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About nephilim42

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  1. Definitely a bummer but totally understandable. As someone who only really follows DotA in esports I was enjoying hearing talk about CS:GO, LoL, and other games. Gave me an appreciation of just how this entire side of gaming has started to move along.
  2. ES2D 2016/03/01: 2 Ass, 2 Spurious

    It's actually pretty hard to call IMO. I used to work as a stagehand and soundguy about 10 years ago. I can't say for sure but more than likely Valve doesn't keep a full production team internally so much as they contract out a lot of the production services to a local company when it's time for the International. Given the Seattle location I imagine they can find people with the production and technical skills to put on something like that without too much trouble (don't know if those are IATSE crews) and at a reasonable cost. Shipping a production team like that internationally a couples times a year isn't feasible without severely eating into your profits. The solution is to contract out the production work to a local company which is what happened here. Just like any other contracted work it's up to the client (in this case Valve) to vet the company they're hiring and looking into the reputation and capabilities of this type of crew is actually a fairly standard thing in the industry so I'd argue, yes, they could have had an inkling of how things might go. Perfect World had a reputation that wasn't a mystery. There were comments even before the 2GD drama to expect production issues. Yes, Valve relented but that implies they had control too. They made a business decision and if it had gone well they would have reaped the rewards but if you're going to take the benefit you get to take the liabilities too. I think another thing to consider is that for all the excitement there is about DotA the market is only so big. To put on these Majors Valve had to step in on preexisting territory because just adding more tournaments probably would have spread the players and fans too thin. They have a right to do that but it would have gotten ugly. Growing pains for the sport.
  3. ES2D 2016/03/01: 2 Ass, 2 Spurious

    Of course and that part isn't that controversial hence why removing him was perfectly reasonable. The problem is that Valve is engaged in a little bit of wanting to eat their cake and have it too and GabeN's public response being rather unprofessional in its own right. Valve didn't create DotA nor did it create the esport around DotA. They took what was there (in all of its often juvenile glory) including the casting scene and made it much bigger through heavy promotion. That's not a bad thing but Valve got lazy about organizing and directing things on a number of levels and it came around and bit them in the rear in Shanghai. The tragedy for Valve isn't just that some fans are angry but that they're laughing at them right now.
  4. ES2D 2016/03/01: 2 Ass, 2 Spurious

    I agree with large parts of Wertwert765's comments in thinking that there's been at least some mischaracterization of the 2GD drama and I think there was a really interesting opportunity for discussion about the state of DotA and esports that was missed as a result. 2GD is anything but disinterested in DotA and has a significant history with the scene which isn't hard to find and it's not like he was just a personality on the low profile side of the scene. He hosted a number of Valve's International events and there was never really much in way of complaints about his sardonic delivery style in the past. I think he made some mistakes and the whole thing is really weird. I think removing him was completely reasonable but the situation reflects the crossroads of where DotA came from, where it is right now, where the fans want it to go, and where Valve thinks it could and should go (let's not forget that Shanghai was part of this whole new Majors system that Valve implemented). I think this crossroads has to be considered along with this drama otherwise we're missing a lot of relevant context.
  5. In the abstract that's a cool idea but I feel like it gets us into some issues related to freedom of speech and expression especially in regards to deeming works nefarious, offensive, and so on. Part of the problem relates to the very old but still pertinent issue of who gets to decide all of these things and what are the consequences of granting that sort of power. It looks one way when you're on one side of the ethical/moral/informational gatekeeping role but completely different on the other end. I think about bodies like the MPAA and it makes me reluctant to endorse solutions that effectively cut off revenue sources for creators even when I find what they make repugnant or distasteful. I guess my hope is for well-intentioned creators to crowd out "bad" works in the mind-space but I can't help but feel a bit naive in hoping for this.
  6. I favor the "not sanitizing" approach myself when it comes to the question of whether or not to continue distributing content that might be objectionable. It's been something I've been confronting a lot lately when trying to share content (games, film, music, books, etc.) to my teenage daughter and son. There's more than enough content out there that I could avoid quite a bit "questionable" content if I wanted to with just a little effort. When the kids were younger and their comprehension of issues was less developed I certainly did so. However, now that they're making further steps towards adulthood I feel an obligation to teach them how to critically think about what they explore with the full knowledge that the same work might be an element in forming a toxic worldview in someone else. Additionally, I have to think just as critically about my own consumption of content. The commercial aspect is really tricky especially went you realize that nothing is ever really free so much as the costs can be obscured, minimized, and/or distributed in such a manner that the trade offs, benefits, and risk aren't obvious. I do think there's a difference between broadcasting a work like "Song of the South" on network television and having a copy archived in a library that can be checked but I have a hard time placing things like hosting it for "free" on YouTube or allowing a consumer to stream it on demand through something like Amazon. I think it's a tricky matter with collaborative works especially ones that involve a huge number of people involved in their creation with a myriad of different and often conflicting set of motivations. Add to that all of the people and motivations involved with distribution and marketing and it gets even more complex. Navigating this stuff as a consumer and parent can be hard. For example, my daughter loves playing the guitar, as do I, and sharing songs and albums that have interesting guitar elements something that's incredibly positive for our relationship. An album with some great and musically significant guitar work on it that I'd like to share with her is The Jimi Hendrix Experience album "Are You Experienced?". One of the tracks is the well known track "Hey Joe" which has some incredible blues music and nuanced guitar work but lyrically centers around a man shooting his wife for infidelity. While the track doesn't outright advocate this as a correct course of action and might be argued to be a narration of a realistic scenario there's certainly no condemnation of the violence. If I legally buy this album to share with my daughter what am I saying? I like to think I can share the interesting aspects of this work while being able to point out that this song has some incredibly messed up aspects. Yes, I could present other music and still have an interesting musical experience but I'm not convinced it's necessary. Parenting is hard. I say all this with the caveat that I think there's a constant ethical challenge for artists and content producers to ask whether they are incorporating potentially offensive elements into a larger work. Thanks for a another great episode and thanks for having Anita on. She has interesting things to say and her work has provided opportunities for me to bring up some important dinner conversations with my son and daughter when we talk about the games we like to share.