Facebook and I are having a relationship crisis! It’s a great place to connect with family and friends, but when it comes to engaging with folks about the RPG hobby, it’s static and disingenuous. I find Google’s G+ to be a more open, inviting and engaging place to connect with like-minded individuals.
I belong to quite a number of Facebook groups related to roleplaying games and the only conversations constantly showing up are ‘What are you playing this weekend?”, “what’s this guy’s story?” or even better “Stat this monster!”. Really? that’s all there is to talk about? I often see other folks trying to start open and engaging conversations, but many times it just turns into a shit show and digresses into a flame war. I think it’s time to remove myself from most of the RPG related groups I belong to.
Over on G+ I have been fortunate to connect with some amazing people who genuinely want to have open discusses without (most of the time) digressing into a flame war. Maybe because G+ is perceived to have a steeper learning curve than Facebook, there is a smaller number of participants. Despite the small population, these participants are some amazing people and I have connected with folks from all over the world. Many of which I game with on a semi-regular basis.
I should mention that I have found most sites (including Facebook and G+) have countless groups, communities and topic threads with little to no regular activity. I think this is a direct result of people’s good intentions and poor follow through to keep these groups and communities active and engaging. I have to keep reminding myself that we live in an age of instant gratification and many have an expectation of instant popularity without having to put in any real measureable work to maintain and sustain, but I digress!
I know there are a myriad of other internet sites out there for connecting with gamers, but G+ seems to be the place where I have the most fun through open and engaging conversations that stay on topic. I have been able to interact directly with game designers, publishers, podcasters and gamers alike. That is important in our hobby; you have to be able to connect with others that have similar interests. By doing so you are able to expand your circle of gamers and thereby have more opportunities to game, especially if you are a VoIP gamer.
My recommendations for awesome Facebook groups:
In the spirit of keeping this conversation engaging, if you are a user of either Facebook or G+, what are some of the groups and communities that you recommend? Share you experience so others can find new connections!