CCP's Director of Internal Affairs: An introduction

Hello everyone.

Permit me to introduce myself: I was an EVE GM and I have been working as such since shortly before EVE was launched. I have always been proud of the integrity we established in the GM department (which was masterminded by Hellmar, then CCP's Chief Technology Officer and now our CEO). EVE GMs are and have always been subject to a very strict code of ingame conduct and that somehow has resulted in the most dedicated and hardcore GM team I have ever heard about. Most of the original EVE GMs are still here, enjoying their jobs and playing by the rules.

Having been allowed to take part in birth of EVE and its eventual success against all odds is truly the high point of my working life, a rare privilege. I've said it before and I'll say it again: I will leave CCP when they drag me screaming out the front door. And even then, they’d better change the locks.

It's fair to say that the original discovery of the misconduct that has rocked the EVE universe recently prompted my official transfer from the GM department to my current position of Director of Internal Affairs. The purpose of this blog is to allow you some insight into my duties and capabilities, as well as give you some background on me and how I came to fill this position.

I was involved in the original investigation of this unfortunate incident, along with the other seniors. Our lack of procedures in cases of this type was painfully evident at the time. The problem wasn't in the investigative process, it was in the process following the discovery, as has already been detailed by Hellmar in his blog. We have now addressed this, as part of the groundwork for my new post.

My job entails monitoring staff accounts, both CCP player accounts and developer accounts, compiling reports on any findings that need to be addressed and asking the questions that need to be answered. I can enlist selected personnel from all departments to help me with my investigations. I have the authority to run database queries, conduct interviews, hire witch doctors and, in general, do what it takes to get to the truth about any ingame conduct I find questionable. On top of that, I have access to all available TQ logs and work with a programmer to provide more detailed logs and reports, as needed.

I am furthermore within my rights to shut down any accounts I find in possible breach of our rules, pending investigation or permanently. I am responsible for setting and enforcing CCP in-house policies. I answer directly to CCP’s Chief Operating Officer and my actions are reviewed by an internal committee to ensure that my decisions are based on verifiable facts.

First and foremost, I still consider myself a GM, here to serve the game, the players and CCP, in no particular order. As before, my job is to understand and enforce our rules, to take action when needed and raise the alarm when something is wrong. Only my jurisdiction has changed. Perhaps my new position will not always be the most pleasant of jobs, but I accept it and I'm glad that my personal intolerance for cheating can be utilized in this manner and potentially benefit so many.

I believed, and still believe that we owe our player community the right to be the focus of EVE, without paid employees using dirty tricks to swing our universe in their favor. Even playing by the rules, I frown on employees being power players to the extent that their gameplay results in any sort of domination over others. I don't believe CCP employees should run the EVE universe; that spot is reserved for the paying customer. EVE is a sandbox, but it's not our sandbox. We're here to keep it clean and provide the sand.

All the best,

Arkanon