Reader Submission #13 – pCars Moderators stop at nothing to silence criticism

Lots of pCars submissions have been coming in over the past few days, and it’s important to let all you contributors know that we’ve covered some stuff already. If you’re unsure about whether we’ve touched on a topic or not, scroll through the Slightly Mad Studios category. Yes, I’m aware there’s a lot to go through. This is what happens when a game is over-hyped to oblivion and lands in our hands as a buggy mess.

Today’s Reader Submission comes from Justin S., who points out the extreme lengths forum moderators will go to in order to silence criticism of Project CARS.

Hello there,

I have seen your site taking some shots at pCars, and I wanted to share what I found. A user made a post making a joke about people that flame pCars and then stated he “LOVED” the game… or did he? The thread was closed after being quoted by a mod. The mod’s quote for the reason of the topic being closed showed what the person actually posted. This to me calls into question the integrity of what is read on their forums posted by anyone. Its a new low. Here’s the link. See for yourself.

Untitled-2They aren’t even trying. But if you are looking for shots to fire the next time you guys decide to point out the crap wrong with them… Well this to me is a big one. You just can’t do that no matter how shitty you are of a person. Sorry for the language. I will say though that the 2.0 patch that has already hit PC has made the game feel better. I’ll give them that. It was so much of a difference it almost made me feel bad about all the smack i talked about them… and then i saw this and it reminded me that they are in fact garbage. 

Anyways I love the site, I love the integrity and the use of facts to back what you say to keep the idiots at bay. Need more media outlets, not just for things like sim racing that have that kind of intelligence. 

I’m running on Caffeine so this won’t be a quality reply.

I think it’s smart of you to draw attention to this quick editing job by a forum moderator. It reminds me of the Brown M&M’s Clause in Van Halen’s tour rider; a small, insignificant issue could hint at the larger problems surrounding how Slightly Mad Studios are handling the post-release drama surrounding Project CARS. If moderators are straight up editing people’s posts to praise the game, even if it’s a generic shitposting thread, what else is going on that we aren’t haven’t noticed yet? What decisions are being made about the direction of the game, away from the public’s eye, that’s effecting the quality of the title?

Are all of the Reddit members praising pCars and claiming they’ve “never encountered any bugs or glitches that other users are complaining about” simply SMS employees under temporary accounts trying to skew public perception? Are there legitimate in-house guidelines when it comes to third-party advertising and viral marketing for pCars? Better yet, why have these individuals bought into this blatant mantra of “criticism = trolling, no questions asked?”

It’s shady as hell, and hints at a deeper problem.

Is Ian Bell behind this shameful approach to negative feedback? Probably. I’ve used this analogy too many times to count, but it’s as if Ian’s some overprotective father, and Project CARS is his promiscuous teenage daughter. Whether your “child” is an actual person, or simply a product you’ve spent years of your life helping come to light, you can either chase around every last douchebag in an effort to shut them up, looking like a dumb motherfucker in the process when the glitch videos keep coming despite your best efforts, or you can use the ugly things people have said and uploaded as tools to help fix what the actual issues are.  Video Games are entertainment, entertainment is art, and art is open to criticism. Ian acts as if every miniscule knock against Project CARS, most of which are valid complaints since the game’s pretty goddamn buggy, is like a huge army of people are calling his daughter a whore and uploaded several shots of her tits to 4Chan.

In reality, they’re just pissed that the head of the whole studio sold the game as this:

arena football is godly

Yet when people got their hands on it, the game turned out like this:

Censoring criticism of your product to this degree, regardless of how you’re doing it, makes you look like a crazy dad. Sorry guys, I lurk both the WMD forums and the game’s post-release forums – Ian’s replies are hardly witty or sarcastic British Humor. The dude just wasn’t prepared for an outcome where Project CARS dropped oil all over the start line and sent a rod through the block, and it’s probably the narcissism, as I’ve said before, fueling the unacceptable relationship he has with the community members who don’t ride his dick.

I think he’s a genius for finding a way to willingly get people to pay copious amounts for the privilege of being a beta tester, but someone needs to pair him up with a “partner in crime” of sorts; one that can get the creative genius side of Ian out in a way that’ll benefit the next game, without subjecting the general public to his weaknesses. Once you accomplish that, the whole mentality that drives him to push for intense moderation on his forums, manipulating once-great publications into advertising for him, and extreme narcissism when faced with genuine criticism will evaporate because there’ll be someone else to tell him Ian, that’s fucking retarded. I’ve been given some insight as to what goes on in the SMS offices, but unfortunately I can’t share it because people need to put food on the table for their families. Take a random guess and you’ll be somewhere in the ballpark.

But the icing on the cake is how, a shitty blog owned by a kid who works for some rental car company and his pharmacist buddy on the other side of the continent, is run in comparison to a major video game developer’s official forums, as well as their third party affiliates. The head of a video game studio cannot take a single word of genuine criticism without launching into a tirade of childish insults, blame shifting, and in some cases, outright bribery; sometimes making headlines for the gross display of immaturity unmatched by anyone in the industry. Linking to is blocked on multiple message boards, and entire publications have been turned into advertising machines that also silence even the slightest implication of negativity when discussing Project CARS.

Meanwhile, over here, waves of fanboys from a multitude of different games will leave a flurry of  disruptive comments, starting wars about everything from my (admittedly) sub-par taste in women to a non-existent financial affiliation with Kunos Simulazioni, and on other sites you’ll see kids claiming I have a mental disorder and an “insane vendetta” against a game because I pointed out that there are some really crazy bugs in a new racing game.

lylDespite our comments section routinely being all-out chaos and several personal attacks launched at me each week, we have a total of two censored words and bust out the popcorn when the new comment notification icon lights up. Ian Bell and the Project CARS moderators somehow can’t grasp this concept and damage their reputation in the process.


36 thoughts on “Reader Submission #13 – pCars Moderators stop at nothing to silence criticism

  1. I see no reason why a moderator would edit this post. I’ve seen much worst posts that are still as they were before. Therefore, I assume that wayneworsley2013 edited his own post, until proven otherwise.


      1. Not necesserely, this is written only if you’ve edited your post after 1 or 2 minutes (I’ve never tested the limit, but it is at least 1).


      2. I see you have no much experience about vb forums: the “edit by…” message only comes up if you edit the post after a given (set) limit. So if in the option you set “10 minutes”, you could edit your posts without the edited message to comes up, within 10 minutes after posting.


    1. Exactly. That’s why they locked down the thread, was so that he could go back and edit his post. You do know how that works, right?


  2. The first question in my mind was if the OP edited his own post, and the moderator caught his real post before editing, or maybe the moderator has post history before something is edited.

    Then the follow up question is if it shows at the bottom of a post when that post was edited.

    Are there any examples in the pcars forum where it shows whether a post was edited or not?


    1. Yes it shows when the user edit his own post, but like I said above, it is after some times. I remember editing one of my post two times in a small amount of tim and it wasn’t marked as edited.

      My guess is that the poster wanted some attention, but edited his post before any moderator sees it to not have any “problem”.


      1. The fact that you finally decided to just ignore that I said that the guy can edit his post without it being written if he edited it before the limit shows your agenda, Austin. Shame on you.


      2. He’d have to edit his own post within like a minute of posting it. The chances of a mod seeing it, typing a reply, but getting ninja’d by the OP editing his original post in the span of 60 seconds from the time the topic was created to mods stepping in is extremely slim.


      3. That’s false, the user can edit the posts within a time limit set in the forum settings, without the edited message to appear. It’s not 60 second, it can even be 30 minutes or more, it depends by who have configured the forum.
        I believe the default is either 3 minutes or 5 minutes.. i don’t remember from my last vb installation.


  3. That thread was commented on, posted, and closed. If the user edited the post it would have said his name has edited his post etc. But it doesn’t and if a Mod did it, than it wouldn’t. I know this from previous experience being a moderator on a different site and being forced to edit profanity. As for It being so soon that it doesn’t show his name yet, look at the date of the post, its old enough that it would show up by now if he did edit it. Once a post is locked you cant go back and edit your old posts either, hence the lock. The only way the OPs text could have been changed after it was quoted and closed by the Mod was if it was changed by a Mod or Admin.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. The user can edit the message without the edited message, if he edits it before the time set in the options (normally five minutes if i’m not wrong).


  4. Love how Ian Bell is destroying his own reputation. He looks like an heroin addict pop star who rose to fame a little too early and now can’t cope with the fame.


  5. The only good thing about the PCars 2 announcement is that it has somewhat stemmed the neverending tide of “PCars is the new Jesus OMG” stuff. At least some people realized SMS is more interested in selling them a new game than fixing the one that’s already out. Of course there’s also the morons who think donating to PCars 2 puts them into some kind of exclusive club or something…lol.


    1. And then there are morons who think, that hating everything pCARS related puts them in some kind of exclusive club. So everything is equal and the world can go round again.


      1. It is an exclusive club. It is called you can’t fool me more… You can call moron a hater, but a lier will remain a lier.. So what is worst? For a wmd-sms member, I guess honesty and truth is the worst things…


    2. pCARS is not new Jesus! … Ian Bell is and pCARS is just his teachings. Fortunately (for you lot) he’s not preaching killing infidels. He knows, that stupidity is a natural thing and nature will help itself through natural selection 😀


      1. So you’re saying that PCars 2 donaters will be removed from the gene pool? After all, you can’t get any stupider than that.


  6. I love the pcars players! The constant attack towards to the devs is helpfull. LoL They have to deal with the CONSTANT ATTACK 24/7 from dumbass keyboard warriors.
    Yep I get it the game is broken. Yep I get it they want more money. I don’t care. Yep I get it they want to milk the cow till it’s death. I don’t care.

    This is insanely over reacted.


    1. Mate it must be over reacted. None cares and devs will continue to lower the quality even more, and give as the line: everyone is doing it nowdays why not we?

      No. See what happen to new batman. this should be for pcars also. and any dev that has a small sef respect should do the same. Blamming the buyer and bullying is not doing anything good. Praising also. If you don’t care , don’t care. Leave the ppl who cares to care.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Is it possible for Ian to somehow be removed from his role in the company ? or is he the top dog there? i assume he is because no self respecting company would want someone who represents them and their image trawling around forums and websites getting into internet arguments over criticism and comments


    1. I’d volunteer to be his partner in crime. Despite all the negativity, you gotta give credit where credit’s due, and he created a killer marketing approach and made a lot of money in the process. It would be interesting to see what would happen if you sat us down in a room and told us to design a pitch for a game together. You’d get something really crazy.


  8. What you won’t do to write another article about pcars (you’re giving to the guys advertising if anything…!)… so I start to believe that you actually work for them!

    The guy have made several posts (like 20), caught the attention of the mods, and then edited some of those messages within the time limit to not shown the “Edited..” message (I think the limit is 3 minutes or 5 minutes.. it depends of how it has been set), some of his “duplicate” posts had the “Edited..” message and have been deleted (because they were duplicates..), while some other remained.

    The message you see quoted by the mod was the original message before the editing… there’s no “mystery” behind it, you only have to use your brain to figure it out! 🙂


    1. Maybe James himself is that poster, and that’s why he was able to edit it and get screen shots!!! Maybe James himself is actually ian bell, and this whole blog has just been to publicise project cars 2!
      We’ll know if soon “ian” does an exclusive interview with “James” and appoints “James” as lead of QA for pcars2.
      Nice try James bell! We’re on to you! Your conspiracy won’t succeed! We’re too smart for you.


      1. If it was the poster, he would have known about the “edited by…” message timeout, so he would have known that his “conspiracy” would have been caught by the readers… so he must be really stupid to do such thing hoping that everyone else wouldn’t notice it! 🙂
        I guess it’s just a matter of “ignorant” post (he didn’t known how vbulletin works, and his fantasy started to fly… like any other article about pcars; i guess he spend half of his day to browse that forum, hoping to find something compromising! lol).

        On a point we agree: all this is giving to pcars more advertising if anything, we’re actually playing their game. :/


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