Elite Dangerous’ community tool developers have gone on strike

    
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Update: The strike has ended — see the end of the post for details.

Move over, voice actors guild: Elite Dangerous gamers are going on strike today. Specifically, it’s developers of a large number of Elite Dangerous third-party tools and websites, who have taken their services offline beginning today through Sunday, striking to attempt to force Frontier to better support them.

“Our third-party websites and tools are used on a daily basis by many tens of thousands of players, and they generate millions of pageviews every month. We believe that our tools greatly enhance the game playing experience, and yet we often feel that Frontier does not actively encourage the effort that goes into supporting their game with these tools. We believe they can and should improve on this situation by maintaining clear and open communication with the third-party developer community. There is currently no easy way for us to request features and support that will benefit the community as a whole, and there is often no warning from Frontier when a game update will alter or break existing APIs that we rely on. This places a significant extra burden on third-party tool makers to work around these issues and to fix our tools. Repeated requests for support and bug fixes are made, but there is frustration caused by an apparent lack of progress on those.”

The strikers have apologized for the inconvenience, but the timing couldn’t be worse for the players affected by the outages in light of the massive event planned this weekend, during which players will be participating in a roleplaying event whose outcome will affect the game’s upcoming novel.

“As much as we would love to see the features of various third party tools incorporated into Elite: Dangerous itself, we realize that Frontier’s developer time and resources are limited, and we are happy to provide our tools freely to the community,” the strikers say. “In turn, however, we need Frontier to acknowledge that third-party tools are an important part of your playing experience and act accordingly.”

Source: Official forums. Thanks, BalsBigBrother and ThatLanteshGuy!
Update: BBB let us know that Frontier and the strikers have apparently come to an agreement and the websites are coming back online. “After speaking in private with the OP and other involved community developers, we have all agreed that it was best for the community to bring the websites back up as soon possible,” Frontier’s Ed Lewis writes. “This will be happening simultaneously at 19:00 UTC (where possible) for all the sites. We have made a commitment to work more closely with the third party developer community to address concerns and support these features which the community use and value on a daily basis. These ongoing communications will include developers from other third party websites who may be interested, not just those listed in the OP. If you are an active and established third party Elite Dangerous developer, get in touch.”
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NovaScotiaCitizen

((Deleted by mod.))

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Bruno Brito

And, as the Crow flies, so do i =P

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Pi Er

I’m so glad that people, online workers, find ways to stand for their (work) rights.
Totally support such actions.

CapnLan
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CapnLan

Glad to see things ended well on both sides. According to Ed, the conversation between FDev and the 3rd party devs lasted almost five hours. That’s a rather hefty time spent on it so at the very least FDev took it seriously.

https://forums.frontier.co.uk/showthread.php/347987-support3rdparty-Why-we-temporarily-shut-down-our-sites?p=5447272&viewfull=1#post5447272

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Crow

..and they folded. Way to go.

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Crow
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BalsBigBrother

Mate you can and do make some good posts / points a lot of the time but might I suggest you step away from the keyboard for a little while in this case :-)

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Crow
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Crow
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Estranged

Crow – You are back into your insulting mode. There is no need to play personal issues out on this website. Wouldn’t you agree?

If this were Survivor, voted off the island.

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Bruno Brito

REKT.

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Crow
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BalsBigBrother

If it was funny I would laugh and move on, if it wasn’t I would move on. Anyhow I am off to stalk youtube for a bit, take care sir o/

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BalsBigBrother

UPDATE UPDATE

Edward Lewis (Senior Community Manager)

After speaking in private with the OP and other involved community developers, we have all agreed that it was best for the community to bring the websites back up as soon possible. This will be happening simultaneously at 19:00 UTC (where possible) for all the sites.

We have made a commitment to work more closely with the third party developer community to address concerns and support these features which the community use and value on a daily basis.

These ongoing communications will include developers from other third party websites who may be interested, not just those listed in the OP. If you are an active and established third party Elite Dangerous developer, get in touch with community@frontier.co.uk

We all hope that clears things up!

Thanks everyone,

Ed

SOURCE: https://forums.frontier.co.uk/showthread.php/347987-support3rdparty-Why-we-temporarily-shut-down-our-sites?p=5447133&viewfull=1#post5447133

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Crow

I very much don’t understand how these players think they’re not being heard.

edangerous
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edangerous

Great that they were willing to get things sorted asap but I do hope this virtual strong-arming isn’t repeated anytime soon.

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styopa

This seems reasonable. I mean, effectively the devs are riding such support to cover shortcomings in their own product.
I’ve never understood the NIH mentality of devs treating people badly who contribute their blood, sweat, and bandwidth developing and hosting tools and websites that make up for their own (what are usually obvious, long-recognized) failings.

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silverlock

I’m confused what does the National Institute of Health have to do with this?

But other then that I think your spot on. Every time you break your own API it’s like a big FU to all third party devs.

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Crow

comment image

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BalsBigBrother

So the totally made up and fictional Frontier Developers reply to this is:

“Ok we hear you community so for the yet unannounced 2.4 feature update we have decided to throw out the planned Thargoid invasion. Yeah it was really cool we had loads of different new ships to fight, new Thargoid ground vehicles, branching missions and lots of other cool stuff.

But yeah we have dumped all that and we will be improving out API support and communication instead. I am sure you will all agree this is the big exciting finale we want to give the Horizon expansion and I am sure that everyone is excited by this announcement as we are”

Community: “um …. but “