Beware geeks bearing gifts   Leave a comment

I can see you…

A while ago I bought a ten-pack of Puzzle Quest 2 in an offer on Steam. I only wanted three or four copies, but a ten pack wasn’t much more expensive – maybe even the same – so grabbed it.

Since then I’ve had several copies waiting to be given out, despite offering them around on several occasions. Some people have no taste. Puzzle Quest is great! Well, the first one definitely is. The second one probably is, but I’ve not actually played my own copy yet, so can’t vouch for it personally. Ahem.

Anyway, on Saturday on Twitter I saw a friend giving away a game using the #giveawaysaturday tag. “What a good idea!” I thought, “Finally something to do with one of those copies of Puzzle Quest”. So I threw one at Twitter, and it took maybe ten seconds before I saw it snapped up in Steam.

This was when I made my mistake. I tweeted again, saying that I’d a couple more copies knocking around and if any of my followers wanted one to give me a shout.

So if you ever want more followers on Twitter, give stuff out on condition people follow you.

Also, if you try to give somebody a gift code via Twitter, use a private message and not an @ reply, because anybody can see them. Yes, I know, but it didn’t occur to me that anybody would be looking!

I quickly deleted the offending tweet and explained what I’d meant – that I was offering people I knew a copy of a game, not just trawling for followers – before too much damage was done. Followers wanting a copy of PQ2 are still outnumbered by omni-following silent bots. It’s not so bad.

A weird side-effect of giving people gifts is that they’re automatically added to your friends list in Steam, so now I can see every game played by two people I know not from Adam. And, presumably, they can see every game I play, and whenever I’m online. It’s slightly uncomfortable.

Two or three years ago I made the mistake of adding a load of people I knew at the time to MSN. It quickly became that loading the client, once a thing that could sit inactive in the bottom corner of the screen for hours, was an instant cacophony of typed conversation, a hail of interruptions, and seemingly constant spying. So I stopped loading it at all.

And never spoke to a friend again before he died.

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Posted 12 July 2011 by Colthor in Diary

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