Null absolutely dominates the CSM while making up a relatively small portion of the player base. Of course, CSM observers will frequently point out that this is because the null blocs vote trade with each other in order to game the STV voting system, and are also good at getting out the vote. While I do think this is true, I also assert that it is only part of the reason. The other part is that the rest of us are a bunch of idiots that make it easy for them to win. Instead of feeding them killmails, we feed them seats.
Only an idiot persists in using losing strategies and tactics in in-game PvP. So… why do we keep using losing strats and tactics when it comes to the CSM?
We don’t like the lack of representation on the CSM, and frequently complain about being collateral damage… and then proceed to use the same strats that result in the nullblocs securing about 80% of CSM seats every year. Maybe we should -and I know it sounds crazy, but hear me out- but maybe we should stop doing the thing that doesn’t work. [Cue the gasps, murmurs, and harrumphs]
Of course, that begs the question: what strats and tactics should we use? Well, I’m of the opinion that a good place to start is to try copying what has been working for the null blocs. Obviously, other spaces are a lot more fractured than sov null, which will make vote trading and voter mobilization efforts more difficult. However, together we have such a large number of players that we only need to successfully organize a small fraction of them in order to start securing more seats. And, hopefully, if we can secure a higher than average number of seats this year for non-bloc reps, that will further encourage people to get behind the effort for better representation.
Note: Obviously this is an older chart that doesn’t distinguish between omega and alpha accounts, but it’s the best I was able to find. And it does illustrate how much we outnumber the nullblocs. All of nullsec (including npc null and the small, unaffiliated alliances) comes in with a little less than 15% of the total population.
Naturally, this isn’t going to work if every micro corp out there had to negotiate with every other one in order to secure a vote trade. However, if players could coalesce behind a dozen or so voting blocs with similar values and priorities, then trying to hammer out deals between those groups would certainly be feasible. For example, I seriously doubt that all of highsec is going to agree on a list of candidates. Buuuuuuuuut, I’m willing to bet that someone like @Aiko_Danuja could get the ganking community to rally behind her, and possibly even all highsec PvP’ers. So, if all of the major players in HS PvP could work out a list of candidates, they can now come to the bargaining table with their list and an estimate of how many votes they think that they can muster. So, the question is, are players capable and willing to organize themselves into a reasonable number of voting interests (i.e. low class wormholes, high class wormholes, role players, HS PvP’ers, HS carebears, FW, Pochven)?
Obviously, everyone needs to encourage their guys and their friends to vote. However, one thing that will definitely improve election participation is giving your players a list of guys to vote for. Most people don’t want to watch 10 hours of CSM candidate interviews on twitch, or read some asshole’s 37 page manifesto on how he would fix Eve. So, I think a two prong approach is required here: 1) stress the importance of voting, and 2) make it as easy as possible for them to vote (give them a voting list, the link to vote, and at least a couple of reminders).
Speaking of which, you guys do know how close these elections can get, right?
Naturally, most CSM candidates already view elections through a competitive lens, but I think it’s time for the rest of us to do the same. Why the ■■■■ do we keep pursuing the same losing strats? And why the ■■■■ have so many of us given up on a more representative CSM? Is it because real world elections have beaten the fight out of us, and made us feel like we are incapable of achieving meaningful change? …I can only speculate. What I do know however, is that we are not competing against billionaire political spending ,or legislators that rewrite laws and redraw district lines in order to maintain political power -we are competing against other players on a level playing field. I know some of the nullbloc players can seem larger than life, but they are regular assholes, just like you and me.
Well, I dispute the argument that the player base would be better off without the CSM, but it’s also not going to happen (well, barring a major incident, or string of incidents). People have been calling for and end to the organization for around 14 years now. So, I’m pretty sure that dog don’t hunt.