In our western society, freedom is something we often take for granted. Something that was paid a high price for, by our grandparents and great-grandparents. A freedom that (ironically) when you think about it, was taken from them as they were conscripted, in order for it to be given to us
A freedom that allows us to work wherever we want to work and even not work if we're unable. A freedom that allows us to believe what we want and speak out against things we disagree with.
But in it's FULL sense, freedom is an odd thing. I would challenge you, that to have (what I'm going to call) FULL freedom, one would not have freedom at all. Now before I start getting all the name calling in my comments section about how I'm a socialist, communist pig or any the political jargon that I don't even understand
, let me explain. As an example, if we had "full freedom", we'd be free to commit any crime without repercussion, under the banner of "it's my right and my freedom". But what happens in this situation, is the rights and freedoms of one, is negated by the rights and freedoms of the other. The victim has the right and the freedom to expect that their car won't be stolen. But in the scenario of "full freedom", the perpetrator has the right and freedom to steal their car without repercussion.
I challenge you, that true freedom can only be found within the confides of boundaries and rules. The rules and boundaries are set up to protect the freedoms of the members of every community. They're set up by the people we place in positions of power above us and to become members of a particular community, we agree to abide by these rules that protect our freedoms.
Almost 4 years ago and around 1100 posts earlier (yeah, I'm a slow poster
), I decided to become a member of TOG. This gaming community was introduced to me by a couple of mates who were already part of it and suggested I joined. This is actually the first forum that I joined and the one I've posted on the most. I've spent many hours trolling the forums, reading and replying and I've made many friends that I've not even met.
But I was reminded yesterday that it was not always smooth sailing for me here. I read a post yesterday about a member who had been asked to leave TOG and I have to tell you, this is one of the reasons I LOVE being a member of such a fine community
(you thought I was going to say something else, didn't you?
lol!) I remember very early on, having issues with a particular member and I was supported immensely by the leaders of TOG as they protected my freedoms and rights.
It's interesting to think that although we are a community of people drawn together by one thing in common, we still hold and bring with us, so many differences and diversities. I read threads debating the existence of God which shows we're a group of believing and non-believing OLDER GAMERS. There are threads about the non-censored versions of LFD2, which means there are Australian and non-Australian OLDER GAMERS. Some of us are male, some of us female .... OLDER GAMERS. And even when it comes to games, we have different ideas on what should and shouldn't be allowed. What is and isn't frowned upon. What game types are the best and what just should be avoided
As a member of the BF2142 division, I remember constant debates over whether it should be allowed to camp spawn beacons or "jihad" (a term used to describe placing RDX on an FAV and using it as a mobile bomb to destroy enemy assets). There were things that I didn't necessarily agree with, but once rules were set in place, we all abide by them because that's how we protect our freedoms, rights and good name that is TOG.
I don't want to make this too much of a "I have a dream." - Martin Luther King speech, I guess I just wanted to blog my thoughts and observations about communities and TOG. It's important to remember that we are all different and the best way to manage those differences is to respect the rights of those we're part of a community with.
*hops off his soap box*
Finally, some special shout outs of appreciation to some leaders here who do such an awesome job and have had a direct impact on my stay here.
- King_Rocket - Started the very first welcome thread here for me. Cheers for all your work.
- Battlescoob - Spent the time to sort out my issue here with a certain person
- 303 - It's like you lurk around the forums, posting up just in time to put out fires. Great work.
- Quickie (aka Subgalaxy) - One of the leaders in the BF2142 division when I started. Thanks for your time and efforts.
- Omen, Maddog, Redgum - You guys get named together cos it felt like we went through a few DC's quickly in that division Thanks for your work and all the awesome games we had. Whether I was gunner in MD's gunnship or Omen's tank or in a stabbing fight with Redgum, it's always fun and full of laughs.
- Ch!ll, recon - Thanks for all the work you're doing in my new division of misfits, COD-BO
- Basie - Where would any of us be without you mate? Cheers.
- Father - For the insight to start up such a great community. I've had a lot of great times with TOG. Thanks.
Thanks a lot guys. For a job that is voluntary, you do a great job with just not enough thanks. Keep up the awesome work!
(I think I'll make this my new signature at the end of my blogs. Post up and tell me what you think
p.s. Just so you know, I'm not going anywhere