Thursday, 10 December 2015

December Agony Aunt Column

Mr S of Deklein writes in to ask:

"Dear Mr Kong

I have been trying to engage the whole that forms the living and breathing gestalt. You know the thing that isn't tied together in a unified way. What is it called now? Reddit? No, not Reddit, the communist party? No, no, yes, that's it. The C(c)ommunity! Anyway, I've published two seminal pieces on a leading multi media platform that will fix all that but well, I don't seem to get the desired traction. Please. please, please can you help?

Love Mr S

P.S. Remind me, who is your local Viceroy again? Just wondering. S xxx"

Erm... quite. Well Mr S. I am thinking this might be a bit of a tough nut to crack so perhaps we should start at some basics.

Knowing How to Act Around Others

Use people's names. When you meet someone for the first time, try saying it back to them, such as "Hello, SpacePedo_666, good to meet you." Also, try using it again in the first conversation. You shouldn't force it, but people do like to hear the sound of their own name. Therefore, you saying it makes you more likeable.

Compliment people. Everyone likes to hear nice things about themselves. However, they must be genuine compliments. That means that you pick something that you actually do appreciate about the person and make sure to say it with intention and diplomacy, not in an offhand way.
  • You don't have to just praise someone's shipfits or doctrines. Try for other compliments, such as, "I always love your shitposts!" or "You seem to be glowing ISK today."
Skip the complaints. Yes, you've got problems in your life but so does everybody else. When conversing with other people, focus on what's going well in your life. Null Sec ratting rather than  kickstarters, for example. You'll be happier, and more people will want to be around you.

Be yourself. You probably think you can't be yourself because you have too many weird idiosyncrasies. However, most people appreciate when a person is being honest, right down to the quirks. So don't be afraid to just be yourself. People can tell when you're being genuine and often find that quality likeable.

Take time to listen. If you're always dominating the conversation, people aren't going to be around you. People like to talk about themselves, so give them a chance to do so. Ask questions, and try to let the other person talk more than you do.
  • For instance, try asking open questions instead of closed questions. A closed question is one that can be answered with a "yes" or "no." On the other hand, an open question encourages discussion. For instance, instead of asking "Do you like your community?" you could ask, "What do you like about your community?" 
  • One way to get people talking about themselves is to ask them about their lives. Ask about their alliance, killboard, and ships. Those three things will usually get people talking
Hear what other people are saying. When you give people a chance to talk, actually pay attention to what they are saying. Don't just be formulating what you are going to say next. You can show you are listening by nodding along, repeating back a synopsis of what the person said, and asking questions related to what the person said.

Don't brag. Nobody likes to hear about all the millions of alliances you have undermined. They'd rather get to know you as a person, so skip the bragging.

  • It doesn't hurt to praise other people, though. In fact, it makes you look humble and giving.
  • However, you shouldn't brush off compliments completely. When someone offers you a compliment, just say "Good Fight." or "I appreciate that." Brushing off compliments can make you seem like you are trying to be too humble, which can turn people off as well.

Hope this helps. Let us know how you get on Mr S. Next month, Mr M asks how to sail a yacht.

(with apologies to WikiHow)


  1. This is exactly the lol I needed. Thank you so much for that helpful advice and I do wish Mr. S all the best in his future endeavours.

  2. This may well be the most amusingly apt post I've yet read about the whole ongoing kerfuffle. Mr. S’s letter seeking advice is pure gold. While I’m entirely limited to Sion’s public pronouncements, I must say that in the past he always seemed to deploy his language with great care while now he seems to be flying off the handle. It all feels very out of character. Did he really get his feelings hurt? Elaborate ruse? Brain tumor? I don’t know what to make of it.

    1. Thank you. Who knows? It is most likely intentional. If TMC have abandoned the desire to appeal across the dare I say it "community" then it makes sense. If not then I am intrigued