Unintended Self-Discovery

Unintended Self-Discovery

Discord Overwhelm

Telwyn of GamingSF had some thoughts on Discord at the start of the month that resonated pretty strongly with me.

I just find I haven’t established a useful relationship with how Discord is used. I currently belong to five different community servers (including Blaugust, two MMO-related ones and two tabletop rpg ones). I rarely keep up with even the “main chat” of any of them, let alone the 5-10 other topic specific channels that *each* community has. Using Discord feels like being hosed down with content every time I open the app.

I very much feel the same. Every time I open Discord, I am inundated. And while I can ignore it for a while, it just gets overwhelming. I’m still going to try to get better at using Discord, however. It’s the main tool friends like to use to communicate. And I feel at a distance from some of my favorite folks in Moogle’s Pom Tavern because I am just not sure how to catch up, or keep up. I think part of my problem is being in a bunch of servers I’m not actually participating in, and even though I’ve muted them, I can still see the little badge letting me know there’s things there for me to read.

I don’t want to leave some of these muted servers for various reasons (though I’ll happily leave others), so I’m unsure what to do about the dreaded unread notification dot in-app. Regardless, I’d very much like to figure something out so I can be a part of the communities I’d like to enjoy with friends, and maybe one day be able to effectively run my own community without much anxiety.

Bitten by the FFXIV Bug

I’ve been bitten by the FFXIV bug, but I’ve yet to succumb to the itch. Both Belghast and Sandrian have mentioned the Moogle Treasure Trove, which is of interest to me as a collector, but I also know that I’m nowhere near high enough level on any classes to do much of anything. Which I think is what’s keeping the bug at bay. Plus, let’s be honest, I really don’t have a core group of folks to play with.

Which, to be fair, is an issue I have with all games right now. Since my divorce, MMOs have just seemed far less enjoyable (I had a live-in gaming partner after all). And Manthing and I are never bitten by the same MMO bug at the same time, either. And I just feel so very shy with trying to engage with a group of folks I don’t know in MMOs. In ESO, I’m pretty silent. I ignore the chat of one of my guilds completely, and only really chat in the other one when Eldan Monster is online.

In honesty, I think this kind of ties back to Discord, as well. I think the past few years I’ve just been struggling to make friends, and interact with the ones I do have. And I have the same problem whether it’s Discord or a game (or even real life)—I end up feeling overwhelmed, and then I hide and distance myself from the friends I do have, and don’t let myself make new ones.

Woof! We’re really doing some tough self-discovery in this post today, aren’t we?

I’m not sure how to begin to fix this problem. I know the “easy” solution is to just… stop distancing myself and talk to others. But that’s a big struggle right now, and I can’t think of any other solutions quite yet.

12 thoughts on “Unintended Self-Discovery

  1. *hugs* I’ve already told you my thoughts on this I think, but I do feel the same way sometimes. Vast majority of my servers are muted.

    That said, if you suppress @everyone and @role mentions and mute the server indefinitely, you shouldn’t get the unread notification dot. I only know this because it drives me crazy too. If it’s there, I must click, so I’m very mute heavy.

    Mostly I enjoy that Discord is a dip in and out thing and tends to be better curated than open social media, but heck I understand why it’s not for everyone! And you know where I am if you wanna chat elsewheres. <3

    1. I’m going to look into muting completely and shoving stuff into a folder. Maybe that will make me feel a bit more able to dip in, even if only to one or two channels where most folks I love congregate. <3

  2. I’ve long informed everyone I know (work included) that I’m a fossil when it comes to phone apps and social media. While I could very well figure things out, given my technical PC strengths, it’s easier to act boomer dumb and helpless and ensure no one expects anything from me vis a vis phone or apps. 😉

    With this defence in place, I’m free to use the apps in the manner I like – mostly lurking and scanning threads like web and forum pages and lingering only on subjects of interest, and not feel any obligation to contribute or return communication in any decent space of time… because it’s not likely to happen, given how infrequently I check.

    I treat all these things as “pull” content, when I’m ready to read them, and roundly reject their insistence on “push” content. No, even if you dump it on my desk, it’s not going to be read until I’m ready.

    While I’m sure this won’t work for everybody (aka most people who would actually want a back and forth conversation), take it as encouragement that not everyone participates as actively as the most vocal posters in any media, that there’s plenty of lurkers who may or may not pay attention, and feel free to experiment with the degree of interaction to find out what works best for you.

  3. I can happily sit in a room with a ringing phone and let it ring on unil it stops but even I find Discord’s pings annoying. I feel like someone has literally sat down and worked on getting the sound just pathetic enough to induce feelings of guilt if you ignore it.

    I’m not sure how Discord’s default settings work but I’m guessing they leave most things “off” until you activate them because although I’m nominally in half a dozen Discord channels the only one that pings is Blaugust. Although, that said, it does sometimes ping when I can’t see any new activity, so maybe it’s other channels piping up. If so, they must all be pretty quiet most of the time.

    Like Jeromai I could sort all this out if I wanted to but I really don’t want to. I prefer to feel like I’m the one in control, not dancing to Discord’s pinging tune. I think the technology exists to be used as we, the consumers, prefer, not for us to fit ourselves around whatever the designer thought was a good idea.

    1. YES! The ping noise drives me bananas. And I like that idea—using it as we prefer, not necessarily as “expected”.

  4. I’ve actually just started using Discord, and to say that certain aspects of it are not clearly explained and identified is an understatement.

    There’s plenty of interesting functions, but I can see how it can quickly be a jumbled mess that makes me long for poorly executed software like Skype for Business.

    The concept of being overwhelmed with Discord I can agree with, especially when you’d rather do other things with other people, but the “unread” for other chats keeps trying to suck you back in. And if you’re the Completionist or OCD type, having anything undone will drive a person crazy.

    I was chatting in a 5-man instance in WoW Classic yesterday, and found out that some of the guilds on my server have something on the order of 350 or 400 guild members –not toons, but members. I can barely comprehend being able to follow chat with that many people much less actually play games. And the Discord….

    Oy.

    1. I don’t particularly enjoy Skype, either, but to be honest, I miss just simple AIM and AIM group chats. 😛

      400 guild members?! That’s insane. I mean, props to the folks who can manage it. I know I couldn’t!

  5. Right clicking on a server icon and pressing ‘Mute Server > Until I turn it back on’ has always worked for me.

    I only keep up with the Blaugust server and my own personal friends and family server. I find that’s as much Discord as I can handle.

    1. THANK YOU! Going to do that now to most of my servers lol. And yeah, I can only handle a few channels.

  6. Thanks for the mention 🙂
    The topic annoys me so because I see there is so much potential for reaching out to other creatives (especially in ttrpgs) on this platform, but that requires even more time commitment, when I’m feeling really stretched already. The current situation has me working harder than normal, not less in the daytime – so I’m rather defensive of what I allow to creep on to my daily routine at the moment…

    1. Exactly! The time commitment gets me. 🙁 I completely understand that defensiveness. It’s a good boundary to set.

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