Microsoft needs to disassociate itself from "always-only"-requirement

benny_a

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I'm of the opinion that Microsoft would be making a mistake with doing either of the two rumored things and that it's in their best interest to associate the new Xbox with positive things instead of letting rumors take over what the next Xbox means.

Now that it has hit Yahoo News and is all over much read gaming websites I think they can't continue to take the stance of not commenting about this particular issue.

The next-generation Xbox is associated with a mandatory internet connection and also with a no used games policy (as the latter will be included in the coverage of the former).

Why does it matter? It's not announced yet.

What you hear first is important. If you think Microsoft can just come out and bring the facts to counter bad information with accurate information you might not be aware of the way our mind fails us.
Psychology tells us that with for example the backfire effect, even trying to correct misconceptions can actually increase misconceptions.

See this example from the CDC:
Washington Post said:
The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recently issued a flier to combat myths about the flu vaccine. It recited various commonly held views and labeled them either "true" or "false." Among those identified as false were statements such as "The side effects are worse than the flu" and "Only older people need flu vaccine."

When University of Michigan social psychologist Norbert Schwarz had volunteers read the CDC flier, however, he found that within 30 minutes, older people misremembered 28 percent of the false statements as true. Three days later, they remembered 40 percent of the myths as factual.
That early seeded false information can't be countered with good information later is shown if you look at how persistent the belief by many Muslims worlwide is that no Arabs were involved in the 9/11 attacks. (Data from 2007: 59% Turks, 59% Egyptians, 65% Indonesians, 53% Jordanians, 41% Pakistanis and 56 British Muslims)

There are plenty of people here on GAF that take a wait-and-see approach and that is certainly the most rational way of operating, but you have to consider the full market:
Washington Post said:
The experiments do not show that denials are completely useless; if that were true, everyone would believe the myths. But the mind's bias does affect many people, especially those who want to believe the myth for their own reasons, or those who are only peripherally interested and are less likely to invest the time and effort needed to firmly grasp the facts.
Right now every time the next Xbox is the news, there is a repetition of negative rumors. This is also an issue according to psychology research:

Washington Post said:
The research also highlights the disturbing reality that once an idea has been implanted in people's minds, it can be difficult to dislodge. Denials inherently require repeating the bad information, which may be one reason they can paradoxically reinforce it.

Indeed, repetition seems to be a key culprit. Things that are repeated often become more accessible in memory, and one of the brain's subconscious rules of thumb is that easily recalled things are true.
"But they are just unconfirmed rumors based on the same sources". More bad news from psychology:
Washington Post said:
Furthermore, a new experiment by Kimberlee Weaver at Virginia Polytechnic Institute and others shows that hearing the same thing over and over again from one source can have the same effect as hearing that thing from many different people -- the brain gets tricked into thinking it has heard a piece of information from multiple, independent sources, even when it has not. Weaver's study was published this year in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology.

The experiments by Weaver, Schwarz and others illustrate another basic property of the mind -- it is not good at remembering when and where a person first learned something. People are not good at keeping track of which information came from credible sources and which came from less trustworthy ones, or even remembering that some information came from the same untrustworthy source over and over again. Even if a person recognizes which sources are credible and which are not, repeated assertions and denials can have the effect of making the information more accessible in memory and thereby making it feel true, said Schwarz.
In addition to the all the points about how they should create positive associations it's being distinctly called out that maybe you shouldn't be silent and hope for the best.

Washington Post said:
Another recent study found that when accusations or assertions are met with silence, they are more likely to feel true, said Peter Kim, an organizational psychologist at the University of Southern California. He published his study in the Journal of Applied Psychology.
Based on this I think they need to get out there quickly and show all the positive things they can, they shouldn't let this narrative that has been building over months continue to snowball.

Further reading:
Washington Post article
Mathew Iredale discovers why myth-busting doesn’t work
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Confirmation_bias
 

Tomcat

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tomorrow no one will remember all this
except sites like neogaf
until the next rumor of course
 

frankie_baby

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or they're getting all the bad news out now to attempt to move on before the apparent good news when they officially announce it
 

Dibbz

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But what if its true, its the one rumor that refuses to die.
That's why they are probably not say anything, in hopes it will blow over and people will forget and never bring it up again. I think they are that thick.
 

DidntKnowJack

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Look, it's simple. Their new system either requires an internet connection or it doesn't. If it turns out to be false, then they can distance themselves from it.
 

benny_a

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Apr 25, 2009
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wouldn't there only be a need to distance themselves from this if it's not in fact true?
Yes. I guess I assumed that it wouldn't be true. I still think that should be the base assumption, despite all these rumors.

But what if consumers don't care about always-online?
The narrative that is building is that it's bad so people will associate badness with the next Xbox. If it's actually bad doesn't matter.

or they're getting all the bad news out now to attempt to move on before the apparent good news when they officially announce it
I'm trying to make a case in the OP why that doesn't work.

I mean there is the primacy and the recency effect which are pretty much equal in importance. So I guess they could come out on top, if everything was equal.
 
Jun 7, 2004
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But what if consumers don't care about always-online?
Pretty much. Most people probably don't have a problem with it until it's a problem for them and I'm one of them. We're in a environment where you're always connected in some way and the most popular consumer electronics are those that are connected in that way.
 

Dibbz

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Look, it's simple. Their new system either requires an internet connection or it doesn't. If it turns out to be false, then they can distance themselves from it.
Did you read the OP? Wrong information like this is hard to correct if you do not act fast. MS are probably going to let this ride and even if it does turn out to be false a lot of people that do not pay attention to new console news like GAF does, will not go out to look for the facts.
 

DidntKnowJack

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Did you read the OP? Wrong information like this is hard to correct if you do not act fast. MS are probably going to let this ride and even if it does turn out to be false a lot of people that do not pay attention to new console news like GAF does, will not go out to look for the facts.
Unfortunately, it's not wrong information.
 

mikeGFG

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to be honest, i think we --as an internet community-- need to stop giving this issue so much attention.

let's be patient and wait for Microsoft to reveal the next Xbox. Let the features, content, and games justify their always online requirements.
 

Darryl

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i'm actually all for them trying it. we don't need 3 similar consoles on the market. this is going to create 3 completely different options for consumers each more suited to the needs of a certain market segment. it'll be interesting to watch from the sidelines, but i will not buy a console with always online. i like local multiplayer and japanese games, i get the wii u. if you like western FPS, sports games, and online multiplayer, get the xbox. if you like a mishmash of all, get the PS4.
 

eot

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They haven't announced the bloody thing. This is not big enough for them change their announcement plans, not even close. Either they have nothing to worry about because it's not always online, or it is always online and their strategy for dealing with that will be to aggressively sell you the system with other stuff that's actually enticing. They have nothing to gain from being defensive about it, they want to talk about the system on their own terms.
 

LuchaShaq

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But what if consumers don't care about always-online?
All of my "casual" gamer friends (who basically only play COD/Halo/Sports and then one random other game per year) have all heard the rumors and panicked because they only have 360s and assumed they would be getting the next xbox. After these rumors basically all of them are dead set on a ps4 now.
 

MVP

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They shouldn't disassociate themselves with the future, everything is moving in that direction...if you have a crappy internet connection, the next Xbox isn't for you. If you have crappy wireless data coverage in your area, the iPhone or any other smartphone isn't for you.

What's the problem? Are companies supposed to always cater to the lowest common denominator now? Should AMC force Breaking Bad to be produced with black and white TVs in mind? Sorry, it's 2013.
 

SmokyDave

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Tom buys a Durango, gets home, finds that the console doesn't work due to server congestion/crap internet/whatever, immediately returns it. Shop gets their money back from Microsoft. Sale lost.
Forty other people buy the console, notice 0 issues with the always online requirement (or don't care about any issues), MS laugh all the way to the bank.

I get why people think it'll be an automatic disaster, but I think there's immense potential to be unpleasantly surprised.
 

Forsaken82

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So out of curiosity... I have a serious question to those of you who actually are connected to Xbox Live...

How many of you actually sign out of Xbox Live when playing a single player only game or Single Player campaign?

I only ask because my guess is, assuming the always online is actually true for the next Xbox, it is because they have data that shows a large percentage of those already connected to live don't disconnect while playing single player games... They clearly would not consider such a route if the numbers said otherwise. Perhaps more of you should start disconnecting while playing these games to tell MS "hey, quit being stupid!"
 

Dibbz

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Unfortunately, it's not wrong information.
Yes that is the impression MS is giving by not saying anything. They probably hoped to not make a big deal out of it but it is a big deal and they are dumb for thinking they could just slip it in without anyone questioning them. Especially so soon after Diablo 3 and SimCity.
 

MVP

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So out of curiosity... I have a serious question to those of you who actually are connected to Xbox Live...

How many of you actually sign out of Xbox Live when playing a single player only game or Single Player campaign?
I won't play single player games without Live being connected, in fear of my achievements screwing up or not registering when I get them.
 

jtb

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They really don't.

If the rumor isn't true, then the reveal will tell us as much.

If it is, then the negative headlines are inevitable and they might as well watch the controversy exhaust itself before getting to the reveal.
 
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The issue isn't going to be with early adopters.

The issue is with the console 5-6 years from now, when it's nearing EOL and is price reduced to move to the lower cost marketplace. These people are going to be the ones who have spotty or no internet. That is where their sales are going to be lost.

I have a feeling Microsoft realizes this and would rather mine their well off customers for money than search for pure hardware numbers which don't always correlate to continued software sales. They've already established that it's a sustainable market.
 

benny_a

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They shouldn't disassociate themselves with the future, everything is moving in that direction...if you have a crappy internet connection, the next Xbox isn't for you. If you have crappy wireless data coverage in your area, the iPhone or any other smartphone isn't for you.

What's the problem? Are companies supposed to always cater to the lowest common denominator now? Should AMC force Breaking Bad to be produced with black and white TVs in mind? Sorry, it's 2013.
The problem is about the next-generation of Xbox is being perceived at the moment and what impact it has on potential buyers.

My OP wasn't so much about the relative merits for or against an online-only console but rather how the system is currently being described in the media. (Now more mainstream media than the older rumors.)

They really don't.

If the rumor isn't true, then the reveal will tell us as much.

If it is, then the negative headlines are inevitable and they might as well watch the controversy exhaust itself before getting to the reveal.
Again: My argument is that this potentially will not work based on psychological research in other fields.
 

Dibbz

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So out of curiosity... I have a serious question to those of you who actually are connected to Xbox Live...

How many of you actually sign out of Xbox Live when playing a single player only game or Single Player campaign?
You don't fucking get it do you?

What we have right now.

Put in game, servers down can't connect to multiplayer, go play something else like single player

What we will get

Put in game, servers down, can't play single player, can't do fuck all.
 
Jun 7, 2004
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Tom buys a Durango, gets home, finds that the console doesn't work due to server congestion/crap internet/whatever, immediately returns it. Shop gets their money back from Microsoft. Sale lost.
The same thing can happen with the world's favorite games, the CoDs and ACs and Halos and Killzones and WoWs and LoLs and FIFAs and so on. Cloud, social networks, Netflix, Amazon Video, i-things, XBL, PSN, etc...all bound to stable internet connections to make use of most if not all of their primary functions and features. Software of all kinds is increasingly tied into network features and authentications. An always-connected console will simply file in with the rest of the popular software, remote storage services, storefronts, and consumer electronics that essentially operate under that assumption as well. I have a difficult time believing the rumored extent to which the system will cut off service if not connected. That feels more inline with a control measure for their development kits where they are trying to keep things under wraps.
 

Taij

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immediately returns it. Shop gets their money back from Microsoft. Sale lost.
That's not how most retail works. A shop will buy a certain number of units at wholesale. They now own those units and sell them to customers, when they run out they buy more. You generally have to have a specific circumstance to be able to return unsold goods to the manufacturer.
 
Q

Queen of Hunting

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Tom buys a Durango, gets home, finds that the console doesn't work due to server congestion/crap internet/whatever, immediately returns it. Shop gets their money back from Microsoft. Sale lost.
this wont be allowed it will be in the terms for anything that has always on that it was clearly marked that they maybe be server problems, i believe alot of mmo's have this in their terms and conditions and once u agree there is fuck all you can do. just look at sim city yes amazon refunded (and probs really fucked ea off in the process ) but getting an actual refund from EA yea GG. and it was the same with diablo 3 practically no one got a refund for server is to busy
 

Forsaken82

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You don't fucking get it do you?

What we have right now.

Put in game, servers down can't connect to multiplayer, go play something else like single player

What we will get

Put in game, servers down, can't play single player, can't do fuck all.
I get it just fine actually. You need to calm down. my question isn't regarding the logistics of the issue, but rather the likely numbers MS is using to validate it (on top of the entire fact that it was all HYPOTHETICAL in the first place).

That being said, is your complete over reaction to my question worth the real life high blood pressure that likely resulted?
 

Htown

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The issue isn't going to be with early adopters.

The issue is with the console 5-6 years from now, when it's nearing EOL and is price reduced to move to the lower cost marketplace. These people are going to be the ones who have spotty or no internet. That is where their sales are going to be lost.

I have a feeling Microsoft realizes this and would rather mine their well off customers for money than search for pure hardware numbers which don't always correlate to continued software sales. They've already established that it's a sustainable market.
No, the issue is also with early adopters, because there are going to be tons of people connecting to the servers at once, and we all know how online product launches end up when that happens.
 

Dibbz

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I get it just fine actually. You need to calm down. my question isn't regarding the logistics of the issue, but rather the likely numbers MS is using to validate it (on top of the entire fact that it was all HYPOTHETICAL in the first place).
The numbers mean nothing. People don't choose to play offline because they can play online and interact with people. If you force everyone to be always connect, you no longer give us the option to go offline if something goes wrong. Something like, the servers getting pounded day 1 like what has happened to every other always online game out there.
 

Forsaken82

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The numbers mean nothing. People don't choose to play offline because they can play online and interact with people. If you force everyone to be always connect, you no longer give us the option to go offline if something goes wrong. Something like, the servers getting pounded day 1 like what has happened to every other always online game out there.
Again, Hypothetical

Not you, nor I know what MS (ASSUMING THIS IS TRUE IN THE FIRST PLACE) are using to justify any of it.

It isn't worth your complete over reaction.

Its like watching a cubs game and seeing that super fan freak out when Carlos Marmol comes to the mound with a 3 run lead and gives up 2 runs but still gets the save. Fucking responses like "Fucking Marmol, worst player ever!" The Cubs still won! calm down!

I hate marmol more than I hate the idea of an Always online Console :(
 

x3sphere

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I think the online-only thing won't hurt sales much...

There was a a big outcry over Diablo 3 requiring online and everyone still bought it. So far, every DRM-related boycott has pretty much failed on a measurable level.

Most consumers are weak and will still buy in if Microsoft makes the next Xbox appealing enough in other aspects.
 

Green Wiggly

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They'll sell enough consoles at launch, no matter how much they piss GAF off.

to be honest, i think we --as an internet community-- need to stop giving this issue so much attention.

let's be patient and wait for Microsoft to reveal the next Xbox. Let the features, content, and games justify their always online requirements.
THIS. IS. THE. INTERNET.
 

benny_a

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Apr 25, 2009
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Not you, nor I know what MS (ASSUMING THIS IS TRUE IN THE FIRST PLACE) are using to justify any of it.
That's the whole basis of my first post.

Right now it's only being associated with the negativity that comes with forcing online-only for singleplayer games. They have not yet made announcements how it would be great, no matter how far-fetched it is.

Sim City tried to talk about increased connectivity and how regions will make the game more social and more fun between players.

MS has not yet said anything. That's the point of all my post.
 
Jan 16, 2007
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You don't fucking get it do you?

What we have right now.

Put in game, servers down can't connect to multiplayer, go play something else like single player

What we will get

Put in game, servers down, can't play single player, can't do fuck all.
It's still all rumor though, lets not get ahead of our self.

There is still this tiny bit of hope in me hoping this doesn't actually happen and they do it as Sony will.
 

Patryn

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The narrative that is building is that it's bad so people will associate badness with the next Xbox. If it's actually bad doesn't matter.
The narrative on NeoGAF, you mean. Which in the end doesn't really matter to the market that they'll be going after.

Just because it's a big deal here doesn't mean most people care.
 

benny_a

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The narrative on NeoGAF, you mean. Which in the end doesn't really matter to the market that they'll be going after.

Just because it's a big deal here doesn't mean most people care.
I've linked to the Yahoo News article. It reads negatively to me, so it's not contained to NeoGAF unless EviLore is moonlighting at Yahoo News.
 

Patryn

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I've linked to the Yahoo News article. It reads negatively to me, so it's not contained to NeoGAF unless EviLore is moonlighting at Yahoo News.
Ok, granted. But I'm not sure if the fact that it's a republished piece from a site I've never heard of benefits your argument or mine.

I still side with those who believe that the average consumer will give a shit about this.
 

ekim

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http://majornelson.com/2013/04/05/official-statement-on-what-was-said-yesterday/

"We apologize for the inappropriate comments made by an employee on Twitter yesterday. This person is not a spokesperson for Microsoft, and his personal views do not reflect the customer centric approach we take to our products or how we would communicate directly with our loyal consumers. We are very sorry if this offended anyone, however we have not made any announcements about our product roadmap, and have no further comment on this matter."
English is not my first language so I could be wrong but the bolded can be read as : "no we won't do such things like a mandatory Internet connection for our next customer centric Xbox"

Or I'm just naive. :eek:
 

FoneBone

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