyone, simply in hopes of bringing it back. These groups of smarter individuals are different than the rest. Even though everyone has begun to speak more maturely, there are some who will show a great deal of maturity in all that they do. These people will most likely be well-respected people from before the crisis.

And so now that the forum has been dealt a curveball of new ways of thinking, some people begin to think differently. One person may be for abortion if the situation calls, but another may be against it. This will create a conflict, and the forum will begin to separate. The smarter people from before now have realized that the gaming forum they once knew is now dead, and they will believe that it is up to them to try and bring it back. So they will create groups or clans or sorts, to try and give the people reasons to go back to the old ways. And all the while this is happening, the admin, while still checking in and fixing things, is decreasing in his activity. Many people know why he is gone, but others (such as new people) may suspect that he is simply not caring for the forum. As these new people increase, the admin will get less respect. And sooner or later, these smarter people will pop out like a sore thumb, and will be seen as leaders of sorts. Either for clans or groups or whatever they show activity in. Then another serious crisis happens: a revolt.

Eventually, the new people have begun to grow in numbers, and have started to take away the rational thinking and replace it with radical thinking. They may have even taken control of One of the smarter people, and someone who has great influence on the forum. These people will say that the admin is not caring, and that they are in need of a new one. The rest, though, will dismiss it, and will try their best to calm them down. The smarter people who have been converted to the new way of radical thinking will now step up and tell the people that they can provide better than the admin can. And even if the admin is active or not, he will have no control over this group of people, as they have already been lost. The people will still remain, though, but they will become more bitter, and will no longer support the actions of the admin.

The smarter people are now being rapidly converted to their own ways of radical thinking, and will unknowingly create groups of people who dislike the admin. The admin will very quickly lose respect from the people, and even his own staff. But the staff, despite their admin's loss in responsibility, will continue to try and keep the peace. Although soon the radical staff and the rational staff will be divided, the rational staff will slowly disappear. Either by conversion or by popular demand. The admin will now begin to feel something different about his people; he will begin to fear them. But he will not give in. He will start to become more strict on the radical thinkers, and remove the staff who have sided with them. And when he does this, even the few rational thinkers will begin to question his ways. This is when something awful happens. A new revolt, but this time, a very large one.

No longer is the radical thinkers the minority; they are now the majority, the vast majority. The admin, out of his own stressful conditions, will make a bad choice. Whether it is enforcing new rules, or banning many people, maybe even some of the smarter people. This will stir up everybody, and the admin will quickly lose his followers. And soon, he will have a mental breakdown, and most likely delete the forum. His own creation, which used to be a haven for gaming, had to now be deleted as it was a battlefield.

But something special will happen. The radical, smart people will join together and make a new forum. A new administrator will be made. The people will return, even the rational thinkers. They will be once again, attracted by the scent of the new forum. And they will blame all of their past problems on their past admin, and with this, be able to release all of their troubles and stress. No longer will there be rational and radical thinkers, they now will be one in the same. Not talking about serious issues, not debating about the welfare of the forum. Now that they think the source of all their troubles is gone, they will return to their old selves. Talking about video games, planning online gatherings, without a worry in the world. Even the smart thinkers will become blended with this group of the carefree. Although one will have to remain stressed, pressed, and without a break. This will be the unfortunate smart thinker, who will have the job of being the new leader. It may seem a joy at first, but it's troubles will rear their ugly heads soon enough.

And when that happens, the cycle will repeat itself. The leader will be forced to abdicate, and a new one will arise. Perhaps a group of leaders will now work the forum. But it will not be long before the equal-measuring problems of power hunger and member-stress arrive at their doorstep.

---But who is to blame for this? Is it the leaders? The forum has gone through so many, it would be preposterous to try and play that card again. Is it the members? Are they simply too selfish and self-centered to think of what's best for the forum? That cannot be it either, as there have been such a variety in members. Perhaps it's out intelligence to blame. But then again, we weren't going anywhere without it.




----Well, that's the end of the story. I'm hoping those of you whom have read this story (as I'm sure there are plenty who haven't) will have learned something new from it.



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