Who to vote for in the upcoming CSM17 elections? How to know all these candidates? Do you watch endless hours of video interviews, vote the way your Alliance wants, or simply vote for who has the most recognizable names? None of these systems seem destined to result in a proper group of player representatives. So what can a player do?
Every year I publish my recommended ballot in these pages to help guide you to make an informed decision. I do this, not to say vote this way or else, but to provide a simple and easy way for you to know my thoughts about the election and the candidates involved. I want you to vote however you feel like voting. I'm here because I know most of the candidates running, I've talked to them at Fanfest, or in chats, or I've interacted with them in-game, or somewhere else. Some responded to convo requests and some did not. Some are supported by Null Bloc giants and some are not. Some have no chance of being elected this year and some need our support. I take all of these factors into account and build my list accordingly. You can do whatever you want with my recommendations. Just know that I choose based on my own honest independent opinion.
One last thing - my opinion is slanted towards candidates I believe in, who I believe will best serve our community of players, who are focused on areas of the game I believe need attention, and who are independent minded. This is not a dispassionate opinion. I freely and openly admit to my bias.
So here is my CSM17 Recommended Ballot
As you all know by now CCP is focusing on Faction Warfare/Low Sec for the next few years, they are actively engaged in making changes to these systems right now. These changes will impact all of New Eden for the next decade and they must be handled properly and with extreme care. This is not a time for wishy washy, this is a time for honest and direct opinions. And no one on the current list of candidates is more likely to express an honest and direct opinion than Phantomite. I do not make this recommendation lightly, Snuff is certainly not my favorite people - but Phantomite is a focused solo and small gang player that operates primarily in our space. He knows Low Sec extremely well and is an expert I can trust to help guide the development of these important systems.
When people think of Ithica they immediately think "Tournaments" and while that is certainly an important part of his experience, I believe it is also important to remember that Ithica is a low sec player as well. I've known Ithica for over a decade now and consider him to be a friend of mine. We first met when he flew in the Bastards with Nashh Kadavr back in the day and we've bumped heads many times in and around Low Sec space. Most importantly he is good people and he loves Eve Online and the community. This is his first time running for CSM and that is a hard mountain to climb, which is why he is in my number two spot - vote for Ithica. Trust me, this is one vote you won't be wasting.
Torvald is good people. And a long time advocate of Faction Warfare changes. For this reason he is getting the third spot on my ballot. He has been on the CSM before and recommended sound and well reasoned FW updates to CCP. He will work hard for us to ensure that FW gets the attention it deserves.
Arsia is an incumbent and should have no problem being re-elected to another term. While I don't pretend to understand role-players, she will continue to be a strong advocate for Faction Warfare and for Low Sec on the CSM.
Gideon is a new candidate and appears on my ballot because he is good people and Spectre Fleet is a long-time supporter of my events and also a positive force in the areas of space I care deeply about. Gideon's platform is wide-spread and focused on detailed issues that need to be addressed and as such is on my ballot. Also wormholes. Wormholes are important.
Eve does need representation from the NPSI community and Keacte is our candidate for that role. Also an excellent Eve player with lots of experience that we can trust to understand not only the role public fleets play in the community, but other issues as well.
Speaking of Wormholes. This is your candidate. Let's make sure he gets on the CSM this year. Ok?
I probably don't need to say anything here, Steve is good people and he seems determined to be on as many CSM as humanly possible. So you can't go wrong putting him back on the council. Again.
Do you have any idea what it takes for me to recommend a Tusker for the CSM? Just kidding, Stitch is a solid candidate that covers both FW/Low Sec and Wormhole space. But honestly he is, like most candidates, more than just the space they play in.
As usual I leave my last slot for a Null Bloc candidate I can live with being on the CSM. I had three candidates up for this slot this year that I was debating between and only one of them took the bait and responded to me on Discord. I'm not surprised, Brave has always been a close supporter of ours over the years - Stay Frosty and Brave started at almost the same time. Jinx is also good people and will serve us all well on the CSM.
So there you have it. Another year and another set of candidates for CSM. This will be my ballot and I'm confident in each of my choices. These are all good people who care a tremendous amount about our game, our community, and the direction CCP is taking us into the third decade of Eve Online. You can't go wrong voting for any of the people above.
Thanks for reading and be sure to vote.