Most kick votes are the result of people playing like shit in an intentional-looking fashion.
I don't think it is their place to decide if someone is or is not intentionally playing like shit, no less empowering them to create temporary bans. I see these kicks way too often for no stated reason and I do not think it is conductive to retaining or growing this player base to be kicking anyone who plays or is to be perceived to play subpar for one game. I had a game tonight where people were tired of useless spam votes being called. One explicitly stated they were so tired of the useless exit votes that they were ready to call it quits ( Scholar_NZ
). So after seeing another attempted exit vote I tried to kick the exit initiator (or who I thought was the culprit) with a clearly defined reason. I was later then almost kicked (3/4 yes votes) for absolutely no reason.
This is the state of our game. Useless votes being spammed and spurious kick votes plague this community while nothing is done socially or administratively.
To further show you how bad this has gotten, I saw one user tonight complain about playing the same map twice, called an exit vote, then tried to call a start vote immediately after
when the game was exited and a new replacement map. Not even joking. Then I saw one player complain about "maps being too small" while voting for maps that were too small and calling exit votes. But this is a tangent.
Who cares about the mere act of calling a vote? It has no effect on anything.
It does have an affect when the meme votes pass on occasion and someone gets kicked for spurious reasons due to vote-k syndrome. It clogs up people's attention, it clogs up resign votes, and over time it gets old. Really old. It gets old when I see 3-4 kick votes a day because someone gets a little upset over losing that they want to kick people for what they perceive to be subpar play. In the ALL WELCOME room even. This is beside the point as I asked what the purpose of a kick without a reason is from a sociological standpoint. How is it enforcing any norms if the norms it is trying to enforce aren't defined or a reason given? The offender is left questioning what they did and the rest of the group is left questioning what they did. We can assume for that matter that the offender might have been playing below expectations, which quite frankly is a stupid reason to kick anyone unless they're actually doing negative contributing things (such as TK or reclaiming allied stuff). Let's put this to an analogy:
You are arrested (kicked). The police do not even tell you on what charge you're arrested for. Why is this bad? In order for punishment (for normal social people) to be effective, a wrong must be conveyed to associate an effect to the cause of perpetrating some offense. If that wrong is not conveyed effectively, then you run into the issue of having an ineffective punishment system. This is one of my criticisms of the current kick command as a socialization tool.
Worse yet: let's look at it from a person's perspective who is starting to engage with the community. They play their first multiplayer game and they're exposed to a "random" kick vote of someone who is "perceived to play poorly (whether intentionally or not)" by someone else and a kick vote is called. How does this player associate the punishment with the cause? They see a player kicking @Dhrama_Khan and go "why are they kicking him?"-> no answer -> speculation. Congratulations, you have ineffective socialization. This is why admin bans and mutes have a reason and get communicated with by Nightwatch
to the offender. If you get banned for a day and the reason is "Teamkilling in B99999", you associate teamkilling with getting banned. (That aside, I wished that they'd bring back ban/mutes being announced in #zk for this exact reason, but that's a topic for another day)
Now onto further elaboration of why kicking players for subjectively poor performance is bad:
Going back to the example mentioned before. You have someone just starting to engage in the community. They are looking at player behavior for norms. They see these random kick votes and let's say they understood the reason that this person was kicked for ("bad play"). They now have to deal with anxiety and worrying about getting kicked or are repulsed by this idea and never engage in zero-k again. Zero-K doesn't grow and inevitably dies off all because some players get a little fussy and immediately escalate to kick voting a poor performer. This is not a desirable outcome.
Since it requires a majority of votes to pass why does a reason need to be stated?
For the record, it requires only a marginal majority of the team. Half plus one if I recall correctly. Which makes abusing it in larger games easier (double so thanks to Clan balance putting your buddies who will back you up in with you).