Venture Officers and accountability


Pathfinder Society

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Scarab Sages 1/5

So, it looks like some VO somewhere has decided to make up an home rule inflict it on his local players (link if you missed it). At what point folk given inordinate authority get checks placed on them?

I realize its probably not necessary in this case (assuming the unnamed VO is receptive to correction from the campaign staff), but I think it raises an interesting question. Most of the time I see any criticism of the campaign staff squashed and eddied away. I am distressed at the culture of authoritarianism I see growing.

1/5

what

The Exchange 5/5 RPG Superstar 2010 Top 16

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Hi, Matthew. I'm not a venture officer, and I never have been.

I'm not sure what you're expecting to see. Mike has stated his policy that successes are celebrated in public, while errors and issues are addressed in private. If you want VCs and/or VLs to be called out, by name, in public, I think you're going to be disappointed.

If the campaign leadership needs to distance the official campaign position from that of an officer's judgement or post, Mike or John (or Mark before them) have done so, with respect for the person's service.

Silver Crusade 5/5

Chris beat me to it Mike's policy from what I understand is to publicly celebrate...... and privately punish.

Grand Lodge 2/5 RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Chris Mortika wrote:
Mike has stated his policy that successes are celebrated in public, while errors and issues are addressed in private.

This is what I was going to point out. It does have the unfortunate side-effect of occasional PR speedbumps (i.e., a publicly-voiced issue looks like it's not getting addressed, as far as the public can see). Sometimes I wish for even just a little "This is being handled; thread locked" or some such. But rest assured, the powers that be are paying attention to issues. :)

Digital Products Assistant

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If a Venture Officer is displaying behavior that is concerning to you, it should be brought to Mike Brock's attention by emailing mike.brock@paizo.com. These kinds of things are not discussed publicly on our messageboards.

5/5 5/55/55/5

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Myles Crocker wrote:

Chris beat me to it Mike's policy from what I understand is to publicly celebrate...... and privately punish.

That explains all the chelaxian item retrieval missions...

Grand Lodge 2/5

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Like the others have said, private messaging is the best. A Venture Officer once told me that he and many others specifically avoid posting on the boards simply because if they ever make an honest rules mistake they get a ton of flack for it.

Also, relevant to the other post: Think of a VC as a GM who organizes events and games. For the actual game they are no more perfect/flawed than any of the rest of us. Always try private discussion over public discussion.

Grand Lodge 3/5

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Venture Officers are not Pathfinder rules savants. We are volunteers to help grow and administer PFS as best we can. That includes organizing events, helping others organize events, fielding questions on PFS works, players committing evil acts or disruptive behavior, etc. We are no higher authority on game rules then any other player.

If you have problem with a VO you email or message Mike Brock (email above).

Silver Crusade 5/5 5/5 **

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Jacob Dotter wrote:

Venture Officers are not Pathfinder rules savants. We are volunteers to help grow and administer PFS as best we can. That includes organizing events, helping others organize events, fielding questions on PFS works, players committing evil acts or disruptive behavior, etc. We are no higher authority on game rules then any other player.

If you have problem with a VO you email or message Mike Brock (email above).

Actually, first you should discuss it with the VO first. They're human, they make mistakes. The good ones (which includes all of the ones that I've actually met) welcome constructive feedback and will rectify any mistakes that they have made.

5/5 *** Venture-Agent, California—San Francisco Bay Area North & East

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On the rare occasion I have had a problem with a Venture Officer that I did not feel comfortable talking to them about (once in about 300 sessions) I found Mike Brock very responsive to private message.

So throw in another vote for contact Mike Brock privately if you have an issue with a VO.

Dark Archive 4/5

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Matthew Trent wrote:

So, it looks like some VO somewhere has decided to make up an home rule inflict it on his local players (link if you missed it). At what point folk given inordinate authority get checks placed on them?

I realize its probably not necessary in this case (assuming the unnamed VO is receptive to correction from the campaign staff), but I think it raises an interesting question. Most of the time I see any criticism of the campaign staff squashed and eddied away. I am distressed at the culture of authoritarianism I see growing.

And yet you still posted it.

The Exchange 4/5

I don't think we have enough authoritarianism in our culture.

/It is better to be feared than loved.
//Only the strong shall survive.

1/5

1 person marked this as a favorite.
Matthew Trent wrote:

So, it looks like some VO somewhere has decided to make up an home rule inflict it on his local players (link if you missed it). At what point folk given inordinate authority get checks placed on them?

I realize its probably not necessary in this case (assuming the unnamed VO is receptive to correction from the campaign staff), but I think it raises an interesting question. Most of the time I see any criticism of the campaign staff squashed and eddied away. I am distressed at the culture of authoritarianism I see growing.

Speaking as someone who plays in the same area as the post you are linking to, I can assure you that in no way is the VC "making up a home rule to inflict on his local players". I don't want any sort of can of worms drama, but suffice to say he is very open to people correcting his misrulings, and no one is perfect. In the past some players took advantage of that and were deliberately giving false information on rulings and so now he just makes sure that if you think he is wrong he would like you to point it out in the book or on the forums.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Pathfinder Society Campaign Coordinator

See my reply on that thread.

Shadow Lodge 4/5

We really need an Octoberfest PFS Boon . . .

Just saying.

:)

Grand Lodge 4/5 Pathfinder Society Campaign Coordinator

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DM Beckett wrote:

We really need an Octoberfest PFS Boon . . .

Just saying.

:)

Maybe check out the Oct 7 blog. . .

Just saying.

:)

Shadow Lodge 3/5

There's a boon coming out the day after Unicon ends in Melbourne AU?

Shadow Lodge 4/5

I think 2 days actually, due to the time zones. But, if it makes you feel any better, that's also two days after our PbP Game Day, so I feel you.

Still seems like it's been forever.

Grand Lodge 4/5 Pathfinder Society Campaign Coordinator

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Avatar-1 wrote:
There's a boon coming out the day after Unicon ends in Melbourne AU?

If Unicon ends on Oct 6, then that is an accurate statement.

There are generally 4-10 conventions every weekend happening somewhere in the world. So, it doesn't matter what Monday we decide to release holiday boons. Someone is going to have it happen the day after their con ends.

Silver Crusade 1/5

I will simply say this. I have seen the process of dealing with VO who many thought was out of bounds in their behavior. I will only say that the process was transparent to those involved, fair, and any parties who were out of line were given ample chances to make corrections.

I will not discuss it further because these things Mike & have chosen to to deal with privately, and rightly so IMHO.

The Exchange 4/5

DM Beckett wrote:

I think 2 days actually, due to the time zones. But, if it makes you feel any better, that's also two days after our PbP Game Day, so I feel you.

Still seems like it's been forever.

I know what I'm emailing out Monday night to the PbP players...

Shadow Lodge 4/5

Same here.

Lantern Lodge 5/5 Regional Venture-Coordinator, Asia-Pacific

Michael Brock wrote:
Avatar-1 wrote:
There's a boon coming out the day after Unicon ends in Melbourne AU?

If Unicon ends on Oct 6, then that is an accurate statement.

There are generally 4-10 conventions every weekend happening somewhere in the world. So, it doesn't matter what Monday we decide to release holiday boons. Someone is going to have it happen the day after their con ends.

That is unfortunate indeed.

In light of the holiday Boon being released the day after our event, I now declare Unicon moved to NEXT week. This will affect all scheduled PFS games, and of course all the other tabletop, freeform, miniatures, card and boardgames scheduled at that event.

or ... maybe I'll leave things as they are.

Come and enjoy Unicon!

Unicon 2013 Melbourne, Australia
Melbourne High School, South Yarra
Friday 4th to Sunday 6th October

Featuring new release Season 5 scenarios, including the Special: Siege of the Diamond City

[ Event Page | Unicon website ]

Grand Lodge 4/5

Unicon! Experience all the Pathfinder you can before the dreaded Oktoberfest Boon floods the society with slovenly Caydenites with the accelerated drinker ability! Unicon!

Grand Lodge 4/5

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Honestly, I keep reading that as Unicron.

Liberty's Edge 4/5 5/55/5 ** Venture-Lieutenant, California—Sacramento

Michael Brock wrote:

Maybe check out the Oct 7 blog. . .

Just saying.

:)

ooooooh... That is my wedding anniversary so I am assuming the boon will be related to that... ;).

Paizo Employee 4/5 Developer

4 people marked this as a favorite.
Dragnmoon wrote:
Michael Brock wrote:

Maybe check out the Oct 7 blog. . .

Just saying.

:)

ooooooh... That is my wedding anniversary so I am assuming the boon will be related to that... ;).

Hmmm...if your wedding anniversary corresponds directly to the upcoming holiday...I don't know quite what to say.

*Looks at blog text*
*Looks at Chronicle sheet*
*Looks at Dragnmoon*

Congratulations?

Liberty's Edge 5/5

4 people marked this as a favorite.

I would like to say a HUGE THANK YOU to all the VCs and VOs and VLs out there working hard everyday to provide awesome game days to all the players every week!!!! :-)

I've seen how hard you work and I admire and appreciate all you do. I only organize game days for one store, I could not imagine how much work it would be to oversee everything in the region.

Most of us players are able to take a week off of PFS if we want, but that's not an option for the VOs. The VOs are still people, with families and friends and a life outside of PFS, and I feel grateful that they've chosen to dedicate as much time to PFS as they do.

Yes, the VOs are people and mistakes can be made. But a private conversation seems far more appropriate when you believe a mistake has been made. And as long as both of you are willing to listen, there's no reason you wouldn't be able to come up with an amicable solution. I know in this age of digital media it can be easy to post and hide behind the anonymity that a computer screen can give and pretend that you're allowed to say whatever you want. But the truth is it still affects people. I hope other people keep these things in mind once in a while.

I also appreciate Mr. Mike Brock's open door policy to address concerns and Mr. John Compton's willingness to step in to address concerns as well. The support from the campaign's leadership is nice to see as a player.

So again, I would like to extend a big thank you to VOs everywhere!

Big hugs all around! :-)

Although, I don't recommend hugging the tiger. I cannot guarantee how he will react...

Silver Crusade 5/5

What if i pull the tigers tail? I had a paladin who used to like pulling on dragon tails......

Catling, thank you for the kind words<

Myles Crocker

2/5 Venture-Agent, France—Paris

Jeff Merola wrote:
Honestly, I keep reading that as Unicron.

I read it Unicorn the first time. I was wondering where in the world there was a Unicorn Day…

Grand Lodge 5/5

勝20100 wrote:
Jeff Merola wrote:
Honestly, I keep reading that as Unicron.
I read it Unicorn the first time. I was wondering were in the world there was a Unicorn Day…

Hey, it's Australia. If there were unicorns, that's one place I'd look for them. =)


Michael Meunier wrote:
勝20100 wrote:
Jeff Merola wrote:
Honestly, I keep reading that as Unicron.
I read it Unicorn the first time. I was wondering were in the world there was a Unicorn Day…
Hey, it's Australia. If there were unicorns, that's one place I'd look for them. =)

Only if their horns were poisonous.

5/5

Joseph Caubo wrote:

I don't think we have enough authoritarianism in our culture.

/It is better to be feared than loved.
//Only the strong shall survive.

I was wondering when those slashes would return.

5/5

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John Compton wrote:
*Looks at Dragnmoon*

At least avert your eyes so you have a chance of not having to make the saving throw, n00b.

The Exchange 4/5

Kyle Baird wrote:
Joseph Caubo wrote:

I don't think we have enough authoritarianism in our culture.

/It is better to be feared than loved.
//Only the strong shall survive.

I was wondering when those slashes would return.

They have always been. You're the one MIA!

Lantern Lodge 5/5 Regional Venture-Coordinator, Asia-Pacific

Joseph Caubo wrote:
Kyle Baird wrote:
Joseph Caubo wrote:

I don't think we have enough authoritarianism in our culture.

/It is better to be feared than loved.
//Only the strong shall survive.

I was wondering when those slashes would return.
They have always been. You're the one MIA!

I like the slashies .. they're kind of like mini Haiku.

Shadow Lodge 4/5 * Venture-Captain, Michigan—Mt. Pleasant

勝20100 wrote:
Jeff Merola wrote:
Honestly, I keep reading that as Unicron.
I read it Unicorn the first time. I was wondering where in the world there was a Unicorn Day…

Probably in Scotland, since you know, it is their national animal... No, really, look it up.

Shadow Lodge 4/5

Unicron

Unicorn

Grand Lodge 1/5

Michael Meunier wrote:
勝20100 wrote:
Jeff Merola wrote:
Honestly, I keep reading that as Unicron.
I read it Unicorn the first time. I was wondering were in the world there was a Unicorn Day…
Hey, it's Australia. If there were unicorns, that's one place I'd look for them. =)

But they'd have venom, or fangs, or claws that will disembowel you, or all three! It's Australia!

Dark Archive 5/5

"NOW ENTERING!" A Gnome with a deep, bellowing voice grabs your attention at the nearest doorway.

"He has served all Factions in Absalom. He has cleared the Mists of Mawangi! He thawed the Frozen Fingers of Midnight, is the Gillmans foil and Riddleports Bane! This hero is a traveller of the North and member of the Snowmask Clan. He has unlocked the Infernal Vault and NOW steps out of Wraths Shadow. SCOCK Yogerking!!!!

A 6'2" Half-Orc, kicks the gnome aside with a thud (best 1pp ever)and steps into the (social) battle. "I'm Half-Human dammit"

OK, OK everybody relax. I'm the big bad VC in question. Let's get it out of the way, I screwed up the 'always having your weapon at the ready' rule. No excuses, thanks for the ruling from up high. Of course you can attack when your weapon is drawn without a move action.

So last Saturday, I have this 25 year veteran player at my table. No prob,I got this. Personally, I like the guy and have had fun being a player at his table. He GM's for the Society regularly and is a contributor to the PFS overall. I have asked him "Use your vast RPG wisdom to help me provide the structure PFS requires." Instead, he studies all the gray areas of the rules and continually pushes the boundaries. Kinda frustrating but it comes with the job, I've got it handled. *smiles* Great, lets have some fun.

Not to be, as the party mix led to a high difficulty setting and frustrations quickly followed. You bet, at some point I said "You can't negate quick draw." I also said "If I'm wrong, don't hesitate to link me the post or whatever and I'll improve my GM style. For now, lets move on." Not to be, as this player blew up my table with rules arguing beyond the "I always have my weapon at the ready!.. argument". Lexica Rose said it all in the other thread. Buzzcop also shined some light in the above post. Thank you for stepping up and voicing your opinion. Sorry, I was late to the discussion.

Now that everyone has smelled Reno's dirty laundry. Let me finish with, please don't lets this get(more) blown out of proportion than it already has been. The buses have done their work and I encourage everybody to move on. (Show's Over!) Everybody involved enjoys this game on a high level. No need to vilify. Reno is a small city and I look forward to enjoying another game as players or in whatever configuration of GM/PC set-up happens. I'm surprised about the amount of (negative)attention our little game has gotten and I think we can both make adjustments to better serve the PFS as a whole. I certainly will be. *Picks up his Gnome, stuffs it into back-pack and leaves* mumbling something about having to prep tonight's game.

Grand Lodge 2/5 RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

Scott Yauger wrote:

...he studies all the gray areas of the rules and continually pushes the boundaries.

...this player blew up my table...

...

No need to vilify.

Dark Archive 5/5

Correct. Those things happened and it makes no one a villain.

Silver Crusade 2/5

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"If I'm wrong, don't hesitate to link me the post or whatever and I'll improve my GM style. For now, lets move on."

It's not horribly likely in this particular situation, but I've seen this attitude wrongly TPK parties. This is why the PFS guide forbids GMs from deviating from RAW, including FAQs. Of course, the next level of this problem is *interpretation* of RAW.

Also, I think Jiggy was pointing out how it could be seen that you are vilifying the player in question, and then asking for no one to vilify.

It's also worth nothing that quick draw is not completely negated by this ruling. It's particularly good on PCs with sneak attack and ranged weapons on the surprise round.

Shadow Lodge 4/5

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Scott Yauger wrote:
stuff

^And this is why these things are better handled in private. There are three sides to every story: Yours, mine, and the truth.

Grand Lodge 2/5 RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

David Bowles wrote:
Also, I think Jiggy was pointing out how it could be seen that you are vilifying the player in question, and then asking for no one to vilify.

More or less. I mean, I don't know your intended tone, and your language was definitely far less severe than the other player, but your descriptions of the OP's actions were subjective and negative. (As opposed to objectively neutral; the difference between "he blew up" and "he raised his voice"/"he continued to press his case for X length of time", or the difference between "he studies the gray areas and pushes the boundaries" versus "we don't always see eye-to-eye"/"he uses unconventional builds that I don't always understand".)

Only the three of you were there, so the rest of us don't know what fault there may have been at the table (if any). But as for what's happened here, at least among the three of you, is that it looks like the OP politely asked for a ruling and then another player and the GM responded with public ridicule (some plainly real, yours probably just perceived).

So just to be clear, I'm not saying you were trying to vilify the OP, but from what little appeared here on the boards (certainly not helped by the second player), it could sure be interpreted as a dogpile.

As Mystic Lemur said, there's a reason this stuff should be handled privately. Probably would've been a whole lot more low-key if the OP hadn't identified his GM as being his VC. Ah, well. Where's the TARDIS key?

5/5

Jiggy wrote:
As Mystic Lemur said, there's a reason this stuff should be handled privately. Probably would've been a whole lot more low-key if the OP hadn't identified his GM as being his VC.

The first half of the question was, "What do you do when your VC is saying 'if you don't like it, talk to the VC.'" The answer, of course, is email Mike Brock.

The second half of the question was whether there is accountability for VCs that do stuff like that. The answer is, "We sure hope so." But since stuff like that is handled discreetly, there's no public information on it, which means we don't actually know what sort of accountability there is for something like that.

It's a damned if you do/damned if you don't sort of situation. If you make stuff like that public, it's drama. If you make stuff like that private, nobody knows if you're actually handling it. All we have to guess on is that sometimes VOs are suddenly not VOs anymore and no one will say why, and other times VOs go way off the reservation and still keep their position.

But if we're going to make such a secret of the way things are handled, I wish we would stop chastising people for not knowing how to handle things. If I can't RTFM a self-identified newbie for not reading the books, I don't see how the rest of y'all can shush them for not knowing something is only every supposed to happen behind closed doors.

Grand Lodge 2/5 RPG Superstar 2012 Top 32

In other news, I've apparently referenced "the OP" in a spinoff thread started by a different person than I was talking about. Can't wait to see how much confusion THAT causes. :/

Liberty's Edge 5/5

I suddenly feel like I'm watching several cat fights breaking out simultaneously.

As it would seem - kind words tend to fall on deaf ears, negative words only tend to provoke.

*sighs, shakes head slowly, and walks away*

I call back, "Come on tigers, let's go find some kinder posts to read"...

Liberty's Edge 5/5

Patrick Harris @ MU wrote:
Jiggy wrote:
As Mystic Lemur said, there's a reason this stuff should be handled privately. Probably would've been a whole lot more low-key if the OP hadn't identified his GM as being his VC.

The first half of the question was, "What do you do when your VC is saying 'if you don't like it, talk to the VC.'" The answer, of course, is email Mike Brock.

The second half of the question was whether there is accountability for VCs that do stuff like that. The answer is, "We sure hope so." But since stuff like that is handled discreetly, there's no public information on it, which means we don't actually know what sort of accountability there is for something like that.

It's a damned if you do/damned if you don't sort of situation. If you make stuff like that public, it's drama. If you make stuff like that private, nobody knows if you're actually handling it. All we have to guess on is that sometimes VOs are suddenly not VOs anymore and no one will say why, and other times VOs go way off the reservation and still keep their position.

But if we're going to make such a secret of the way things are handled, I wish we would stop chastising people for not knowing how to handle things. If I can't RTFM a self-identified newbie for not reading the books, I don't see how the rest of y'all can shush them for not knowing something is only every supposed to happen behind closed doors.

Just wanted to address this:

1) This entire thread is kinda in bad taste, since it was a single perspective from another thread that got turned into its own thread by another poster who made an assumption that the original OP was 100% correct.

2) Why do you have to have public proof that a V-O has been chastised? For the same reason that I won't call out a GM by name for making a mistake publicly, nor change a GM's decision for a mistake they might have made, if you start airing dirty laundry of the volunteers who essentially make this campaign go, they will likely stop volunteering.

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