DICE producer talks community management amid slow news rollout

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Frustrated by the lack of news from Battlefield 2042? You’re not the only one. While DICE has already said that they are going to announce something about the Battlefield 2042 beta “later this month”, some players have speculated that since it is the end of September, it was not. any day of the past week. Sadly, nothing about this was announced Monday through Friday, except for something regarding Battlefield Mobile, which sparked some fans of the franchise.

On Twitter, a new thread (among many) named the tweet from DICE community manager Adam Freeman as the studio “liar.” Here is the thread Reddit says with the tweet that was mentioned in the thread for relevance:

And they lied AGAIN… WTF DICE… from the battlefield2042

In the same thread, DICE producer Ben Walke (released as F8RGE) explained some of the misconceptions about working as a community manager and touched on other things as well. Here is his message in full:

Hello,

I’ve seen a lot of talk like this lately and over time it just gets more and more aggressive, and that anger goes to Freeman and the rest of the community team on a personal level. I don’t think that’s fair, but instead of saying “don’t do that” I wanted to explain my thought process a bit.

Working in the community is probably one of the most misunderstood roles in the industry. While at first glance it’s easy to think this is one of the easiest jobs out there, from experience I can tell it isn’t.

You see, the problem with community work is that you are always stuck in the middle. You have everyone waiting for you for the answers, and that includes both the internal teams and of course your player base. When things are going well, you find yourself in a great situation (which is unfortunately all too rare) where everyone’s wants and needs align.

At times like this, working in community is most enjoyable. After all, you are surrounded by happy people and it becomes contagious. Have you already played a part of your favorite game and it is all just a click away? It is a bit like that.

From experience however, these moments are fleeting and my advice to anyone working in Community is to always enjoy them while you can because there is always something around the corner.

I should note that working in Community is really an iceberg job, as the vast majority of your work goes unnoticed. Back in the days when I was doing community stuff (hello / r / starwarsbattlefront, I miss you) I would say the public speaking element of the role was probably less than 10-15% of my overall work. .

I used to joke that being a Community Manager is a bit like being a meteorologist. You do your best with the information provided, but if you say “It will be 22 C tomorrow”, and then it turns out to be 21 C, people start calling you a liar and various other things. It’s a bad analogy, but on a basic level it kind of fits.

This is probably the most frustrating part of all the work, you depend on receiving this information and if you don’t receive it then you end up in limbo. You may also have to wait for the other teams. I don’t want to go into the whole Marketing machine, but I will say it’s a lot more than “tweeting”.

Even the simplest thing can be a monstrous effort, requiring multiple teams across the world to come together to do it. Is this a website update? Do you need to get some artwork, are the artwork in the right ratios? Can someone write the copy? Then you need a team to locate it. Next, pages need to be built, social teams need to be educated, and customer support needs to be upgraded. Do you have partners? Do you need to let the holders of your platform know so that they can take charge, are there any store pages that need an update? A tweet can often turn into a pandatableflip.gif of a process that needs to be followed. Nothing is ever as easy as “just a tweet”.

Let’s take an example that I can speak with some confidence. If you know my work on Star Wars Battlefront II, you know we used to post community broadcasts. In the simplest form, these are just posts on Reddit with information we thought players wanted to hear. On average, I think it took about a month from the first words written until the CT went live. I would have written it all in one day, but the rest of the time is this whole process you have to go through.

There is so much work that goes unnoticed, it’s still that iceberg of a few lines above.

Of course, Community is just a cog in the machine, and as a cog it is very difficult to turn on your own, you need all the other cogs to turn for you to do your spins. If those cogs don’t move, you’re stuck in limbo. Sometimes you just have to wait, no matter how much WD40 you apply, time is the only thing that makes things happen.

I’ve never met a community team that isn’t passionate about its players and wants nothing but what’s good for them. I’ve seen your Battlefield team fight for you with my own eyes, they care and are sure they probably always will.

I suspect I am starting to waffle now. I’m not sure if this helps to clarify the community area, and although I no longer work in this area, I hope you understand that I couldn’t sit back and not step in and support them, as they really don’t deserve all the hate directed at them.

In short, that doesn’t mean you shouldn’t or shouldn’t talk about things you don’t like. But consider that there are people on the other side of the screen that your anger and frustration is directed at, and those people don’t 100% deserve it. No one on your community team is lying, everything they say is correct as they post it, sometimes the wind changes and you get caught in a sudden downpour. Everyone is doing everything they can to make you happy.

If you’ve made it this far, thanks for reading and I guess that’s where I make my best impression of Lars and say, see you on the battlefield.

Ben

While it’s frustrating that we haven’t heard from DICE yet, the community (and everyone) should know that it’s not just DICE’s call; the studio needs to clear things up with publisher EA before they can relay any information, and that goes for the developers as well.

Hopefully we’ll hear something about the Battlefield 2042 beta next week.

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