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Take it easier (an open letter to Ross Scott)

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Dear Ross,

 

In a recent live stream, I wanted to ask if you take regular days off: days where you have nothing to do except relax and enjoy life. Well before I even asked, you answered by saying that you haven't really had a day off (or maybe time off) since you were in your 20s, and that you were going to take a vacation. This was simultaneously heartening and horrifying for me: heartening to hear that you were going to take a vacation, but horrifying that you haven't for so long. And I wasn't the only one, based on the responses to "A Drastic Proposal: Time Off for Ross" and "Ross, take off as much time as you want, screw those redditors!"

 

So this is an open letter directly to you, to encourage you to take it easy. Or, if you have trouble doing that because of habit or financial necessity, try to take it easier. I put a poll on the "Drastic Proposal" thread, asking people if you should take more time off, or none at all. Well some 92% of people thought you should at least take more time off, and 86% of people thought you should get 1 day off a week after chores PLUS vacation time and holidays. Some responders went further than I did.

 

The goal of that poll and this letter was never to manage your time for you - since mad people tend to have odd ways of managing our madness, and turning it into entertainment. But there is an overarching goal of all of this: TAKE IT EASIER.

 

Please take MORE vacations, MORE days off, and MORE time to celebrate your favorite holidays. This is partly for your benefit, but its also a selfish desire: well-rested creators can be more creative. It's hard to come up with jokes when you're sleep deprived! It's hard to get time to explore games if you're constantly worrying about your work. It's hard to make excellent work if you're missing time with those you love. So I think the easier you take it, the better your videos will be (not that they don't rock already. There's a reason you have a cult-like fanbase). But again, this isn't totally selfish: even if the quality or the frequency of uploads suffer, I would still support you taking more time off.

 

Now this is long enough already, so most of what follows will be quotes from other people. I'm not the only one who feels this way. I'll be pulling this list from the comments on those two above links, but if I email I'll also pull comments from the reddit letter and the mirror on the Accursed Farms forum too.

 

Hope you have a kickass vacation, and that you're neglecting to read this while hanging out on a Polish beach somewhere.

 

Best Wishes,
A Loyal Fan (jack_hectic/jackinthebox/Professor Newman)

 

P.S. If you only read one comment from your fans, read this suggestion from u/RCDv57. It may be useful especially for a unique creator like you:

Quote

At the bare minimum, I think that Ross should start to log his hours. For personal use. He treats this as a job and is professional. Why not track hours? Just keep a notepad and make a note of when he starts and stops.

P.P.S. The quotes! To start with, a comment from b14ckm4g1c on the forums:

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Every real mfer who's been following you for a long time will agree with me in saying that it's ok for you to take time off to chill and not work yourself to death. You've been working like a damn horse since the very beginning, through the dark days of jobbing for Machinima and into the "indy" YouTube career! Don't kill yourself by working and make time for some R&R. Human beings need vacation time. 

And another from there by Interlinked:

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Getting burned out and not being able to produce anything is not a good thing, so taking a break isn't just acceptable, but recommended. 

As for reddit, there's u/_TickleMeElmo_:

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Where I am from, that would be still illegal for a full time job I think...

  • A full time job is a 40h week, that would be weekends off - so two days.
  • There are 10 public holidays this year.
  • You need at least 24 vacation days a year.

I can't order you around Ross, and I understand being self employed is stressful - but when the suggestion here sounds like indentured servitude, what the hell are you doing now?

Take some time off!

 

Finally, the best ideas came from u/RCDv57. I included his best idea all the way back up as the first P.S., but here it is in full:
 

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IMO: Ross has essentially crunched himself into the dirt for years.

Studies show that constant work actually hurts performance.

I believe that he should refrain from working on the videos on the weekends at the very least. Probably more.
 

We also don't own Ross. Ross owns Ross. Giving him his work schedule is a bit rude. And the schedule you suggest is terrible. It says nothing about hours. He could do six 18 hour workdays in a row. That's 108 hours a week. Far FAR too much. I'd like it if he tried to keep things down to 30-40 hour weeks.

With 40 hour weeks a crazy person like Ross could easily go ballistic and get them done in three or four days, then use the rest of the week to recharge.
 

At the bare minimum, I think that Ross should start to log his hours. For personal use. He treats this as a job and is professional. Why not track hours? Just keep a notepad and make a note of when he starts and stops.

 


P.P.P.S. I may be emailing this to Ross as well, to make sure he sees it at some point.

Edited by jackinthebox
I'm a perfectionist, I can't stop editing... (see edit history)

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Posted (edited)

As someone that was inspired by Ross and wants to make it's own channel one day (well, the are other inspiration over the years, but Ross is one of the main ones), I'm extremely worried about his mental health.

 

Ross, I don't know how bad is your financial situation, but that's still not a excuse to take a break once in a while. Unlike OP suggested, a beach may be out of question considering the pandemic, but you can still watch a movie, series, or even play a game of your interest, which the latter could be also good to discover a new candidate to Game Dungeon, but aim more to have yourself entertained.

 

[EDIT]

 

Ok, I was quickly browing Youtube and this video came out:

 

 

I decided to share here because I think it's relevant to the topic.

Edited by Kaiosama TLJ (see edit history)

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How about this for an endorsement of taking a break... Every single one of the youtubers I watch on the regular (Baradul, Lathland, Major Hardware, JayzTwoCents, Hardware Unboxed, Gamers Nexus, etc.) have taken breaks regularly in the past year. Hardware Unboxed even lost access to their channel for a few weeks because of it, but they are all doing quite well despite (or because of) the break time.

Don't insult me. I have trained professionals to do that.

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im all with this but just from my perspective i think he enjoys making most of his videos. so in a sense, making videos is a sort of time off for him? like when you hear him talk about landscapes and aesthetics he likes theres so much passion behind it, he comes off as pretty relaxed and somehow keeps that up for the duration of a 40 minute or so video.

 

none the less the man has a lot going on and should do whatever helps him detox.

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I feel like Ross is just a guy who naturally likes working on stuff. I'm not too worried about him burning himself out, I think he's accepted he's just a workaholic. Which is fine.

 

My main concern is that he feels really bad whenever he's not able to get videos out fast enough, that's what worries me. Because it's obvious that Ross is absolutely 100% a quality of quantity guy, but he always seems to regret not having the quantity AND the quality. That's gotta be rough, and I hope that's not related to any kind of social anxiety or something.

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I think you guys are giving him kindof bad advice.

 

I agree that breaks are sometimes suitable, but usually 'take all the breaks you want its fine' is either coming from people who don't really know themselves all that well, or people who think that the majority of viewers are like them.  In both cases it tends to end kindof badly.  Minding, Ross seems to act like he kindof understands this, but the torrential flood of only 'do whatever man its cool' coming from all angles (including for instance most youtube comments) does seem like kindof a poor plan to follow.

 

Regardless of whoever you are personally, most of his viewership is likely contingent on the quality and quantity of the content he puts out.

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1 hour ago, QuakeIV said:

I think you guys are giving him kindof bad advice.

 

I agree that breaks are sometimes suitable, but usually 'take all the breaks you want its fine' is either coming from people who don't really know themselves all that well, or people who think that the majority of viewers are like them.  In both cases it tends to end kindof badly.  Minding, Ross seems to act like he kindof understands this, but the torrential flood of only 'do whatever man its cool' coming from all angles (including for instance most youtube comments) does seem like kindof a poor plan to follow.

 

Regardless of whoever you are personally, most of his viewership is likely contingent on the quality and quantity of the content he puts out.

He's not going to listen to them anyway. 

"You don't get to bring friends."

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On 6/10/2021 at 1:19 PM, Im_CIA said:

He's not going to listen to them anyway. 

Or us. That's part of his charm.

Don't insult me. I have trained professionals to do that.

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