So follow along after the jump for the answers to this week's Ask Massively and don't be shy about getting your own questions in by commenting on this post or sending your inquiries off to firstname.lastname@example.org.
mwilliams asks: I really enjoy the in depth game specific articles, like LotRO, Champions, Aion, and EVE. They bring a great insight to games that maybe someone hasn't tried. I know a few of them have piqued my interest in games I don't or haven't played. I would like to know how you work with those writers. Do you just turn them loose? Do you guide them in any specific way?
Great! I'm very excited to hear when people enjoy those. It was a bit of a risk I took in getting that system established, but I wanted to get far away from the common practice of having bloggers writing in-depth posts about games they don't even play. That bugs the heck outta me. So we went through a long and arduous hiring process earlier this year and grabbed the best of the best (as we saw fit) and set them up with their own columns for the games they are most passionate about.
As for how I work with them, it's my job to make sure we're pushing interesting content on the site, so we (along with my wonderful editorial staff and fellow bloggers) work together as much as possible. But I would say 80% of the time, these columnists are writing their own topics with only helpful nudges from me, Sera or Bree. I firmly believe that the best way to get quality writing is to start from the root: hire quality writers. From there, it only takes tweaks. So I'm very proud of the team we've built here and how well we can work together to keep this site going strong. Now's the part where we play the national anthem or something, right?
Kai asks: Why doesn't Shawn hang out in the Massively chat room? Is he secretly a Cylon?
How do you know I'm not in the chat room? I may have minions of spies who blend into the shadows, reporting back to me with every curse word, hateful comment and misuse of there/they're/their. And I might just be compiling a list of the worst offenders, sentencing them to a specially reserved RSS feed made up of the latest F2P news and images of... well, I shouldn't really say.
I will make an effort to pop into the IRC chat room more often, just for you Kai. I expect hugs, candy hearts and a foot rub. In that order, please.