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Keep in mind, this is the community as a whole. I am not singling out any specific group or the player base of any specific there. THIS ENTIRE POST IS A GENERALIZATION. Just because YOU do not agree with it does not make it any less true to my observation, and just because you agree with it does not make anyone who disagrees an idiot or anything like that. This is a generalization based solely upon my oberservations and experiences with the community.
Originally, I was going to take the time to think about this, do a little research and use big fancy mumbers and statistics and the like. But frankly it's just not that important to me nor is it that big of an issue so I'm going entirely off the cuff here. As such this might be a little messy.
That said, one problem I see in every gaming community, every single last one is this sense of playing the game for everyone BUT yourself. Every MMO I've been apart of had the community turn away from playing to have fun, and playing to spend time with friends you might know online or completeing your own goals and it turns to a giant pissing contest. You see this and signs of it everywhere.
For one example, take the 'sparkle pony" WoW released ages ago. Now, dismiss your personal feelings about the model - I, myself, dislike the model..I would never buy that mount. However, try to think back with me, what was the main complaint about it? SEEING, IT, EVERYWHERE. People started to insult and reject people from groups just for having a mount, not because they bought it but because they bought it and it was popular - To the point where the cynical brit made a video bashing it, which no doubt just increased the vile spewing towards it since a majority of his fans can't seem to think for themselves but thats neither here nor there. That, in of itself, while a problem isn't what I'm getting at. What I'm getting at is that, had the model been a 0.00000000000000000000005% chance drop from a boss, any boss, hell even just a random named mob everyone would be pissing themselves trying to get one. Why? Not because they like the model, but because its a status symbol.
Thats what the MMO community has turned into, a series of collection status symbols. Its no longer about having fun, its no longer a hobby. It's all about trying to get the best gear, and rarest items so that people will stroke your E-peen for you.
Now, while video games as a whole are built entirely on the idea of progression, you beat a boss to get better stuff to beat a bigger, harder boss, repeat until infinity. MMO communities are one of the few communities of players - along with FPS - who will actively spew vile insults at another for not having cool enough looking gear, because frankly thats all it is. It doesn't even have to be a single item, it's that status that it represents, be they insulting over DPS meters, your build in a game, the type of character you use, its turned into one big giant pissing contest of status.
The secret world
WoW, DCU online, star wars: the old republic, city of heroes, city of villains, everquest, plenty more I'm probably forgetting or aren't worth noting.