Discussion in 'General CPA Stuff' started by Spiderman, Apr 1, 2013.
"My buddy, my buddy, wherever I go, he goes..."
So I don't play MTGO and haven't even seen it in almost a decade. I'm not familiar with things there, but this is an April Fools Day thing, right? I mean, it seems like it's probably kind of funny, but I feel like an outsider on whatever the real joke is...
If you don't know what the joke is (and I don't either, by the way), it's probably on you, the uninformed reader.
This seems like the kind of thing I would have written here 8 years ago if I tried to write an article in ten minutes and could get graphics to work correctly. Also, I think it's supposed to be a parody of the Microsoft Office paperclip. There really aren't any jokes in the article (you can stop reading this sentence here, if you like) specific to MTGO. There's really only three observations going on that sort of apply to any Magic player: people make bad decisions in drafts, people can act like douches, and people blame the randomization of their cards (read: the shuffler) when they lose.
And now I've spent more time replying to this article than it probably took to write. What does that say about me?
That's exactly what I thought. But I'm pretty sure Microsoft Office moved on from that (I don't use Microsoft Office at home, but I've used it at school quite a lot, and Clippy wasn't around in Office 2007 from what I could see). So the feature of Microsoft Office that was universally derided and that they stopped including in their product over five years ago is the thing that WotC decided to parody?
Actually, that's perfect for most of the target crowd because then they wouldn't be familiar with the original source.
I don't know about that. Clippy was pretty infamous. People that never used Microsoft Office generally still heard about it, and even if you mean that the "target crowd" would be young, they wouldn't be that young. Maybe young enough not to assume that someone would make an April Fools Day parody of Clippy in 2013, because it's so far behind, but really that's anyone. I mean, I guess I'd compare it to people that would still make jokes about George W. Bush's presidency. But in that case, at least it's something with global significance and some sort of legacy...
<shrug> I know *I* forgot about Clippy and had to look him up when you brought him up.
I don't know if high schoolers use Microsoft Word to write papers, but they would have be using Microsoft Office 2003 and since I would assume they aren't the first time users of such a program, the feature most likely would have been turned off by whoever was. So it's not just a five year gap of when it officially was dropped but more like a 10 year range, so that's pretty much anyone in their 20's now, which I would say is within the majority of the "target crowd".
Hm, I thought you meant teenagers. I'm in my 20's myself and I remember seeing Clippy in 1997, the year that it first came out. Now, I do basically live in Microsoftland*, and did then. But so did a lot of WotC employees. I'd think more of the lack of recognition would be down to people not expecting a joke that's five years too late than to people actually being unfamiliar with Clippy because they've only used newer versions of Office. But again, that could be more because of where I live.
*I've never actually lived in Microsoftland Proper (not an official thing, but anyone who's lived here would know what I mean by the term). However, I grew up about 20 miles south of it and later lived less than 10 miles west of it. I'm pretty close.
I'm not sure how you're making the connection that living in "Microsoftland" means that people should recognize Clippy. It may be that's how the joke was created, but the "target crowd" lives worldwide.
That's what I thought.
I don't know. It wasn't a feature in Office 2007. I can imagine a lot of people in their early twenties never used Office 2004.
Or never saw it, 'cause like I said, it was most likely turned off by the time they were using it.
Not sure how best to explain it if you've never been in the area. The largest metropolitan area on the west coast outside of California is along the Puget Sound. Seattle's the biggest city out here, but directly east on the other shore of a lake is an area that I've heard jokingly referred to as "the evil empire across the water" with respect to technology. Microsoft permeates everything and that influence extends to most of the rest of western Washington. Kids get exposed to all things Microsoft fairly early on. If I was to go to most of the cites in the Puget Sound area and quiz random 20-somethings with "Do you recognize this" using a picture of Clippy, they'd almost all answer in the affirmative. Even if they're young enough not to have used Office 2003 as adults, they'd remember having used it as kids because all the public schools are in the clutches of Microsoft's evil empire. And not everyone necessarily adopted the newest software right away, when it was at its most expensive. Actually, there are still facilities at the University of Washington that haven't updated their computers and just last month I briefly used computers that had Clippy. It's dated, but not unrecognizably so. Not here. But I recognize that most places aren't like the Puget Sound area. To someone my age in my area, a joke about Clippy comes across as kind of like President Bush joke. Maybe it's not like that for most people.
Again, from what you're saying, that would seem to imply that kids in Washington would recognize Clippy, being near Microsoft. But nationwide or global, that isn't so... and the Washington kids would be just a small fraction of that.
I'm not saying they never used Microsoft Office. I'm saying that when they did, it was probably turned off by either someone at home or someone at the school. And if they *did* see it, they wouldn't necessarily remember it, as I am a perfect example of that.
So what it boils down to is that the majority of players wouldn't recognize the similarities enough so that WOTC can "get away" with it. You or a "small number" might recognize it, but that's what a minority is
I wouldn't know. I don't have much access to people from all over the country to test that. I only said that regional variation might explain how easily the Clippy reference in this joke is deduced. You seem to be jumping from that to the conclusion that most of the "target audience" would have forgotten Clippy or never have seen it. That has not been demonstrated.
It's on by default in those older versions of Microsoft Office. Yeah, people can turn it off, but assuming that lack of recognition due to someone else turning the Office Assistant off would be a major factor isn't really warranted. And at least in the cases of public schools, I think those computers do and did tend to use mostly default settings on their software anyway. That was the case for the computers available for student use when I was in Junior High, High School, and when I went to a local community college (from 2005 to 2008). I saw Clippy pop up in all of those cases.
No, I don't think that's necessarily true. I don't have any evidence either way.
As a side note: I asked my 21-year-old brother about Clippy to make sure that I wasn't wrong about people a bit younger than myself still remembering it. He not only remembered Clippy, but actually remembered other, alternative personas for the Office Assistant that were available in one version of Microsoft Office (I suspect that he was remembering Office 2000). And it turns out that my mother (who also remembered Clippy) actually thinks this is a funny April Fools Day joke. Oh well, she's weird.
My god... indoctrinated by Clippy... we're doomed!
I think we're descending into nitpicking at this point, but what the hell, the forum's been slow of late (aside from CanadianBrad spicing it up since his arrival
I'm not jumping to the conclusion, but putting forth theories why people in general would not recognize the Clippy reference and thus why the WOTC joke would "go over their heads". You haven't demonstrated that they would recognize Clippy either except for the regional variation, so I think mine holds equal weight.
I don't see why it isn't warranted. It's as equally plausible along with people not turning it off, due to the lack of evidence either way. And since *I* know from experience that I would turn something that annoying off, I think my assumption that most people would also is a good assumption.
Your experience with the school computers is also a certain example for your side, but again, I can't see it being extrapolated "to the world" without more evidence.
Perhaps this is a good question for "Ask Wizards": "How many people recognized the Clippy reference, broken down by age group?"
Oh, we passed that point a while ago.
But I didn't make a claim that would need demonstration. When I brought up potential regional variation, it was to explain why our personal experiences might differ. I do think the joke would only work if people did recognize Clippy. Otherwise it's just an obscure reference. But I don't think the joke is really particularly funny even assuming that one gets it, so really, that's not particularly important. People recognizing or not recognizing the reference doesn't affect anything I said.
In the mid 00's, I occasionally saw jokes on the internet based on Clippy. These were predicated on audience recognition of the subject of parody. Here's one I can still find. To get that joke, one had to not only recognize the Office Assistant, but recall that it would pop up when one was writing a letter with "It looks like you're writing a letter." The MTGO buddy piece also plays on this. I don't happen to think it's a funny joke, but it is a joke. Lacking the Clippy reference, it's nothing. But I'm saying that it's way behind. The Wikipedia article on Office Assistant even has a "criticisms and parodies" section listing some of the more prominent internet and television references. I don't know whether the general public in 2013 would do well recognizing Clippy, but back when it was still a thing, none of these parodies would have really worked if almost all of the audience didn't understand them on account of having immediately turned Office Assistant off.
Nice try putting the onus on me, but like I said, I don't maintain any assertions that would require evidence here. If people don't recognize Clippy, the parody is meaningless. If people do recognize Clippy, it's a joke that's five years too late, and really something that was done before and done better by others. It's a catc-22 (fairly easily escaped from if one thinks the parody really is funny or if one thinks it's funny even outside being a parody, perhaps as some sort of absurdism, and hey, I can't control other people having weird senses of humor). That's why I initially asked if there was anything particular to MTGO that would affect this.
Perhaps you've forgotten why we originally started this discussion. Especially since you made the comment in bold.
You originally asked
For you, who even knew about Clippy, the "joke" was lost on you, meaning you were uncertain whether it was a joke or not. For someone who doesn't even know about or recognize Clippy or the significance of April Fools, they could have taken it at face value and thought MTGO was going to start offering the Buddy. Which means WOTC did its job. So it really doesn't matter whether its a regional thing or whether people knew or didn't know about Clippy, if someone didn't know for certain that it was a joke, then it's still "mission accomplished".
Actually, I was baffled that they'd make an April Fools day joke that seemed to be a reference to a defunct product. I was hoping that there was something particular to MTGO that I didn't know about that would actually make this funny. That's why I said, "it seems like it's probably kind of funny, but I feel like and outsider..."
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