A rambling post that has a little to do with warcraft.

Today I am talking more about character than about Wow, although it certainly applies. This has been bouncing around in my head after reading several posts about group dynamics and what it means to be a greedy asshat. While I agree to some extent with points made in both of all those posts, along with dozens of others I have read on similar topics,  I think it comes down to more than just honesty.

 Lets look at a few examples, shall we?

A person is doing a bit of shopping, going to the store to pick up a few small things and one rather expensive one. he realises that he left his wallet at home and only has the cash to cover the small things. Does he put the expensive thing back on the shelf, or try to sneak it past the register on the bottom of his cart?

That same person, who would never dream of shoplifting, leaves a department store after paying for his purchases. When he reaches the car he person discovers that the rather expensive item was forgotten on the bottom shelf of the cart.

Does this person go back into the store, inform them of the error, and pay for the item? Does he just dump it in the trunk and count himself lucky?


Another person is standing at the teller window cashing his paycheck. The teller walks away from the window to grab more deposit slips and her cash drawer is not latched. He sees hundreds of dollars sitting there within easy reach. Grab some “free cash”? Stand there and wait?

That same person goes through the drive up window at the bank. He sends in a deposit slip and his paycheck. When the teller returns both a receipt for the deposit being successfully made andthe uncashed paycheck he sends the check back in.

The teller, seeing the check asks weather it is for deposit or cash. What does he do? take the cash? Inform the teller that it has already been deposited?


Yet another person is playing Wow.  Week after week she raids the current end boss of the game with her guild. Three times the legendary “OP Weapon of Uberness” drops (+299 to all stats, on use: doubles size of epeen).  Three times the loot council decided it should go elsewhere.It drops for the fourth time tonight.

Twenty-four guildies have passed while the loot council debates. Need or pass?


That same player comes on knowing that she is transferring servers that Friday once she gets paid. Since she cannot commit to all the raid days for the week she bows out of raiding with her guild, she says her goodbyes and leaves the guild. Thursday night the now unguilded player is on finishing up “packing her bags” for the transfer when she gets invited to another guilds raid.

The “OP Weapon of Uberness” drops yet again. The raid has no master looter, 24 people have passed while the loot council debates, it’s up to her…….  need or pass?


Some people would look at those examples and  see a difference.

They are all the same.

The difference is not in how honest the person is, and the end result would be the same in all three examples.

Some people are simply wired to act in what I would call and honest manner. Some people act honestly simply because the consequences of being dishonest are not worth the gains from the dishonest behavior.

I think the point I am trying to make is a simple one. The reason there seems to be more dishonest folks on the internet (in my opinion) is due to the lack of real consequences to their actions.

An asshat might not lie, cheat, and steal, in the real world out of fear of the punishments that might happen. That same hidden asshat would have much less of a problem behaving that way online where the chance of real punishment is slim to none.

It is said that the anonymity of the internet brings out the asshat in people. I say it was already there, but out of fear of punishment they were just too cowardly to show it. The internet just gives them a forum to show it in with no fear of reprisal.

None of this was a question of honesty, it was a question of integrity.

Do you treat people the same when you are in a pug?

On an unguilded alt?

On a random Death Knight you rolled on a server where you are a stranger?

Do you still treat people well when no one else is looking?


Note: Sorry for the unpolished rambling. Due to family obligations and an unexpected, unwanted, road trip I will be offline until at least this weekend. I wanted to clean this up a bit before I released it, but I also wanted to post it before I left. Simply put I ran out of time.