What is a Community?

We recently posted an innocent looking piece of fan art on Facebook that was created by one of our community members. The image playfully mashed up the themes of Mass Effect and My Little Pony, depicting the Pinkie Pie character in N7 armor. We thought it was hilarious and wanted to let the rest of our community in on the fun. Those of you that had front row seats during the aftermath know that’s not exactly what happened.

Even though the image was posted in jest, it raised the ire of a portion of our Facebook community. Some fans felt compelled to “unlike” our page, while others even went as far as to post their intention to “sell all their Mass Effect games.”

It got me thinking: What exactly is a social media community, and what is its true purpose?

It is my belief that the purpose of a social media community is to create a place where people from all over the world can gather, linked by their shared affection of a particular passion. It sounds almost Utopian, doesn’t it? A little corner of the internet reserved just for us where we can go and interact with like-minded fans.

At BioWare, we think of our fans as our extended family, and as within any family, there are bound to be times when we won’t always see eye-to-eye. Sometimes Uncle Jay is going to root against your favorite sports team. Sometimes cousin Sue is going to wear socks with sandals. And sometimes, just sometimes, we’re going to post pictures of little pink ponies sworn to protect the galaxy from Reapers.

We support our community’s desire to be creative and share with us. Our talented fans send us all types of content, from painstakingly detailed fan art and cosplay photos to music and poetry inspired by our games. We try to showcase as many of them as we can, and hope that the community will find it all as fascinating as we do.

We strive to provide a community that offers a little something for everyone, and as such, new content is always being gathered for future posts. We take the work that we do very seriously, but we also believe that a good sense of humor is healthy. Doesn’t everyone enjoy a good laugh?

If you don’t enjoy a particular post, that’s okay. You can’t please everyone, as they say. However, rather than become hostile and turn against the community, we have an alternate suggestion: Create something better. Instead of raving about what you don’t like, show us an example of something that appeals to you.

Remember, it’s your feedback that helps to shape the community, but you’re always going to catch more flies with honey than vinegar. Be good to one another.

 

~ David Hulegaard, Social Media Coordinator