A broken community-has anyone else had community collapse?


#1

Im interested to hear from anyone here about issues within their respective communities. I’m a (now former) member of a community that over the past 3-6 months has undergone significant changes, to the point where I’ve decided to stop playing the game because it’s just become so unpleasant to play the game. Whenever i read on twitter on see on Youtube people going to other communities or talking about theirs all I see are the positive bits, but i’d be interested to here if people have experienced the same problems as these, and how (if at all) they were dealt with.

I’d say the problems with my former community could be boiled down to:

Hyperpartisanship
Think most people are proud to be members of their team, but in the case of this community, this has escalated so substantially over the past few months it has seriously limited the number of people I would call “friends” in the group.

Whilst when I joined the community (about 8 months ago) everyone was on the whole very friendly with each other (despite the usual odd few), it has slowly progressed to the point where there are three very distinct groups of people that come together for raids, don’t interact with each other, then split up again until another raid of interest pops up.

One of the factors that escalated this was gold gym badges and coins from gyms. I’ve played in several communities and never seen the issue of coins from gyms discussed. “If you can get your 50 coins each day, good for you-if not, most of us can’t-thats just the game” was pretty much the philosophy I witnessed everywhere. In my community its very different. The number of spaces in gyms we have access to is actually very close to the total number of people who play on the island. As the community isn’t that large (between 40-60 active players, bump up to 150 if you include semi-active players) , and we have 28 gyms. As we are an island thats it-no travelling a few more miles down the road to the next nearest town. As a result, most of us can semi-reliably collect 50 coins a day from gyms-even from just one gym. As a result of people getting used to that not long after the new system came in about a year ago, its lead to a huge number of arguments in our group chats over people being kicked off before they got their 50 coins. It’s pretty much to the point where arguments are almost daily, can often last 30 minutes on the chat and have created a large amount of resentment, to the point where there are large groups of people who won’t talk to other large swatches of people.

Having just 28 gyms on the island also inevitably led to the challenge to see who could get a gold gym badge on each of the 28 gyms in the quickest time possible. Something I noticed really kicked into gear once people discovered I was trying to become the second person to do it. Following this, at least 10 other people, all on different teams, decided not long after I started to follow in my footsteps at the exact same time. After several arguments erupted among these people (which I largely tried to stay out of), I pretty much had to resort to creating a second account, battling on an off a gym and just doing raids to get the gold badges (by this point I was close I wasn’t just going to give up but I was fed up of being used as bait in arguments). At its peak it involved groups of 6-7 people on each team driving around up to 3am just to take 20 of the gyms (even long after they got the badge-it divulged to inconveniencing others soon after). We even had a guy make at least 15 accounts he used to spoof to gyms minutes after I would take them, just so he could come down later and add quickly whilst driving by.

(Severe) lack of organisation
I joined this community after a few months spent doing raids in another UK community. In this UK city, there was a brilliant (in my mind) system of organisation in place, involving a Discord group, raid polls etc. You couldn’t be much further from that in this community im in right now if you tried. I didn’t realise how much of a struggle it could be to get 6 people to turn up in one place at a certain time, it turns out its VERY. Despite efforts by myself to try and instigate this kind of organisation structure in our group, I was largely rejected and eventually just gave up.

Another good thing about having an actual structure in place is that in most other communities, you have moderators/admins of the group, who thereby become the “leaders” of the community. Our community has no leaders whatsoever. As much as I would have liked to step into that role, no one else seemed particularly keen, especially after I try and come in and change quite a lot of stuff. A moderating influence is really needed to break up arguments among the group, enforce rules (which, by the way, we also didnt have) and deal with dissenters. We had plenty of spoofers (including above), that pissed a lot of people off by taking gyms and such, but no one there to actually kick them out and rid them from our community, which we all wanted.

All of these stories, along with lots of other little moments at raids where organisation just collapses (some people writing 100 word messages to explain why they can’t come to a raid in a raid organising chat instead of not posting anything to avoid clogging up our feed), people just being jackasses to each other, arguments etc. led to me deciding I just can’t enjoy the game in this community im in at the moment. I don’t enjoy going to raids and having only 2 of the 16 people that show up actually be ok talking to me because the others are annoyed a battled a gym they were in for 2 hours and they hadn’t got coins yet. And all sorts of other stuff like that.

For me, the last straw was absolutely at a recent raid. With no help from a car, I had to run 20 minutes up from out town to an area just outside it. All uphill, just to get to a raid. That whole 20 minutes I was checking our raid chat-we were 2 people away from getting the numbers (it was a legendary raid) needed to be able to battle this thing. Thankfully I passed quite near my house on the way there, so pretty much cancelled my appearance as no one else was coming-only to find out that 5 people hadn’t written anything in our chat and were already there waiting for me. This is something that had been discussed at length in our chat group and something that was really beginning to piss me off, but when Im running 20 mins up a hill to get to a raid, thinking its not happening only to find out there were plenty of people. It just makes raid organisation pointless-you could turn up to one and find people just didnt bother posting it in the chat but a group of 8 people come to do it.

So in conclusion….
I’m not sure if anyone else has had similar experiences. I think the things to remember are:
-Chat groups are great for organising things but I wouldnt say they are great for long discussions, as people are usually at least 3x more annoying on chat groups than they are in real life, face to face conversations. With a few exceptions (naturally)
-I don’t understand the point of the team system, I don’t like it, and its led to really stupid arguments over some pretty stupid stuff in our community. I hope they do reform it
-Don’t get serious about the 50 coins you can get a day. Its just a chance at the coins that Niantic is giving you, not handing every single player them for no effort (though cant say i’d be too disappointed about that….)
-People need to seriously chill out and enjoy this as a game, make friends, have fun-not ruin everyone elses fun with name calling, arguments etc.

TL:DR-people need to enjoy this GAME but need to consider organisation seriously if we want effective communities


#2

It’s not my day to write a so good worked out text like yours, but at least a comment…

Why do you think that Pokemon Go will be different than other things in life?

Join a group of football-supporters, or in a Gym, or in a Pub, or in the church… it’s allways the same. There are people with social abilities, and others which allways produce problems.

You will allways have trouble with some of the members, I’ve never have seen a group where all members will completely work together.

You have to filter the one’s which match with you, and forget the others.


#3

Pfoe, TL;DR?
No i read it kinda sorta mostly.
Its recognizable. We have (had) a few splits in our city, for different reasons. People who play a certain way like sharing accounts to fill gyms, catch pokemon, or have multiple accounts have been reasons for arguments.

People only wanting to play with their own part of the city has been a recent one in the north part of our city i heared. We have a telegram app in wich you can tell a program on what gym in our city a raid is happening. People who want to attend only need to tap a button with a time on it to let everyone else know they are comming so everyone can see enough people will be there before even leaving the house. For some reason they oppose this so they split off…

Another one was “leadership issues”. Our biggest whatsapp and telegram groups are run by a few admins who, to their credit, try pretty hard to manage things. But are lacking in either knowledge or time about the game or our other utilities we use (the telegram bot i mentioned). It has led to some frustrations wich exploded when a whatsapp admin kicked someone from our group trying to calm people down in an argument (wich he started by misunderstanding written text) :stuck_out_tongue:

Big groups are fun, but especially over text message apps its hard to convey tone. People with a certain mindset quickly assume someone is saying something negative to them, whilst in reality it might be a joke (or genuine advice).

Just make friends with the best/most active players so you can raid together. Gyms are just GG and you cant do more about it then what the game allows you… attacking and defending. If you make friends with other teams that issue might just resolve itself.

P.S.
Hey look, i made a TL;DR reply to your TL;DR post. Now i feel obligated to go back and read it better :stuck_out_tongue:


#4

The main argument that arose in my local community came just before i actually joined. From the information i could gather people were gathering to do a raid and a member of the local Discord showed up (apparently very drunk), got into a fight with someone and smashed a window. Obviously that scared people out of raiding for a while, but we’re a fairly close community


#5

That’s true. I’m not expecting it to be different really. I would love to just filter out certain people but it’s at the stage where I’d be filtering out everyone in the group. Literally everyone. In the past month or two there’s only two other people in the group I talk to (or who talk to me) and it’s got to the stage where they are the ones who screwed me over in that “last straw” story so I’m pretty done with the game. I’m hoping to get back in to the game when I move somewhere else in a few months.


#6

I really hope so, have fun and find new friends in this new place.

Apart of this, I play this game nearly alone, only have accepted others in case of the two ex-raid passes I had.
And it’s really not so bad this way, it’s different to the mayority here, but I like it.


#7

Didn’t appreciate how much I wrote until I posted it here and its so much fml

That’s true, I think chat groups are never gonna be perfect because its so hard to actually communicate properly in them. To be honest I was part of a small group of people-literally only two others, but one had 2 accounts and another had 3 so for raids we could pretty much do anything we wanted, just the three of us. But these two have kinda screwed me over a bit-they were the ones that I was talking about in that “last straw” story above where I ran for quite a while to get to a raid, thought it wasnt happening but they were there ready to do it with a group of others and no one bothered to tell me.

Im not annoyed about this gym stuff, i’ve got my gold badges now, just take a few now and then to try and get some coins-it just frustrates me how after months of trying to explain to people that theres no point complaining about gyms as its so much worse in cities, no one bothers to listen and every day our chat groups are filled with people complaining. It even got to the point I got some seriously abusive messages from some players for battling a gym they were in.


#8

We started with the group of 14 in my community and now at the gym system were two groups of seven and most don’t get along with each other no more a lot of it has to do with someone’ not calling so and so about the Raid and not letting them know what’s going on but I understand sometimes there’s two to three minutes left she don’t have time to text everyone you text the closest players and then we would all meet up to go walking we will say look what I caught her I caught the other day and then it starts with why didn’t you call me why didn’t you text me if y’all were out and if you try to stay there was no time it just gets worse and worse and then you find out some people just always busy or working and then get mad when you don’t text them about a raid
So that was our downfall then we went down to one team of 7 and found out one of our oldest players like little kids in a bad way and had a past so needless to say we kicked him out and kicked out the guy that brought him into the group that caused a few players to be mad at our group for having someone like that in it but we did not know
So now the whole communities divided is very hard to find help with raids now no one trust no one understandably but that’s a story


#9

1: Is the “.” on your keyboard broken? This is exhausting to read
2: simple solution here would be a whatsapp or telegram group. Then you dont need to text every single person seperatly.


#10

It’s recognizable. I didn’t experience all of it, or any of it quite as extreme as what you describe, but still, recognizable.

Only advice I can give: don’t take the game too serious, especially not if your local community can’t handle it. Just go with the local flow, and see what happens. It can be nice if someone takes some sort of leader role, just to get things done, but, when there’s little or no interest in the direction this leader takes, then trying to push it can tear a community apart. In their free time, people aren’t looking for leaders telling them what to do or how to do things. They piecemeal together what they want and what they don’t, and when they get too much stuff on their plate they don’t want to do, they’ll start to consider whether the do’s are worth it.


#11

I joined my local Discord group on Christmas Eve last year and haven’t missed getting a Legendary since. All 3 teams seem to be pretty friendly with each other.


#12

It’s been six months since I returned to playing Pokemon Go. The moment I got back I joined a Facebook Community where I hoped to meet new people interested in playing Pokemon Go too. At first it was a very welcoming community composed of two groups of people who joined together for group raids one from our island and another from the next. Raiding then was never a problem; post a T5 and a number of spoofers would jump to your aid - we non spoofers seldom got together because we were always busy and as a result the good willed spoofers always had to wait for us before a raid could start. Soon our spoofing players and the spoofers from the other island started to be territorial with defending their respective local Gyms. One of our spoofers said: “We can raid T5 pokemon without you guys.” and that was the first fallout. Immediately the players from the other island left the group.

After that I realized just how difficult it is to organize raids without the other group. Our system was: whoever sees a good raid opportunity starts a group plan and a number of people would then vote whether they would be “Going” or not. Once the ideal number of players were available the plan is a Go. The non-spoofers would then assemble first before the TOA would be announced. 50% of the time, it would fail because the schedule of non spoofers (especially me) was a bit crowded but eventually we learned to loosen up our time frames a little. And started a neat little Era where 5-9 “Legits” (as we call ourselves) would gather and the rest would be “Flyers” who offered air support.

Over time more local players were added to the group, however they were “Snipers”-people who sniped around the world to get 100 iv pokemon. They started to show off these “Perfect” pokemon in the group saying that they can’t wait for PVP. This caused a little resentment between them and the “legits”.

When groudon raids came around, some of the Legits have already started to spoof around the world in search of perfect pokemon too and this reduced the number of people available for raids. I struggled hard to organize T4 raids, which were still somehow affordable, to collect enough Tyranitars (I got two maxed out through candy).
Soon it became evident that the only opportunity to catch a Groudon was when a Sponsored gym held a T5 raid. International spoofers (whom we refer to as “aliens”.)would come and attack immediately as the egg hatched and our little group of 2-5 players waited to join in on their public rooms. This continued for some time, allowing us to also collect a number of mewtwos, and then the Sponsored gyms got pulled out. Again the small number of spoofers and legits available for raids became evident.

Arranging raids started to be a chore so I proceeded to solo T2 pokemon and weaker T3 (Piloswine) to collect enough Rare candies to power up my mewtwo and tyranitar and Kyogre… Soon I was Able to solo the likes of Machamp, Gengar and Jynx with the pokemon I earned during our “Golden days”. As new trainers started to come in, I stepped up as a “ground support”. These new players became spoofers who didn’t want to leave the City, and I used my free time to assist then in T3 raids. Occassionally they would raid together with the senior spoofers to raid T5 bosses where I may or may not be able to join. I was a bit bothered and wondered why the hell could they not have spoofed when I was available. The truth is: They just cant. They were spoofing and raiding abroad while I got stuck to raiding T3s… Sometimes I would join during my rest days and I could get the occasional T5s. The community started to be troublesome but one T5 a week was still fine by me…

Then The shadow Bans came around – this further lowered the number of enthusiastic spoofers. Iphone users laid low even going as far as to delete Pokemon Go to avoid playing and lower the number of days that the shadow ban was in effect. Android spoofers were more resilient and one even claimed that “the bans are not happening.” This time, All raid plans that I made were met with excuses like “Not enough players anyway” while they continued to spoof abroad. I was greatful when some new players were added to the group but they were actually interested in spoofing for more legendary pokemon. Seeing as the group had become less helpful,I decided to leave and gave up on ever getting a Latias.

Tonight I found a middle-aged man soloing aN Aggron raid (with two phones) and I approached him to see how he was doing. Sadly I told him that I would not make much of a difference wether I helped or not, because this aggron was boosted. I introduced him to anither legit mwmber who was still in tbe grouo so that he may try to ask for some help but I already know tht he would either be “very dissapointed” or reserort to “spoofing”.

Basically the community is still alive but with them raiding seperately and spofing all around it started to feel less useful to legit players. The dominant members right now are spoofers who brought the newbies with them abroad. Spoofing latios and Latias alike while we here have given up onT4 and T5 raids entirely.


#13

Games don’t change life. They provide an escape for some and an enhancement for others; but if you have issues with other people not viewing this game the same way you view it, chances are that is a trait you have in work and family life, too.

Most of us think if we could just change everybody else’s attitude and behavior we could be happy. While the tragic reality is that happiness is hiding within changes to ourselves and our attitudes/behavior.


#14

That sucks, I guess I’m lucky to have found a group that is pretty easygoing and organizing raids goes fairly smooth. I think there may have been drama before I joined just from talking to people, but nothing like you describe.

We have a discord group with hundreds of active users and a handful of moderators. known spoofers are banned from participating (though obviously they can still read and drop in for raids if they keep quiet about their spoofing).

Gyms are plentiful, so we’ve never had the coin drama. Some people have friendly competition amongst themselves and will always knock each other out, but I emphasize friendly…we also live in an area frequented by tourists, so any coordination about when gyms get taken down would be impossible.

If it’s the way you describe, I’m sure more people than just you are put off by the situation. maybe start a discord group and see if some people follow you. Even if it’s a fairly small group, you still might be able to organize meet ups and raids.


#15

Known Spoofers are banned from our Discord group too. Most of the fun of raids is seeing everyone and the social aspect. Sometimes we get too many people for raids and have to split into two groups.


#16

In my opinion this game has created a lot of animosity against players. In my town there are a couple of guys who live across a park that has a gym, and since they live across from the park they think that they own it and when players of different team deposit their Pokémon they get really angry to the point of threatening with harm and harassing other players. People need to grow up and not take this game too seriously, I mean this is a cellphone game and not life or death. That’s why I stopped playing that much and only do the quests and avoid the raids in order to not encounter fools with antagonistic personalities. I also stopped attending the community days in my town, and try to go out of town and participate without issues.


#17

Many walls of texts. From what i get from first couple paragraphs were; yall play all together regardless of team.

i see communities only working together between colored teams. Anything else is just assistance for raiding.

Making multiple accounts makes sense if your team of friends arent awake or around.

But the war on your island seems genuinely good. Fight and take or been taken down. Sorta how the real Pokemon World works. Hopefully you can keep a small group of gym terroriziors as friends and secretly take everyone out.


#18

In my city we work all together, especially Instinct and Mystic.


#19

My thoughts exactly because we have the same problem over here. I live near three gyms and take them regularly but it’s gotten seriously tribal recently. There’s about 5 gyms on our island that other people live right next too. They all claim to not care about the gyms in question but will go out and take them back the minute I take them and start plenty of arguments about it.


#20

I know, it’s how the real Pokemon world works but normally people don’t have arguments over it. Used to go around with a few people but they took it way too seriously-going out at 2am to take most of the islands gyms for no reason. Really boiled over when they started going out to any gym they were being battled off and having arguments with whoever was battling it. There’s no one on this island who I enjoy playing with anymore.