Brisc & Real Life

(This post is bereft of fancy graphics because 1) I'm on a PC laptop today and I can't figure out how to save graphics on this damn thing, and 2) I don't want to use a real life picture of Brisc anyway.)

By this time you are all familiar with the breaking news this week that Brisc Rubal and several other Alliance members in The Initiative got into a bit of hot-water with CCP. The former managed to incur the worst possible punishment an Eve player can get and the other two got one-year bans. Which is horrible enough to imagine. I'm not here today to replay this story. Mostly because there is absolutely nothing to comment on. Either he did it or he didn't and none of us know anything about it. Only Brisc and CCP know. And I doubt we'll ever get the truth.

For me however, there is more to this story than the act itself. When I started playing Eve the distance between my real life and the game was gigantic. I never told anyone in-game where I lived or what I did for a living. I stayed off Social Media and rarely even commented on Blogs. The fact that my Son played with me at the time was also a huge secret. We never told anyone. Primarily the reasons were obvious. My Son was a minor at the time. I owned a successful but struggling business. And Eve was the first (and only) MMO that I had ever played. I had no idea what I was in store for.

The journey from there to today is a decade long act of trust. Even once I started writing this blog my real life tended to stay in the background. Originally my Twitter handle was only intended for in-game commenting. Gradually, and sometimes not on purpose, my real life and my gaming life started to merge.

In that decade I've been doxxed several times on Reddit, I've had stalkers, personal threats, my account was stolen three times (once for over a week), a legit criminal once threatened to beat me up, and my personal choices have been made the subject of much debate on a wide variety of platforms. My Wife and I have traveled to Iceland three times, to Amsterdam, to Vegas, and we've had three player meets at our home. With another one coming up in July. (You should come, it is a blast!) At this point there is no distance between Rixx Javix and Bryan Ward. We are both the same person. For all intents and purposes.

This week's events have caused some level of concern regarding that distance. Is this really the smart way to go? But the cat is out of the bag now, you can't put it back. Insert your own favorite analogy here, the point being - is this ok?

First of all, I'd never be in the same situation. For one thing I'm not running for CSM. For another, I've signed hundreds of NDA documents over the years and I've never broken a single one. I know things about obscure manufacturing products that I will take with me to the grave. (Mostly because I've forgotten them.) All of that is true, but that doesn't mean some other situation couldn't happen that would expose the connection.

The great thing about that connection is that it is entirely built on trust. Trust that is hard earned. But trust, like so many things in life, is a two way street. My involvement with Eve and the community is not a secret. From anyone. I just spent an evening with the President of our company yesterday explaining the inner workings of Eve Online and the community. I talk about my involvement, travels, adventures, and how great this community is to anyone that will listen. Or anyone that wants to know more. The rest isn't a secret. I'm an open book.

Years ago a few Eve players contacted my Ex-Wife to inform her of my dealings in Eve Online. This is a fact. And I'll never forget the day she showed up with literally this entire blog printed out, along with whatever else she could find on the Internet. She was so proud and thought she had caught me in a lie. She forgot that just because you personally don't know something, doesn't make it a lie. (I started playing Eve only after we had separated.) My dealings with CCP were in my disclosure documents already. And the fact that I play an online video game? The Judge laughed and we all moved on.

In Brisc Rubal's real life, if anyone mentions the NDA, all he has to do is say, "Oh, you mean that video game I used to play?" That should pretty much put it in the proper perspective for normal humans.

The tunnel vision that Eve produces is legendary. In both PvP and in other aspects, like this situation. But it isn't real life. Rixx is a bunch of pixels at the end of the day. The only thing real about him is the player behind him. And that's me.

I always say that eventually the truth will out. And I believe it. Whatever the truth of this situation with the CSM, CCP and with Brisc might be - the consequences are already determined. We may never learn the truth. There have been other CSM situations in the past that we still don't know the truth about. And this may just be yet another one of those.

As for me? I'm just going to keep on doing what I always do. Keep plugging along and keep being myself. That's all any of us can do. Nothing else will endure.


  1. So what happened? He did not kick back to the other CSM members or the right people in CCP?

  2. I concluded the same in short order, about guilt or innocence.

    There was an issue years ago, which required that the rules for CSM be changed to allow for anonymity. The lesson just got re-enforced.

  3. Would be interesting to know how many new Alpha accounts were made after the announcement and the exposure the last couple of days. Isn't there a thing in marketing that says "There is no such thing as bad publicity"?


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