Hi, I am Xenuria. I am going to talk about voter Apathy, Turnout and the CSM as an institution.
47 Candidates ran for election
29 Candidates made an official forum thread
20 Gave at least 1 interview
5 Gave more than 1 interview
3 Had an official campaign Video
CSM 13 Voting was open for 1 week and CCP did a decent job at reminding people of this fact. In-game notifications and launcher adds told players that voting was open. I am going to say something controversial so here is your trigger warning.
Low Voter Turnout is not the fault of CCP.
Even when CCP spams the player-base with notifications in-game, in-launcher, on-site and even through email or the rare station advertisement; it’s still not effective. This lack of effect is not the fault of CCP games or even the CSM as an institution. The blame for low turn out falls squarely on the shoulders of the apathetic voter.
For the sake of precision let me define what I consider to be an apathetic voter and how that is different from other groups. An “apathetic voter” meets the following criteria.
- They know at least on a very basic level that the CSM exist and is something they can influence through their action or inaction.
- They have the ability to cast a vote or have a 30 day old alpha account with enough isk that they could plex it and be eligible to vote.
- They have strong views about the CSM, CCP and EvE Online.
- Instead of Voting or being involved in the process they complain about those bee guys always getting elected.
This demographic is distinct from the players who can vote but don’t know about CSM or can vote but choose not too because they simply don’t care. Number 4 in this criteria is best observed through the optics of /r/eve. At any given time there is somebody making a topic or a post about how bad everything is. They juxtapose a shallow mythos with self defeatism and pathetic woe is me sentiment. I cannot possibly cover all the conspiracy theories or rationalizations for why they stew in sour discord only to sit on their hands when voting opens.
Debunked & Dunkt
There are some common complaints used as a soap box for pubbies to justify their apathy, the very same “complaints” are used as a cudgel by Null blocs to keep pubbies from voting. I will list a few of them below.
- Voting takes too long
- I use 2FA and can’t be asked to log in on all my accounts
- None of these people represent me
- The CSM dosn’t actually do anything
- My votes don’t count
These excuses are obviously all hokum. These cop outs have been debunked and refuted ad nauseam.
Here is the part that is hard to swallow.
Voter turnout keeps getting lower and The Imperium keeps getting more and more of their people elected. This is democracy in action. The single largest coalition in the game is getting a representation on the CSM proportional to their population and investment in the political process. This is working as intended. The Imperium are the largest coalition in The Game but they are comically outnumbered by the people in high-sec who are not alts or otherwise affiliated with null blocs. You change the behavior by changing the culture, it’s the responsibility of the informed voter NOT CCP to openly rebuke voter apathy. It is the cause of a disenfranchised majority to empower and organize their own bloc when the election term rolls back around next year.