1. #1

    Blizzard and common social media practices...

    How commonly do you think Blizzard makes use of some of the social media 'tricks' that apparently many large companies make use of? The PR industry has especially been growing very fast in this area, where they make twitter or forum accounts (by the dozens) to post positive or negative comments under order of the company that hired them.

    1. Twitter

    Making fake accounts to post on your own twitter page and to ask your own account very specific questions with engineered answers to improve your image and to market or advertise some of your products. This habbit has reared it's head since a few years now and is becoming very popular and common among bigger companies. Blizzard moving some of it's employees, devs and community managers to have active twitter accounts can obviously not be seen as a mere consequence or act of benevolence. It's very likely that they too make use of this practice.

    2. Forum trolling / fanboying

    According to Forbes, last year at least 200.000 people were paid by some gaming company to troll fan forums of a specific game or to continuously post positive feedback about their own game(s). This is apparently also a rapidly growing market, and with MMO-C being one of the largest WoW forums, it would only make sense that some of these 'professional trolls or paid fans' might also regularly post here, either under indirect contract by Blizzard, or by other companies. (EA apparently is the biggest spender when it comes to hiring professional forum trolls to cause bad publicity on forums of other games).
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  2. #2
    I think all of them do it. All the time. Not doing so puts them at a disadvantage. It's practically a law to do whatever it takes to make your shareholders money. If you don't, they'll take their money to somebody who will.

    If it's legal, they'll do it. If it's not legal, they'll just be discreet.

  3. #3
    There was a blog on Daeity's site before it was taken offline about an EA troll who had been let go and was quite keen to tell people about his previous role. I can't remember exactly what was written but one thing that stood out to me was that he although he was pro-SWTOR on the boards he posted on he admitted he was far from the biggest fan on those forums and he would use the fanboys to silence any criticism of SWTOR for him.

  4. #4
    Twitter accounts asking questions so they can give the desired answer, seems kinda silly to me. Why not just post what you want people to know ?

    Forum trolls, I dunno. I make decisions for myself. If I like something, I like it, If I don't, I don't. I like forums to discuss things and to learn things. Sometimes people bring up perspectives I never considered and that changes my stance and that's why I participate in forum discussions. But no amount of "I hate XXXX" will have much persuasion on me, because it's just chatter. Look at all the Anti-LFR topics. I don't love LFR per se, but no amount of "LFR is destroying WoW" is going to change my mind that it was a good thing. So if half the Anti LFR threads are just paid forum trolls then they won't be earning this money off me.

    Giving the number of rude, immature comments made at GC's twitter, not sure how many could be fake questions. But then, maybe that's the whole ruse of it all.
    Last edited by Mad_Murdock; 2013-06-18 at 01:26 PM.

  5. #5
    Scarab Lord b2121945's Avatar
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    1. Everyone does that, just look at this post:
    http://eu.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/6533614326#1

    2. What are you going to do about it? Tell them that they're paid trolls if they don't agree with you? Some of them are, some of them are trolling for fun, some of them are critizing the game/company without any intention of trolling and some of them are just doing what everyone else is doing (which you can see as trolling).
    And ye, it's nothing new.

  6. #6
    With the number of people spamming twits at Blizz I doubt they need to make their own account to ask questions, I'm sure there's hundreds or even thousands of comments they could reply to when they have some info they want to give out.

    Ditto with forums, there are enough Blizzard fans and fanboys out there to defend Blizz's products, I doubt they need to hire people (unless they're doing it to troll the tinfoil-hat brigade).

    To be honest I'm not sure how many of these corporate shills are actually out there, sure you sometimes get a post that reads just like an advertisement but mostly calling someone a shill seems to be the new alternative to calling someone a fan-boy. Try explaining why you like something that already has a large hater culture and you'll likely be accused of being payed by the company.

  7. #7
    Im sure the anti-wow trolls on here Wish they were getting paid. The majority however are just stupid people.
    Originally Posted by Zarhym
    It does no one any good to make GhostCrawler the scapegoat for all design decisions you disapprove of. Not how reality works.
    https://twitter.com/CM_Zarhym/status/275712376840531968

  8. #8
    Everyone on MMO-C that created an account after 2007 is clearly being paid by someone for their opinion!

    I don't think Blizzard uses these tactics. What is the gain of fanboys praising their games in forums like MMO-C? Intelligent people do some research before buying something. You can identify trolls very easily on review sites like metacritic (be them positive or negative trolls). Plus: When a game is played by a large number of people it might be good, even if "the game is basically dead since 2005, classic > all, pandas suck"
    I can see what you see not - vision milky then eyes rot. When you turn, they will be gone - whispering their hidden song...

  9. #9
    Paid shills are a rather common practice.
    Benevolence is a luxury for the strong - Wrathion

  10. #10
    GC answers some of the most random or trollish tweets ever. I doubt anything there is staged :P

  11. #11
    Business is Business...Big business in a fake world, so to say.

  12. #12
    It feels like 90% of mmo-champ is infested by paid Blizz trolls.

  13. #13
    Quote Originally Posted by Cheekin View Post
    It feels like 90% of mmo-champ is infested by paid Blizz trolls.
    it feels like 90% of mmo-champ are infested by people who don't play the game

  14. #14
    Bloodsail Admiral Tsundere Pejo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Cheekin View Post
    It feels like 90% of mmo-champ is infested by paid Blizz trolls.
    Or...and stay with me here because this may go over your head, people that feel passionately about the game (let it be positively or negatively at the time) seek out a forum to further discuss the game, in which they flock to the most popular WoW forum as they are able to comment at anytime (let it be they're subbed or not). Nah, Nevermind, apologies for my crazy idea - on Tylenol and 10mg of oxycodone.

  15. #15
    Quote Originally Posted by Anarchor View Post
    How commonly do you think Blizzard makes use of some of the social media 'tricks' that apparently many large companies make use of? The PR industry has especially been growing very fast in this area, where they make twitter or forum accounts (by the dozens) to post positive or negative comments under order of the company that hired them.

    1. Twitter

    Making fake accounts to post on your own twitter page and to ask your own account very specific questions with engineered answers to improve your image and to market or advertise some of your products. This habbit has reared it's head since a few years now and is becoming very popular and common among bigger companies. Blizzard moving some of it's employees, devs and community managers to have active twitter accounts can obviously not be seen as a mere consequence or act of benevolence. It's very likely that they too make use of this practice.

    2. Forum trolling / fanboying

    According to Forbes, last year at least 200.000 people were paid by some gaming company to troll fan forums of a specific game or to continuously post positive feedback about their own game(s). This is apparently also a rapidly growing market, and with MMO-C being one of the largest WoW forums, it would only make sense that some of these 'professional trolls or paid fans' might also regularly post here, either under indirect contract by Blizzard, or by other companies. (EA apparently is the biggest spender when it comes to hiring professional forum trolls to cause bad publicity on forums of other games).
    lol... no.

    Ghostcrawler, and Holinka are the only ones that posts about design on twitter.
    Both of then are answering real persons the entire time, including me, more then once.
    There is haters, people that outright disrespect then, and still they answer, sometimes asking for people to be polite.

    So no, they are not there just to make fake account to answer their own questions.
    They answer ALOT of what community asks then. (Even if sometimes community and then cannot agree... @looking at you rdruids at 5.0/5.1...)



    Now about fanboying, no blizzard just have fans.
    They need not to pay anyone to post in favor of their games.
    Myself for example, i'm here doing what some might call "fanboism".
    Now the difference between fanboy arguments and real logical arguments is that fanboys will close their eyes to evidence, and logical arguments will try to be based on then.

    So in this sense, i'm no where near a fanboy, because i base everything in evidences or in logical argumentation.
    That is why sometimes i rage at blizzard, and sometimes i go in their defense, because i can't stand to see illogical things being said by any of the parts.
    Like now that they are saying that Casters should not do descent DPS in movement, this is asinine, and plain wrong design for example. ( You should lose dps on movement, but not like it is now, you should do ~75% of your dps, maybe even 80% in the move, so that good players have something to work around, but not like they are doing, that reduces dps to ~30% when in movement. )


    So i simple cant see enough evidence to believe in what you are saying.
    Both of twitters seems pretty clean, and they answer both pretty good questions, as well as very bad ones.
    And in fact most of the time they answer things that are hard to answer and that does then no good in answering, other then informing and getting feedback from community.
    Also when they need to inform people of something, they just plain post it on their twitter instead of waiting for a question to arise.


    Now to forums, i can see how this COULD be true, but i feel its very unlikely.
    There is no basis for us to suspect, even more when the forums are all full of people crying the entire time.
    If they pay'd for that huge amount of people to post for HOURS on the forums with many fake accounts, we would have a fair balance between people crying and people saying everything is fine, and we tend to see much more crying, and people blaming blizzard for no senses.
    Last edited by satanicway; 2013-06-18 at 03:35 PM.

  16. #16
    Scarab Lord Mokoshne's Avatar
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    it's pretty common to pay employee's to post on behalf of the company. i believe microsoft went into overdrive with this to get positive posts defending the xbox one during e3 and the backlash that occured on sites like reddit.
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  17. #17
    Quote Originally Posted by b2121945 View Post
    1. Everyone does that, just look at this post:
    http://eu.battle.net/wow/en/forum/topic/6533614326#1
    Woot, that guy was a psychic.

    Most probably the playing account of a blizzard insider. But you can see hes an active heroic raider, so i believe he is not fake, you can also look at his guild roster, and see the drop dates, and everything, it all seems pretty legit.

    Edit: Or blizzard just saw his thread, they liked the idea, maybe they were already working into something similar, but couldn't come with a name, and liked his one, and named it flex, maybe some inside joke about it.

  18. #18
    Moderator MoanaLisa's Avatar
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    If anyone is being paid to post here, I'm not aware of it. But I think it's probably relatively common.

    Does Blizzard make a practice of it? Maybe, maybe not.

    Whether someone is being paid or not is pretty irrelevant. You take someone's opinion about something and dismantle it, agree with it or simply comment on it. Accusing someone specific of doing it here is probably trolling and will get you in trouble.
    If you have anything to contribute to a thread topic, please do so. Discussing moderation or calling out specific people is against the rules and makes a post liable for an infraction. Please report problem posts. If anyone is unclear about the rules please read our FAQ. Thanks.

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