As a note again for those who want to just hit the Analysis shows:
* CSM Watch: Analysis Show 1
* CSM Watch: Analysis Show 2
* CSM Watch: Analysis Show 3
I've also added links for the candidates interviews, analysis shows, and their official forum thread both to this and to the previous candidate review blog.
Top Notch Candidates:
Apothne: (interview) (analysis show) (forum thread) (CZ articles)
Frankly, I think that only people who are strongly grrPL would not have Apothne near the top of their list. Well, that and people who are voting exactly as their corporate masters tell them, but I doubt those people bother reading this blog. Apothne has a well-deserved reputation as a theory-crafter and FC that would make him a strong sounding board for ideas from CCP devs. He rightly calls out his advantage of having worked alongside CCP devs at the AT in a collegial manner. He also is a solid communicator who can get his point across (see above link to his CZ articles), yet is good at listening to other people's points as well. These three aspects are all critical to a CSM's job, and we rarely seem to see all three in the same candidate.
(Disclaimer: I am a CZ editor and have worked with Apothne there, though so far only on one yet-unpublished article.)
Joffy Auix-Gao: (interview) (analysis show) (forum thread)
I was very impressed with Joffy. I think he should push more that improvements for disabled players are things that help a wide variety of able-bodied players as well. His lowsec PVP credentials are a good match for a CSM that is losing incumbent lowsec reps, and the backing of Rixx Javik certainly doesn't hurt either. The story of Joffy's background and how he plays Eve is amazing and inspirational, but you would be write to say "great story, but how does that make him a good CSM candidate." Reading over this forum thread provides a good look in on this, including an exchange about Joffy's inability to physically attend summits which includes Mike Azariah's assurance that he feel Joffy is up to it.
Dotoo Foo: (interview) (analysis show) (forum thread) (Foo's blog)
So let's hit this right up front. What happens when you have a very competent, level-headed, good communicator for a candidate - who happens to not have a natural constituency that can slavishly provide thousands of votes? If Steve Ronuken wasn't running then he might be a shoo-in replacement as someone who is super competent on industry and markets. He has clearly invested a lot of work to widen his experience over the past year, but is his area of focus too narrow? Is his self-imposed focus on communication through his blog too narrow? Foo sounds like a great candidate to me with a independant mind that could be great for providing feedback on the future of Eve out to CCP Seagull's vision of player-built gates. I think he's going to end up getting on my ballot, but I also fully expect that he's more likely to not make it this time but perhaps be positioned even better for next year. And he is enough of a patient planner that perhaps that's what his plan is too.
Noobman: (interview) (analysis show) (forum thread)
His interview started off shaky and I think that mentally I was ready to write him off, but then he pulled it all back together. He is a wormhole candidate, which is a playstyle that we definitely need represented on the CSM, as well as flying with PL which means lowsec and nonsov null experience. His commentary on wormhole I found enlightening and insightful, though I do that from the POV of someone who only uses WHs to get somewhere else. His presence on the capital focus group is also a strong positive, particularly given his analysis on what is working or not working there. I think the big challenge for Noobman is how he compares to other candidates with WH experience such as our next candidate, Sullen Decimus.
Sullen Decimus: (interview) (analysis show) (forum thread)
His interview was solid, his demeanor was serious and thoughtful. He plays with one toon in WHs and another in nullsec (Bastion, part of the Imperium). In his forum thread he also answers competently about high-sec incursions. Interestingly there is also a back and forth where Vic Jefferson comes to pick a fight with him for being part of the Imperium. This points out a real challenge for him: many won't vote for him as a "goon pet" and unless he is on the official CFC ballot then he won't get their votes either. In the CSM Watch Analysis Show #2 the panel got a bit wrapped around the axle around his reserved posture towards the NDA and his real-life work. As they summed up there, it is unfortunate that behaving "like an adult" is a feature for a CSM candidate rather than an expectation.
I have a feeling that either Noobman or Sullen Decimus, but not both, will end up on my ballot eventually for the way they span WH and another playspace, but there are plenty of candidates left to go.
Jin'taan:(interview) (analysis show) (forum thread)
Good quote here that "this time we're not just voting for CSMs, but also for whether or not the CSM project will continue." It's clear that there is a voting bloc out there this time that is voting to burn the CSM down. Being a representative for ProviBloc and the NRDS engagement rule is good, and I get that game changes can impact NPSI and NRDS, such as the example he gave, but when compared to other candidates FCing competently isn't really a marker that makes a candidate stand out. If you're looking for a sampling of his analysis of the game, see his EN24 article on Battlecruiser rebalance. I think he sounds solid, but I'm not yet sure if he is exemplary enough to stand out in the horde of players running.
Not Worth Your TimeNameloading: (interview) (analysis show) (forum thread)
I was surprised to hear the argument that all players should be working their way to nullsec; I thought that old-null-school bias was pretty much dead. That puts him off my list for people's consideration right away. The nail in the coffin is his opening comment in the interview that part of his motivation was to make his mark of Eve? Even if people are running to try to become space-famous, usually they're clever enough not to say it out loud.