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.  Sending spam/flames to emulator authors 
September 2, 1998
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. Author: JL_Picard

        Hey, JL_Picard here. I felt like writing this article and submitting it to Zophar's Domain because I saw something on the SYS2064 site and it struck a chord... I knew about general lameness in the scene before that, but something clicked and I wanted to get this message across to as many people as I could. This article probably won't stop the downward spiral of the scene but if we get this message across, then hopefully it will help.

Quoted from SYS2064 (http://www.classicgaming.com/sys2064/)

There is a scary trend going on...
...it seems that emulator programmers are getting more and more hate-mail...I can't believe that people are so stupid to bite the hand that feeds them...Please don't bug the authors! Wait patiently for new releases and when they are released, enjoy them! Remember...most emulators are FREEWARE - the authors spend their time and money on them and at least you could encourage and help them!!

- The folks at SYS2064

I'd just like to elaborate on this.

        There were always a lamers and idiots in the emu scene (as far back as I can remember) but they seem to be increasing in number at an alarming rate. It seems that many people don't realize that people who program emulators (most of them) are doing it for everyone's benefit, and they do NOT have to cater to any individual's whims or desires. Authors who have made emulators free are EXTREMELY kind people, and they have no obligation to anyone, let alone the many people who flame them for stupid reasons. I can even respect the authors who charge for their emulators, because programming an emulator is a very hard task and a huge undertaking. If they would like to ask for a little money for their emulators they are justified in doing so; all the time and effort spent on programming must give them some reward for their work. Remember, emu authors have to make a living too, most of them have one full time or part time job, have a family, etc., and they program in their spare time, often a *LOT* of their spare time.

         What can I say about people who dedicate all of their time to try to brighten people's days by giving them a chance to relive memories and explore the games of the past...sometimes even the not-so-distant past. They are committed, not to any individual(s) but to themselves and the public at large... to develop and develop and develop non-stop, always improving their code, always making it easier for the end-user to use, always improving the quality of their GUI, home page, whatever. Developing an emulator is a non-stop high-frequency frenetic pace of updating, bug fixing...and if you've ever programmed one, you know that an emulator is very seldom finished, if ever. Emu authors who have chosen this path have made a commitment to the public at large that they will make available to the public (PD) their emulator, usually for free.

         Yet, there still exists people who are not satisfied with whatever is released. Authors VERY frequently receive hate mail and letters with subjects such as "WHY DONT YOU RELEASE A NEW VERSION ALREADY" and "YOUR EMULATOR SUCKS. WHY DONT YOU PROGRAM SOMETHING ELSE" and "I'M GOING TO REPORT YOU TO THE POLICE" and "FUCK YOU, WHY DONT YOU SUPPORT (x) AND WHY DOESNT (x) WORK" and "IF YOU DON'T SEND ME ROMS I WILL KILL YOUR FAMILY", etc, etc, ETC.

        Most emulator authors who receive such lame emails for the vast majority, discard it and forget it - ignoring someone you don't like is always the more mature way of handling people, it shows that they are above the maturity level of the sender, and that they wouldn't go down to the lamer's level by retorting anything. Some attempt to take minimal action by blocking the sender's email address, or IP address, etc., and some take other action. In all cases, the authors are annoyed in varying degrees (based on the contents of the email).

        Most often the senders are individuals who are under a certain age, and lack a certain maturity, other times they are lamers with no lives, and they can afford to sit around all day and anonymously flame everyone to death. Still other times the sender is a foreigner who unfortunately can't speak English and the first English words they learned are not appropriate (to say the least) :) The other times, people with no lives in the form of system administrators can play too...can we say "putting inappropriate content on the front page of Zophar's Domain?" oh, and lets not forget RipFob :) hehe. just had to put that in there.. I feel the most sorry for these individuals because they posess an immense technical knowledge about computers and are able to run entire networks, but their power hungry natures usually wins over the battle with their conscience. Sad, but true.

         In all these cases, what is being accomplished here? What will you accomplish if you send a piece of hate-mail to an emulator author. Well let's see.

  • The author in extreme cases (and there have been quite a few in these past times) will discontinue the emulator and withdraw from the scene.
  • Sometimes he/she will send email to your system administrator and ask that action be taken on your behalf (flooding, etc).
  • Other times they will ban your email address from appearing in their inbox (maybe even your entire domain) so if anyone had a VALID question/comment it would never get through.
  • Most of the time, they will simply delete your email with no questions asked.
  • You will annoy them...you will earn no respect in their eyes, and maybe they will even discredit you in their next release.
        This is just plain stupid...and it must stop sooner or later. There is no reason to get upset at emulator authors, ABSOLUTELY NONE whatsoever. They are doing so much, and they ask literally *nothing* in return. In this "scene", there IS such a thing as a free lunch, and there are in fact MANY free lunches :) However there won't be for very long if this is allowed to continue...think about it. What incentive is there for an author to develop an emulator and be public about it (release it, etc) if all they can look forward to are hoardes of lamers and idiots flaming them for something they worked so hard on. I know I wouldn't do it.

         If you are one of these people that send hate mail, then I truly pity you. You have no life, and you must suck the life out of others by nonverbally admitting you are lame, and you want to show your lameness by trying to prove something. If you are one who has done it before, and realize the error of your ways, then thanks, one person can make a difference (if everyone thought like you).

         People can be forgiven. All you have to do is thank the authors every once in a while for devoting most of their energy to something they just give away, for free...they are doing it for you. They ask for nothing back. Thank them, if possible submit bug reports, suggestions for new features, etc. In this way you will be praising them, and encouraging them to continue with a good conscience, knowing that there are people who care and appreciate what they do. You can make a difference...change this scene around. The emu scene is on a downward spiral and it has been for some time, but it doesn't have to be that way. It SHOULDN'T be that way. Please recognize this, and thanks.

        Side note: I know there are going to be some *really* lame people who decide that I'm wrong, and they're right, of course. So feel free to make comments to my email address stated above, and voice your opinion.
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