A Blogging GM

Sometimes I wish I had made this blog anonymous. Since becoming GM of my guild, this wish has become even stronger.

I struggle with knowing how much guild-related stuff is appropriate to share on this blog. Generally I’m not a proponent of airing private guild matters, especially contentious ones, in public. But sometimes I just want to vent, seek outside opinions, or share things that I found amusing and think other people would get a kick out of.

I have talked about troublesome guild-related things a few times in the past, but I try to do it without naming names or getting into too many details. I also try to turn it into a broad discussion of an issue that others will relate to rather than just complain “these people are unappreciative and  their whining angers me!” Occasionally someone is such a douche that any reservations I have about spilling all the gory details fly out the window, but I’ve only been driven to that point once.

One of my favourite things about blogging is getting comments and perspectives from others about things that I’m dealing with in game. As a GM, there are a ton of decisions to make and things to deal with that I’d like to hear others opinions on. However, I also feel that protecting my guild/guildmates’ privacy is more important than having a place to vent or soliciting advice and opinions.

Is there a happy medium? Obviously I’m not going to share things people have told me in private on this blog (or anywhere). But what about events that happen in guild that I’d like a second opinion on? I can try to make things sound general, but anyone who can put two and two together is going to know where my most of my issues or questions are coming from.

Is it appropriate to share specific issues that have come up in guild with anyone who wants to read them? 

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6 Responses to A Blogging GM

  1. It’s a fine line that gets marginally thicker through practice, I’ve found. The way I used to handle it was that if a lot of people could benefit from it AND I had already dealt with the issue, I would try to put it on my blog in vague terms. Of course, this meant already having dealt with it.

    If you’re looking for advice for a current issue, that’s where you run into some snags. If the officers aren’t being helpful enough (no fault of theirs, sometimes people are just stumped), then you might want to go outside the guild to a friend or friends who also play the game.

    Finally, Matticus and I used to “consult” with each other regarding guild master stuff. We’d listen to the problems the other was having and then offer solid, fairly unbiased advice. It didn’t always get taken, but it was another viewpoint and, as GM, that’s what you really need when making decisions: different perspectives. Even if the perspective is from an old, retired GM, sometimes that’ll help unstick you. ;)
    Kurn recently posted..Kurn’s Guild Spotlight!

  2. FWIW, I appreciate that you do take the high road. For your sake as your friend I hope you have an outlet where you can bitch and moan when you really need to, but I appreciate the fact that you don’t do it on your blog.

    Without naming names, I’ll just say this: there was a very well-known and popular blogger out there who was very public about the guild she helped lead. In T13 they went through some big struggles and she talked a *lot* of smack about them publicly on her blog, and it was flat-out disgusting. Had I been a member of that guild and read those posts, I would have /gquit on the spot and been very loud about why.

    Coming at issues from a vague, oblique perspective is okay. Throwing a tantrum on your blog after every crappy raid night is…not.
    Stormy recently posted..What’s the Haps?

  3. Actually, as I recall Kurn it was more of a one way thing. Namely I’d always go to you all the time to deal with my stuff. Can’t say I remember the last time you came to me if ever!

    But yeah, the best peopl to seek advice from is other gms. We’ve all been through some tough times in the past and the strong ones are still carrying their flag to this day. Feel free to scream and shout my way if you need.

  4. I can definitely relate to this, it’s something I struggle with as well. I’m not a GM, but I’m an Officer and there are times when I would like to raise issues that’s ongoing for input from others, but feel that I can’t because I don’t want my guildies to be offended.

    A GM friend of mind (from another guild) and I used to joke that we should make a special, anonymous blog called Confessions of a Guild Leader, where we could just write about all these types of things without naming anyone. Just as a ways to vent and get input from others who may be in a similar situation.

    In the end though, I agree that our guild members’ privacy is more important than us getting to vent, and it’s why I often don’t write about things I would like to. There are exceptions though, when I do write about things. I’m struggling at the moment because I want to write about something, and the guild is aware of the issue as well.. so it wouldn’t come as a surprise to them. But I still don’t know if it’s okay to write about.
    Saga recently posted..Pandaren Starting Zone

  5. As an officer in my own guild, and knowing guildies read my blog, I do have to watch what I say. I have no qualms complaining about people who have since left the guild.

    For me the easiest way to vent is to go to one of the many blogs I read and vent there in a comment or ask for advice and see what the readers of that blog will say as it is unlikely my own guildies will go there. And if I was really worried it would be done pseudonymously.

    But it’s a tough one Jas. Beru never seemed to have a problem venting in hers – perhaps you can ask her :D
    Navimie recently posted..10 Days of Pet Battling Day 10 – Design a pet

  6. That’s a toughie. I once wrote a post that commented on a common practice in the community: bugging the Garalon fight to make it easymode. It was a very general opinion-driven piece that essentially argued why I feel bugging out Garalon (hehe) is cheating.

    Unfortunately, several officers and the guild leader believed the post was attacking them directly—earlier in the week, a guild group had entertained the idea of cheesing the fight—but in reality they just reminded me of a topic I’d already given thought about writing on. It ultimately led to my dismissal from the guild. I was floored.

    They felt I took a guild issue and made it a “public issue.” Perhaps there is room for some form of flattery in there, but they’re clearly not aware of how little traffic my blog posts get.
    Ross recently posted..WoW Weekly: Now what?