You just DON'T tell your customers that you do that.
I do not think that particular subreddit (r/mwo) can be defined as a base for our fans or customers any longer...
Rather, since the change of management, and the resulting diaspora of our active Reddit fans towards r/OutreachHPG and other Subreddits. r/mwo has essentially become an echo-chamber for those who have been banned from our services for repeated abusive behavior.
The abuse resulting in the original bans could range from anything from repeatedly advertising other services in an off-topic manner, directly insulting and harassing another staff member, spamming vulgarities, or so on. But generally speaking, there were always attempts to warn the player to provide feedback in a manner that is less toxic and those players who were banned showed an unhealthy desire with continuing anyways or were disingenuous with our staff at any time of showing remorse for their actions.
Putting aside the eternal argument of "who started it" which continues to put modern geo-politics into a circular stalemate... Our staff often cannot post there without facing a grab-bag of toxicity. This is compounded by those who continue to use alt-accounts to try and provide themselves with a disproportionate voice as well as to downvote bomb staff posts out-of-view. It is made even worse by the fact that those in this sub-reddit who show any active fandom are referred to as shills while, ironically, those who would seek to draw players away from our game or draw away staff from their work simply to insult them are being lauded.
While I have stayed silent on this particular subject in the past to allow the Community time to adapt and reset following those changes. I am dismayed by the results. Over 4000 registered subscribers at stake and the majority of those remaining active being forced to move elsewhere. In fairness, to the new overlords of r/mwo: The actual carrying out of takeover was indeed one worthy of an Inner Sphere story. It is simply a shame we are left a Periphery wasteland in what was once a Noble House. My sincerest hope in that regard is that I am proven wrong sometime in the future...Some basic moderation standards would go a long way so we can help address legitimate and constructive concerns.
In the meantime, however, PGI staff are being provided a general ComStar advisory against non-essential travel through that segment of space. We will continue to serve and provide for our customers, fans, and concerned citizens alike here on our official forums as well as with our visits to OutreachHPG.
Addendum: Well, this got some people's attention and even woke up a few inactives!
Indeed, r/mwo had around 4000 subscribers...While many have changed hubs with the change of it's moderation team and the removal it's moderation standards, in past months: Many others remain, and some have been painted as the targets of my messages in this thread. I'd like to take a moment to add an additional apology to those people: Whether they are an impassioned pilot who has never been intentionally abusive towards a staff member or another player, or whether they are a casual who has just stumbled into the crossfire.
To those people I would like to clarify where my frustrations lie...it is with individuals.
It is with those individuals who believe that negative feedback must exclusively be given with insult, and who demean those who try to provide critical constructive feedback without the urge to denigrate others. They may seem funny, but they ultimately aren't helping you or us when they replace legitimate feedback by brute forcing their way into each subject.
It is with those individuals who would declare that we do not communicate enough, and then either intentionally misquote staff by putting insults directed to the Community in our mouths, or downvote any links or information we provide to remove it from view. They aren't making prophet of a bleak future, they are attempting to fulfill it.
It is with those individuals who proclaim the need for freedom of speech and democracy when the moderators have addressed them for vulgar behavior, and yet happen to also run multiple accounts for the purpose of giving their voices more weight than any other player. Not only are they often shoving your individual and personal opinions further from our view to promote their own, but they have often tried to rally you against us each time we have quietly tried to bring them back to equal footing with other players.
It is with such individuals who see entertainment in manipulating others beyond the game. Those who have proudly admitted that they seek to waste the time of our Support or Dev staff or see the game burn. Such individuals are clearly not out to promote MechWarrior regardless of their attachment to past games.
Such things are upsetting: And I believe it should also upset those who who really consider themselves fans or simply out to better the game. The best news is there are numerous ways for fans to channel that anger into something positive in ways our team alone cannot. It is to keep talking, even in the face of those who would tell you to shut up. It is to report those who are abusive rather pretend it never happened. It is to respond to those who spread obvious half-truthes to give the actual word. Examples of all such behaviors have been demonstrated last night. I'm certainly not asking each player to shine sparkles and fandom on every thread, but simply to ignore their inhibition to post otherwise civil and constructive feedback.
To those who have provided feedback in the past and feel slighted by the fact that they were not directly responded to, or that their concerns were not addressed soon enough for their preference: I can only ask that you hold tight and keep your feedback handy. Please be ready to update it if relevant, and e-link it to us as needed as we make more of an active effort to take in concerns for the hot-topic subjects. Likewise, I appreciate the patience of those players who wait for their top concerns to appear in the pipeline.
Where, in the past, a retail paywall would allow staff to simply force such individuals out of context immediately with a banishment: The growth of social media and of freemium gaming means all games have had to adapt to such individuals.Nobody, be it a Doctor of Virtual Anthropology nor a "Fedora-wearing amateur" will be able to accomplish the job of speaking on behalf of the Community or the team if the players are being overrun and directed by such individuals as I have described before.
The individuals I have described to you before have been repeatedly addressed through private messages, support tickets and moderation and yet continue to spend the equivalent of a work week in attempts to harass and manipulate our team and players. To those players who are truly passionate and who can make a difference by speaking out with cool heads, I apologize once more for this matter, it's distraction from other feedback concerns, and any change in view of me it may have given you. I may indeed like to portay myself as an insane person, but it is said that the definition of insanity is trying the same thing multiple times and expecting different results. There will indeed be greater communication to all players just as much as there will be less priority and attention given to those toxic individuals. All we need is for you to keep talking or start talking. While my intent was to drive your activity to a safer place, it seems others have seen fit to portray it otherwise.
Thank you for sticking by and have a good day.