How to tell if a CSM candidate is going to be effective

We here at JNN believe that there are fundamental skills a CSM member should have. Given the large variety of candidates from those that apply just for clout to those that scream from the top of their lungs about just one issue, one change, one playstyle. We’re here today to clear up any confusion for those that may not have the hours on hours to scour twitch streams, Twitter posts, and reddit threads.

Diplomacy is the art of saying ‘Nice doggie’ Until you can find a rock. – Will rogers

After consulting with CCP Devs, Former CSM, Current CSM, Former Candidates, Game Designers, Space politicians, Solo PvPers, and Null-bloc talking heads, a clear picture has formed. We asked what the three most important attributes would be in being an effective CSM member was and one’s ability to be diplomatic was mentioned in nearly every conversation.

Though in this context it’s less about brokering peace and more about being able to navigate the many different issues, playstyles, and personalities that exist inside the council. As former CSM elect Brisc Rubal would say in his interview “Don’t be an asshole”. The issues that are brought by CSM and the potential changes from CCP can ignite tempers .Creating situations where those will less mental steel would erupt from their chairs.

The ability to stay cool, calm, and collected is thusly priceless when it comes to this situation. Being ranked at the number one thing JNN looks for when interviewing candidates.

We all have dreams. But in order to make dreams come into reality, it takes an awful lot of determination, dedication, self-discipline, and effort. – Jesse Owens

Another thing that constantly came up was a persons dedication to the role. Showing up to meetings, Making sure you’re doing appropriate community out-reach. Keeping up to date on the current state of whatever your area of expertise is. All of these things and more can take a lot of time.

One of the things in particular we heard a lot from previous CSM members was just how much work being a CSM really is. So take note about how much work someone is putting into their campaign. Even if you might not agree with what they’re saying. Their hard work could be and indicator that they’re someone able to take on the challenges of being a CSM member.

So in short, Show up, pay attention, and be determined. That is the second thing we’re looking for in our candidates.

Video games are bad for you? That’s what they said about rock-n-roll. – Shigeru Miyamoto

The third quality we’re looking for is someone who spends time playing this game. I can not stress how many times a response to our questions was “play the game” or “undock”. Now while we don’t think undocking is necessary to being a CSM. We certainly think playing the game would be important for a CSM. A pretty simple question is formed to answer this question about any CSM. It’s pretty simple, just ask them.

If you want to get investigative you could dig through killboards, livestreams, and videos to see what your favorite candidate is up to. But if that seems like a little bit much for you rest assured we’ll do the legwork for you in our upcoming series of articles on various CSM18 candidates.

Economics is everywhere, and understanding economics can help you make better decisions and lead a happier life. – Tyler Cowen

We asked CCP developer CCP Swift otherwise known as Elise Randolph for comment.

“Everyone has a slightly different view of what the CSM do, and in truth each term is a bit different from the last. Candidates that go into the CSM aiming to dictate design choices or push through a single feature will be met with disappointment. An effective CSM member will understand that, while the course is charted, there is still some room on the tiller to navigate the ship. Providing feedback, identifying issues, and working with CCP devs is the name of the game.

Since our transition to expansions, we’ve been able to involve the CSM during core design phases and scoping internally, so they’ve had incredible insights early on and have assisted tremendously. This success has been why we’ve changed the format (and timing) of the CSM such that they can meaningfully contribute to multiple expansions during their term, and share their great experience.

There are, of course, some items where the CSM aren’t given the chance to weigh in – but we’re getting better at integrating them as fully as possible.”

I’d like to think that every candidate has an idea of what their job is inside of CSM. But if that quote doesn’t explain it perfectly I don’t know what else was. So for our fourth and final quality we’re looking for we’d like to say – “An understanding of what a CSM’s job entails”.

Honorable mentions

We’d like to take a second to mention in order a couple popular answers from our survey.
– Expertise In a Given Gameplay Area.
– Tolerance with debating and/or answering public questions (Even if they’re stupid)

These two areas we translate roughly to being “good” at EVE Online. As well as Customer service skills. Which might not be exactly what every CSM needs. But we thought they came up enough to put on the sheet. That being said I’m running out of lunch break so I think it’s time to end this article.

We’ll catch you on the next freighter out of IV-IV,
Fly safe space cowboy.

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