The CSM elections are coming up again. At least I assume so, because both Winzentowitsch Madeveda shows more presence again, but also because CCP has proclaimed the topic CSM as a monthly partner topic.
That’s why we German bloggers just stick to it and adopt it for the theme of the month. Sometimes we bloggers are also lazy.
What is the CSM?
CSM is the abbreviation for Council of Stellar Management. In fact, the CSM is a group of elected players who are supposed to advise CCP on the further development of EVE Online. The members of the CSM are elected every year by all players of EVE Online and then represent the players and their interests to CCP. At least the interests of a part of the players, if CCP involves the CSM.
The ten elected members of the CSM get after their election, verification and signature of a confidentiality agreement then a direct communication channel to CCP and also access to selected CCP internal information. In the absence of a pandemic, a face-to-face meeting is also held twice a year in Iceland.
What are the advantages of the CSM?
The idea behind the CSM is actually simple and ingenious. You have representatives of the players at hand, with whom you can discuss planned changes and which carries the feedback of the players bundled and processed to CCP.
Especially when the CSM was introduced in 2008, social media and Discord didn’t exist or were widely used. So CCP had to get the feedback from the official forum. Not ideal for a comprehensive opinion.
Also, talking through planned changes in a small group keeps the surprise (both positive and negative) of the players. After all, it would be boring to know exactly every patch in advance.
What are the disadvantages of the CSM?
The possibility to discuss changes in a small and secret way naturally also leads to a reduced transparency. It can give the impression that nothing is moving forward at CCP, since larger ideas in particular take a long time to implement.
The biggest disadvantage for me personally is that CCP relies on the opinion of the CSM, who represents the players. But the problem is that especially the big alliances in 0.0 mobilize their members to the elections and are therefore more represented than other player groups. In the current CSM, six out of nine members are from 0.0.
My opinion and recommendation
The Council of Stellar Management was a clever marketing move by CCP. I still think the idea is a good one, even though there is unfortunately a clear direction in the lineup. On the other hand, I have seen few issues in the last 12 years where the CSM would have had a serious impact. Possibly, however, this is simply not seen and never comes to light thanks to secrecy obligations.
Is that why you shouldn’t vote? It depends. If you have one or more candidates who convince you and whom you would like to support – then vote. You can have a certain influence on the CSM and CCP. I vote since I play EVE Online and will continue to do so!
PS: No, I do not recommend candidates.