Working Ahead and the Anthem Boycott

It’s a strange feeling, to be writing ahead enough that I have to remind myself that you haven’t seen yesterday’s post yet, because it hasn’t gone live yet. By the time you’re reading this, though, you will have. At least in theory. In fact, you’ll have probably read it later today in my timeline. It feels like some sort of absurd time paradox.

Now, I do like being a little ahead. It allows me to do things like go to bed on time instead of having to stop and write a blog post first. The biggest drawback for me is that nothing feels, well, fresh. I’m like “which post is going up today? Oh, right, the XIV/Plex one. That was yesterday?”

In taking time to think about it, the problem is one of voice and authenticity. By the time people get a chance to read a post, I’ve had a chance to sit around and stew on it a little more. That 24 means that the version of me that exists when you read it may not even agree with what I wrote anymore. At least not entirely. From your perspective, though, we are the same person. This is further aggravated when I write about current happenings, because I often figure everyone has probably already read/heard about whatever I’m talking about. Which is fine, I consider my writing to be opinion pieces, not journalism.

Things like this: Protest to revert Loot drop changes. (Anthem). It’s a suggested boycott/blackout that’s been getting a lot of coverage the last day or so, which will have been at least two days ago by the time you see it here. I’m still going to talk about it though.

My initial reaction is that boycotts are not typically effective. In fact, EA has been subjected to quite a number of them. The problem is that boycotts require really high participation rates to work. My favorite case example is Chick-fil-A. Man it’s hard to believe that was eight years ago.

It was reported that they were financially supporting organization(s) that were openly opposed to same-sex marriage. When reported, the business quickly drew criticism but essentially doubled down on their position, to a great deal of backlash. Including these same kind of calls for boycotts. On the other side of things, a day of support was organized and they allegedly managed to break some sales records. What was the real impact? Well, it’s a private company, so they’re not obligated to tell us.

I have seen similar stories about EA, though I find them somewhat more questionable. Things like a boycott being organized for FIFA and some manner of microtransaction selling out, indicating the ineffectiveness of the boycott. I find it suspect because these sort of transactions are typically limited time, to generate urgency, not limited quantity. I’m not familiar with the FIFA games, though, so maybe it’s a thing.

So I think an Anthem boycott is unlikely to do all that much. It is, however, very public, and probably a good sign that the game’s sales/revenue will underperform. I’ll probably still buy it, and play, in six to 24 months when I find it on sale or it’s included in some manner of bundle. For now I’m content to watch from a distance. This whole thing still reminds me of The Division and the sort of things it went through after release.

Y’all take care, try not to incur the wrath of the internet. It is not typically a kind beast, to be sure.

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