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T O P I C
Lies, Damn Lies, and Libel
July 3rd 2000, 00:43 CEST by andy

Following the recent discussion about libel laws and how they affect sites such as PlanetCrap, we invited one of our regular visitors to write about the subject. Steve Bauman is a working journalist with ten years experience.



Lies, Damn Lies, and Libel
Steve Bauman

In her book "The Argument Culture: Moving from Debate to Dialogue," linguist Deborah Tannen talks about how modern discourse has evolved from thoughtful and complex discussions of issues into polarized and antagonistic arguments that manage to turn every issue into a metaphorical battle in which one participant needs to win. One of the most dangerous effects of this "argument culture," as Tannen describes it, is that it creates "an atmosphere of animosity that spreads like a fever." Nowhere is this more obvious than in online forums, where even the most innocent discussions usually degenerate into mudslinging and name-calling.

"The argument culture urges us to approach the world -- and the people in it -- in an adversarial frame of mind," explains Tannen. "It rests on the assumption that opposition is the best way to get anything done: The best way to discuss an idea is to set up a debate; the best way to cover news is to find spokespeople who express the most extreme, polarized views and present them as 'both sides'; the best way to settle disputes is litigation that pits one party against the other…."

People with opposing or balanced viewpoints are usually labelled anything from ass-kissers to apologists. The reality is that these may represent alternative viewpoints that could enrich the discussion; unfortunately, as Tannen says, "The legitimate, necessary denunciation is muted, even lost, in the general cacophony of oppositional shouting."

When people are asked why they're so confrontational online or via e-mail, one response is usually, "That's the only way they'll understand you're serious." Tannen acknowledges this, saying "…current conventional wisdom often devalues less confrontational tactics even if they work well, favoring more aggressive strategies even if they get less favorable results. It's as if we value a fight for its own sake, not for its effectiveness in resolving disputes."

The general thinking seems to be, why be Gandhi when you can be Patton? Why poke them with a stick when you can club them over the head? Why have a civil exchange when you can sue the bastard and make them pay? Where we'd once try to resolve issues in private, now we use public forums to air our grievances. And when that doesn't satiate our desire for justice, we turn to litigation.

The spread of online forums and near-ubiquitous "rant-filled" personal homepages has forced average Joes and Janes to suddenly be intimately familiar with the existence of libel laws; if you're not familiar with them, you should be. You could be at risk when you elect to post anything online, whether you're posting under your own name, completely anonymously or relaying the anonymous posting of someone else.

The Associated Press Stylebook and Libel Manual (Sixth Trade Edition) defines libel as "injury to reputation… words, pictures or cartoons that expose a person to public hatred, shame, disgrace or ridicule, or induce an ill opinion of a person." In order to claim defamation of its products or services, a company must show actual damages, such as a loss of business.

With that definition in mind, think back to every heated exchange you've had on a message board, or every e-mail sent while angry… oh dear.

Libel laws were allegedly introduced as a more civilized alternative to the ancient art of duelling. They were designed to preserve the dignity and protect the reputation of an individual. Over the years they've been adapted to allow a free press to report on touchy (and potentially damaging) items that are in the public interest and, as the press have become more tabloid-like and driven by money, to protect the public from a more predatory press.

However, to some, libel saws are about the suppression of free speech. The United States legal system is flawed in large part because of its flexibility; it's quite open to exploitation. This is particularly true for libel laws. The laws themselves aren't inherently the problem; rather, it's the mere threat of legal action (and the costs involved with any lawsuit) that's able to instil fear in most people and businesses. This creates the impression that wealthy individuals or corporations can effectively squelch free speech even when what's being said isn't necessarily libellous. Organizations such as the ACLU will occasionally step in and try such a case, especially if it's guaranteed to draw a lot of media attention.

The United States has, over the last 30 years, refined libel laws and their relation to the press and public figures. Public figures are given less protection from libel because the Supreme Court ruled that, because they have access to the media, they have more opportunities to defend themselves and their reputation. In order for a public figure to win a libel suit against the press, he or she needs to prove the publication acted maliciously; "malice" in this instance doesn't mean ill will or intent to harm, rather that the publication knew that the libellous information was false, acted with reckless disregard for the truth and printed the material anyway.

(English law makes no distinction between private and public figures and puts the burden of proving the truth of libellous statements on the defence, which requires the co-operation of the plaintiff. However, in the United States, lawsuits involving public figures require the plaintiffs to prove all libellous statements as being false.)

Libel laws are absolutely relevant to anything that occurs on the Internet. The only question is whether or not the "public figure" clause of libel suits should be applied to online speech. With any online publication, the number of people who witnessed the libel can be tracked, and the person or company that's been libelled can (more) easily reply. And in a sense, we're all publishers when writing message board posts or creating personal webpages, as publication occurs when information is communicated by traditional or electronic means to someone other than the person defamed.

While the press and individuals and corporations have always been at odds with each other, libel laws are now being applied more and more to matters between individuals; in a sense they're becoming the legal equivalent of a pissing match. Even the threat of a libel suit is enough to stop any discussion. These sorts of cases seem for the most part unnecessary and wasteful, fuelled less by rational logic than driven by emotion and anger. They serve only to dilute the public's perception of why libel laws are even needed in the first place.

This doesn't mean that the principles behind libel laws should be ignored, or that issues should not be passionately discussed. But as we move toward an acceptance of tabloid journalism there's more of a blending of fact and fiction, a tendency for publications (be it literal publications or individuals "publishing" on a message board) to produce an entertaining story rather than a true one. Before people start throwing libel lawsuits around, they need to consider context; a casual message board is not the New York Times.

We should still hold any press entity to a higher standard of accountability; readers need to be able to believe that they're reading is as accurate as possible. However, according to the AP Stylebook, most libel cases stem from "factual error or inexact language." It's this type of human error that becomes grounds for lawsuits, but we have to protect honest mistakes and not clog our court system with lawsuits that could be solved with a simple apology. (As an aside, it should be standard practice for all publications, both online and print, for corrections and apologies to get equal promotion as the original incorrect story.)

As a general rule, the truth remains the best defence against a libel claim. As long as you can show that what you've written or posted is accurate, you can't be found guilty. Language can be used to soften potentially libellous comments-in other words, it's not so much what you say but how you say it. But you have to keep one thing in mind: anyone, or any company, can sue you for libel over almost any comment. You can also be sued for quoting something libellous. The First Amendment generally protects opinion unless it can be proven that the facts upon which the opinion is based are false or defamatory.

These are just a few of the risks you run when "publishing" any material, and why individuals need to bone up on libel laws.


Related links:


C O M M E N T S
Home » Topic: Lies, Damn Lies, and Libel

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#1 by ""
2000-07-03 00:47:29
<i>Thinking...</i>
#2 by "Maarten Goldstein"
2000-07-03 00:48:17
maarten@ritualistic.com http://www.ritualistic.com
Oops :)
#3 by "Steve Bauman"
2000-07-03 00:50:16
sbauman@adelphia.net http://homepages.together.net/~sbauman/
Y'know, if I hadn't tried to do this at 4:00AM this morning, I mighta tied in the intro to the rest of the piece a whole lot better... something about increased online aggression leading to more potential libel cases, blah blah blah.
#4 by "Darkseid-[D!]"
2000-07-03 01:47:47
darkseid-d@planetcrap.com http://www.captured.com/boomstick
nicely written

*reads more*

Ds<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#5 by "Talion"
2000-07-03 01:59:16
talion6@hotmail.com
What about the effect of anonymity on Internet libel issues?

Steve points out that we all are in a sense publishers on the Interent.  Are we public figures?  Let's say someone libels me on a PC message board.  My character has been tarnished...except it hasn't.  None of you know who this "Talion" person is.  I could change my name and resurface with a clean slate.  This is true for 99% of people on the Internet...they can drop the alias they are using, or assume one if they haven't already (ie, if we all shout Maarten Goldstein down for doing a "Thinking..." post, he can post here as BillyBob and we'd never be the wiser).

In my opinion (ie the opinion of someone who learned everything he knows about libel from this article) I can not be libelled here.  There's no way to make anything "stick".  Worst case, I have to use some proxys to avoid my flashcom.net showing up with my new alias' posts.

People like Scott Miller, Steve Bauman, etc. do not have this luxury because they work in the industry.  People associated with mods and other lower profile, noncommerical roles might still have some sort of "public standing" even if they are working under an alias.

But for everyone else, I'm not sure libel's such an issue.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#6 by "Steve Bauman"
2000-07-03 02:08:49
sbauman@adelphia.net http://homepages.together.net/~sbauman/
<quote>What about the effect of anonymity on Internet libel issues? </quote>
Posting anonymously doesn't protect you because someone could probably find out your true idendity (you're never really truly anonymous). And while it's easy enough to switch anonymous identities to "reset" your reputation, that doesn't mean you couldn't sue.
#7 by "Twitch"
2000-07-03 02:13:38
twitch@gamepig.com http://www.gamepig.com
Interesting article, and well-written. I don't agree, however, that the accessibility of the legal system is a "flaw," so much as a necessary evil.  The stereotype of a country with litigation run amok is more of a boogeyman than a reality - there are no shortage of storied about outrageous "frivolous" suits...but there are very few follow-ups when the cases are disposed of. I've only been out of law school for a few years, but have never seen a truly "frivolous" case get to even the trial stage. Faulty bullshit detectors aren't any more common among judges than the general populace :)

Certainly, abuses exist, but there are already numerous safeguards against truly ungrounded suits - which are not particularly difficult (or expensive) to dispose of. As the article pointed out, civility and familiarization with libel laws are the best remedy for the "insta-threat" mentality.
#8 by "Craig"
2000-07-03 02:27:01
craigl@globalnet.co.uk http://www.planetcrap.com/crapspy/
Just a quick note for CrapSpy users... I put up some information on the <a href="http://www.planetcrap.com/crapspy/support.html">CrapSpy support page</a> on how to load all the topics at PC (not just the ones on the front page) into the CrapSpy topic list. So new users can still browse the older threads (even though you could just drag and drop a link from the archive anyway).

Craig<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#9 by "Ian"
2000-07-03 03:02:04
terrencelaukkanen@hotmail.com
<b>#Main Post</b> "andy" wrote...
<QUOTE>
The United States has, over the last 30 years, refined libel laws and their relation to the press and public figures. Public figures are given less protection from libel because the Supreme Court ruled that, because they have access to the media, they have more opportunities to defend themselves and their reputation.
</QUOTE>

In that case, if the courts make it harder for you to sue if you have access to media and can clear your name, (To use an example) Seth's (probably bluffing) threat to sue crash for libel for calling him a socialist has a snowball's chance in hell. Seth has access to the exact same media crash used (In this case, PlanetCrap), and in fact, has much more power over said media than crash did. Even if it went to court, Seth would be making a huge gamble. As he himself said that the odds were about even that he would lose. In other words, <b>he has a 60-40 chance of the courts deciding that he's a communist</b>. It seems that the United States government deciding in a court of law that Seth is the Red Menace is a much worse situation than an accusation stating the same thing on a relatively obscure message board.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#10 by "Steve Bauman"
2000-07-03 03:08:42
sbauman@adelphia.net http://homepages.together.net/~sbauman/
<quote>In that case, if the courts make it harder for you to sue if you have access to media and can clear your name,</quote>
It should be pointed out that it's harder to PROVE AND WIN a libel case, not harder to sue. Someone who is sued to for libel may lose even if they win if they're fired by their company or go bankrupt paying for a lawyer.

<quote>Seth has access to the exact same media crash used (In this case, PlanetCrap), and in fact, has much more power over said media than crash did.</quote>
It could also be argued that crash, being part of C|Net, is also a member of the media so is on equal footing.

If indeed the entire case hinged on crash's implication that Seth was a socialist/communist (he uses them interchangably, the law probably would not), it would be up to Seth to prove he was, indeed, not a socialist (despite the admission his wife was a registered socialist) and that crash was completely aware of his NOT being a socialist. Good luck, kids.

Of course in my little bit of research, I discovered that in England it would be up to crash to PROVE Seth was a socialist in order to defend his case. Of course he could ask, and Seth could say he was not, and crash could lose.
#11 by "Ryan Greene"
2000-07-03 03:20:42
rxgreene@netzero.com
Hey! You got content in my filler! You're making me think! Stop that! Dammit, I come here to rant, not think!

(tee hee)

Seriously though Steve, Great Article! You make you points without taking a aside and raise some interesting points... Imagine if you could call out someone who was talking trash about you, for a duel... Things would be different (not better, just different) in terms of both what was said, and how peoiple handled it.
#12 by "Andy"
2000-07-03 03:22:52
andy@planetcrap.com
<b>#10</b>, Steve Bauman:
<QUOTE>
Of course he could ask, and Seth could say he was not, and crash could lose.
</QUOTE>
<i>Seth vs crash, Simpsons version, the case concludes...</i>

<b>crash:</b> Are you a socialist?
<b>Seth:</b> Yes. Doh!

<b>Seth's lawyer:</b> Woohoo! I mean... um... orrrrb-<i>jection!</i>

<b>Judge:</b> Mr Krieg, are you sure about your answer?
<b>Seth:</b> Sorry, your honour, no. I didn't... hear the question.
<b>Judge:</b> Very well. Mr crash, please repeat the question.

<b>crash:</b> Are you a socialist?
<b>Seth:</b> Yes.
#13 by "flamethrower"
2000-07-03 03:38:57
flamey_at_evil@hotmail.com http://flamethrower.evilavatar.com
By all rights Gracelands Estates should be able to sue 3D-Reams to get their trademark back.
<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#14 by "Steve Bauman"
2000-07-03 03:44:58
sbauman@adelphia.net http://homepages.together.net/~sbauman/
<quote>Seth vs crash, Simpsons version, the case concludes... </quote>
<i>Cut to scene with Seth's lawyer</i>
<b>Seth's lawyer</b>...and when I stomp on your foot and ask if you're a socialist you reply...

<b>Seth:</b> Yes
#15 by "RahvinTaka"
2000-07-03 03:45:07
donaldp@mad.scientist.com
<b>#10</b> "Steve Bauman" wrote...
<QUOTE>socialist/communist (he uses them interchangably, the law probably would not), it would be up to Seth to prove he was, indeed, not a socialist (despite the admission his wife was a registered socialist) and that crash was completely aware of his NOT being a socialist. Good luck, kids.</QUOTE>

Did anyone actually believe that Seth actually contacted a lawyer ? When I first read it my BS detector went of the scale. Lets have a look at it logically.

* Lawyer giving odds ?? Not something that happens in my country thou it may be different elsewhere. Hell even doctors don't give odds because there has been cases against them for doing so. Maybe the lawyer may have been young/inexperienced/stupid or the law may not have applied in whatever country Seth belongs to.

* Both Seth AND his lawyer not understanding the differences between socialist/communist. Again it could be laid at the feet of incompetent lawyer or one who wasn only subject to Seths rose-colored view.

* The lawyer obviously not looking at available evidence such as PlanetCrap (how many lawyers do you know who follow this route ???)

So hands up anyone who thought Seth was not bluffing ?

Personally I though it was just a vindictive low blow aimed at getting crash fired. Revenge is sweet no ? Seth never struck me as the most mature or secure of individuals and this was the only way he could play ball I guess.

As a sidenote there are those who may be interested in:

[06.30.00]

Sony Drops Suit
Sony is withdrawing the patent infringement it had brought against Connectix. The suit, filed in February alleging that Connectix's Virtual Game Station Playstation emulator violated Sony patents, was dropped just one day before it was to go to trial. "While we recognize that Sony may still attempt to bring some of these claims back before the court at a later date, this represents the third victory in a row for Connectix in this case, said Connectix CEO Roy McDonald, "We hope that at some point Sony will recognize the merits of cooperating with us in giving added flexibility to consumers and fans of the PlayStation." Sony had two remaining copyright claims pending against Connectix.
<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#16 by "Steve Bauman"
2000-07-03 03:47:31
sbauman@adelphia.net http://homepages.together.net/~sbauman/
<quote>Dammit, I come here to rant, not think! </quote>
Watch what you say, mister!

Thanks for the feedback.

<quote>Imagine if you could call out someone who was talking trash about you, for a duel... Things would be different (not better, just different) in terms of both what was said, and how peoiple handled it. </quote>
This is a frightening prospect... it'd come down to who has the most and biggest... firepower. Hmm, it's always about sex, isn't it?
#17 by "RahvinTaka"
2000-07-03 03:50:05
donaldp@mad.scientist.com
<b>#14</b> "Steve Bauman" wrote...
<QUOTE>


<quote>Seth vs crash, Simpsons version, the case concludes... </quote>
<I>Cut to scene with Seth's lawyer</I>
<B>Seth's lawyer</B>...and when I stomp on your foot and ask if you're a socialist you reply...

<B>Seth:</B> Yes




</QUOTE>
hehe<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#18 by "RahvinTaka"
2000-07-03 03:54:19
donaldp@mad.scientist.com
<b>#11</b> "Ryan Greene" wrote...
<QUOTE>Imagine if you could call out someone who was talking trash about you, for a duel... Things would be different (not better, just different) in terms of both what was said, and how peoiple handled it. </QUOTE>

I put it to you that sueing is just a adpated form of dueling. At the start both parties brag, boast and intimidate the opposition. However during the duel it comes down to who is better and/or more sneaky. Better in current society has to do with amount of money and used to refer to how well you handled your rapier/gun/wit etc.

I prefer the western gunslinger duels as they have that whole sunset in the background thing going for them<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#19 by "RahvinTaka"
2000-07-03 04:35:35
donaldp@mad.scientist.com
Does anyone know the technical details of libel cases that occur over the internet when particpants are not in same country ?<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#20 by "Ryan Greene"
2000-07-03 04:38:21
rxgreene@netzero.com
RahvinTaka/Steve-

I agree...Both those thoughts had occured to me, but at least in the dueling, there was less money changing hands, and both parties recognized the (I hope) the consequences.

Now it is more a matter of putting your money where your mouth is.

Of course, my knowledge of dueling is limited to what pop culture has taught me.

Sad really.
#21 by "Steve Bauman"
2000-07-03 04:47:00
sbauman@adelphia.net http://homepages.together.net/~sbauman/
<quote>Does anyone know the technical details of libel cases that occur over the internet when particpants are not in same country ? </quote>
I don't have the links, but there are quite a few cases of people in England (in particular) suing Americans for libel, despite the libelous material being on servers located in the US. The reason this occurs in England is because the burden of proof is placed on the defendent as opposed to the accuser (which seems pretty backward to me).

In many cases, the person being sued just doesn't show up, loses the case and once it's realized the person has no real assets, the "winner" essentially gets nothing. This was the case when someone sued a college student in New York.

Those these aren't Internet cases, there was a recent case involving a man who was called a Holocaust denier in a book published in the US and was filed in England, in large part because it required the defendent to prove he WAS a denier.

And I believe Robert Maxwell sued Forbes for libel in England, despite the publication having a circ there of 2000/month (versus 800,000 in the US).
#22 by "RahvinTaka"
2000-07-03 04:59:38
donaldp@mad.scientist.com
<b>#21</b> "Steve Bauman" wrote...

Damn I thought I was safe here in Australia because you have to move mountains here to get libel through. Arg - maybe I should watch what I say ? Naaah, that would be no fun.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#23 by "Brandon 'GreenMarine' Reinhart"
2000-07-03 05:31:28
brandonr@3drealms.com http://www.3drealms.com
Okay, so my question is "WHERE THE HELL IS THE BATTLE.NET THREAD?"  Or is Blizzard too cool to bash on?
#24 by "Brandon 'GreenMarine' Reinhart"
2000-07-03 05:32:52
brandonr@3drealms.com http://www.3drealms.com
<A HREF="http://www.battle.net/forums/diablo2-realmstatus/posts/ka/10.shtml">http://www.battle.net/forums/diablo2-realmstatus/posts/ka/10.shtml</A>
#25 by "Dave Long"
2000-07-03 05:33:10
ogv@gamestats.com http://ogv.gamestats.com/
<quote>I don't have the links, but there are quite a few cases of people in England (in particular) suing Americans for libel, despite the libelous material being on servers located in the US. The reason this occurs in England is because the burden of proof is placed on the defendent as opposed to the accuser (which seems pretty backward to me).</quote>

If I'm not mistaken, this is the reason the British Tabloid Press is so out of control. They can print anything they want and pretty much not worry about being taken to court for it. I certainly wouldn't want to be a public figure in England for that very reason.
#26 by "Apache"
2000-07-03 05:47:53
<quote>Okay, so my question is "WHERE THE HELL IS THE BATTLE.NET THREAD?" Or is Blizzard too cool to bash on? </quote>

If you get the "Cannot connect to server" msg, go into your diablo II folder, delete your bnetcache and reconnect. still laggy, and your realm character shows up as as open dude, but it will get you on...

/me is pulling hair out over bnet conditions
#27 by "Paul"
2000-07-03 05:51:39
pab05f@mizzou.edu http://www.planethalflife.com/aerotic
Brandon:
It's difficult to plead ignorance when you ship 2 million, yes count them, 2 million copies out to stores.

Seems to me there is plenty of information to have a thread for this topic.
#28 by "Paul"
2000-07-03 05:55:12
pab05f@mizzou.edu http://www.planethalflife.com/aerotic
as far as blizzard is concerned, I still haven't gotten around to playing starcraft. I bought it right when it came out, and just haven't gotten the time. For some odd reason I played Dominion instead.

that was a mistake.

- Paul
#29 by "None-1a"
2000-07-03 06:06:53
none1a@home.com http://www.geocities.com/none-1a/
<b>#9</b> "Ian" wrote...
<QUOTE>In that case, if the courts make it harder for you to sue if you have access to
media and can clear your name, (To use an example) Seth's (probably bluffing)
threat to sue crash for libel for calling him a socialist has a snowball's
chance in hell. Seth has access to the exact same media crash used (In this
case, PlanetCrap), and in fact, has much more power over said media than crash
did. Even if it went to court, Seth would be making a huge gamble. As he himself
said that the odds were about even that he would lose. In other words, <B>he has
a 60-40 chance of the courts deciding that he's a communist</B>. It seems that
the United States government deciding in a court of law that Seth is the Red
Menace is a much worse situation than an accusation stating the same thing on a
relatively obscure message board.</QUOTE>

Yeap Seth wouldn't have had a case (no way to show he lost any thing from the exchange), crash on the other had could have had something, if Seth's bluff resulted in him being fired form C|net for it. O BTW being a comunist could acctauly be a good thing in the US (if you ever lose a job because of it or are not hired your protected)<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#30 by "Apache"
2000-07-03 06:21:54
the only "problem" with Diablo II is the fact that too many players want to have "realm" characters (officially sanctioned, legit, etc) which are hosted on Blizzard's servers and the characters are stored on said realm servers.

Open bnet games and single player work fine. <b>But</b> realm characters are where it's at, and anything less would be uncivilized to any self respecting Diabloholic.

Other than that, all the "reported bugs" are 99% driver related...
#31 by "Warren Marshall"
2000-07-03 06:58:19
warren@epicgames.com http://www.epicgames.com
Brandon :

Don't mean to be snippy ... but they have to shut down for an hour to make some modifications?  What's the issue exactly?  :)
#32 by "Carl Jarvis"
2000-07-03 08:23:38
carljarvis@home.com
I tried starting a realm character on B.net, and after getting to level 5 (not a big feat admittedly,) the game stopped and I got kicked into a chat channel with my character back at level 1.  Since then I've just played the SP game.  I figure I can wait a couple weeks and avoid having to redo chunks of the game.  I'm not that offended or maddened by it, however.  B.net is free, so I don't feel like I'm being ripped off.

One annoyance I did experience was that I played the SP game to level 10 (again, not a big investment, but still...), created a realm character of the same name just to mess around on B.net for a bit, and when I deleted the realm character it deleted my SP character.  I'm guessing that when I created the realm character it just overwrote my SP character, but it didn't even give me a warning about it.

Carl Jarvis
#33 by "Brandon 'GreenMarine' Reinhart"
2000-07-03 08:54:07
brandonr@3drealms.com http://www.3drealms.com
Warren, dude, go play the game.  The servers are perpetually down.  The link was just an interesting side note.  What I thought was interesting was the fact that the patch, which was to go in yesterday, has done nothing to alleviate the fact that nobody can play Diablo 2 on Battle.net.

Apache: Open games are irrelevant dude.  The attraction of playing on Battle.net is the Realm.
#34 by "Apache"
2000-07-03 08:57:05
I agree w/ that. It would be nice if the damn thing would come back up so I could win the game. my realm guy is <A HREF="http://www.gamefan.com/newspics/diablo2/final/bg24.jpg">level 27 now</a> and in act 4.
#35 by "Warren Marshall"
2000-07-03 09:21:48
warren@epicgames.com http://www.epicgames.com
Brandon :

Well, I've been playing, but just the single-player stuff ... haven't tried it online yet.  Every time I get an urge to play something online, Counter-Strike seems to override all other considerations.  ;)

And hey, you might find this interesting (or irritating) ... it turns out we CAN get cable modems here at Crossroads.  I have one now.  I don't know who got the bad information before.  :-/  Oh well ...
#36 by "Dethstryk"
2000-07-03 10:02:54
dethstryk@damagegaming.com http://www.damagegaming.com/
Someone post some kind of tips to stay awake, because after staying up this late and waking up so early, I'm gonna need it. Yeah it's off topic, but at least I'm not talking about Diablo II. ;)


--
Dethstryk
Damage Gaming
#37 by "Morn"
2000-07-03 10:10:27
morn@planetcrap.com http://www.planetcrap.com
<quote>
Okay, so my question is "WHERE THE HELL IS THE BATTLE.NET THREAD?" Or is Blizzard too cool to bash on?
</quote>

Where the hell is my Diablo 2?

:/

- Morn
<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#38 by "Dethstryk"
2000-07-03 10:28:40
dethstryk@damagegaming.com http://www.damagegaming.com/
<b>#37</b> "Morn" wrote...
<QUOTE>Where the hell is my Diablo 2?</QUOTE>
I'm picking mine up at Staples tomorrow. Can you believe this game is running for fifty to sixty bucks most places that I have seen? Damn Blizzard, you knew they would go after it, but did you really have to try and make *that* much? Sheesh.


--
Dethstryk
Damage Gaming
#39 by "PiRaMidA"
2000-07-03 10:29:09
piramida@agsm.net http://www.agsm.net/
<b>#34</b> "Apache" wrote...
<QUOTE>I agree w/ that. It would be nice if the damn thing would come back up so I could win the game. my realm guy is

level 27 now and in act 4. </QUOTE>

Apache: you're using thorns with level 27 paladin? why?!? :)<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#40 by "PiRaMidA"
2000-07-03 10:31:04
piramida@agsm.net http://www.agsm.net/
<b>#36</b> "Dethstryk" wrote...
<QUOTE>Someone post some kind of tips to stay awake, because after staying up this late and waking up so early, I'm gonna need it. </QUOTE>

Heh, what helps me is a cold shower and a cup of coffee of course, not some milked down version of coffee but the real thing. Oh and you can try sex, too.<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#41 by "Dethstryk"
2000-07-03 10:35:43
dethstryk@damagegaming.com http://www.damagegaming.com/
<b>#40</b> "PiRaMidA" wrote...
<QUOTE>Heh, what helps me is a cold shower and a cup of coffee of course, not some milked down version of coffee but the real thing. Oh and you can try sex, too.</QUOTE>
Cold shower? Man.. I don't know if I can handle that one. I've also never really been a coffee drinker. And what else.. my girlfriend won't be back till Tuesday. Besides that, sex usually makes me tired anyway.

Maybe I should try coffee? :)


--
Dethstryk
Damage Gaming
#42 by "Apache"
2000-07-03 10:41:28
<quote>Apache: you're using thorns with level 27 paladin? why?!? :) </quote>

One word -- LAG!

With thorns the monsters get hit back for about 400% damage of what they give you and it saves your ass when the lag kicks in :)
#43 by "Morn"
2000-07-03 10:48:13
morn@planetcrap.com http://www.planetcrap.com
<b>#38</b> "Dethstryk" wrote...
<QUOTE>I'm picking mine up at Staples tomorrow. Can you believe this game is running
for fifty to sixty bucks most places that I have seen?</QUOTE>

Interesting, it's around 80,- DM over here in Germany (both the German and English versions), which translates to roughly $35-$40. Yay! =)

- Morn
<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#44 by "PiRaMidA"
2000-07-03 11:27:13
piramida@agsm.net http://www.agsm.net/
<b>#42</b> "Apache" wrote...
<QUOTE>Apache: you're using thorns with level 27 paladin? why?!? :)


One word -- LAG!

With thorns the monsters get hit back for about 400% damage of what they give you and it saves your ass when the lag kicks in :) </QUOTE>

Aha, I see now. So Bnet situation really is that bad? (I play open paladin on a LAN now; hopefully Bnet would get better soon as I'm about to get tired of single :) ). It would suck to lose your char on Bnet during some software upgrade, which is not very likely but anyway, I'm paranoid.

Oh and the holy freeze aura kicks ass with zeal :)<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#45 by "shaithis"
2000-07-03 11:53:17
chrisb@gamespy.com http://www.gamespy.com
People complain about a lack of seriously researched, intelligently written topics on PC, and then when one is written, the discussion turns to bitching about lag on Battle.net (to which I say: well, duh...) after about 30 posts.

nice.

-shai
(who doesn't think the other topics are poorly researched or unintelligent, but some people have said so).
#46 by "Charlie Wiederhold"
2000-07-03 11:56:29
charliew@3drealms.com
You beat me to the punch shai.

Wait till tomorrow when more people are back on their computers and not off goofing around or sleeping. Though being the 4th of July coming up and all, it might only be the Europeans and American's with nothing better to do posting about the topic.

Wait, that'll be just like any other day, never mind! ;)

Charlie Wiederhold
#47 by "PiRaMidA"
2000-07-03 12:04:08
piramida@agsm.net http://www.agsm.net/
<b>#45</b> "shaithis" wrote...
<QUOTE> People complain about a lack of seriously researched, intelligently written topics on PC, and then when one is written, the discussion turns to bitching about lag on Battle.net (to which I say: well, duh...) after about 30 posts.
 
 nice.
</QUOTE>

Well researched topics are very interesting to read but also very hard to comment on, nothing much to add, unless you are very professional with the question. And the people discussing Bnet lag never complained about the quality of PC topics, afaik.

And why in almost every post on PC the discussion turns to bitching about how the discussion drifts from the original topic? :)
<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#48 by "godZero"
2000-07-03 12:24:31
godzero@gmx.de
Wow! No posts about 3DR yet? Unbelivable! :-)<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#49 by "G-Man"
2000-07-03 12:39:17
jonmars@shiftlock.org http://www.shiftlock.org
<b>#48</b> "godZero" wrote...
<QUOTE>Wow! No posts about 3DR yet? Unbelivable! :-)</QUOTE>
Well you just HAD to blow it didn't you?

 - [g.man]<I><B></B></I><I></I><I></I>
#50 by "Charlie Wiederhold"
2000-07-03 12:53:55
charliew@3drealms.com
Actually what the topic lacks is controversy. Whether the conflict lies in the topic itself or the subject matter, in order for it to get discussed it's got to stir something up inside the readers/posters.

Otherwise we say "Nice article Steve!" and move on to the next thing to complain about. That's why I try to not complain when an article is written here that seems to have the sole intent of stirring up conflict, because let's be honest, that's what gets people talking.

"That block of ice sure is cold" just isn't going to get too many people up in arms. :)

Perhaps if Steve had tossed in some colorful commentary about recent events it might have lit the conversation up with more energy. There is a reason why Andy's topics tend to get discussed more, if he didn't toss the spin on it, it wouldn't have any motion to go anywhere.

*shrug* I think Steve was too smart for our own good with the article. :)

Charlie Wiederhold
C O M M E N T S
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