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Trenches comic: Tuesday Sept. 13, 2011

BogeyBogey I'm back, baby!Santa Monica, CAModerator mod
edited September 2011 in The Penny Arcade Hub
i-phL6PVL.jpg
I'm REALLY good at my job.

09/13/2011 - Anonymous

Note: I am scared of dogs. I was mauled when I was a kid (don’t worry, no permanent scars) and to this day I still freeze up whenever one of our canine friends are around. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t wish them ill, it’s just that I flash back to being that kid getting thrown around like a rag doll.

Once upon a time, I worked for a Game Developer that was very fond of dogs. Everyone had a dog, and was so invited to bring said dogs into work. When we hit crunch mode, many people would still bring in their dogs, but would lack the time to walk said dogs. This led to senior devs having to leave for hours to take their dogs home, walk them, and then drive back into work for some overtime. Frequently, they would just stay home for the night, and people felt like development was slowing because of it.

This is where I come in.

To keep from losing those precious hours from the senior devs, I was tasked with walking their dogs and cleaning up the mid-walk-messes. That’s right boys and girls. I had gotten my CS degree, worked for a few years in the industry to truly discover my true calling: Shoveling dog crap into little blue bags. But I did so with a smile on my face, because I was trying REALLY hard to get converted from a “Temporary” employee to a “Full-Time” employee. I hoped “pitching in for the team” would show my dedication. So during working overtime for my regular tasks and
while everyone was eating their dinner, I was out walking the dogs and waiting to scoop up their steaming piles of joy. No matter how many times you wash your hands afterwards, you just can’t enjoy your dinner after that.

But there IS a silver lining. The senior devs DID get their tasks accomplished. The title DID ship on time. The title was better because of it all, and I felt a sense of accomplishment for enabling others to get vital tasks done when it all came down to the wire.

Oh, and then I got laid off.

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Posts

  • RMS OceanicRMS Oceanic Registered User regular
    By the standards so far laid out by Trenches, that story is practically pedestrian.

    I'm reminded of Horrible Bosses.

  • FramlingFramling Registered User regular
    Aaaaaaand right back to the "And then I got fired" stories.

    you're = you are
    your = belonging to you

    their = belonging to them
    there = not here
    they're = they are
  • EddyEddy Gengar the Bittersweet Registered User regular
    a jibba ji bibba job

    will cost you a couple bucks more than a ZJ

    “Even as a gengar she was lovely.” ― Ovid, Metamorphoses
  • ToxTox I kill threads Punch DimensionRegistered User regular
    edited September 2011
    I mean really the moral is don't put up with shit at work.

    That is literally the moral of this story.

    Tox on
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  • Jam WarriorJam Warrior Registered User regular
    Tox wrote:
    I mean really the moral is don't put up with shit at work.

    That is literally the moral of this story.

    Absolutely. You don't get remembered as that great guy who picked up the shit, we should hire him permanently! You get remembered as the disposable meatbag we actually got to pick up shit, had to let him go, couldn't look him in the face after that.

    TingleSigBar.gif
  • King RiptorKing Riptor Registered User regular
    If you have an honest to goodness phobia and it's literally work I couldn't pay a teenager to do you probably have a right to just tell them to go to hell

    Politely of course.

    I have a podcast now. It's about video games and anime!Find it here.
  • The MantizThe Mantiz Registered User regular
    Birthday comic! :D

    3DS - 2878-9572-9277
  • ASimPersonASimPerson Cold... ... and hard.Registered User regular
    How do you get "laid off" from a temporary position? Doesn't your contract just end?

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  • RMS OceanicRMS Oceanic Registered User regular
    ASimPerson wrote:
    How do you get "laid off" from a temporary position? Doesn't your contract just end?

    Maybe they ended the contract early.

  • Mc zanyMc zany Registered User regular
    Framling wrote:
    Aaaaaaand right back to the "And then I got fired" stories.

    I think people have realised that they have a much better chance of being featured if their story ends like that.

  • Mojo_JojoMojo_Jojo But do you really believe him? Registered User regular
    ASimPerson wrote:
    How do you get "laid off" from a temporary position? Doesn't your contract just end?

    Why were the dev team driving home with their dogs to walk them if the tester was able to do it at work? There are many questions.

    Homogeneous distribution of your varieties of amuse-gueule
  • JustinSane07JustinSane07 __BANNED USERS regular
    By the standards so far laid out by Trenches, that story is practically pedestrian.

    I'm reminded of Horrible Bosses.

    Yes but this story is 100% believable, at the least. Unlike many others.

  • 3lwap03lwap0 Registered User regular
    ASimPerson wrote:
    How do you get "laid off" from a temporary position? Doesn't your contract just end?

    Maybe they ended the contract early.

    Hmm, the verbiage is right. If the contact is over, the contracting agency can reassign you to a new contract, or just let you go. Truthfully, it isn't the client who let you go, it's the agency who put you there. Technically, that's being laid off. The distinction is often blurred because for the most part, the contracting agency just handles your HR stuff, and mails you a paycheck. They client supervises you, your work, tasks you, etc. That's the life of an on-site contractor.

    And as The Trenches has taught us, you are incredibly disposable.

    I think Pringles original intention was to make tennis balls... but on the day the rubber was supposed to show up a truckload of potatoes came. Pringles is a laid-back company, so they just said, "Fuck it, cut em up!".
  • GyralGyral Registered User regular
    edited September 2011
    Moral of the story: If your job is so unimportant that you can walk the dogs for everyone else, don't expect to be around when they don't need to walk their dogs.

    Gyral on
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  • HenroidHenroid Radio Demon Internet HellRegistered User regular
    If an employer asked me to walk their dog, something nowhere close to my job duties, I'd tell them to fuck themselves. In more kinder words, obviously.

    Centrism is just the cowardly way to be a bigot w/o being explicit about it.
    American politics isn't 4D chess, it's just if you give a shit about other people or not.
  • astronautcowboy3astronautcowboy3 Registered User regular
    I really want more positive stories from the trenches. Hearing things like this makes a career in the game industry sound very, very depressing.

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  • DenadaDenada Registered User regular
    All these "and then I got fired/laid off" stories are just kind of meh to me. I mean, when you work in an industry where companies work really hard for a short period of time (or long period of time if you're blizzard or valve or something) and then are done for a bit, what job do you expect to keep exactly?

    And this story specifically ... man. If you want to make the transition from temp to permanent, showing yourself to be so unnecessary that you can literally go outside and pick up shit for a while while everyone else does the real work is not the way to do it.

  • PreacherPreacher Registered User regular
    Seriously, if I was assigned to walking the important peoples dogs, I'd think that was a statement of how much they valued the work I was doing. Also if he was using his hands to pick up shit obviously he didn't know how to do that either, so an all around incompetent.

    I would like some money because these are artisanal nuggets of wisdom philistine.

    Http:// pleasepaypreacher.net
  • GregBGregB Registered User
    "Quit yo jibba jabba, fool!" - Mr. T

  • 3lwap03lwap0 Registered User regular
    I really want more positive stories from the trenches. Hearing things like this makes a career in the game industry sound very, very depressing.

    I was hearing these kinds of stories long before The Trenches. Every industry has it's horror stories, but the gaming industry seems to have a disproportionate number of them (more so for entry level positions). It seems as if it's some bizarre right of passage, willingly throwing yourself into the gaming meat grinder, only to be laid off.

    I think Pringles original intention was to make tennis balls... but on the day the rubber was supposed to show up a truckload of potatoes came. Pringles is a laid-back company, so they just said, "Fuck it, cut em up!".
  • KochikensKochikens Registered User regular
    Contracted Temporary Full Time is the way the industry has gone and I am not bitter about it. I also have two dogs next to me right now. They are adorable.


    This comic is probably my favourite so far

    jibbajob

    i hope they get drunk in the office all the time

  • Human ShieldHuman Shield Registered User
    I just registered to say some things:

    People who say they're REALLY good at their job-- aren't. People who are really good at their job are quiet and do it and don't need to tell other people about it because they make the point with their work. I've worked in SQA for 11 years. Yeah, it can feel like crap at times. In the case of game companies, many times the QA are just-out-of-college kids, paid in nickels and dimes because there are a million others willing to get paid badly to work in the industry if it means getting a foot in the door. They either dream of playing video games for a living (haw haw, kids) or hope to work their way up to being developers themselves.

    The developers know this. They also know that if they don't get the product done in time, it could mean their job now goes to one of those millions of fresh faces trying their best to break the game. They work long hours, over time, weekends, and some pimple-faced kid sits down and bashes on the keyboard a few times and OOPS! It doesn't work now. Fix it. And fix it fast, because the higher-ups are tapping their wristwatches and raising their eyebrows at you. Do you realize there are millions of other people they could be paying less to do your job? And they're thinking about that right now...

    At the same time, the QA people are looked at in three ways: 1. "Stop finding bugs! We need to get this out the door immediately! We're three months behind schedule and you keep reporting these new issues! KNOCK IT OFF!" 2. "This bug is meaningless. Yeah, it exists, but it hardly puts a dent in the overall product, so we're just going to defer it. Quit making that face at us, we value your work. This just isn't a very important issue." 3. "We just started getting calls from customers about a serious issue with the product. Why didn't you find this bug? We need to have a meeting to discuss why this wasn't caught. During the meeting, we will schedule another meeting to discuss how to avoid this in the future."

    Of all the companies I've worked for, the best understood that development and QA are two halves of a whole. QA need to respect the developers for the time and work they put into making something out of nothing, and the developers need to respect the QA for all the repetition and thinking outside the box they have to go through to make sure the developers look good.

    On a different note: is this comic going to become funny eventually? I read it out of morbid curiosity since it's supposed to be a comic about the trials and tribulations of working in QA, but thus far the humor seems to have taken a back seat to the artwork-- and it's driving a stretch limo. I've blanched at every strip posted so far, and I have to wonder: does it really take THREE PEOPLE to write this? I hate to think that "Isaac Cox LOLOLOL" is going to be the epitome of this comic. Perhaps you guys should hire some QA to run your scripts by before you post these for public consumption?

  • ArbitraryDescriptorArbitraryDescriptor Registered User regular
    Coach Z, Mr. T, and Boss need to get together for a drink sometime.

  • amscrayamscray Registered User new member
    I signed up for the forum just to leave a comment on today's blog story. It's THAT infuriating.


    ok a) don't take the job if its dog friendly and you don't like dogs

    b) those devs probably were working 80 hours, they're allowed to take their dogs home for an hour

    c) if you were temp, you didn't get laid off, they just didn't like you enough to keep you

    d) it's probably because you sound like a fucking huge baby complainer

    e) the title of your post is douchemode5000

  • GyralGyral Registered User regular
    Well, I guess technically, he was REALLY good at walking dogs and picking up dog shit. The company just didn't need his excellent dog shit handling skills anymore.

    TFEOM_banner.jpg
  • KarlKarl Registered User regular
    amscray wrote:
    I signed up for the forum just to leave a comment on today's blog story. It's THAT infuriating.


    ok a) don't take the job if its dog friendly and you don't like dogs

    b) those devs probably were working 80 hours, they're allowed to take their dogs home for an hour

    c) if you were temp, you didn't get laid off, they just didn't like you enough to keep you

    d) it's probably because you sound like a fucking huge baby complainer

    e) the title of your post is douchemode5000



    The point of these news posts is to highlight just how crappy it is for Video Games QA temp testers. And how dev's exploit them. If you read his post, you'd see:

    "This led to senior devs having to leave for hours to take their dogs home, walk them, and then drive back into work for some overtime. Frequently, they would just stay home for the night, and people felt like development was slowing because of it." Doesn't sound like an 80 hour week.

    And "it's probably because you sound like a fucking huge baby complainer"...he shoveled dog shit to get on the good side of senior management. That sound like a complainer to you?

    Dear God you are a silly goose.


    YOU'RE ALL BABIES.
    SO MUCH POTENTIAL TO WASTE.
    Koshian wrote: »
    JOKE'S ON YOU
    MY POTENTIAL IS ALREADY WASTED
  • jwalkjwalk Registered User regular
    if you're a temp there is about a 97% chance you will be laid off at the end of the project.

    if you are not a temp that chance drops to about 75%

    it's a rough industry.

  • KarlKarl Registered User regular
    Exactly. People who work as full time permanent testers have busted their asses to get there and have been laid off countless times as temps.

    YOU'RE ALL BABIES.
    SO MUCH POTENTIAL TO WASTE.
    Koshian wrote: »
    JOKE'S ON YOU
    MY POTENTIAL IS ALREADY WASTED
  • admanbadmanb the bored genie Seattle, WARegistered User regular
    Karl wrote:
    The point of these news posts is to highlight just how crappy it is for Video Games QA temp testers. And how dev's exploit them. If you read his post, you'd see:

    "This led to senior devs having to leave for hours to take their dogs home, walk them, and then drive back into work for some overtime. Frequently, they would just stay home for the night, and people felt like development was slowing because of it." Doesn't sound like an 80 hour week.

    And "it's probably because you sound like a fucking huge baby complainer"...he shoveled dog shit to get on the good side of senior management. That sound like a complainer to you?

    Dear God you are a silly goose.

    I don't think he worked for QA, I think he was a temporary junior dev.

    I agree with you, generally. I don't think he was a complainer, but I do think he was kinda dumb. Agreeing to shovel shit when you're working as a game developer isn't exactly saying to management, "I'm indispensable."

  • KarlKarl Registered User regular
    admanb wrote:
    Karl wrote:
    The point of these news posts is to highlight just how crappy it is for Video Games QA temp testers. And how dev's exploit them. If you read his post, you'd see:

    "This led to senior devs having to leave for hours to take their dogs home, walk them, and then drive back into work for some overtime. Frequently, they would just stay home for the night, and people felt like development was slowing because of it." Doesn't sound like an 80 hour week.

    And "it's probably because you sound like a fucking huge baby complainer"...he shoveled dog shit to get on the good side of senior management. That sound like a complainer to you?

    Dear God you are a silly goose.

    I don't think he worked for QA, I think he was a temporary junior dev.

    I agree with you, generally. I don't think he was a complainer, but I do think he was kinda dumb. Agreeing to shovel shit when you're working as a game developer isn't exactly saying to management, "I'm indispensable."

    From my experience (and I've temp'd for years) the ones who go the extra mile are more likely to get their contracts renewed or are first to spring to mind when permanent opportunities come up.

    You actually have to be good at your job though. If you're shit, no amount of shoveling crap can save you.

    YOU'RE ALL BABIES.
    SO MUCH POTENTIAL TO WASTE.
    Koshian wrote: »
    JOKE'S ON YOU
    MY POTENTIAL IS ALREADY WASTED
  • Fatty McBeardoFatty McBeardo Registered User regular
    The studio in the news post has to be Naughty Dog.

  • FallingmanFallingman Registered User regular
    If you're really good at your job - they don't ask you to walk dogs. And if your job is that superfluous, you cant be surprised if they end your contract.

    But yeah, these stories, are getting pretty "samey".

    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]
  • Karl wrote:
    From my experience (and I've temp'd for years) the ones who go the extra mile are more likely to get their contracts renewed or are first to spring to mind when permanent opportunities come up.

    You actually have to be good at your job though. If you're shit, no amount of shoveling crap can save you.

    I'd say, judging from the accounts we've read so far, going the extra mile doesn't pay off. If you're going to get fired anyway, or get paid nothing additional anyway, then it isn't worth it to humiliate and exhaust and destroy yourself for the sake of "the company."

  • LTMLTM Registered User regular
    edited September 2011
    I definitely feel like future newsposts need to filter for "fired" vs "i was a temp/contractor who didn't get a renewal".

    This is desensitizing me to the plight of people who literally pick up shit for a living.

    LTM on
  • tech_huntertech_hunter Registered User regular
    I just hope that the comic starts to get funny, this one was kind of funny. So far I am kind of disappointed they picked up this project instead of some of the other ones they have kind of previewed, like lookouts or that robot one. I hope Trenches does get better but so far not very entertaining.

    Sig to mucho Grande!
  • DarkewolfeDarkewolfe Registered User regular
    Three of the "greatest" webcomic artists/writers of our generation, who between them almost essentially defined webcomics, and they can't deliver something more interesting than any of the other random stuff I'm reading every day. And they deliver less often than most of them, too.

    What is this I don't even.
  • DurkhanusDurkhanus Commander Registered User regular
    Rawr, we demand instant gratification!

  • BremenBremen Registered User regular
    Karl wrote:
    From my experience (and I've temp'd for years) the ones who go the extra mile are more likely to get their contracts renewed or are first to spring to mind when permanent opportunities come up.

    You actually have to be good at your job though. If you're shit, no amount of shoveling crap can save you.

    I'd say, judging from the accounts we've read so far, going the extra mile doesn't pay off. If you're going to get fired anyway, or get paid nothing additional anyway, then it isn't worth it to humiliate and exhaust and destroy yourself for the sake of "the company."

    Working extra hard to create a good impression can certainly pay off, however not so much in this situation. He was clearly doomed the second they asked him to walk dogs. If he said no, he gets a reputation as unhelpful. If he says yes, he gets a reputation as the guy who walks the dogs. Either way, he'd be on the top of the list when it came time to do layoffs. So I think the best response would be to say "no" and then start looking for new jobs on company time.

  • the nightwatchmanthe nightwatchman Registered User regular
    I just registered to say some things:

    People who say they're REALLY good at their job-- aren't. People who are really good at their job are quiet and do it and don't need to tell other people about it because they make the point with their work.

    I just registered to say:

    Oh, bullshit. I've met plenty of people who are smart and capable, yet arrogant as fuck. The smartest dude I know practically never stops patting himself on the back, but he gets shit done, period.

    Blanket statements FTL.

  • HenroidHenroid Radio Demon Internet HellRegistered User regular
    You know what pleases me? You guys actually registered today for real. I like the nightwatchman better so far though because I agree with him. <.<

    Hope to see you new-faces around more often!

    Centrism is just the cowardly way to be a bigot w/o being explicit about it.
    American politics isn't 4D chess, it's just if you give a shit about other people or not.
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