Sunday, October 3, 2010

Group vs the Individual

EVE corporations frequently have to decide their philosophy on group dynamics.  Which takes precedence, the needs of the individuals, or the needs of a group as a whole?  EVE corporations all make this decision, and their answers are scattered across the entire spectrum of possible answers.

E-UNI is a corporation with a specific state goal; the education of new players in EVE.  Unfortunately, commitment to this goal makes us continually have to choose what is best for the majority of our students as a whole, and not what is best for each individual pilot.  Our wartime SOP is a group example of this type of decision. We have a strict set of rules to limit wartime losses and encourage aggressors to go elsewhere for fun.  However, this constrains the actions of everyone in the corp, not just those that are incapable of taking precautions and continuing their play during wartime. By getting wars over with a minimum of losses, we hope to get back to normal operating procedures as quickly as possible so we can get back to educating students.

Another example is our ROE.  We have set policies for who we can aggress and why, not because we are worried about annoying group X, but instead because we want to keep as many doors open for students in the future as possible.

An unfortunate side effect of our goal-oriented decision making is that players will outgrow the uni, and find that they are no longer comfortable within our rules structure.  This is an expected outcome.  The problem exists when players feel that the Uni should grow to suit their new needs, instead of that they should move on to explore EVE how they want.  This causes frequent drama (usually every 4-6 months) as players realize that they want to see more of the sandbox that what is permissible within E-UNI's rules. We always regret when this type of drama occurs, but we have to stay dedicated to our goal of educating new students, both current students, but also students yet to come.

In a perfect world, we would be able to set up an institution that not only did the best job possible helping new players learn eve, but also provided a corporation where all of them could grow and explore EVE for the rest of their time with no problems.  However, we have yet to find a way to accomplish both goals in the same corporation, and must always decide towards staying operational for new players.  No matter where you decide to go after leaving E-UNI, we hope you remain part of our larger community, stay active on the forums, pop into the public channel from time to time, and most of all, enjoy EVE how you feel it should be played.

NOTICE: This blog post is designed as a conversation about the ideas and conflicting pulls on our corporate focus. It is not intended to be a discussion of specific people. Comments naming specific people will be deleted.


  1. The only way I have ever seen a way out of this 'Drama Countdown' is a membership time limit. But for many reasons, that will not work. The UNI should stay focused on the core mission. Maybe there should be some kind of reminder sent out that unless you want to teach the UNI is not meant to be a permanent home. Before someone suggest it, another Corp will not work as it will eventually get linked to the UNI.

  2. I'm against some sort of timer. We have quite a few members that have been in the Uni for a long time, and they are an incredibly valuable resource. The problem is finding ways to insure each student gets what they want without drama, even if that is placement in another corp more suited to their needs. Do we need to start considering a "career center" to help match people up with corps that match their needs?

  3. I agree, the uni really isn't a permanent stop for most of its members. I don't plan to stay with the uni forever (maybe 2 more months or so, depending on how I feel, my ILN tour ends in the middle of this month so I can leave from then onwards). The uni is a good corp and it's got a generally very good atmosphere to it when the drama llama isn't rearing its head as it has done lately. There's just a certain feeling you get when you know you're starting to outgrow the corp and its purpose. There's nothing wrong with that, and I know the uni encourages people to recognise that and leave when they feel the time has come to go on in their EVE life. Who knows, maybe one day I'll come back to teach or help out in some other way when I have more experience. I can't imagine the day I leave the uni and move on as being the last dealings I ever have with the uni.

  4. TBH a "career center" of sorts would be a rather wonderful idea. Given the university's nature, there are no doubt countless contacts that could potentially be used for the endeavor. It could also increase interest in the mentor system as well...

    I can see two routes as far as potentials there. In one, there is just a list of potential places to go, if the person hasn't been very connected in their time with E-Uni, and some general help in moving forward. If the person has been in the mentor program, or otherwise shown themselves to be quite good in the field they are going into, I can see having the E-Uni themselves recommending the person to the corporation they're applying to as a very powerful resource in and of itself.

    It would be a very helpful system either way.. But then either way, the system would require a lot more work for some person or persons, especially if the second, more hands-on approach was worked on.