On gatekeeping and the 'live-streaming edition wars'

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
It feels a little like we're entering a new "edition war" (for those who remember that), with people taking firmly entrenched 'sides'; only this time the battle lines aren't drawn along the 3rd and 4th editions of D&D - the subject-matter is live-streaming. On the one side there are people claiming that livestream viewers "don't play D&D" or "aren't real fans" (an ugly practice known as 'gatekeeping'); on the other side, somebody randomly tweeted at me just yesterday about the opinions of "middle aged neckbeards, like anybody gives a ****".

While this is far more rife on social media than here, I want to emphasize in advance that gatekeeping (on either side of the debate, though I'd rather there were no sides to it) is not tolerated here on EN World. Whether that's on the basis of editions, live-streaming, age, gender, or anything else, if somebody says they're a D&D fan, then they're a D&D fan; it's not your place to tell them they're having badwrongfun. If we find anybody gatekeeping others in the hobby here, the moderators will be having a word. And, to be clear, this goes both ways -- there are bad actors on both sides of the current topic.
 

Shiroiken

Adventurer
Not that I actually care (this is the first I've heard of it), but technically if someone just watches livestream, they aren't "playing the game." They are watching the game, but that should in no way deny their love for the game. I like watching football, and consider myself a true fan, but I sure as hell won't play it!
 

Coroc

Adventurer
I do not watch livestreams, but I really liked some of the AI videos from the Pax XYZ conventions with Jeremy and other folks on youtube.
Although my and my tables playstyle is quite different than what they present, I would be quite angry if someone does call me not being a real player, because I am watching this or referring to something occurring in those live playing sessions in a thread here.
I mean what kind of argument is this? They do not even know what someone does, besides watching a livestream? Maybe I am getting old, I sometimes just do not understand peoples behavior anymore.
 

sulimo0310

Explorer
I personally feel like this "divide" is a false one. I am one of those "middle-aged neckbeards" who has been playing since 2nd Edition. I have been running a game for my current D&D group weekly for the past 13 years. I am also a fan of live-streaming D&D and watch Critical Role every week. Most of (although not all) of my group watches it and none of them have any problems with it. My 16 year old daughter is the youngest member of our group, 5e is the first edition she has ever played, and she is one of the 2 members who does not watch Critical Role. 5e is the favorite edition of every member of the group, and we all love how much mainstream exposure our hobby is getting. I am a very infrequent poster on these forums, but a constant lurker. I suspect the vast majority of "older" D&D players are like myself, or don't even lurk in forums like this. We are the silent majority and don't really get this "edition war" mindset. But that's my personal experience and I have nothing more than anecdotal evidence to back it up. Who knows?
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
I personally feel like this "divide" is a false one. I am one of those "middle-aged neckbeards" who has been playing since 2nd Edition. I have been running a game for my current D&D group weekly for the past 13 years. I am also a fan of live-streaming D&D and watch Critical Role every week. Most of (although not all) of my group watches it and none of them have any problems with it. My 16 year old daughter is the youngest member of our group, 5e is the first edition she has ever played, and she is one of the 2 members who does not watch Critical Role. 5e is the favorite edition of every member of the group, and we all love how much mainstream exposure our hobby is getting. I am a very infrequent poster on these forums, but a constant lurker. I suspect the vast majority of "older" D&D players are like myself, or don't even lurk in forums like this. We are the silent majority and don't really get this "edition war" mindset. But that's my personal experience and I have nothing more than anecdotal evidence to back it up. Who knows?
Just look at Twitter and Facebook. It's very prominent there.

I suspect the vast majority of "older" D&D players are like myself, or don't even lurk in forums like this. We are the silent majority and don't really get this "edition war" mindset. But that's my personal experience and I have nothing more than anecdotal evidence to back it up. Who knows?
As for whether it happens with the hypothetical people who don't use the internet, that's not really the point -- this thread is about us right here on EN World, and is about preventing it from happening here on this forum. I don't have any say about what happens elsewhere!
 
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sulimo0310

Explorer
Just look at Twitter and Facebook. It's very prominent there.



As for whether it happens with the hypothetical people who don't use the internet, it doesn't really matter -- this thread is about us right here on EN World, and is about preventing it from happening here on this forum. I don't have any say about what happens elsewhere!
Sure, but social media platforms always give voice to a vocal minority. Most players aren't following or contributing to such discussions. It's a relatively small sample size compared to the actual player base as reported by WOTC.
That being said I agree completely that all that matters is we prevent it here. We can't police the world and shouldn't. I am just saying that maybe that posters on a 5e D&D forum are a self selecting group of people who have strong opinions about 5e they think other people need to hear and are not necessarily reflective of the player base as a whole.
 

Morrus

Well, that was fun
Staff member
Sure, but social media platforms always give voice to a vocal minority. Most players aren't following or contributing to such discussions. It's a relatively small sample size compared to the actual player base as reported by WOTC.
Again (whether or not that's true; I suspect it's not as true as you think), it doesn't matter. I'm talking about the behavior I expect here on this forum.
 
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Olrox17

Explorer
Well, this is unfortunate. I'm not a Critical Role fan, but I see no reason to hate on them or their fandom. Am I going to buy Critical Role books? No. Would I prefer more "traditional" DnD content to be put out by Wotc? Yeah.
But I hear that the Critical Role book is not going to replace a "traditional" release, it's just extra. In that case, I have no problem with its existence.
 

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