The room was dark, but someone was here. They were playing Smash Bros in the corner, blanket over their head, unaware that I had entered. The television picture flashed brightly against the wall, illuminating what seemed to be a dozen or more cats spread across the floor, all staring at me with piercing green eyes. I reached for the light, but a loud hiss stopped me in my tracks. Never mind, I thought nervously. I grabbed what felt like a shoe, and began whacking the cats while advancing across the room. They leapt at me one by one, as I batted them away, shielding my eyes. “GAME!” the television shouted, as I swatted the final cat. Elie’s battle was over, and so was mine. He turned around and saw me, remembering why I was here…
Hello xat Elie, thank you for agreeing to be interviewed. I’m first going to ask you a few questions about your private life.
So what’s your real name, how old are you, where are you living and what are you studying?
Elie. I’m 18. Um… I’m living in the US and I’m not studying anything yet.
What words would you chose if you had to define yourself?
Easy to amuse cat-lover.
Some people think you are a girl. Do you try to be mysterious?
I use the name Zaaroar everywhere else because of this, and also because it sounds cool.
Fun fact, someone said it sounded like a Pokemon, then the year after, Black and White came out and there was a similar sounding Pokemon: Zoroark.
Let’s go back to your origins on xat, for how long have you been on xat and how did you discover it?
I’ve been on xat since the summer/fall of 2009. I found it through a Wii game: Mario Strikers Charged. Players could use whatever name they want pretty much, and many had the name “MSCBay.com” with fancy letters. I visited after a couple months of playing these guys, registered, and started chatting.
What was your first impression of xat?
In 2009, I thought it was fantastic. I made friends and had a blast playing Brawl, Mario Kart Wii, and Mario Strikers Charged.
What is your best memory on xat? When was it?
My favorite memory on xat wasn’t really on xat (I think), but it was with friends I made on xat. It was in the summer of either 2010 or 2011. I really wish I could talk about the details, but we were kids and our jokes are too inappropriate to share other than someone sticking a stuffed monkey in her shirt.
Did xat ever bring you anything in real life?
No, not really other than some friendly gifts I still use today (thanks Sanic and user who doesn’t want to be named). I did try bringing some friends onto xat, but I have never met someone from xat.
Who do you trust a lot on xat? Do you have a role model?
I trust a lot of people, but a lot of the things I want to talk about I simply can’t either because they aren’t interested in what I have to say or I’m not allowed to. I’m not saying that they’ll tell the world, but it’s complicated. I don’t have a role model, but I envy anyone that has an easy time making friends on xat and gets along with everyone.
What is your favourite chat?
My own private chat. I will randomly PC people and most don’t disappoint.
What are the things you usually want to talk about?
Most of the things I still can’t say. One of the things I can say is cats. I love them, but people aren’t interested.
Let me ask you your opinion on different subjects.
What is your favourite power?
Flower power. It’s adorable and funny.
What do you think of the new forum?
I’m indifferent, but I do like the notification feature on the current one.
And who was the best month Main Owner of xat_test before it received a permanent Main?
I was never on xat5 enough to judge any of the main owners, but if I had to pick, it would be Adena.
Now, let’s talk about what you do on xat.
How would you define your main role?
I consider my main role to just be someone that contributes to xat. Whether or not I was a Help owner or a volunteer, I would still be trying to help in some way.
What is your favorite form of support?
Definitely helping on Help. I just like having a one on one conversation with the user that needs help. The forum feels like a competition and tickets can be a little frustrating. I have not done much for the wiki yet, so I can’t say it’s my favorite.
When did you become volunteer?
I became volunteer in January 2016.
If you had one user to thank about your nomination, who would it be ?
I don’t know about this one, but I’d like to thank my mom for paying for the internet bill. Thanks, mom!
Was it a goal to reach?
It was a goal of mine, but I also wasn’t sure if I would accept if I got the invitation. I knew my chatting experience would change, and we all have seen those things that have happened to the past volunteers, so I was unsure. I ended up accepting it, and so far it’s not that bad and hasn’t changed. I just wish some people would treat me as if I wasn’t a volunteer. We’re still normal users, guys!
You also are Main Owner at Graphics. When did you start?
I became Main Owner at Graphics on December 2015.
What did you bring or change when you became Graphics’ Main Owner?
I haven’t brought much yet other than bring it back to life a little and a contest. I did try making it semi-international (if a staff that speaks another language is online, you may speak the language in the main chat), but no one used it so it went back to being strictly English.
If you had to choose a successor, who would it be?
Definitely Jake. He is the most loyal to the chat, has been main owner in the past, and unofficially runs it with me.
We are coming to the end of this interview. I would like to know what is your global impression of xat now.
Now, it’s just a time waster more than anything and a little toxic. While I feel xat has not changed much at all, the community has changed a lot, and it’s disappointing. I still try to make the best of it though.
When did the community changed?
I can’t really tell you when, but each year seems to be less enjoyable than the last.
Do you know how long will you continue being on xat ?
I have no idea, but the upcoming months will have a huge impact on my activity.
Do you have any special message to end the interview?
Send me cute cat gifs as a sign of friendship and fight me in Sm4sh.