However, this past week, it came to my attention that some users have been using the ‘in-game chat’ feature to criticize or belittle at least one player during his or her match. Unkind words were exchanged, and only later did this player contact me to let me know this behavior was occurring.
While I have no doubt that this was an isolated incident, it does provide a great opportunity to talk about the kind of culture we want to have in our small Standard Pauper community. As a huge enthusiast for this format, I want to see as many new players as possible welcomed and encouraged to get involved in Standard Pauper. I want these new players to feel like this is a great environment for them to play Magic, especially if they are new to the game or new to any sort of competitive play. Incidents like those reported to me this week cannot be allowed, or it threatens the long term survival of the format.
To that end, here are a few things I would like everyone who participates in our events to keep in mind:
- New players should be greeted warmly and have their questions patiently answered. This is especially important given the number of players for whom English is not their native language.
- Players should never criticize another player’s deck or play, and certainly not in a way that would make him or her feel stupid or picked on. If someone asks for feedback or an honest assessment, feel free to let that player know what you think. But be constructive with your comments.
- As a general rule, please avoid chatting in other people’s games. The only people talking in a match should be the two players competing. There may be instances where you can address a question, but these should be rare exceptions.
- If you ever witness something you believe is hurtful towards another player or suspect someone of cheating or manipulation, please let me or whomever is hosting the event know right away. Such behavior WILL NOT be tolerated. Although this has rarely happened, in the past hosts have not hesitated to suspend or ban players from participating in events for this sort of behavior.
- And of course, have fun! Enjoy yourself, and don’t do anything to limit the enjoyment of the other players. (Other than beating them in Magic. That’s totally allowed!).