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Siren Song issue is awful

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Names Are Too Hard
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Founded: Jun 17, 2020
Moralistic Democracy

Postby Names Are Too Hard » Mon Jul 20, 2020 11:37 am

Othrodox Empire wrote:Siren song issue is pretty bad in my opinion.
You can either remove sirens or replace them with bloody murder screams.
Or just go back to stone age.
Those are 3 options you have...
These types of issues that have such narrow width for choice and only allow you litteraly surreal extremes, are pretty annoying in my opinion, and kill roleplay.
It be very cool to add couple more options, like actually fixing it by employing some kind of alternative technology for radar warnings...

You can always dismiss the issue.
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Candensia
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Left-Leaning College State

Postby Candensia » Mon Jul 20, 2020 12:00 pm

As the author of Siren Song, here are my thoughts.

The premise of the issue stipulates that @@NAME@@'s severe weather warning system (tornado sirens) are outdated and malfunctioning. These conditions led to a situation where citizens ignored the sirens, and died as a result. The issue then presents 3 options.

@@NAME@@ can:

1 - Replace tornado sirens with cell phone alerts. (This is not an extreme option, and is done regularly in many nations throughout the world to warn citizens of incoming threats such as flooding, severe thunderstorms, tsunamis, tornadoes, earthquakes, and more.)

2 - Keep the tornado siren system in place, but refit it to be more attention-grabbing, so citizens wont ignore it. (This is also not an extreme option. Sirens are in use in areas throughout the world, and are designed specifically to get one's attention, otherwise why even have sirens, right?)

3 - The siren system is a waste of money, and should be torn down. Individual citizens should be responsible for their own individual safety. (This *is* a more extreme option, reflecting a libertarian-styled, though clearly satirical viewpoint.)


I contend that in options 1 and 2, technology would undoubtedly play a key role in warning the public about approaching weather threats. It's only after a watch or warning is issued that phones are sent alerts, or sirens begin to sound, wouldn't you agree? These options would necessitate some involvement of technological systems. Option 3 does not send @@NAME@@ back to the stone age, it simply gets rid of the weather warning system.

If you have an idea for an additional option, I personally do not oppose. However, you would need to present a detailed explanation for why such a change is required, and most importantly gain the favor of the Editing Team, as the decision would be up to them.
Last edited by Candensia on Mon Jul 20, 2020 12:02 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Outer Sparta
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Liberal Democratic Socialists

Postby Outer Sparta » Mon Jul 20, 2020 12:02 pm

Contact the editors about your proposed plan.
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Drasnia
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Anarchy

Postby Drasnia » Mon Jul 20, 2020 12:03 pm

Othrodox Empire wrote:Siren song issue is pretty bad in my opinion.
You can either remove sirens or replace them with bloody murder screams.
Or just go back to stone age.
Those are 3 options you have...
These types of issues that have such narrow width for choice and only allow you litteraly surreal extremes, are pretty annoying in my opinion, and kill roleplay.
It be very cool to add couple more options, like actually fixing it by employing some kind of alternative technology for radar warnings...

So a couple of EDIT: three points I'd like to bring up when it comes to issues:

1. Issues aren't comprehensive. It isn't feasible to write and edit enough options to approach comprehensiveness, and even by that point people might still complain there isn't the absolute perfect option they have envisioned. Furthermore, it's unrealistic and unfair to expect players to read maybe 10+ options in most issues. That's a lot of text.

2. Nations aren't expected to answer every issue they are confronted with. Sometimes, you're given an issue that doesn't really fit your nation. At that point, you should dismiss it. The point of issues is to give the opportunity to make the choice while not necessitating a choice.

3. Issues have to be balanced around the pool of nations that are eligible to receive them. Maybe the options are extreme for you, but there needs to be extreme options for the people that run extreme nations.
Last edited by Drasnia on Mon Jul 20, 2020 12:04 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Westinor
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Liberal Democratic Socialists

Postby Westinor » Mon Jul 20, 2020 12:13 pm

Othrodox Empire wrote:The 1st issues is extreme, cause it is meant to disable the sirens, that citizens depend on their phones for warnings, which can be incredibly dangerous.

the context put in 2nd issues is also extreme. I do believe that sirens already in place are meant to be attention-grabbing otherwise they wouldnt be siren systems. Thus it would be extreme to make them even louder, whilst not fixing the technical issues.


It seems to me that even if the system is fixed, citizens will continue to ignore it seeing as it has likely been fixed a multitude of times before, with more malfunctions occurring after that. In that case, it'd be near impossible to convince civilians to listen to them, so that would warrant (in my eyes) a more extreme approach.
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Jutsa
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Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Jutsa » Mon Jul 20, 2020 4:28 pm

Who wouldn't want a good, blood curdling scream every day, though? :)
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Awesomeland012345
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Postby Awesomeland012345 » Mon Jul 20, 2020 4:30 pm

btw, NS is kind of a political satire site, so a good amount of issues may seem to have extreme results/options
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Outer Sparta
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Postby Outer Sparta » Mon Jul 20, 2020 4:31 pm

Jutsa wrote:Who wouldn't want a good, blood curdling scream every day, though? :)

Especially since it gets people to immediately act instead of dawdling.
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Daarwyrth
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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Daarwyrth » Mon Jul 20, 2020 4:31 pm

Awesomeland012345 wrote:btw, NS is kind of a political satire site, so a good amount of issues may seem to have extreme results/options


That's the game's charm in my opinion ;)
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Personal Freedom
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Civil Rights Lovefest

Postby Personal Freedom » Mon Jul 20, 2020 4:45 pm

I think in a model of the classic issues,
1. Option 1 should be in the removal or far into the reduction of the existing system. The strawman of the left wanting to end government funding for anything.
2. Option 2 should be for the heavy upgrading of the system, the strawman of the left wanting to throw more money at an issue.
3. Option 3 can be out there and often is.

The issue is option 2 has the weirdness expected of an option 3. Mandatory drills or something of the like would much better fit the mood of the older issues.
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Romance and Reverie
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Psychotic Dictatorship

Postby Romance and Reverie » Tue Jul 21, 2020 2:41 am

Ruined the issue for myself by looking it up, but good thing I did, since it'll irk me too whenever I get it.

It doesn't even need additional options, just splitting option #2 would be an easy solution.

The last part of the option is kind of ham-fisted in there, and the option is really a mix of two very distinct perspectives.

Suggestion: Split option #2 into two parts. Just ending the option without the last sentence would've been a catch-all option, which OP would've been happy with.

- "Well, not everyone has a cell phone, and what if its battery dies in the middle of a storm, what then? The biggest advantage to sirens is that we can assure that they will always work... as long as they aren’t old, malfunctioning, or whatever. It should be clear that a refit of the siren system is on the radar."

And now, the new option, basically just the last sentence of the original...

- "That won't solve anything! What we need to do is update them to be more... attention-grabbing. I’m sure citizens won’t ignore weather sirens if we replace the wail with, say, a blood-curdling scream!”

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Daarwyrth wrote:
Awesomeland012345 wrote:btw, NS is kind of a political satire site, so a good amount of issues may seem to have extreme results/options

That's the game's charm in my opinion ;)


What people find charming will differ, even among the extreme results/options.

When the issue at hand is non-trivial (which one wouldn't want to dismiss), it should either have a breadth of options or at least one "catch-all".

1. Having a captain go down with his ship even if he's inches from the shore, as was tradition.

2. Having a jacuzzi in a library.

3. Having a "Blood-curdling scream" siren.

All three are extreme, but option #3's flavour is clearly different, with a more niche humor.


Westinor wrote:
Othrodox Empire wrote: I do believe that sirens already in place are meant to be attention-grabbing otherwise they wouldnt be siren systems. Thus it would be extreme to make them even louder, whilst not fixing the technical issues.

It seems to me that even if the system is fixed, citizens will continue to ignore it seeing as it has likely been fixed a multitude of times before, with more malfunctions occurring after that.

In that case, it'd be near impossible to convince civilians to listen to them, so that would warrant (in my eyes) a more extreme approach.


The issue clearly states that the citizens' reason for ignoring the siren is that it's unreliable.

- "However, that didn’t seem to concern residents, who had grown all too used to constant tests and malfunctions associated with the aging system."

Option #2 also clearly solves this problem.

- "The biggest advantage to sirens is that we can assure that they will always work... as long as they aren’t old, malfunctioning, or whatever. It should be clear that a refit of the siren system is on the radar."

It wouldn't be "impossible to convince civilians to listen to them", because they now know it's upgraded and reliable. They've also witnessed deaths from not listening to the alarm.

If we continue with your argument and add the assumption that the new system will also malfunction at some point, changing the alarm wouldn't do anything either. They'd become desensitized again.

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Minskiev
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Postby Minskiev » Tue Jul 21, 2020 10:32 am

Issues aren’t SUPPOSED to be “The only sensible option is option 3”. They’re SUPPOSED to make you think, and provide a challenge, not cater to your wants and needs.
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Drasnia
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Postby Drasnia » Tue Jul 21, 2020 12:28 pm

Othrodox Empire wrote:
Minskiev wrote:Issues aren’t SUPPOSED to be “The only sensible option is option 3”. They’re SUPPOSED to make you think, and provide a challenge, not cater to your wants and needs.

I disagree. That could excuse any issue not matter how narrow its choices might be. It just sucks when you need to click disband issue cause of those things. If you want a challenge go learn math or something lol, nobody is arguing about challenge, issue has extreme end options that make many people who like some realism/roleplay tune it off, like myself.

NS is a satirical site and satire is meant to present exaggerated topics in order to challenge - and potentially change - your core beliefs. Yes it's true this site isn't challenging in the same way mathematics can be - namely mental acuity - but it can sometimes be challenging by questioning of your core beliefs and ideology.

I think that what you're wanting isn't fully in harmony with the core design tenets of NS issues. You can get what you want from a significant number of issues, but there will be some that go against what you want in a nation simulation game. Nationstates has never been fully realistic. We do strive for some amount in order for issues to feel grounded and thus be more effective, but realism and accuracy isn't a primary goal.

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Outer Sparta
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Postby Outer Sparta » Tue Jul 21, 2020 3:02 pm

Othrodox Empire wrote:im aware that accuracy and realism isnt the goal, but is an important aspect, if ignored it really kills an issue and makes it a bad issue.

So you're saying this is a bad issue?
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Jutsa
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Postby Jutsa » Wed Jul 22, 2020 8:18 am

Suggestion: Split option #2 into two parts. Just ending the option without the last sentence would've been a catch-all option, which OP would've been happy with.

That's... kinda lame though. Like. "Update the old system" makes logical sense, yes, but then there's almost no issue. Also it's a crap ton less funny.
It's like trying to tell a joke and inserting a longwided, drab story to build a logical conclusion to it. It's self-defeating.

Plus, if you actually think about it, the core issue is equally about people being used to the old siren noise. Not changing that to something more shocking
frankly is not much better than the dismiss button, if you really think about it. :P

ed: added a quote but I think it's equally as pertinent to be acknowledged by the op (ed: original poster, i.e. thread maker, for those not in the loop).
Last edited by Jutsa on Wed Jul 22, 2020 8:26 am, edited 2 times in total.
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The Free Joy State
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Postby The Free Joy State » Wed Jul 22, 2020 8:41 am

Outer Sparta wrote:Contact the editors about your proposed plan.

Please don't. The OP chose the correct venue for their query.

First, I must say that the bar for adding new options to issues already in the base is very high. If you want a chance of getting a new option added, it is up to you to write the option you think will improve the issue, ideally with an explanation of how it will improve the player experience (and not liking the issue isn't reason enough). Then the community gives their feedback. If the community thinks it may be an improvement, the editors may take it backstage for discussion (which does not guarantee it will be added).

We do not add options for comprehensiveness, only for necessity -- such as vital modernisation or where they provide an objective improvement to the game for the maximum number of players.

Personally, I think the issue tells a complete story as-is. I don't see the need for an additional option here.

EDIT: If you do decide to proceed, now you have this thread, you may as well use this thread for it. But, if you decide to attempt to add options to future issues, the Writer's Block would be where you'd present your option to initially assess community feedback.
Last edited by The Free Joy State on Wed Jul 22, 2020 8:46 am, edited 3 times in total.
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Minskiev
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Postby Minskiev » Wed Jul 22, 2020 8:51 am

Look, Orthodox. You’re some nation that picks sensible options on issues. And that’s alright, I do too. But, you have to acknowledge the fact that not everybody is some boring Inoffensive Centrist Democracy. If every option is dull but makes sense, there’s no more humor in issues. They become boring, and thus the game becomes boring. Why would people want to play a boring game? And so, issues try their hardest to include major viewpoints in only a few options, so if yours isn’t in it, then it’s not their fault. Issues aren’t supposed to be easy fixes, that’s why they’re national issues. Except for easter eggs of course but those aren’t real.

Issues are supposed to be:

FOR x

AGAINST x

COMPROMISE (that can be insane) of x

Not:

FOR x

OTHER FOR X

ANOTHER FOR X

YET ANOTHER FOR X

X?

AGAINST X

OTHER AGAINST X

ANOTHER AGAINST X

YET ANOTHER AGAINST X
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The Free Joy State
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Postby The Free Joy State » Wed Jul 22, 2020 9:03 am

Minskiev wrote:And so, issues try their hardest to include major viewpoints in only a few options, so if yours isn’t in it, then it’s not their fault.

Actually, not quite true.

Issues find the viewpoints most directly related to that specific issue (which may vary based on presentation, which is how issues on similar topics can have completely different and non-overlapping options).

OP, to find out more about issues, including what issue writing is all about (which might tell you more about what NS issues are all about), check out this resource by one of my fellow senior issue editors.
Last edited by The Free Joy State on Wed Jul 22, 2020 9:06 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Minskiev
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Postby Minskiev » Wed Jul 22, 2020 9:06 am

Well, obviously the major viewpoints of THAT ISSUE but if the issue is about, say, burning witches, then major viewpoints of nations would be simulated.

Remember, views of NATIONS, not players. If it was the viewpoints of players, it’d be quite boring.
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The Free Joy State
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Postby The Free Joy State » Wed Jul 22, 2020 9:07 am

Minskiev wrote:Well, obviously the major viewpoints of THAT ISSUE but if the issue is about, say, burning witches, then major viewpoints of nations would be simulated.

Remember, views of NATIONS, not players. If it was the viewpoints of players, it’d be quite boring.

I'm one of the senior editors, dear. I don't need lecturing on what issues are about. ;)
Last edited by The Free Joy State on Wed Jul 22, 2020 9:07 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Minskiev
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Postby Minskiev » Wed Jul 22, 2020 9:09 am

I wasn’t lecturing you, I was restating what I was saying to Orthodox with your specifications.

Anyways, I’m off to make myself lunch.
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Chirenai
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Postby Chirenai » Wed Jul 22, 2020 9:22 am

Othrodox Empire wrote:Siren song issue is pretty bad in my opinion.
You can either remove sirens or replace them with bloody murder screams.
Or just go back to stone age.
Those are 3 options you have...
These types of issues that have such narrow width for choice and only allow you litteraly surreal extremes, are pretty annoying in my opinion, and kill roleplay.
It be very cool to add couple more options, like actually fixing it by employing some kind of alternative technology for radar warnings...


This isn't an issue about radar at all. OP's complaint about this issue is predicated on a misread. That should be the end of it right there. However...

You want an alternate tech? Great. Option one is 'get alerts through phones'. That's your alternate tech. Option one isn't surreal, it's something most people rely on in first-world countries anyway. Have a smartphone? You're getting these alerts already. You might ignore them, or turn them off, but they're there. Not surreal. Second option is a "refit of the siren system". This is also not surreal. The third option is to remove it altogether. This is dumb, imo, but maybe your nation is ultra-libertarian, so it could be a valid option.

The only remaining complaint is the inclusion of the satire. That the OP is complaining about the satire on this issue is odd, given his nation's name, their currency, his quote and oh, the result text from nearly every other issue he's ever done.

OP is complaining to be complaining and should be ignored, or at least avoided, like the world appears to do to his nation anyway, since he's in the top 10% there. At least now we know why.

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Romance and Reverie
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Psychotic Dictatorship

Postby Romance and Reverie » Wed Jul 22, 2020 10:00 am

Jutsa wrote:
Romance and Reverie wrote:Suggestion: Split option #2 into two parts. Just ending the option without the last sentence would've been a catch-all option, which OP would've been happy with.

That's... kinda lame though. Like. "Update the old system" makes logical sense, yes, but then there's almost no issue. Also it's a crap ton less funny.
It's like trying to tell a joke and inserting a longwided, drab story to build a logical conclusion to it. It's self-defeating.


There are many issues which are entirely plain, here we're talking about a single plain option. If not offering breadth of creative choices, offering a catch-all is a minimal courtesy.

I do agree with you on wittiness/charm being important, but I addressed that in the original post, as seen below.

Daarwyrth wrote:
Awesomeland012345 wrote:btw, NS is kind of a political satire site, so a good amount of issues may seem to have extreme results/options

That's the game's charm in my opinion ;)


What people find charming will differ, even among the extreme results/options.

When the issue at hand is non-trivial (which one wouldn't want to dismiss), it should either have a breadth of options or at least one "catch-all".

1. Having a captain go down with his ship even if he's inches from the shore, as was tradition.

2. Having a jacuzzi in a library.

3. Having a "Blood-curdling scream" siren.

All three are extreme, but option #3's flavour is clearly different, with a more niche humor.


Jutsa wrote:Plus, if you actually think about it, the core issue is equally about people being used to the old siren noise. Not changing that to something more shocking, frankly is not much better than the dismiss button, if you really think about it. :P


I disagree. Westinor brought up the same argument and I addressed it in my original response.

The reason people were used to the old siren noise was that they knew there was a 99% chance of it being a malfunctioning, or a test.

The Issue At Hand wrote:"However, that didn’t seem to concern residents, who had grown all too used to constant tests and malfunctions associated with the aging system."


A new system that isn't error-prone would not be ignored, especially after they just experienced hell as a result of ignoring the system.

That said, the other interpretation is fun, and does belong in an option.

Option #2 combines these two perspectives into one solution, which is messy and ugly. At first it assumes and seeks to solve my interpretation...

Option #2 wrote:Well, not everyone has a cell phone, and what if its battery dies in the middle of a storm, what then? The biggest advantage to sirens is that we can assure that they will always work... as long as they aren’t old, malfunctioning, or whatever. It should be clear that a refit of the siren system is on the radar."


...and then, abruptly, it switches to, and seeks to solve your interpretation...

Option #2 wrote:"All we need to do is update them to be more... attention-grabbing. I’m sure citizens won’t ignore weather sirens if we replace the wail with, say, a blood-curdling scream!"


I see this as a cut-and-dry issue with a cut-and-dry solution, but everyone except you is defending its current iteration flimsily or reactionarily, some even attacking OP nonsensically.

It's unrelated, but I ran into an unnecessary defense of grammatical error (or at least ambiguity/clunkiness) from an editor elsewhere.

The atmosphere is pretty discouraging for people who genuinely want to help make improvements, or in the case of OP, discuss potential for improvement.
Last edited by Romance and Reverie on Wed Jul 22, 2020 10:28 am, edited 1 time in total.

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Candensia
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Postby Candensia » Wed Jul 22, 2020 10:28 am

Romance and Reverie wrote:
The atmosphere is pretty discouraging for people who genuinely want to help make improvements, or in the case of OP, discuss potential for improvement.


It's also pretty discouraging to see, as the author of Siren Song, my hard work being summarily tarnished as "pretty bad" or "awful" or "messy and ugly".

Volunteers devote countless hours, days, months, and years of their lives to this cause, and every issue represents the combined work of authors, supporting writers, and a capable team of editors, so one should expect backlash and pushback when making claims of this nature.

I contend option 2 works better as is. I agree that refitting the siren system, and updating it to be more attention-grabbing represents two blended ideas. That was intentional. I think they work together because either idea alone is both not extensive or humorous enough to work as standalone options, and also too similar to one another not to be contained within the same option.
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Romance and Reverie
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Psychotic Dictatorship

Postby Romance and Reverie » Wed Jul 22, 2020 11:17 am

Candensia wrote:
Romance and Reverie wrote:The atmosphere is pretty discouraging for people who genuinely want to help make improvements, or in the case of OP, discuss potential for improvement.

It's also pretty discouraging to see, as the author of Siren Song, my hard work being summarily tarnished as "pretty bad" or "awful" or "messy and ugly"...so one should expect backlash and pushback when making claims of this nature.


Fair enough, OP could've shown more tact in his choice of words. He did however present a legitimate argument, which should've been the focus for backlash, and it wasn't for the most part.

As for me using "messy and ugly", I'm referring to a single aspect of a single option, not the entire issue.

I also could've been more tactful, and not used "Ugly", but given the context, and the constructive and lengthy nature of my discussion, it's obvious I'm not here to hurt feelings or throw peanuts.

"Messy" is a completely legitimate descriptive term though, and it's a bit of a reach to criticize. I do apologize for using "Ugly" though.

Candensia wrote:I contend option 2 works better as is. I agree that refitting the siren system, and updating it to be more attention-grabbing represents two blended ideas. That was intentional. I think they work together because either idea alone is both not extensive or humorous enough to work as standalone options, and also too similar to one another not to be contained within the same option.


I've seen issues where a single plain/extreme option is enough as a standalone. Forgetting that precedent, the conditioning -> screaming concept here is definitely enough as a standalone option.

I feel less strongly about the plain half, but it's one option among four, I'd vote for it being fine. The humour can be created/presented in the result, as is standard for plain options.

I'm not a good writer, but for example "Government spends billions on infallible alarm system so citizens don't lose trust in it".

I vehemently disagree on the two being even remotely similar though. To me, the blending doesn't work.

I'd be happy with the blending if the 2nd part was strictly flavour instead of approach.

For example:

"Well, not everyone has a cell phone, and what if its battery dies in the middle of a storm, what then? The biggest advantage to sirens is that we can assure that they will always work... as long as they aren’t old, malfunctioning, or whatever. It should be clear that a refit of the siren system is on the radar. All we need to do is We could also update them to be more...attention-grabbing. I’m sure citizens won't ignore weather sirens would appreciate it if we replace the wail with, say, a blood-curdling scream Maxkovsky's The Tempest!"

The Tempest just came to mind, some clever chap could think of a wittier but also agreeable replacement.

Earlier in the thread, I've mentioned the difference between even extreme options, and their charms. Given that there are limited options to pick from here, having the humor be less niche (but still extreme) would be nice.

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