Moving forward…Jeg Elsker
Many stronger writers than I have stated their piece on the Mittens / CSM situation so for me to chip in on past events now seems rather redundant. Needless to say, I don’t think any party escapes without at least some level of criticism, whether it be The Mittani himself, CCP, the wider gaming press or the individual who threatened suicide in the first instance.
The situation is by and large resolved now. Seleene has been voted in as Chairman and I can’t see too many people complaining. Seleene has long been an impartial and fair voice in EVE and with a wealth of experience both as a player and CCP employee, I think he will continue on the path The Mittani established with CSM6.
So we can wrap the entire thing up in a pink bow and post it to ‘Done’ right? I don’t think so. I suspect we have only just finished the first chapter of a meta-narrative that will have various impacts on New Eden for at least the next year.
On the recent State of the Goonion, The Mittani stated that he cho-cho-chose Goonswarm over the CSM. This smacks of hollow tubthumping seeing as the choice had been removed from him by this point but I’m sure the Goonies will have went nuts following the broadcast from the ~Chairman Of My Heart~. Freed from the shackles of imposed schizophrenia caused by simultaneously being the head of a group that exists solely for the good of the game and the head of a group of players who exist to cause carnage for everyone else throughout the sandbox, Mittens announced his intention to ‘Burn Jita’ on the return from his ban on 28th April. Jester’s breakdown on this issue is a great piece of writing and one I recommend you all check out but the tl;dr is that Mittens and the Goons have CCP in an incredibly tight spot. They plan on making a large number of EVE players very, very unhappy indeed but the Goons will be playing firmly within the rules and constraints of the sandbox CCP has created. While there may have been some ambiguity or confusion over Mitten’s actions in Iceland and whether he breached the EULA/TOS, here there is none.
It would appear that The Mittani plans on having fun as Goonswarm CEO over the coming months and I doubt the cleansing of Jita will be the first incident we will see from them. The question is what arguably the most famous pilot in the history of EVE wants to achieve in the long term. From following his writing, actions and interviews over the past few days combined with his known history, one thing Mittens craves is power and/or internet spaceships ~celebrity~ (far from mutually exclusive). While the leadership of Goonswarm may have been imposed upon him, there can be no doubt that he has taken on the role with relish and skill.
Seeing the CSM as a powerless voicebox after the problems in the fifth council, he assembled the collective voice of Goonswarm to ascend to the role of Chairman of the sixth. The majority opinion of his work on CSM6 was overwhelmingly positive and necessary for the growth of New Eden through some very murky waters however I don’t believe his intentions were entirely altrustic.
The Mittani wants to leave a legacy and while he could do that with Goonswarm, it is nothing compared to what he could achieve with the CSM. Goonswarm has approximately 8,400 members at the time of writing while over 10,000 accounts voted him into CSM7. Mittens held (for a short time) a mandate outside of his beloved Goonies with support also coming from both individuals and groups who may not like the ethics of Goonswarm as an entity but appreciate what he has achieved over the previous twelve months.
And CCP realises what just how useful a person like Mittens can be to have around. In forcing him to resign his seat on CSM7 before he had actually taken it, they were able to ban him for 30 days without stopping him from attempting re-election in CSM8. My suspicion is that he will lead Goonswarm to righteous fury throughout New Eden in the duration of 2012, stand down as their CEO at the beginning of the election campaign in early 2013 and be overwhelmingly elected Chairman of CSM8. In exercising a cute loophole in the rules, it would appear that’s what CCP wants once the dust has well and truly settled from Fanfest 2012 and I have no doubt that it is what the driven and ambitious Mittani desires also.
Following on from that, who knows? CCP itself? I certainly wouldn’t rule out CCP Mittens making an appearance at a Fanfest some time in the future. One thing I am confident of is that The Mittani’s political ambition within this sandbox will not be restrained to ganking some Orcas in high sec in years to come.