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New SC Categories (+ survey!)

Bug reports, general help, ideas for improvements, and questions about how things are meant to work.

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Lenlyvit
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Founded: Feb 13, 2012
Democratic Socialists

Postby Lenlyvit » Wed Mar 31, 2021 12:23 pm

I've always liked the documents idea, as it would be used by not only GP but the RP and sports community as well. It could be used to recognize legitimate regional governments, interregional organizations, interregional treaties, among other things in GP. In RP it can be used for a lot of things, such as recognizing ceasefires, trade rights, and a host of things I can't think of. In sports it can be used to recognize nations hosting a certain event, such as the World Cup and others. There's so many possibilities.
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Unibot III
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Founded: Mar 11, 2011
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Unibot III » Thu Apr 01, 2021 9:54 am

Lenlyvit wrote:I've always liked the documents idea, as it would be used by not only GP but the RP and sports community as well. It could be used to recognize legitimate regional governments, interregional organizations, interregional treaties, among other things in GP. In RP it can be used for a lot of things, such as recognizing ceasefires, trade rights, and a host of things I can't think of. In sports it can be used to recognize nations hosting a certain event, such as the World Cup and others. There's so many possibilities.


Yes, I think there's probably a lot of uses for it that can't be predicted. Conventions on things like card farming for instance, might become a thing if they continue to grow in importance & they're percieved as a distruption that needs to be managed.

A roleplay international convention or protocol is quite exciting too, because the GA and NS Roleplay generally are considered seperate entities entirely -- in fact for a long time there were archaic moderation rules that limited NS Roleplayers in the Roleplay subforums from roleplaying the GA.

The SC could, with the "Document" category, legislate multilateral agreements that references NS RP events or interact with them in some manner.

Not every RPer is going to be interested in that kind of dynamic though, but I've often found some experienced RPers embrace new options to change things up and adopt new "angles" and dimensions to their plot.

In the SC's early days in 2009-2010, there was a lot of interest in linking WA Condemnations with co-existing roleplays - like ISANN and the Slave Wars. It kind of depends whether realism is popular or not in the RP subforums or not - it goes in and out of favour with the community there - in 2009-13, for instance, there was a backlash to ultra-realism and cloisterism in favour of bigger, inclusive stories and an openess towards experimention and amatuerism.

These things tend to kind of swing back and forth like a pendulum and it depends on the personalities at play. A lot of the change during the period I was talking about was led by Gholgoth - AMF, Yohannes, Milograd, Kazmr etc. - many of whom had some Gameplay experience too and didn't want to put limitations on what NS Roleplay could be.
Last edited by Unibot III on Thu Apr 01, 2021 9:55 am, edited 1 time in total.
[violet] wrote:I mean this in the best possible way,
but Unibot is not a typical NS player.
Milograd wrote:You're a caring, resolute lunatic
with the best of intentions.
Org. Join Date: 25/05/2008 | Former Delegate of TRR | Gameplay Alignment: -18 / -13
Unibotian Factbook // Collected works // The Gameplay Alignment Test //
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The Unified Missourtama States
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Founded: Jul 30, 2019
Democratic Socialists

Postby The Unified Missourtama States » Thu Apr 01, 2021 1:15 pm

Unibot III wrote:Yes, I think there's probably a lot of uses for it that can't be predicted. Conventions on things like card farming for instance, might become a thing if they continue to grow in importance & they're percieved as a distruption that needs to be managed.

And card farmers will continue to ignore those declarations, and it will block the queue from passing actual meaningful things like liberations. Bad idea.

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Unibot III
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Founded: Mar 11, 2011
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Unibot III » Fri Apr 02, 2021 7:45 am

Last call for survey responses today! Takes about a minute to complete the survey. Then we can discuss which proposed categories seem most popular.
[violet] wrote:I mean this in the best possible way,
but Unibot is not a typical NS player.
Milograd wrote:You're a caring, resolute lunatic
with the best of intentions.
Org. Join Date: 25/05/2008 | Former Delegate of TRR | Gameplay Alignment: -18 / -13
Unibotian Factbook // Collected works // The Gameplay Alignment Test //
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Unibot III
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Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Unibot III » Fri Apr 02, 2021 4:28 pm

RESULTS:

Thank you to the 32 respondents that took the survey.

Basically, all the proposed categories received more than majority support (excluding No Opinions), except "Dismissal." Impeachment and Document were significantly more popular than other proposed categories - likely because they do not impact Military Gameplay. The "No Opinion" vote was highest for 'Custodian' and lowest for "Expulsion."

Image

Approval rating (minus No Opinion)
Impeachment: 88.89%
Document: 65.38%
Custodian: 62.50%
Restriction: 56.00%
Mediation: 55.56%
Embargo: 53.57%
Expulsion: 53.33%
Dismissal: 35.71%

Some comments from the survey:
To be blunt, most of these nideas seem pretty atrocious. If they were elaborated on more, maybe they'd make sense, but as it is there are several resolution types here that seem to serve no purpose except to make the game worse - in particular, Mediation sticks out as one of these, since the only possible function I can see for it is to make a region griefable for one update when the founder is asleep.
Nope :)
The GP community really shouldn't have the power to expel/bar a nation from the WA, from becoming a WA delegate, or from founding a region. Custodian seems like a good idea.
Good Ideas
What are you trying to achieve?
Only thing is with the dismissal, I’m wondering whether it would be best to only ban the nation from becoming Delegate
owo this is uwu
Ideally we would also kill influence :^)
[violet] wrote:I mean this in the best possible way,
but Unibot is not a typical NS player.
Milograd wrote:You're a caring, resolute lunatic
with the best of intentions.
Org. Join Date: 25/05/2008 | Former Delegate of TRR | Gameplay Alignment: -18 / -13
Unibotian Factbook // Collected works // The Gameplay Alignment Test //
Proudly Authored 9 GA Res., 14 SC Res. // Commended by SC#78

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The Unified Missourtama States
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Founded: Jul 30, 2019
Democratic Socialists

Postby The Unified Missourtama States » Fri Apr 02, 2021 7:54 pm

That's nice, but please keep polls out of Technical, this is not a democratic area, as has been stated before by the important people, and I do happen to quite heavily agree with them on that.

There are already outlets for all your ideas that you claim to need templates for. The game is fine as is, no need to ruin it by stopping the use of already existing meaningful and useful mechanics.

"Games like Nationstates are like a big cardboard box, and there are two kinds of people in the world. The kind who look at the empty void inside the box and ask 'Where the hell is it?' and the kind who jump into the box with their friends and make it into a fort, or a spaceship." ~ unattributed

Be creative, it's not just a big void.

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Unibot III
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Founded: Mar 11, 2011
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Unibot III » Fri Apr 02, 2021 9:51 pm

If I recall correctly that quotation is from Kandarin, who at the time was leading the charge (along with Todd McCloud, Nai, and a very young Unibot) to introduce new NS Gameplay changes in 2008.

Thank you for sharing the memory though.

The Unified Missourtama States wrote:That's nice, but please keep polls out of Technical, this is not a democratic area, as has been stated before by the important people, and I do happen to quite heavily agree with them on that.


I never said I thought that tech proposals should be made based off popularity, I said I thought the insight might be helpful to the discussion here.

Why? Because often I find with these discussions that a side conversation between two players can give the impression that an idea is more unpopular than it is, or that something is more disputed than it is. The reality is that most of the proposed categories discussed in this thread are generally approved (and in some cases, widely approved) by players — an important question then becomes which categories should Admins prioritize for creation and where is the need most pressing?

However, I’ll also say that my memory of WA Liberations is that they were incredibly controversial when they were first introduced. Their introduction was accepted and popularized only over time. That’s something worth bearing in mind here: necessary change can be scary and can take time to be absorbed into a community’s culture.
Last edited by Unibot III on Fri Apr 02, 2021 9:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.
[violet] wrote:I mean this in the best possible way,
but Unibot is not a typical NS player.
Milograd wrote:You're a caring, resolute lunatic
with the best of intentions.
Org. Join Date: 25/05/2008 | Former Delegate of TRR | Gameplay Alignment: -18 / -13
Unibotian Factbook // Collected works // The Gameplay Alignment Test //
Proudly Authored 9 GA Res., 14 SC Res. // Commended by SC#78

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The Unified Missourtama States
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Founded: Jul 30, 2019
Democratic Socialists

Postby The Unified Missourtama States » Sat Apr 03, 2021 5:50 am

Unibot III wrote:Why? Because often I find with these discussions that a side conversation between two players can give the impression that an idea is more unpopular than it is, or that something is more disputed than it is.

Sure, I'm not disputing that representation may be more equal than the general population, but admins don't make decisions based on votes; they make them based on compelling arguments.

Personally the only one I'm absolutely against is "Documents" which will achieve nothing at all by any means and is really just a bad idea.
~something about change~

Shove that delicious change down my throat then.

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Great Algerstonia
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Founded: Mar 21, 2019
Father Knows Best State

Postby Great Algerstonia » Sat Apr 03, 2021 10:34 am

Expulsion is good, we can expel blatantly noncompliant nations from the WA

Although there should be a different standard of expulsion for Delegates- maybe a higher majority required or something?
Last edited by Great Algerstonia on Sat Apr 03, 2021 10:36 am, edited 1 time in total.
I don't like sand.

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Great Algerstonia
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Founded: Mar 21, 2019
Father Knows Best State

Postby Great Algerstonia » Sat Apr 03, 2021 10:41 am

The Python wrote:
Zandilund wrote:
True. Some deeper thought and you'll realize that the SC will never overthrow a raider region.

Still, why take a founder's region away from them? A region should be owned by its founder while it still exists, to allow the WA to take away their authority is wrong.

Because fash bad.
And, as Eshialand said, sometimes it's needed if raiders refounded a region.

That's such a niche purpose tho. Theres very little situations that can be used in, and I can only think of a few that are subjectively good
I don't like sand.

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Weed
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Founded: Oct 23, 2011
Anarchy

Postby Weed » Sat Apr 03, 2021 10:59 am

Years ago I would be so excited to sit back and watch some of these play out, but now I think it would take some heavy handed guard rails for this to go anywhere but in a boring and toxic direction. Which mods are not going to do.

I personally think embargo, restriction, and custodian would be great ideas if used for GamePlay purposes, but are instead going to be used against any region right of AOC for feel good internet warrior points.

If any of these potential offensive resolutions are added I suggest we allow them to stack in proposals, so that we do not have to wait through the appointment of LeftyMcLeftFace as the custodian of XXX, then a restriction of XXX, then a pre-emptive liberation of XXX, and then finally the embargo. Let’s let them combined in one four day vote to save our sanity.
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Unibot III
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Founded: Mar 11, 2011
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Unibot III » Wed Apr 07, 2021 9:10 am

The Unified Missourtama States wrote:
Unibot III wrote:Why? Because often I find with these discussions that a side conversation between two players can give the impression that an idea is more unpopular than it is, or that something is more disputed than it is.

Sure, I'm not disputing that representation may be more equal than the general population, but admins don't make decisions based on votes; they make them based on compelling arguments.

Personally the only one I'm absolutely against is "Documents" which will achieve nothing at all by any means and is really just a bad idea.
~something about change~

Shove that delicious change down my throat then.


So, a few things first: admins don't make decisions off votes, but in my personal experience, they do avoid making decisions when the GP seems deeply divided over the direction of things - and these divisions can often appear to be greater in perception than in reality when debate threads get heated or circular. A poll helps orient things, it's an additional way to take stock of what kind of support the proposal might have.

I think we agree that popularity alone isn't a legitimate criterion here: sometimes proposed game changes can disproportionately impact how a minority play the game and that should be taken seriously, and sometimes the popularity of proposed game changes is based on common misunderstandings and lay knowledge about current miilitary and political gameplay.

As for the "Document" proposal, I suppose my elevator pitch for the "Document" category would begin with that lovely Kandarin quote you shared earlier. NationStates is at its best when it leaves some room for players to create something unanticipated.

Much of what we know as NS Gameplay today was improvised, and not a part of an intentional design.

I don't know precisely what players will do with the "Document" category and I don't expect the outcome to be predictable, but I know that if you give players a blank slate, like the GA proposal system or Dispatches or WFEs, players will fill the canvas. While it is true, international law and conventions can and have been pursued independent of any official process, the adoption of these conventions has been sporadic and ephemeral, and there's often been an absence of an appropriate neutral, multilateral venue for the drafting of these agreements to begin with. Having an official forum for the consideration of international law, conventions, and agreements, will facilitate these discussions, legitimize them, and support their long term codification.

Weed wrote:Years ago I would be so excited to sit back and watch some of these play out, but now I think it would take some heavy handed guard rails for this to go anywhere but in a boring and toxic direction. Which mods are not going to do.

I personally think embargo, restriction, and custodian would be great ideas if used for GamePlay purposes, but are instead going to be used against any region right of AOC for feel good internet warrior points.

If any of these potential offensive resolutions are added I suggest we allow them to stack in proposals, so that we do not have to wait through the appointment of LeftyMcLeftFace as the custodian of XXX, then a restriction of XXX, then a pre-emptive liberation of XXX, and then finally the embargo. Let’s let them combined in one four day vote to save our sanity.


I think that it is absolutely true that many of these proposed categories will be used to target regions that the NS GP community believes should be targeted or ostracized, for a variety of reasons - and I do think that this practice is more popular now than in years past.

However, there are a couple of factors that will weigh against hostile proposals:

  • The more you target one region, the more fatigued the electorate becomes & the more attention you're giving the region. "Stacking" the resolutions into one proposal, as you suggest, would remove this countervailing force.
  • With power comes responsibility. The more power given to the NS GP community that could be potentially used in a hostile manner, the more discussion that will be required over whether the use of these powers are appropriate or necessary. Part of the reason why sometimes I think NS GP can be uncritical about which regions it targets (and which one it doesn't) is because the stakes are low - a puppet tag raid is not a permanant disruption, a hostile WA Liberation is performative - when a community has real power to interfere in the sovereignty of other regions, I would expect a heated discussion to arise over what basis is being used to target these regions and what the terms of rehabilitation are, if any.
Is today like the "good old days"? No, it's definitely different. But I can't shake the feeling that the focus on pariah regions is a symptom of a bored, stagnant international community looking for something to do and someone insignificant to antagonize, rather than a permanent socio-cultural change in NS GP. We've had these kinds of moral panics in the past. What I say is, give players something that they can dig their teeth into, something that can renew political and military gameplay and add some more dynamism to it, and I would expect that they'd be far interested in that. The WA Security Council, and a series of new SC categories, is an excellent vehicle for that renewal because it's open to all and its reach and impact is broad.
Last edited by Unibot III on Wed Apr 07, 2021 9:15 am, edited 3 times in total.
[violet] wrote:I mean this in the best possible way,
but Unibot is not a typical NS player.
Milograd wrote:You're a caring, resolute lunatic
with the best of intentions.
Org. Join Date: 25/05/2008 | Former Delegate of TRR | Gameplay Alignment: -18 / -13
Unibotian Factbook // Collected works // The Gameplay Alignment Test //
Proudly Authored 9 GA Res., 14 SC Res. // Commended by SC#78

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Weed
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Founded: Oct 23, 2011
Anarchy

Postby Weed » Wed Apr 07, 2021 11:30 am

Unibot III wrote:
Weed wrote:Years ago I would be so excited to sit back and watch some of these play out, but now I think it would take some heavy handed guard rails for this to go anywhere but in a boring and toxic direction. Which mods are not going to do.

I personally think embargo, restriction, and custodian would be great ideas if used for GamePlay purposes, but are instead going to be used against any region right of AOC for feel good internet warrior points.

If any of these potential offensive resolutions are added I suggest we allow them to stack in proposals, so that we do not have to wait through the appointment of LeftyMcLeftFace as the custodian of XXX, then a restriction of XXX, then a pre-emptive liberation of XXX, and then finally the embargo. Let’s let them combined in one four day vote to save our sanity.


I think that it is absolutely true that many of these proposed categories will be used to target regions that the NS GP community believes should be targeted or ostracized, for a variety of reasons - and I do think that this practice is more popular now than in years past.

However, there are a couple of factors that will weigh against hostile proposals:

  • The more you target one region, the more fatigued the electorate becomes & the more attention you're giving the region. "Stacking" the resolutions into one proposal, as you suggest, would remove this countervailing force.
  • With power comes responsibility. The more power given to the NS GP community that could be potentially used in a hostile manner, the more discussion that will be required over whether the use of these powers are appropriate or necessary. Part of the reason why sometimes I think NS GP can be uncritical about which regions it targets (and which one it doesn't) is because the stakes are low - a puppet tag raid is not a permanant disruption, a hostile WA Liberation is performative - when a community has real power to interfere in the sovereignty of other regions, I would expect a heated discussion to arise over what basis is being used to target these regions and what the terms of rehabilitation are, if any.
Is today like the "good old days"? No, it's definitely different. But I can't shake the feeling that the focus on pariah regions is a symptom of a bored, stagnant international community looking for something to do and someone insignificant to antagonize, rather than a permanent socio-cultural change in NS GP. We've had these kinds of moral panics in the past. What I say is, give players something that they can dig their teeth into, something that can renew political and military gameplay and add some more dynamism to it, and I would expect that they'd be far interested in that. The WA Security Council, and a series of new SC categories, is an excellent vehicle for that renewal because it's open to all and its reach and impact is broad.

Ever the optimist Uni, that's why you're a better person than me. I don't think what is different has anything to do with stagnant game mechanics on NationStates because it has happened to communities all across the internet. The difference is cultural, and tied to deep OOC anger that we will never be able to get off this site again.

I get that I'm the worst person to be saying that, because I was the only person who on the first day of having C&C went 'OMG condemn the nazis' and brought about the first OOC hostile resolution ever. So I'm an old brown pot leaf complaining the new pot is green, But at least y'all had the decency to dislike me for it.

And how long did it take everyone other than me to get bored of our new toy and just start using it to draw attention to the alt-right? Is that how long we expect it to take us to get bored of these new toys too? I guess I am a scrooge for thinking throw out the good debates with the bath water. Probably should ignore old grumps like me, and listen to the young at heart like Uni. :)
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Weed
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Unibot III
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Founded: Mar 11, 2011
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Unibot III » Wed Apr 07, 2021 1:47 pm

Weed wrote:Ever the optimist Uni, that's why you're a better person than me.


Stop it! :blush:

I remember back when we were all doomsdayers over Rule IV, it was Topid - the real optimist - who sought to bring an end to the 3WB protests in the SC, and get us back on track. I'm just a cheap firebrand. :lol2:

And how long did it take everyone other than me to get bored of our new toy and just start using it to draw attention to the alt-right? Is that how long we expect it to take us to get bored of these new toys too? I guess I am a scrooge for thinking throw out the good debates with the bath water. Probably should ignore old grumps like me, and listen to the young at heart like Uni. :)


I expect that the "Document" category would generate more sustainable activity long term for the SC, like in the GA. There would be the predictable deluge of proposals for the other categories if they were introduced, and then as viable nominees dried up, the actual use of the category would slow down to a case-by-case basis like WA Liberations since each of the categories is only appropriate in some cases under certain conditions.

The intial buzz would elapse a year, in my experience with the SC 2009-2010.

But the deeper - and more substantive - impact to NSGP would come from the spinoffs that can't be predicted.

How would defenders and invaders adapt to the new categories? How would major regions respond and interact with a more activist WASC? Who would muscle for control in the WASC? Would new regions and communities rise and form as a result of this spinoff activity? When there is a change to one area in NSGP, other parts of the political world adapt and respond to that change, and that response necessitates further changes, activity, and drama that couldn't be forseen in advance. For instance, when the SC was first created, what happened was WA Authors were immediately recruited into NSGP ranks because their skills were needed in NSGP -- this was a transformation of NSGP that couldn't have been predicted in 2009. Members of Dharma, IDU, AO, and Monkey Island were headhunted and sprawled out across NSGP into different camps. With them, they brought their writing skills and ideas and beliefs (and grudges from the WA) which rewrote NSGP fundamentally.

I honestly believe that the real success of the SC hasn't been its output on paper (Were there even natives in the "Land of Liberals" to save? :lol2:) but the influx of people and ideas that it brought to NS Gameplay. NSGP can stagnate, it can often
cloister around apparatchiks who know how to operate the political field, but they don't have a sense of the bigger picture and are too professionally detached to lead a movement. The SC was a lifeline for the NSGP - it brought writers and thinkers and very passionate people into its world who otherwise would have remained outsiders. And I think to sustain that, you have to renew the SC, with new categories, and additional purpose and ramifications for NSGP.
Last edited by Unibot III on Wed Apr 07, 2021 2:07 pm, edited 2 times in total.
[violet] wrote:I mean this in the best possible way,
but Unibot is not a typical NS player.
Milograd wrote:You're a caring, resolute lunatic
with the best of intentions.
Org. Join Date: 25/05/2008 | Former Delegate of TRR | Gameplay Alignment: -18 / -13
Unibotian Factbook // Collected works // The Gameplay Alignment Test //
Proudly Authored 9 GA Res., 14 SC Res. // Commended by SC#78

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Lenlyvit
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Founded: Feb 13, 2012
Democratic Socialists

Postby Lenlyvit » Mon Apr 12, 2021 8:01 am

It would be nice to see new SC categories, but the likelihood of them implementing such things seems slimmer and slimmer each year.
Last edited by Lenlyvit on Mon Apr 12, 2021 8:01 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Unibot III
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Founded: Mar 11, 2011
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Unibot III » Mon Apr 12, 2021 5:23 pm

Lenlyvit wrote:It would be nice to see new SC categories, but the likelihood of them implementing such things seems slimmer and slimmer each year.


I mean the truth is Lenlyvit, I’ve advocated for a “Document” category since 2009. It hurts my brain to think that it’s been more than a decade in the making. :?

I think this discussion has done a good job at assessing the interest for the various proposals on the table and at this juncture, it’ll be helpful to hear from senior moderators & site admin what categories they see as viable and how “deliverable” each proposal is (I’m imagining some categories would be more difficult to introduce than others.)

It may be helpful for admins to hear from others as to whether we should be prioritizing the creation of certain categories, or just prioritizing deliverability overall (I.e., more categories quicker.)
[violet] wrote:I mean this in the best possible way,
but Unibot is not a typical NS player.
Milograd wrote:You're a caring, resolute lunatic
with the best of intentions.
Org. Join Date: 25/05/2008 | Former Delegate of TRR | Gameplay Alignment: -18 / -13
Unibotian Factbook // Collected works // The Gameplay Alignment Test //
Proudly Authored 9 GA Res., 14 SC Res. // Commended by SC#78

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✯ Duty is Eternal, Justice is Imminent: UDL

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Fauxia
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Founded: Dec 22, 2016
Left-Leaning College State

Postby Fauxia » Mon Apr 12, 2021 6:01 pm

I don't understand the purpose of a SC "document" resolution. People can document things as it stands.

Ultimately, I don't see much of a purpose for these. It's not that I'm trying to shoot anything down, if there are any ideas I think work for the SC I'd argue in favor, but these just seem like weaker liberations to me. Additionally, when a liberation actually is needed, these could delay its writing.

I don't think mediation would work, and the case in point is Lenly's Liberate TNI proposed a while ago. As soon as there was any threat whatsoever, Onder managed to haul the founder back from oblivion and refound.

People always say "oh, you aren't paying attention, you're just using a login script" but the reality is if you're using a login script you still have some investment in the game for some reason, and you're likely to notice within a short period of time (certainly by the point anyone has enough influence to banject the founder nation and evacuate, and that's if no one else tries to spoil that simply by jumping into the region and making its expiration impossible. I'm rambling, but the point is that there is no way this could ever actually be used, except if the founder only paid attention every week, the proposal wasn't drafted, and someone was stealthing in the region to build up a little bit of influence in the first place.

Interesting idea, but really not possible. It would have to reserve executive power to the WA and forbid the Founder from changing it. But even then, that isn't likely to work, since the Founder can always banject the Delegate repeatedly.
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Unibot III
Negotiator
 
Posts: 6084
Founded: Mar 11, 2011
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Unibot III » Tue Apr 13, 2021 3:55 am

Fauxia wrote:I don't understand the purpose of a SC "document" resolution. People can document things as it stands.

Ultimately, I don't see much of a purpose for these. It's not that I'm trying to shoot anything down, if there are any ideas I think work for the SC I'd argue in favor, but these just seem like weaker liberations to me. Additionally, when a liberation actually is needed, these could delay its writing.

I don't think mediation would work, and the case in point is Lenly's Liberate TNI proposed a while ago. As soon as there was any threat whatsoever, Onder managed to haul the founder back from oblivion and refound.

People always say "oh, you aren't paying attention, you're just using a login script" but the reality is if you're using a login script you still have some investment in the game for some reason, and you're likely to notice within a short period of time (certainly by the point anyone has enough influence to banject the founder nation and evacuate, and that's if no one else tries to spoil that simply by jumping into the region and making its expiration impossible. I'm rambling, but the point is that there is no way this could ever actually be used, except if the founder only paid attention every week, the proposal wasn't drafted, and someone was stealthing in the region to build up a little bit of influence in the first place.

Interesting idea, but really not possible. It would have to reserve executive power to the WA and forbid the Founder from changing it. But even then, that isn't likely to work, since the Founder can always banject the Delegate repeatedly.


TNI happened, sure. But Greece also happened. Founders do go inactive and there are quite a few regional hawkers who make use of scripts to the extent that I’m not sure they even play the game anymore. Mediation is applicable on a case by case basis and it requires a patient community of people — essentially you need a group of people motivated enough to outlive their region hawkers. The strange thing about NationStates is.. this does happen. The game is almost two decades old.

The value of Documents is the (1) facilitation of an official, neutral, multilateral space for international lawmaking, (2) permanent, centralized record-keeping, (3) the proclamation of international laws and conventions across the game to encourage adoption.

You can say “players can do it without a WA category!” but the reality is they do not. International law and conventions are not common and they are rarely long-lasting — they’re introduced every few years in NS GP and they disappear a little while later. Why? Because the host of the treaty can never really establish itself as a neutral host, and when the host loses interest, record-keeping for signatories falls into a coma. It also hurts the late adoption of international conventions that the text only ever reflects those that initially wrote it and signed onto it, it doesn’t face scrutiny from an international community during its drafting and adoption. And try amending an ancestral international treaty! There’s literally no process to do so, when all the players and regions that signed it haven’t been playing the game in fifteen years.

I don’t like the Liberation comment you made because, while WA Liberations are useful, they’re not helpful in the cases that the other WA categories are anticipating. Passwords are one challenge, but so are scripted-logins, piling, and influence-sharing. I also think that WA Liberations are a blunt instrument to use against pile raids — yes, a preventative WA Liberation will help inoculate the region against complete griefing — but what kind of game experience is that? Invaders inoculate their occupations from being challengeable by mass piling, and defenders prevent the destruction of the region by writing a letter, and they both sit and watch the region deteriorate until they reach a stalemate. If an Embargo category is available, in lieu of a preventative WA Liberation, I think players will be encouraged to use it over a WA Liberation because they’ll be able to substantiate piling and intent to grief, but not intent to password. This is preferable in that we want tools to be used that are appropriate, measured, and contribute to a competitive environment.
Last edited by Unibot III on Tue Apr 13, 2021 4:10 am, edited 3 times in total.
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✯ Duty is Eternal, Justice is Imminent: UDL

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Kapka
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Posts: 1
Founded: Apr 28, 2020
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Kapka » Tue Apr 13, 2021 10:24 am

I like the ideas people are suggesting so far. Things like embargo and sanction, liberate, or even one that requires WA inspectors or WA peacekeeping troops to enter a country should definitely be implemented in some way.

Anything to improve the SC, because to many people I think it's fairly dull and powerless at the moment.

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Fauxia
Senator
 
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Founded: Dec 22, 2016
Left-Leaning College State

Postby Fauxia » Tue Apr 13, 2021 11:37 am

Unibot III wrote:TNI happened, sure. But Greece also happened. Founders do go inactive and there are quite a few regional hawkers who make use of scripts to the extent that I’m not sure they even play the game anymore. Mediation is applicable on a case by case basis and it requires a patient community of people — essentially you need a group of people motivated enough to outlive their region hawkers. The strange thing about NationStates is.. this does happen. The game is almost two decades old.

In Greece the founder never existed in the first place, if I'm not mistaken (having been on the disastrous NSIDC mission myself, I remember some details, but I have done myself the favor of purging most of them), so this resolution has little to do with it. In cases where the founder ceases to exist, the Delegate is executive anyway, and mediation doesn't work. I don't think a specific type of resolution just to target Macedon (without actually having any assurance that it won't be undone very easily) is fair, and in the future it will only make hawkers more careful. Additionally, it just seems weird to me to have a resolution that can be undone with the simple click of a button from a founder.

If influence did not exist, there would be a use here, but it just seems like asking for a lot of wasted legislation.

Unibot III wrote:The value of Documents is the (1) facilitation of an official, neutral, multilateral space for international lawmaking, (2) permanent, centralized record-keeping, (3) the proclamation of international laws and conventions across the game to encourage adoption.

Yes, but why waste the SC's space passing things that only pretend to have effect? That's the GA's job. C&C's don't have any effect, but the shiny badge is nice, and C&C's don't really purport to have any purpose in the first place. As for record-keeping, it doesn't fit with the theme of the WA, which is a legislative body, at all, and the actual end result of this would be not writing accounts of important events because "oh, the Security Council is going to do it!" As for the encouragement of adopting international laws... no. You have been far too long in GP (and the GA, for that matter) if you think the vast majority of regions are going to care. "Oh, this international law passed". It doesn't effect them at all. Instead, they just stop caring about the Security Council at all.

Unibot III wrote:You can say “players can do it without a WA category!” but the reality is they do not. International law and conventions are not common and they are rarely long-lasting — they’re introduced every few years in NS GP and they disappear a little while later. Why? Because the host of the treaty can never really establish itself as a neutral host, and when the host loses interest, record-keeping for signatories falls into a coma. It also hurts the late adoption of international conventions that the text only ever reflects those that initially wrote it and signed onto it, it doesn’t face scrutiny from an international community during its drafting and adoption. And try amending an ancestral international treaty! There’s literally no process to do so, when all the players and regions that signed it haven’t been playing the game in fifteen years.

I think this ultimately is because nobody except a few GCR politicians actually cares about international law. Those are best handled by individual regions making agreements with each other. If you enjoy the RP of it, there's a General Assembly for you. Most of this stuff is not going to apply to most regions.

Unibot III wrote:I don’t like the Liberation comment you made because, while WA Liberations are useful, they’re not helpful in the cases that the other WA categories are anticipating. Passwords are one challenge, but so are scripted-logins, piling, and influence-sharing. I also think that WA Liberations are a blunt instrument to use against pile raids — yes, a preventative WA Liberation will help inoculate the region against complete griefing — but what kind of game experience is that? Invaders inoculate their occupations from being challengeable by mass piling, and defenders prevent the destruction of the region by writing a letter, and they both sit and watch the region deteriorate until they reach a stalemate. If an Embargo category is available, in lieu of a preventative WA Liberation, I think players will be encouraged to use it over a WA Liberation because they’ll be able to substantiate piling and intent to grief, but not intent to password. This is preferable in that we want tools to be used that are appropriate, measured, and contribute to a competitive environment.

I think you are fundamentally ignoring the fact that it takes four days to pass a SC resolution, plus time to draft, plus time waiting for other things in the queue to get to vote.

Let's say raiders invade a region. Most of the pilers are going to be there within two or three updates (or else the defenders will liberate the region and it won't be needed in the first place). Defenders continue to not be able to liberate the region, so the embargo passes. Now, the raiders are accruing influence almost as quickly as before - faster, even because defenders can't make any attrition runs. So guess what has to be passed to actually get the job done? A liberation. I challenge you to come up with a circumstance where an embargo actually helps the natives.

Restriction isn't so bad, I suppose, but ultimately I think you will still need a liberation. Very often, what happens anyway in raids is that they switch Delegates all the time anyway.

But also, these seem to be attempting to address a moot point at this point. Griefing is almost dead. Occupations are usually against liberated regions and are temporary. There's tag raiding, but most raiding is done by independents that don't really like griefing. I'm not saying that it won't ever happen again, but I think this seems like extra admin effort for barely any payoff in this regard. Natives can already be protected from liberations.
Last edited by Fauxia on Tue Apr 13, 2021 11:38 am, edited 2 times in total.
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Aether
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Posts: 12
Founded: Jan 10, 2017
Democratic Socialists

Postby Aether » Tue Apr 13, 2021 12:13 pm

The embargo seems a good idea

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Unibot III
Negotiator
 
Posts: 6084
Founded: Mar 11, 2011
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Unibot III » Tue Apr 13, 2021 2:25 pm

Fauxia wrote:
Unibot III wrote:TNI happened, sure. But Greece also happened. Founders do go inactive and there are quite a few regional hawkers who make use of scripts to the extent that I’m not sure they even play the game anymore. Mediation is applicable on a case by case basis and it requires a patient community of people — essentially you need a group of people motivated enough to outlive their region hawkers. The strange thing about NationStates is.. this does happen. The game is almost two decades old.

In Greece the founder never existed in the first place, if I'm not mistaken (having been on the disastrous NSIDC mission myself, I remember some details, but I have done myself the favor of purging most of them), so this resolution has little to do with it. In cases where the founder ceases to exist, the Delegate is executive anyway, and mediation doesn't work. I don't think a specific type of resolution just to target Macedon (without actually having any assurance that it won't be undone very easily) is fair, and in the future it will only make hawkers more careful. Additionally, it just seems weird to me to have a resolution that can be undone with the simple click of a button from a founder.

If influence did not exist, there would be a use here, but it just seems like asking for a lot of wasted legislation.


So... incidentially, WA Liberations were created to respond to Macedon. (The France & Belgium occupations were the motivation behind WA Liberations - no one else really practiced Macedonian tactics as ruthlessly as Macedon, except maybe the Persian Empire.)

The Greek founder was Yauna, he was a bad faith actor connected with the Persian Empire - he continued to resurrect his account over a period of many years only to block refound bids. What happened in Greece is rather confusing. Essentially, Yauna switched executive powers on the account just prior to a planned Persian Empire invasion and then CTE'd. Persian Empire continued to occupy Greece behind a password, so a WA Liberation was necessary to open the region up.

'Mediation' would not apply in the case of Greece specifically because Yauna was CTE'd, but Greece is an example of an ongoing, long term covert effort to refound a region that was facilitated by the WA Security Council.

I think the thing about cases like Macedon (and there are other hawkers out there) is that they often impact dozens of UCRs for each group - so even a few bad faith actors can more than justify the creation of a WA Category.

Yes, but why waste the SC's space passing things that only pretend to have effect? That's the GA's job. C&C's don't have any effect, but the shiny badge is nice, and C&C's don't really purport to have any purpose in the first place. As for record-keeping, it doesn't fit with the theme of the WA, which is a legislative body, at all, and the actual end result of this would be not writing accounts of important events because "oh, the Security Council is going to do it!" As for the encouragement of adopting international laws... no. You have been far too long in GP (and the GA, for that matter) if you think the vast majority of regions are going to care. "Oh, this international law passed". It doesn't effect them at all. Instead, they just stop caring about the Security Council at all.


As you've acknowledged: the SC spends the vast majority of its time discussing, proposing, and vetting cosmetic resolutions (C&Cs). It clearly is within the SC's mandate to pass things that do not have a substantive in-game impact, since that is already what the SC spends most of its time considering.

I think the idea that gameplay regions will care less about the SC than they do now because of the introduction of international laws and conventions is not sound. There will, of course, be regions that deliberately refuse to acknowledge the authority or the legitimacy of the WASC (there already are); but many more regions care about their international reputation and will have some level of investment in the legislative outcome.

I think what we should actually expect is that major regions will promote international laws they like (for whatever reason that may be), and their support for those laws and conventions will make it difficult for them to ignore or dismiss international laws that they're not satisfied with. Regions are rarely cut and dry ideological sovereigntists like Gatesville Inc. - and their support for some intiatives introduces new entanglements and the risk of hypocrisy.

I think this ultimately is because nobody except a few GCR politicians actually cares about international law. Those are best handled by individual regions making agreements with each other. If you enjoy the RP of it, there's a General Assembly for you. Most of this stuff is not going to apply to most regions.


I strongly disagree with this sentiment. Most of the major areas of discussion for international law and conventions often impact smaller UCRs even more than major GCRs - they're more vulernable security-wise, more dependent on recruitment etc.

I think one of the main reasons why we've see international lawmaking stuck in an embroytic state over the years is because the conventions are never promulgated beyond major regions. When you're only involving a small circle in the drafting and adoption of a law, you cannot expect that the law or convention will metastasize through the wider international community that have no foothold in these circles.

I think you are fundamentally ignoring the fact that it takes four days to pass a SC resolution, plus time to draft, plus time waiting for other things in the queue to get to vote.

Let's say raiders invade a region. Most of the pilers are going to be there within two or three updates (or else the defenders will liberate the region and it won't be needed in the first place). Defenders continue to not be able to liberate the region, so the embargo passes. Now, the raiders are accruing influence almost as quickly as before - faster, even because defenders can't make any attrition runs. So guess what has to be passed to actually get the job done? A liberation. I challenge you to come up with a circumstance where an embargo actually helps the natives.


This isn't your fault, but I think you missed an important part of the proposal (and was discussed more in depth in the original Embargo thread): once passed, the embargo removes WA membership from those nations that moved into the region after the time of the proposal's submission, everything is grandfathered to that specific point in time.

This is why Embargoes often would be more helpful for defenders than WA Liberations in the case of pile raids: while WA Liberations can act as a buffer to obstruct region destruction, WA Liberations do not actually give you an opportunity to actually free a piled invasion - you're essentially forced to watch the region be griefed to the ground.

Now you may ask... what's stopping defenders submiting rush/template drafts for WA Embargoes all of the time? I think this an important question, but the answer is there are a number of genuine countervailing factors at play here:

  • Rushing the submission of the resolution risks embarassing the proposers or casting doubts on the legitimacy of the category, because you cannot substantiate the claims in your resolution.
  • If an embargo isn't necessary, no sane defender would want an embargo where it isn't needed because it would make a non-pile raid significantly more difficult to liberate not less.

Invaders will also adapt to the category, no doubt. I would expect them to increase the size of their intial invasions and either time-delay piling (so it's a slow burn) or go extremely fast and heavy on the piling to build up extra influence during the grace period before the resolution's passage. I would also expect invaders to adopt reverse siege tactics, by using updaters to pump up their lead's endorsements at update.

Restriction isn't so bad, I suppose, but ultimately I think you will still need a liberation. Very often, what happens anyway in raids is that they switch Delegates all the time anyway.


I think the long term implication of WA Restrictions would be increased value in subversion and intelligence, and an increased risk for lead invader abstenteeism. It's most helpful as a category in high-octave situations where the occupation is occuring for a long period of time or the target itself is worth blowing a spy's cover.
[violet] wrote:I mean this in the best possible way,
but Unibot is not a typical NS player.
Milograd wrote:You're a caring, resolute lunatic
with the best of intentions.
Org. Join Date: 25/05/2008 | Former Delegate of TRR | Gameplay Alignment: -18 / -13
Unibotian Factbook // Collected works // The Gameplay Alignment Test //
Proudly Authored 9 GA Res., 14 SC Res. // Commended by SC#78

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✯ Duty is Eternal, Justice is Imminent: UDL

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Pekares
Lobbyist
 
Posts: 11
Founded: Apr 22, 2017
Capitalizt

Postby Pekares » Wed Apr 14, 2021 6:39 am

Whereas adding these new kinds of SC legislation could certainly be interesting, I fare that they can end up being used in the wrong way in certain cases (exploited).

Documents: I do not see how this would affect something in game play. What happens if you break such a legislation?
Embargo: Somewhat interesting, but exploitable. I just fare that the careless majority will sometimes use these wrongly.
Restrictions and Mediations are unnecessarily powerful. When it comes to what Mediations are supposed to solve, it could just as well be an automatic game feature, that if the Founder has been inactive for a certain amount of time, the WAD could automatically receive Executive powers.

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Unibot III
Negotiator
 
Posts: 6084
Founded: Mar 11, 2011
Inoffensive Centrist Democracy

Postby Unibot III » Wed Apr 14, 2021 10:37 am

Hi Pekares! Welcome to the discussion.

Pekares wrote:Whereas adding these new kinds of SC legislation could certainly be interesting, I fare that they can end up being used in the wrong way in certain cases (exploited).


I think it's a feature, not a bug, that the categories can be exploited. My understanding of the WA Security Council is that its powers are a double-edged sword that can be used both for "good" and "bad."

Documents: I do not see how this would affect something in game play. What happens if you break such a legislation?


There wouldn't be a compliance mechanism that impacted the game mechanics for SC laws and conventions.

The compliance mechanism in reality would be social and political. Many regions covet their reputation. Many regions will want to highlight intentional laws and conventions they're supportive of, and this will tie them into acknowledging laws and conventions they may not otherwise be satisfied with.

When it comes to what Mediations are supposed to solve, it could just as well be an automatic game feature, that if the Founder has been inactive for a certain amount of time, the WAD could automatically receive Executive powers.


The issue is distinguishing between mechanized and actual activity: many founders, especially of hawked colonies, are simply scripted to log in. WADs already do gain executive powers when founders go extinct for inactivity, but log-in scripts grant founders "immortality" even if their players stop playing the game.

Take for example, "Gatesville" - one of the most prestigious legacy UCRs in NS - and it sits as a sad, mostly empty tombstone with an auto-login script assisted founder.

However, I think that this does raise a tangential point that I hadn't considered, but actually is a very critical point of discussion: many, many hawked regions use founder-imposed passwords on top of a log-in script. This is the case with Eastern Islands, for instance, which was griefed by the Brotherhood of Blood.

For example, natives tried to propose a WA Liberation for their region, Union of Kingmakers, and found out the hard way that the WA Liberation would do nothing against a founder-imposed password.

While "Mediation" would act as a recourse for some existing hawked regions (including Macedon), it wouldn't act as a recourse for any that are passworded. Hawkers could protect their regions from a WA Mediation by just imposing a password.

One way to assist natives in cases like Union of Kingmakers, and others, would be to expand WA Liberations slightly, so that the WA Liberation removed a founder-imposed password unless the founder re-introduced the password. That way, if the occupation is dormant, and the founder is in fact a script, natives have an opportunity through the WA Security Council to seek help for their region that was hawked and griefed.

To me, this is about removing an "end-game" from NSGP - and encouraging activity, competition, and constructive gameplaying.
[violet] wrote:I mean this in the best possible way,
but Unibot is not a typical NS player.
Milograd wrote:You're a caring, resolute lunatic
with the best of intentions.
Org. Join Date: 25/05/2008 | Former Delegate of TRR | Gameplay Alignment: -18 / -13
Unibotian Factbook // Collected works // The Gameplay Alignment Test //
Proudly Authored 9 GA Res., 14 SC Res. // Commended by SC#78

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✯ Duty is Eternal, Justice is Imminent: UDL

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Whole India
Bureaucrat
 
Posts: 51
Founded: Jul 18, 2019
Authoritarian Democracy

Postby Whole India » Sun May 02, 2021 11:31 pm

I really liked your ideas.
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