To all my friends, this is goodbye.
After much thought I have decided that I simply can't remain a member of Gaia any longer. I just want to say it's not because zOMG! got shelved, it's been shelved before and the game has continued to work. This is something much older than even zOMG!, which admittedly was the only thing keeping me from leaving years ago. Though the hullabaloo that's been going on throughout the site for most of this last week certainly is a good example of everything that has been driving me away from Gaia for quite a while.
Gaia is not the site I joined back when I attended the very first anniversary dance, and I wouldn't expect it to be. The site has grown and changed over the years, and I've been so happy to be there and see them. I'll never forget when fishing was added, or my first tentative steps into Towns. I love having the Hangout feature, I understand why it was replaced with GiM, then later Meebo and the Hangouts feature. I remember the excitement every time a new feature was announced, I remember how buggy everything used to be and I'm glad it's less buggy now. But Gaia isn't about the community anymore, more and more it seems that Gaia HQ is making decisions specifically to stir the community up, or at least isn't taking our thoughts and feedback into consideration. Why else would Alchemy be as broken as it is, RiG/CIs so prolific, Facebook so omnipresent? This site has lost its soul, I feel for Lanzer, I feel for the devs and admins who have to be the go betweens, I feel for the artists, and I feel for the rest of the mods and staffers. I sincerely hope this improves, but I won't be around for it.
The community isn't irreproachable either. I'm so embarrassed for how crazed even normally wonderful and intelligent people can get. I also felt strongly about zOMG!, it was the only MMO I'd ever been able to play past the "definitely can't solo anymore" stage and the community is why, I also felt physically ill when I read Swarf's post about Gaia HQ's behavior, but there really should not have been the raging and venom I saw spread around everywhere. I understand not everyone is going to be impossibly polite, but there was no need to be raving beasts everywhere. The community as a whole has become pretty much a senseless hoard, GD is proof enough of that. I shouldn't be embarrassed to admit I'm a member of a site I love to friends I've made elsewhere because it's known by and large for having a terrible userbase. Is it really so hard to type out whole sentences, Gaians? And most browsers now have spell check built in, why can't you just use it?
Lastly, I want to apologize to my many friends. I was the "leaving anon" and I should not have done that. I realized I should have just been a regular anon so you could enjoy my gifts without all that worry. I hope you can forgive me for my thoughtlessness. You have all been absolutely wonderful, without you I certainly would have left in disgust long ago, not this regretful leaving. I hope we'll meet again somewhere else, I certainly don't plan on removing you from my Skype! Keep enjoying zOMG!, I hope Gaia HQ realizes that you're all a force to be reckoned with and gives you back your devs. I love you all!