One of the services that TMC offers its customers is the VOTE BUTTON, generally meant to vote for your home mud, (even though it is possible to vote for several different Muds each day). You can only cast one vote per day for each game, but they accumulate over time, until the list is reset, (generally every three months, I believe).
The option to vote has been available for a long time, and in the old days players were actively encouraged by the staff to vote daily, since being high on the list obviously gives an advantage, when it comes to catching the interest of new players.
But recently some negative things have occured.
First there was this deluge of mass voting for Armageddon, which was at first perceived as a cheating attempt to get to the top of the list, but later turned out to be staged by some disgruntled ex-players, to paint out their old mud in a bad way.
But what seems to be happening at present is even more disturbing.
For some reason people generally appear to have stopped voting, and that has weird affects on the list.
My own Mud, 4D, has always had a rather small active playerbase, and today it is alarmingly low. But our players have always been good at voting, and even now some of our oldtimers still click the vote button faithfully every day, even if they are not really actively playing any more. This used to keep us somewhere among the Top 20 in the old days, (and given the size of the playerbase, I was farely content with that).
But today we are number 2 on the list.
That should perhaps make me happy, but instead it makes me really worried. Because it is yet another sign that textmuds are slowly dying.
If people can’t even bring up enough energy and interest for their oldtime home-away-from-home to perform the minimal task of clicking a vote button once a day, then there is something seriously wrong. It really is not that much of a task. I do it myself as a reflex, directly after I open the computer every day, and it takes all but 2 seconds.
Not only will you do your home mud a favour by voting, you also add to the traffic to the TMC site, (which I assume is a good thing, and probably the reason why the vote buttons originally were introduced here and on TMS).
So, Mud owners, step up the game! Show that you still care about your mud! Start voting regularly again, and encourage your players to do the same!
Even if the result of this will be that my own mud drops back to a lower level, it would actually make me happy.