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troll

10 things the comments section has taught me about the web

Of all the challenges faced by those who put content online, the comments facility must be the most vexing one. (There’s even a Twitter account, @AvoidComments, which reminds followers not to read the comments, ever. Sample tweet: Whenever you see a smiling child, remember: she’s never read a comment in her life, and she’s doing just fine.)

Many websites have experimented with reining in the bad behaviour that predominates in a facility that offers a toxic combination of visibility and anonymity. Imposing standards all too often means sacrificing interaction, however. Recently, TechCrunch announced that it’s bringing its comments facility back; channelling comments via Facebook resulted in a precipitous dropoff in engagement, so now it’s trying LiveFyre.

I usually don’t read the comments on one of the platforms I blog on, and haven’t for years. This is sad, because I’ve always thought of blogging, unlike the opinion pieces or features I write, as a fundamentally social act. You write in the expectation that others will have a view on what you’ve written, and the text is created in the space between your post and the reactions to it.

If I stopped reading the comments, it’s because they became a strain on my sanity. To survive them, writers need to have thick skin, or be a masochist, or both, and I know of bloggers who stopped writing because they couldn’t handle the vitriol. Actually, I don’t know of anyone who can spend any time reading the comments on some websites without wanting to stab themselves in the eye with a hot fork. But trolling and abusive comments are par for the course, so much so that serious research has been conducted into why people behave so badly online.

Researchers have found that that people online have lower levels of self control. (Oh yes, and spending too much time on Facebook makes you fat – the more people spent online, the more likely they were to engage in binge eating).

In my years of blogging, I’ve learned a thing or two from the comments facility.

1. There’s a kind of Kevin Bacon game going on

In the Kevin Bacon game so popular in the 1990s, the challenge was to link any actor to Kevin Bacon. In the comments facility, the challenge is to see how long it will take for the comments on any post to devolve into a slanging match between – for want of a better term — liberals and conservatives.

Take this report from a UK news website on a group of American tourists attacked in Peru.

The first comment takes a swipe at liberals and it goes downhill from there, becoming nothing more than an opportunity for Republicans to fling insults against Democrats, and vice versa. In South Africa, for example, all comments facilities ever somehow end up hosting rants against the ANC and/or apartheid and/or white privilege, whether or not the original post had anything to do with it. The situation is similar in countries with similarly torrid pasts.

Which is why….

2. If you want lots of comments, write about race and/or politics

Around the world, hot button issues range from gun control to rape. Nothing fires up the comments facility like discussions about race. With over 88 000 views and 575 comments, this post generated far more interaction on blogging platform Thought Leader than any other in the history of the site. The recent FNB ad debacle effectively turned South Africa into a giant comments facility, with much ranting about the ANC on various news sites.

Don’t write about race or politics unless you are very thick skinned or utterly convinced of the correctness of your views (I’ve learned the hard way).

3. Abuse is nothing new

The comments facility has just made it easier for people who’d otherwise just rant around the dinner table, to articulate them in public. Back in 2004, readers were forced to fax hatemail to the publisher of my satirical pieces about bitter expats; now all they need to do is post a comment. Fortunately, the comment sections on many sites are moderated so the abusive, ad hominem attacks on their bloggers are mostly filtered out. If I got to see the comments they didn’t let through, my insomnia would probably be worse than it already is.

4. We’re talking a small number of people

Editor of News24 (a division of emerging markets media giant Naspers) Jannie Momberg says about one percent of readers comment, and of those, around 10% are abusive. “News24 comments” remains a byword for aggressively stupid, racist comments, but that’s not really fair because the same behaviour can be seen in the comments facilities of other news websites, too. In fact, the comments on a couple of recent pieces have been sane and reasonable for the most part.

5. The same names crop up everywhere

Spend any time reading news or comment and you’ll spot the same familiar names and pseudonyms, banging the same drum they’ve been beating for years. Commenting must virtually be a full time job for some of them, and they never seem to get bored.

6. Very few people actually read what they comment on

This is what really grates me. If I go to the trouble of putting together an argument, the least I expect is for the reader to take in what I’ve actually written before commenting. Sadly, the typical reader strategy seems to be: read the heading, scan through the body of the text, blurt out the first thing that comes to mind.

Most popular columnists and bloggers have regular readers who know them well, or think they know them well, so by the time the latter click on the link, they’ve already made up their minds (familiarity, alas, breeds contempt — on both sides). They read what they think they see, then argue with their own projections. Much of the so-called debate in the comments facility is a form of ideological shadow-boxing.

7. Angry, abusive comments beget more angry, abusive comments

Take any divisive topic – in this case, climate change. According to this study, the more abuse in the comments facility, the more it will inflame others who might otherwise have been reasonable. Study co-author Dietram Scheufele, a professor of science communication at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, pointed out that the comments made what used to be a private act now more like “reading the news article in the middle of the town square, with people screaming in my ear what I should believe about it.”

8. There will be mansplaining

Mansplaining is the practice of men telling women what she’s actually thinking because, poor thing, she’s misinformed. Because commenters don’t list their gender, it’s impossible to make a reliable assessment of whether men comment more than women, but my impression is that they do. Any female blogger who writes on a platform where there are many male readers knows all about mansplaining.

9. The real discussions often happen elsewhere.

This is something that happened when TechCrunch shifted to a Facebook-based comment system. I’ve long held the view that if people really wanted to debate with bloggers in a civil manner, they can do it on Twitter or Facebook. Luckily, I haven’t had to deal with much trolling on either platform, and because there’s more immediacy — the blogger is there in person, not a disembodied name attached to words – it’s harder to be abusive.

10. And yes, sometimes the comments are more interesting than the piece that inspired them

Sometimes, the comments facility works as it should, bringing out viewpoints that actually add to an understanding of an issue. The comments on this post on a rather obscure subject are easier to read than the piece that triggered them.

There are no ad hominem attacks, and each commenter seems to be genuinely interested in teasing apart a complex issue. But this is all too rare, and probably only happens when the vast majority of potential commenters are filtered out by the complexity of an issue.

Recently, I changed my blogging strategy, writing slightly less contentious material that’s as much about seeing what responses I get as it is about putting my opinion out into the world. A meta post, if you like. As a result, I’ve started reading the comments again — but I’ll probably stop, because it’s still too depressing: the same crowd are still saying the same things they did five years ago. Not that it matters, really.

The commenters don’t really need me to participate, because once the post is up, it’s not mine anymore, but theirs. It takes on a life of its own, and I am happy to let it go.

Here’s the ultimate irony: if the comments facility teaches you anything, it’s that if you’re going to be a writer, and put yourself at the mercy of others online, you have to learn to filter out most your readers or you’ll stop writing altogether. As that Twitter account reminds us: “The next time you’re thinking of reading the comments, do a Google image search for ‘fluffy puppies’ instead.”

  • http://twitter.com/tiffanymarkman Tiffany Markman

    Sarah, you’re totally right about this, especially the ‘once it’s up, it’s not mine’ issue. Having said that, I am that rare blogger who (fanatically) reads her comments, and I haven’t had death by cancer wished on me in a while, so either my haters are otherwise occupied or they’re getting used to me.

  • Paul Moment

    I don’t think it has to be an either/or situation of having an inflamed comment feed or nothing at all. Don’t forget: Moderating your comment threads is completely legit. After all, you’re the one hosting the discussion. Well-moderated comment threads with clearly defined rules and moderator interaction can be super useful and foster solid participation if your content is good. Sure, it can open you up to accusations of censorship, but those will probably come from the same problem children you’re trying to avoid having on your thread in the first place, right? And meanwhile, every other participant is getting great value.

  • http://www.facebook.com/doug.mancill Doug Mancill

    This is probably correct, but I can think of at least one exception here in Thailand. I often find the most interesting and insightful remarks about local politics in the comments section following news articles about political events and scandals here. Some of the comments also provide very interesting background information that is missing from the article. There is also the typical reds vs. yellows (if you know Thai politics, you will know what I mean) argument, but often those arguments reveal interesting information that doesn’t seem to get reported.

  • Stephen Hall

    Maybe what is needed is a troll-oriented CAPTCHA, i.e. one which tests if you have something worthwhile to say before it will let you post a comment?

  • http://ivinviljoen.net/ Ivin Viljoen

    It’s often easy to tell from the comment itself if the commentator read the comment. I often find a paragraph that interests me and comment on that – this is especially necessary if you’re going to comment on a lot of sites (which could be important).

  • Patsy Zarilla

    Wow, what were you watching?

  • MG

    E3 2015. You know, the one where Microsoft Revealed AR, VR, backwards compatibility, RARE replay to name a few. Sony revealed… um… Some indiana jones wannabe game, and The Last yawn. Then a bunch of multiplats that will also be on PC and XB1. That being said, I guess you do have a point that Sony has EXCLUSIVE CALL OF DUTY DLC… Wow. so amazing. lol.

  • brusselsproty

    Bethesda’s partnership with Microsoft means that PC mods will arrive on Xbox One before the PS4 — a massive coup.

    Can that compete with some dlc for a dying game COD. Lol.

  • poneros

    If you were wanting details on games coming out in 2016, a PS3 demo of a game that still may never release, 80% cinematics and no gameplay, pictures of a VR headset and video of an IP not even worth describing, a broken unchartered demo, horrible jokes, awkward hosting moments, and a looped video of 3rd party content characters. Sony knocked it out the park if that was their aim.

  • ceramicsaturn

    Microsoft had what it always has, for better or worse. Halo, Gears and Forza. Hardly exciting. How you thought that was more mind blowing than the surprise after surprise that Sony offered, I don’t know. If you’re more into that, it’s fine, but to say it outshined one of Sony’s best conferences in its history I think is a bold overstatement. I mean, “Frankly, nothing really popped at Sony’s conference.” Really?

  • http://grahampeter.co.za/ GrahamZA

    What was mind blowing at Sony’s conference? I’m looking for a honest answer, not trolling here.

    – Final Fantasy VII Remake will be multiplatform. The end of the trailer mentions “First on PS4”
    – Star Ocean will more than likely be ported to Xbox One as well. I know I’m guessing here, but I’m going on the fact that the last one was ported, albeit from Xbox 360 to PS3.
    – Persona 5 is a Sony stable. I can argue Gears, Halo, or Forza against it.
    – The Last Guardian is a game that’s been in development hell for years, so who knows when it’ll really launch. Remember, ICO and Shadow of the Colossues were initially comercial failures and eventually picked up. The same may happen to Guardian.
    – Shenmue is still a Kickstarter game. Yes, it’s been funded now, but it’s still a Kickstarter game.

  • http://www.projectspark.com coip

    Not to mention Shenmue 3 is 2.5 years away, according to that Kickstarter page.

  • Andy Walker

    Writing this piece wasn’t exactly easy because I do have a PS4 and I love it to bits, but you have to be realistic here.

    I’ve hated the Xbox One for ages. It’s big, it’s bulky, the UI doesn’t make sense and it’s more sluggish than the PS4, but the future of the Xbox One looks much, much brighter than the PS4, and if you look at what’s to come both in terms of hardware and software, MS will make something of a comeback here.

    I’m definitely not biased though, unless by biased you mean “owns a PS4 but can still admit when Microsoft deserves credit.”

  • MG

    People can’t handle the truth. Fanboys will fanboy, nothing you can do about it. At least as a Sony fan you can admit when something is not in it’s favour, it’s important too, because you’re going to let Sony know that they need to step it up. Whereas all these fanboys crying that Sony won, would have Sony be complacent. Stupid.

  • http://www.projectspark.com coip

    “I’ve hated the Xbox One for ages. It’s big, it’s bulky”.
    Do you carry your consoles around a lot? Can’t see why this would matter at all. I carry around a slim portable hard drive with all my Xbox One (and now Xbox 360!) games and apps on it. Plug and play, baby.

  • brusselsproty

    Quantum Break, Scalebound and Crackdown 3 were not shown as Phil Spencer confirmed they will be at the Gamescom show in 7 weeks time along with more new titles for Xbox One and Windows 10.

    Gamescom up until now was Sony’s big stage event, this year they will NOT be attending !!!!!!.

  • MG

    Fanboying here, stop and take a step back buddy. First of all, FF7 remake? Really oyu think Sony wins because of a remake? (Over hyped game anyway, FF7 is not the best Final Fantasy). Also, FF7 remake is likely cross platform anyway, not like I would care.

    Shenmue? boring.

    Horizon Zero Dawn? yawn.

    The Last Guardians? more yawn.

    Persona 5? definitely not my type of game.

    So you’re reasoning is a bunch of games that people could enjoy or not. Whereas Microsoft, ON TOP of showcasing all these games, comes out with AR, VR, and backwards compatibility. On top of that, FF7 remake? Meet RARE Replay, 30 RARE games in one package for XB1. Yea, that’s right, Final Fantasy 7 is less than Conkers Bad Fur Day, is less than Goldeneye, is less than Banjo Kazooie. It just doesn’t even compare this year, Microsoft won E3 by a landslide.

  • ceramicsaturn

    I always love it when I’m called a fanboy. There’s hardly a system I DON’T own. Hell I’m probably one of three people on the planet still playing 3DO. That doesn’t change the fact that I have eye balls and can judge which conference had the most “holy crap” moments. I like Microsoft’s exclusives like anyone else, and it’ll keep my white X1 turned on quite a bit! But it didn’t come as a surprise. The only surprise, for me (games wise) from them was Rare’s new title. But Rare isn’t really Rare any longer, and I have my doubts (though I’m a sucker for pirate themed games). While YOU might not care about FF7, Halo, Mario, .. whatever.. not mentioning it, and the plethora of other titles that meant a lot to others, and caused quite a stir, is poor reporting. Period.

  • MG

    FF7 is not exclusive, Mario is amazing, I’m super excited for Mario Maker. I own a Wii U you know, you’d do better to not assume that I’m just some XB fanboy. I weighed it all out, Microsoft just came out on top because it was MORE than just games. That’s my honest opinion, not fanboying, just being completely unbiased.

  • ceramicsaturn

    Yeah that didn’t sound like a rant at all.

  • ceramicsaturn

    See how it feels when you’re called a fanboy and you’re not? Comes off as a dick move. I have an opinion. I’m not financially invested or married to ANY console maker. That would be dumb as hell.

  • MG

    Agreed, fanboying is stupid. I really just do believe that showing more than just games was enough for me to throw in the towel for Sony. Microsoft just seemed to have more to show this year, and that in my opinion is why I believe they topped it. Of course this is my opinion, and you’re welcome to yours. I also agreed fervently that tying yourself to one console is stupid, except PC, that is the best gaming system.

  • http://grahampeter.co.za/ GrahamZA

    Again, Final Fantasy VII Remake isn’t an exclusive.

  • ceramicsaturn

    And again. Everything is being ported to pc. Under that logic, Nintendo is the only one with a decent list of “exclusives”.

  • http://grahampeter.co.za/ GrahamZA

    Yup.

  • brusselsproty

    SONY DAMAGE CONTROL ALERT

  • ceramicsaturn

    Thanks, I’ve already been called a Nintendo fanboy and a Microsoft fanboy on comments sections this E3, thanks for solidifying the Sony fanboy… now I’m a fanboy of everything!

  • elopez17

    I’m a sony fan with my playstation 4, so here it is.
    The true is, he is right, sony talk but did not show anything while microsoft talk and show, especially the vr. sony better bring something big because there will be a lot of people who will move to xbox as soon vr is for sale. and that include me.

  • David Yee

    Please sell me your PS4, so I will playing Horizon Zero. Where I can hunt freaking robot dinosaurs. I already saw the Xbox One VR demo last week. All you get is Xbox One games stream to the VR set in front of a virtual screen. Wow, that’s way better sitting in front real big screen TV. The VR games will coming to Windows PC, not the Xbox One.

  • MG

    Oh my god, PS4 has Call of Duty EXCLUSIVE DAY ONE DLC. SONY WINS.

    Actually, lets be honest. Sony didn’t have shit this year. and I’ll sell you my PS4, do you want it?

  • Revolver Ocelot

    They have, actually. The PS4 has more exclusives than the Xbone for the whole year. Sorry if this hurts you.

  • David

    I missed E3 this year but from what I’m hearing and what others told me Microsoft ran away with it. Backwards compatibility, the new controller, and the new UI and system update all had me incredibly excited. So much so that I didn’t even bother to look at the games they announced. Which others told me were fantastic. Phil spencer really turned things around.

  • MG

    Aye, this is the truth of what happened. Sony PR is going crazy right now though, lots and lots of fanboys running around everywhere trying to claim with great fervor that “SONY WON”. The fanboyism is so ridiculous, it hurts my brain to see people so worked up over Microsoft being more interesting and having more to showcase this year.

  • David

    Well fanboys will be fanboys I’ve come to accept that. But it seems the general populace has agreed that Microsoft stole the show. So I guess it’s ok

  • http://www.projectspark.com coip

    It’s like Sony spent all of their money hiring paid shills to cover E3 than on actually making a decent E3.

  • Revolver Ocelot

    Or maybe the majority of people actually do think Sony won this year.

    But hey, you get another go next year. Try not to overhype it again.

  • XbotMK1

    This is obviously a troll article or a fanboy article. You’re attempting to misslead people with lies just like Microsoft did during their conference.

    Microsoft’s conference was:

    Halo 5 (A game we allready saw 2 years/E3s ago)

    Recore (New IP with a worthless CGI trailer and no release date in sight)

    Backwards Compatibility (But failled to mention it only has a fraction of 360 titles, and arrogantly took shots at Sony’s PlayStation Now service which can run on Samsung TVs without a console)

    Forza 6 (A niche rehashed yearly release franchise we all knew about, and Forza 5 was stripped of content to rush it out as a launch title and full of microtransactions)

    Xbox Elite Controller (Costs $150 with little improvement over the regular controller and it still runs on AA batteries so Microsoft can rip you off with a recharge kit)

    Tomb Raider (timed exclusive)

    Multiplats

    Indie montage (Microsoft is lucky to even get indies considering they still have their shady arrogant parity clause)

    Fable Legends (An old franchise also coming to PC)

    Sea of Theives (New IP with no release date in sight and the name is fitting for Microsoft and Xbox One)

    Gears 4 (Old franchise with no noticeable innovations. Gameplay reminded me of The Order 1886)

    VR “partnership” (What does that even mean? What does that have to do with Xbox? Why should anyone care? Oculus and Vive are not part of Microsoft. Is Microsoft letting Facebook and Valve run the Xbox E3 conference? You announced VR but no VR games? Why did you not question this? Is this a joke?)

    Hololens (A missleading “staged” demo. Reporters say Hololens doesn’t actually look like what Microsoft is showing you. Microsoft says Hololens is it’s own platform so what does it have to do with Xbox? Looks to be a gimmick not a game. No price or release date in sight)

    New UI changes (Because their old one was hated by many)

    Xbox conference review: Full of lies, BS, lip service, and Phil Spencer trying to kiss everyone’s *ss to make it seem like they care for gamers. They tried to impress people with a staged Hololens demo that had nothing to do with Xbox. They announced backwards compatibility but didn’t tell people the cons. They showed old games and barely any new IPs despite the fact that they haven’t released a big Xbox exclusive in the past 8 months. Out of desperation, Microsoft announced a partnership with VR (whatever that means) because they desperately wanted to have an answer for Project Morpheus. Microsoft’s conference was missleading and reeked of desperation.

  • poneros

    ^ Paid for by Sony Entertainment

  • http://www.projectspark.com coip

    Seriously, right? That was some impressive propaganda. Complete FUD, of course, full of lies, but the effort he put into trying to spin it was impressive. Hope he gets paid by the word.

  • Jimmy Jangle

    What a tit.

  • brusselsproty

    Oh dear is your Sony PS4 on it’s way down, never mind you will just have to finally accept people don’t only buy one brand of console and dedicate their life to it.

  • SmarterThanAll

    Dude seriously why do I always see you? Why don’t you read articles you actually like why do you hate on every single article that has to do with Microsoft? What they reject your job application and now you got a stick in your a**?

  • john smith

    Because he’s a pathetic loser! Probably a Sony employee. The good thing is lots of gamers continuously call him out for it which really helps to maintain proper balance in these comment sections, in my opinion.

  • ByAnyMeansLegendary

    Maybe Sony can bring you on stage to “pique the ponies interest” with a Kickstarter to then pay you anyways of your wonderful effort in trying to shit on every Xbox article that gets posted.

    -It’s amazing to see how many quality indies Xbox One seems to be getting with such a “shady arrogant parity clause”
    -And Recore is coming Spring 2016.
    -VR for M$ is them throwing themselves in that market without having to spend R&D and millions of $ on something that may not even catch on also while being able to compete with Morpheus.

    -You proud of a company showing you a 2009 PS3 demo on a PS4 stage? That was non-playable.. and is still having trouble running on PS4? There was absolutely nothing innovative about that.. Unique may be the word you were looking for.. I’ve never seen a 6 year old last generation game be shown on an next generation console’s stage.. Very unique indeed.
    -Is TV cool now? Cause I swore ponies were eRioting over M$ letting people connect their cable boxes to X1.. But as long as Sony comes up with a service charging you money for TV.. it’s all fine and dandy..

    Sony didn’t show off one exclusive that will make customers purchase that console this holiday season.. Are they stupid? Do they know how well X1 sold last year around that time? And now they’re going allow it to happen on an even worse level.. Not one retail exclusive this year? Amazing.. Sony kept it Sony and gave smoke and mirrors, took advantage of people just like you with pure hype..

    Exclusively there was Horizon and an unstable Uncharted 4.. Nothing else. No substance overall, congrats.

    Oh and a media player.

  • john smith

    OMG! Did Phil Spencer break into your house and set you cat on fire or something? So much fanboy bullshit! Lmao! You are sooooooooo far up Sony’s ass you’ve actually lost touch with reality! Is it even possible to hate a brand that much? You’re the perfect example of why PS fanboys are universally hated. smh.

  • Ahmazin

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j1vSYIHlMp8

    When people react like this at watching the PlayStation conference, it’s hilarious to me, to read an article that said Sony’s conference fell flat, lol. Show me a reaction like this from Microsoft’s presentation, and then and only then, will I concede this article has any kind of merit (Not to mention, you got the whole order of Sony’s conference wrong). Microsoft had a very good conference, but Sony’s made grown men pee in the pants, prance around like little school girl happy!

    Oh and just for kicks:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HXJTWEEi6BM

    Yeah… the only thing that fell flat on it’s face, is this article!

  • http://grahampeter.co.za/ GrahamZA

    Final Fantasy VII Remake isn’t an exclusive. At the end of the trailer it states, “First on PlayStation 4.”

    “Yeah… the only thing that fell flat on it’s face, is this article!” – You’re judging an article yet you have appalling grammar? Come on man you’re not lending credibility to your argument here.

  • Ahmazin

    What exactly is wrong with my grammar? Perhaps it’s your reading comprehension. The fact that they work for a publication, has nothing to do with their authentic reactions. They are still people and their reactions are just as valid as anyone else’s

    But here:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vUyF_FbidWk

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zD1QmZna1e4

    Did Microsoft’s presentation inspire people to make dedicated videos expressing their complete joy of what happened at Sony’s presentation?:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vQ1DT-uMOas

    Sony made the dreams of millions come true with the announcement of the remake of FFVII and Shenmue 3.Perhaps you and the author of this article just do not understand the depth and the breathe of what those two games means to the gaming community of gamers that grew up, when games were rock solid and complete, from day one.

    Microsoft’s conference, though very good, will be forgotten by the end of the holiday season. People will talk about the E3 that Sony announced the remake of FFVII and Shenmue 3 for years! I know I will NEVER forget it!

  • http://grahampeter.co.za/ GrahamZA

    Yes, people have been asking for a Final Fantasy VII remake for years — I’m one of them — but not decades. A game being released 18 years ago does not equate to decades, does it?

    I’ll reiterate this again: “Final Fantasy VII Remake isn’t an exclusive. At the end of the trailer it states, “First on PlayStation 4.”” Did you not read that bit?

    Great, Sony let the developer on stage for a game we’ve all been wanting. Remember Shenmue 3 is now only on Kickstarter and coming end of 2017.

  • JD

    actually, Shenmue hit it’s goal in about 12 hours (surprised it took that long), so kickstarter is irrelevant. Sony is taking it from here.

  • brusselsproty

    So how’s that now going to work, are the people who paid into Kickstarter going to be refunded by Sony or get the game for free on release ?.

  • Ahmazin

    Why are you stuck on the fact, that it’s not exclusive. Frankly, I don’t care about it’s exclusivity. I care that it’s being made. People have been wanting these games for years! The Last Guardian had become a myth… Then there it was, with a release year.

    My point is even though Microsoft had a good conference, it will be forgotten in a matter of months. Microsoft gave it fans what they typically give them. Halo, Gears, Forza, Fable, with a sparse few new IP’s trickled in, that the fan base won’t buy anyway. (I’m probably the only person who plays Ori and the Blind Forest on my XB1 from my friend’s list). Everyone else is playing some kind of shooter or watching netflix. It was a nice presentation, but forgettable.

    Sony on the other hand, announced 3 IP’s that were pretty much considered NEVER going to exist. Games that people have been asking for and wanting for YEARS! Literally YEARS!

    I understand, you just don’t get it. You don’t get the passion and joy one would feel for something that you have wanted for so long, and you NEVER thought it would EVER happen… Then like magic, there it is. But not just one title, like The Last Guardian, Not just two, like FFXII, but Shenmue 3 as well!!!

    You can dismiss it if you want… But the videos I’ve shown everyone, are evidence, that those announcements at Sony’s conference meant something. It meant a lot, to a lot of people that had been hoping for so long… and their dreams finally are coming true! People with tears in their eyes! You think they care if it’s exclusive or not?

    That’s what you and the person that wrote this article, don’t understand. Microsoft placated it’s fans. Sony was the freakin’ Make a Wish Foundation during it’s presentation!!!

  • Revolver Ocelot

    Xbox fanboys are going nuclear because once again MS failed to meet the hype. It’s such a shame.

  • MG

    No, you’d best just stop now. Your fanboyism is absolutely insane. Take Sony’s cock outta your mouth before you speak boy.

  • MG

    Dude anyone can post reaction videos of people being idiots. In fact I think this video is just detrimental to your argument. It seems like this game is essentially for retards.

  • brusselsproty

    The reaction from real Xbox fans when Phil Spencer announced backward compatibility.

  • john smith

    That’s called fanboy delirium! Also, keep in mind that opinions are just opinions.

  • http://www.projectspark.com coip

    Agreed 100%. I’ve been following E3 for decades. Never missed one of them. Sony’s E3 2015 conference was one of the weakest in years. Microsoft blew them away: more exclusives coming THIS YEAR (I counted at least seven), more new IP, more new innovations, more new features, more new partnerships, and that HoloLens Minecraft demo was astonishing.

    In contrast, Sony’s major announcements were 1. a game you’ve been waiting six years now already is now only another year away (hooray?), 2. one new IP, 3. a remake of a two-decade-old game (yawn), and 4. a kickstarter for a game that has never even been on Playstation before and won’t arrive for another 2.5 years, at best. Sony has had one significant AAA exclusive in 2014, and no more coming this year. They really got embarrassed by Microsoft here.

  • Tied

    I’ll be excited about backwards compatibility on the One when it shows that it won’t be like the “backwards compatibility” on the 360.

  • Jimmy Jangle

    And it already shows that, have you tried it?

    No?

    Well f*ck off then.

  • brusselsproty

    Look and learn –

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kjblk1ADq9k

    Some frequent stuttering points in the 360 version run perfectly smooth on X1, but not all
    -Texture pop-in is vastly improved. While not perfect, there are many instances where it no longer happens at all
    -Load times are shorter. In this video it was 4 seconds, but when replaying the same scene later, it was as low as 2
    -Character lighting appears to be darker, except on their skin
    -ME1’s somewhat clunky controls are less of an issue with the X1’s controller
    -Some cutscenes appear to end slightly quicker, as a result of no momentary slowdowns when changing camera angles/animations/etc.

  • JD

    Is this real life? do people actually believe this clearly biased nonsense ? Microsoft announces backwards compatibility and 2 games that everyone knew was coming with very niche fanbases, and that is great? I’m sorry, that is insane. All Microsoft did is prove their critics right, when it comes to gaming, all they have is shooters. I mean seriously. what do you have other than what everyone knew was coming? nothing. Sony announced things that people want, but as far as we knew, were not going to get.

    Microsoft did nothing but give people what they already knew
    they were going to get. It’s like getting a paycheck. It’s good, it’s great,
    but you knew it was coming. There is no surprise here.

    With Sony, you still get your paycheck your Uncharted, your
    last of us, Persona 5 , Star Ocean you usual stable of games of high quality in
    multiple genres.

    But you get more than that, you get Shenmue 3, you get the
    FF remake people have been asking for ,for decades.

    Oh, and on top of that Sony decides to announce that
    Microsoft’s buddies are jumping ship (Activision/COD).

    And Microsoft is somehow better? I’m sorry, but that is a
    really bad joke.

    I’m not going to say Sony’s was world changing, it wasn’t.
    It was just Sony establishing itself as what it has been known for. High
    quality games, in different genres, games every gamer can play. Whether they
    prefer shooters, RPGs, action, sim…..whatever.

    All Microsoft did is try REALLY hard not to lose what they
    already have, Sony did something to GROW their brand.

    They are not close, Microsoft didn’t fail at anything. But
    Sony is moving forward, Microsoft is looking back. i.e. halo, gears, literally
    backwards compatibility.

  • john smith

    MS showed many more big exclusives than Sony did and most of them will be released this year – fact. I don’t care what anyone’s personal preferences are E3 is about the games and MS showed more. Half of Sony’s big guns were in fact multiplats! I’m not hating on Sony but all the fanboy delirium over 3 outdated games (2 of which are multiplat) needs to stop for sanity’s sake.
    Also, Sony was the only one that announced things that people wanted? You’re clearly too far up Sony’s ass to take seriously.
    I’d also like to know what’s up with this “high quality” nonsense?
    Most of your points seem to be based off of personal opinion rather than fact.

  • JD

    No they didn’t.they showed 2 exclusives a very small group of gamers in general care about(that group being Microsoft FPS fans).and aI bunch of games that amount to nothing really exciting. And I have to be up Sony’s ass to say that a new shenmue game is bigger than a new shooter from Microsoft.I’m sorry, that’s silly. What I mean by high quality is who’s games are everyone talking about year after year. You may get tired of hearing about how great last of us is, or how many awards uncharted got this time around. The reason for that is that Sony has better games. I don’t care if Microsoft announced two games everyone on earth knew was coming.That’s not exciting, that’s expected. Sony showed games large swaths of gamers wanted for years, and had no idea was on the horizon.no comparison.That’s why if you look around in the gaming media, do you know who’s E3 they are still talking about? Not Microsoft’s, why is that? Because they are an afterthought now. You can like Microsoft, and sing from the rafters Microsoft has more exclusives.sure in number, but what is the biggest exclusive of the year? Not from Microsoft. And it’s like that year after year.this isn’t new.having exclusives is nice, but not if they are forgotten inside of 90 days. Like literally every Microsoft exclusive has been this generation.except titan fall, and that’s because of how massive of a failure it was. Sorry buddy, time to wake up.there is no war, Microsoft did nothing at. E3 to be cheered, they did the bare minimum and looked to their past to try to hold on to what they have.It’s sad when you think if what they could’ve been.But reality check, they aren’t.Sorry

  • john smith

    The first sentence in that wall of text told me everything I need to know about you. You’re a delirious PS fanboy! Move along asshole I won’t waist any time with you or anyone as irrational like you.

  • JD

    Translation, you can’t really debate the facts of the situation.And the gaming worlds responses more than back up what I’m saying. Because unless you believe halo fans make up 53% of gamers, you are clearly a fanboy.grow up buddy, just man up and admit you are wrong.no need to go all 3rd grade with insults. Microsoft just isn’t what you clearly want it to be.time to start dealing with that fact now.it’ll be ok

  • JD

    For future reference it’s ok to just day that you were wrong, and move in with life. I hope you get better at that one day

  • kingbain90

    You are absolutely retarded. Lol small niche fanbase? Have you seen how much Halo games sale? Go check the score board kid it’s sold more, won more award, has higher score reviews than all those games on PS. Jrpgs is a small niche market thats what Sony showed.

    You have a low budget kick starter, a puzzler thats been in development for years and look last gen, a multiplate indie we knew about, a multiplat remake and Uncharted 4 which we already knew about. Other than Horizon Sony had nothing.

    Halo the best selling console exclusive, Gears highly rated series, Recore a new action adventure, new pro controller better than scuf, BACKWARDS COMPATIBILITY the show stopper, Rare replay, Forza 6 which just shit on all racers currently out, a handful of others, and most of these out in 2015! Unlike over in “sparse” land. And Crackdown, Scalebound, QB still coming.

    Your whole argument is laughable

  • JD

    the situation.

    Halo is not the highest selling console exclusive. Not even
    close, it barely cracked the top 20 in highest selling games of the past. And that
    was Halo 3……aren’t you up to 5 now? The highest selling halo was halo 3 which
    sold 11 million. Out of 83 million
    Microsoft gamers that is BARELY over 10%. That is a small niche of gamers.

    And for the record, the ONLY halo game to win ONE game of
    the year is halo 2, NO OTHER HALO HAS EVER WON ANYTHING.

    Uncharted, the last of us, and numerous other Sony
    exclusives win awards in multiples of 10. Again, it’s not close. But that isn’t
    what this is about.

    If you want to like it, that’s fine. But please, PLEASE stop
    thinking it’s this transcendent better than everything else video game. Because
    it’s not even close.

    And in case you are curious, Mario dumps all over halo, it’s
    almost embarrassing in this day and age really. Even though Nintendo struggles
    EVERY Mario related game that came out during the same time span DOUBLED or
    almost TRIPLED halo sales.

    I don’t mean lifetime all time series sales, I mean single
    games released in the last 5-10 years.

    So like I said, it is a VERY small group of niche gamers. It’s
    LESS than 10 million, or I should say it WAS less than 10 million after the
    follow up to the best halo game came out. Now that is established.

    So we have halo and gears, two games everyone knew was
    coming that are niche games. We have a racing game which is an even smaller
    niche. We have backwards compatibility, which stopped nothing. Did you see the
    reactions from E3? See many people jumping around and excited about backwards
    compatibility? Get real. It’s a nice feature, but it’s not going to sell any
    consoles by itself. These are facts.

    Sony’s E3 is the one that everyone is STILL talking about.
    Take out the smaller titles announced, because they don’t seem like that big of
    a deal. But announcing 2 HUGE franchises that people have been asking for , for
    YEARS (technically 3 with the last guardian, but I’m with you, that is a pretty
    small niche too)

    Let’s be realistic, Shenmue was the biggest exclusive
    announced. It says a lot about a game that it makes 3 million dollars in
    essential pre-orders 24 hours after being announced. And of course FFVII sold a
    LOT more and was MUCH higher reviewed than any halo game ever has been (don’t
    forget FF7 was a PS exclusive, though the remake will be a timed exclusive).

    By comparison, Microsoft did very little. Microsoft did the
    bare minimum, nothing unexpected, nothing really new. Just a outdated feature,
    and a few old franchises that everyone knew was coming. Sorry, but they need to
    do much better than that.

  • kingbain90

    After all that and you still failed. Sells more than any PS exclusive and can only be touch by Mario thanks for admitting. 11 million buys isn’t considered niche? While Sony exclusive are lucky to sell past 5 million.

    I’ll take Halo 5, Recore, BC,Sea of Thieves, Elite pad, Gears 4, Fable, Forza over a Japanese indie kick starter, Uncharted 4, a timed remake, Horizon and a delayed ps3 game that will release after almost a decade.

  • JD

    Really? It was said halo was the biggest selling, best reviewed, most award winning exclusive franchise. I point out that only I’ve game in the series cracked the top 20 (19) of console exclusives for that generation.point out it’s won a total of one award, and point out that 11 million out of 85 million (the 360 sales total) is a minority…..But I fail? Wow, delusion is strong with you isn’t it? And you are more than welcome to prefer the lineup, but as pretty much proven by game and console sales, you are very much in the minority. Which is pretty much what I’ve said the whole time, thanks for making the point for me.

  • kingbain90

    Lol Halos won one award you say? Learn your facts

    have you seen sales of games at all even multiplates done sell as much as halo does on 2 let alone 1 platform. Halos sold more than any PS exclusive sooo…..what does that tell you? TR sold 8 million last gen and was considered a hit. Halo 4 sold around what? 10-11 mill on just 1 console. Compare Halo to any exclusive or even multiplates and it’s numbers competes with just about any game. 1 out of 7 360 owners bought Halo, that sounds pretty good to me. Very few games can say this.

  • JD

    I’m not sure you understand reality here.let me repeat it, ONE game of the year award, for halo 2.That’s it. And it’s nowhere near the best selling exclusive for any console.It’s the 19th best selling exclusive. So yeah, no. Sorry junior, you can like halo and that’s cool.But it’s not the greatest in any regard, not one.do ayou quick Google search, it’s not hard to confirm.You like it, that’s cool.But in the world of gaming, it’s barely a blip to anyone but hardcore halo fans.time to come to grips with reality. 11 million out of 85 isn’t one out of seven.your math fails. Funny you mention PlayStation exclusives not being on the radar, especially since PlayStation exclusives win HUNDREDS of game of the year awards. Uncharted the original won at least 10. You know last of us won hundreds. You have a really funny definition of “not on the radar”.lol

    Sorry buddy, Microsoft and halo isn’t what you want it to be. Face facts, it just isn’t

  • kingbain90

    Go read halo 3 and halo 4 wiki page, it’ll do the talking for me. You’ll see the game of the year awards, the sales records, ect. Call me when Uncharted sell over 9 million.

  • JD

    Go ahead and Google game of the year winners. Not wiki pages were gamers like you put whatever they want.lol

    Sorry junior, halo has NOTHING other than a single game of the year award for halo 2.

    Halo is nothing compared to basically anything that matters

  • kingbain90

    Lol dat denial your deny halo 3 and 4 won goty award. Hell halo 4 has a goty edition lol dumbass. Your links aren’t working. go look at gta sales on 360 and go look at Halo 3s identical. Go look at uncharted 5.5 million lol. Go look at Halos 97 meta score. It kills you on the inside knowing Halo is the highest selling exclusive on 360 and more than any on ps3. Live with it

  • JD

    Your joking right? Lol. Just because a game gets a game of the year edition doesn’t mean it actually won a game of the year award.lmfao….Are you new to gaming? Seriously?LMAO!!! Game of the year editions is a way to get people to buy all the dlc long after release. Good Lord bro, you are hilarious. Yes, halo is the best selling exclusive of Microsoft…..The problem is, it’s also the only game worth a damn on the system.hence, the joke status of this article.get it now?

  • JD

    Time to wake up and realize that halo isn’t what you think it is, and that microsoft isn’t what you want it to be.

  • http://www.projectspark.com coip

    Microsoft showed off 7 exclusive games coming this year, and 2 new exclusives coming next year, in addition to the 4 exclusives coming next year they already had announced.

  • sleepyc

    This is probably the most delusional article I have seen in some time. Either that, or it is paid astroturfing.

    I actually laughed out loud, and had to login just to share the love.

    Oh well, maybe next generation for Xbox, since they lost this one.

  • Jimmy Jangle

    Citation needed.

  • Andrew Edwards

    I really wanted to see the console refreshed based on 20nm chipsets, finally though with DLNA and media player the PS4 continues to grab my interest, I just hope for the ‘slim’ to be released before xmas15.

  • Swan Lee

    Yep glad to see a fair assessment of what really happened. Sony’s show was all fanboy fodder but it actually had very little about exclusives that were coming out anytime soon. Sony does this every E3, giving fanboys pats on the head while not really announcing anything worthwhile.

  • Revolver Ocelot

    Haha, shitlaslang, one of Tim Dog’s merry ass kissers.

    You got destroyed again. Deal with it.

  • Revolver Ocelot

    Still got the tinfoil hat on, huh, shitlaslang? When’s the Xbone getting some games? When’s Quatman gonna stop pissing the bed?

  • Revolver Ocelot

    Fantastic clickbait. The Xbone got slapped around, and everyone knows it.

  • http://www.projectspark.com coip

    Seven exclusive games coming out this year on Xbox One versus zero coming out for PlayStation 4. Now who got “slapped around”? Sony, and everyone who isn’t in denial knows it.

  • Revolver Ocelot

    First major Shitbox release is in August, and I’m being generous. That’s just pathetic. But then you’re a known Xbox rodent.

  • http://www.projectspark.com coip

    You know nothing about me or about gaming.
    Pathetic? Pathetic is your competitor having 7 exclusives coming out this year while you have 0. That’s pathetic.

  • Revolver Ocelot

    I already addressed this delusion. Go back to waiting for games. :)

  • http://www.projectspark.com coip

    I don’t have to “wait” for games because I own an Xbox One, which has 7 exclusives coming this year, and will have 100+ additional games added to the library via backwards compatibility with Xbox 360, all of that versus 0 exclusives coming this year on PS4 and no backwards compatibility. Looks like Sony is taking their “Greatness Awaits” slogan a little too literally. Boom.

  • Revolver Ocelot

    You are waiting if you’re using the future tense, dipshit. Meanwhile the PS4 had an excellent selection right bow and a thicker lineup for the rest of the year.

    $349 to play the games you played years ago. Greatness? Never coming to the Corpsebox None. :)

  • MG

    Xbox One has an excellent selection. PS4 has some shit no one cares about. Try again, next time take Sony’s **ck outta your mouth.

  • Revolver Ocelot

    Xbone has a whole lot of nothing while the PS4 has the games people want. “But I don’t like it so it doesn’t count!!!” Get a grip. :)

  • MG

    Incorrect. Microsoft has it both ways, the PC games and the XB1 exclusives. Sony has their exclusives, which are slowly but surely becoming not exclusives. Just like how FF7 remake will be on PC and XB1.

  • Revolver Ocelot

    Yeah, Halo and Forza. Wow, what a lineup.

    You lost Killer Instinct as well. What a shame. Stay hoping you get FF7.

  • MG

    You assume I care if games are exclusive or not. This isn’t some kind of cock waving fest, the XB1 is just the better system.

  • Revolver Ocelot

    So you can’t justify it then. Wow, what a weak console.

  • http://www.projectspark.com coip

    Killer Instinct isn’t a lost exclusive. Like all of Microsoft’s forthcoming “PC” games, it’s only available as an Xbox game for Windows 10. It will be sold in Microsoft’s Windows Store only, require an Xbox account, and use Xbox Live (just like Project Spark does now). So when biased fanboys in denial like Revolver Ocelot try to downplay the fact that Xbox is destroying Playstation when it comes to AAA exclusives by trying to claim that many of Xbox One’s exclusives are on “PC” or are going to be, it’s okay to point out that that is not the case. The new state of Xbox is device agnostic: Xbox games will be cross-play and cross-buy, available on many Windows 10 devices (consoles, computers, tablets, and phones). They’re still Xbox exclusives.

  • http://www.projectspark.com coip

    I’m not waiting, actually, because backwards compatibility got unlocked several days ago. The Xbox 360 titles are rolling in.
    You’re very confused. The Xbox One had more AAA exclusives in 2013, more in 2014, and is set to have more in 2015 as well. Go buy an abacus.

    I never owned an Xbox 360 before so all of those hundreds of titles are brand new to me.

  • Revolver Ocelot

    20 emulated games for the unpaid guinea pigs. Suppose it gives you something to do while you wait for remasters.

    Learn to count. The PS4 has had consistently more games since launch. Deal with it.

  • http://www.projectspark.com coip

    You are the one who needs to count. The Xbox One has destroyed PS4 every year in AAA exclusives: more in 2013, more in 2014, and now on pace for more in 2015. Just look at E3 2015 alone: 7 exclusives coming to Xbox One this year versus 0 for PS4. That’s merely a slice of the same pie that we’ve seen every years since both consoles launched. PlayStation 4 fanboys are in some serious denial. These are quantifiable measures. It’s a rout.

  • Revolver Ocelot

    Still wrong, coip the shill. PS4 has more games this year, even after UC4 and R&C got pushed back. What a shame for you.

    That’s two exclusives no matter how hard you try and spin it. Between that and no games until August it’s been a spectacularly bad year for the Shitbox Done.

  • http://www.projectspark.com coip

    Not even close–especially with backwards compatibility now in action. Xbox One has way more AAA exclusive games. It’s actually really embarrassing how far behind Sony is. The gap is widening. You’re in some serious denial.

  • Revolver Ocelot

    Only thing embarrassing is seeing Xbox rodents try and sell emulation as a crutch for your piss poor lineup.

    The gap sure is widening – between reality and the ditch of denial idiots like you cower in. :)

  • http://www.projectspark.com coip

    Considering the PS4 has, every year, lagged behind the Xbox One in AAA exclusives, that’s a pretty ironic statement to make.

  • Revolver Ocelot

    Already dealt with. “Bu bu but dem deep MS pockets”

  • http://www.projectspark.com coip

    Lying by omission, stemming from ignorance, is not “dealing with it”; it’s merely further embarrassing yourself.

  • Revolver Ocelot

    Stay desperate. Peggle 2!

  • http://www.projectspark.com coip

    Peggle 2 is excellent. After a long wait, it’s finally on PS4 now. Sure, you can’t get it for free via EA Access like we can on Xbox One (because Sony won’t let you), but it’s still worth the purchase. I recommend it.

  • Revolver Ocelot

    Dat hot AAA exclusive. Isn’t that the Puzzle Bobble rip off?

    “Free” on EA Access. I don’t have much time for that con, sorry.

  • http://www.projectspark.com coip

    Why don’t you instead tell me all about those great ‘free’ games on PS+. You won’t. Because you’re a hypocrite. Go back into your cave like the little troll that you are. The only think more pathetic than a paid shill is a volunteer one.

  • Revolver Ocelot

    I won’t because EA Access and PS+ have little in common.

    Keep paying extra for stuff you should be getting with XBLG, drone.

  • http://www.projectspark.com coip

    You’re right: EA Access is a good deal; PS+ is a ripoff.

  • Revolver Ocelot

    No, a good deal is getting those deals with XBLG like you’re supposed to. But we all know Xbox rodents like taking it rough so there we are.

  • damian

    Game value is subjective. I hate forza but not because its a bad game. 24 car multiplayer, water and weather and day night are amazing. Sony first party and third party exclusives are very exciting too. The argument is which platform offered the most yay.

    Microsoft
    Direct x 12 coming
    Updated interface with smart assistant
    Pro controller
    Backwards compatibility on ALL 360 games except kinect developer just has to say ok (legal issues not technical)
    Vr compatible (a surprise)
    7 exclusive or timed in the next six months
    Hololens this is a party trick at this point but still amazing to watch
    Preview program
    Mod support

    Xbox went above and beyond. Yes, they needed to. Both Xbox and PS communities were having a field day.

    Play station did well. I don’t think it was awful. They didn’t need to fix much and what they needed to fix they did. Looking at you dlna streaming.

    Microsoft has been a pain in the ass for three years. I personally understand why. They changed their minds, retreated, got lost, regrouped.

    If Sony had a console year one e3 they would have taken the conference. They didn’t, because they have a good console.

    Microsoft announced a brand new console and said if you buy it we will give you a 360. Trade in your old one or come back to playing it.

    Microsoft got a redo, Sony didn’t need one, however anyone announcing a new console always gets to claim the lion share of E3. Next year it will be Nintendo. I’m ok with it because all of these companies are made of people that work hard to do what they think is best, yes they have ups and downs. When they are up they should be acknowledged and when they are down they should acknowledge it.

    I mean yo momma and suck something and [insert platform here] rulzzz

  • Revolver Ocelot

    Because of the notorious complexity of the Cell processor, genius.

  • John Henry

    I dont care what micro wimp shouts /They been screaming ,most of this for years , and we will never see half of it , windows 10 instantly sucks 2 and half maybe 3 gig of system memory away from the xbox one performance . Which it barely has any performance as it is now . All I can see is even worse frame rate bottle necks and memory errors on the xbone front . This is just microwimp tossing money around trying to “APPEAR” tp know what they are doing . focus on the word “APPEAR” it is all they have .

  • Hello

    Clearly this guy is a stupid fanboy, I kinda agreed until u talked about holo lens and vr. Also I don’t know how much it matters to others but I’d rather unrushed titles rather than rushed ones, if they happen to come out around November they are over or under developed to be released at that time js