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[Discussion] In Character Rules

Where WA members debate how to improve the world, one resolution at a time.
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Excidium Planetis
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[Discussion] In Character Rules

Postby Excidium Planetis » Thu Feb 16, 2017 1:26 pm

Split off from Auralia's repeal to prevent sidetrack in that thread.

Bears Armed wrote:OOC: Personally, I've thought for a long time that those of the rules that can be read IC should be considered to exist IC, and that reference to those rules should therefore be legal. That hasn't been how the Mods interpreted the situation, but maybe now that responsibility for such matters is being passed to GenSec it might -- if the GA community also supports this -- be possible to make a change?


I agree with the general idea. Rules that can be seen as IC should be able to be discussed ICly, including, possibly, mentioning such rules in resolutions. The problem, of course, is: What rules meet that standard? Which rules, Bears (and others) do you feel can be interpreted as IC rules?
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Postby Separatist Peoples » Thu Feb 16, 2017 1:31 pm

While I don't disagree, per se, I do wonder about the confusion that causes to learning the game. Some rules can be mentioned ICly, but some can't. That really muddles the IC/OOC split, which is really hard for new players. It might be more conducive for new players to keep all Rules OOC, even though it makes things frustrating for more experienced players. It would be a lot more helpful to newbies to have a Bright Line rule.

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Postby Frisbeeteria » Thu Feb 16, 2017 1:53 pm

Separatist Peoples wrote:It would be a lot more helpful to newbies to have a Bright Line rule.

Historically, the vast majority of illegal proposals removed from the Proposal Queue have come from newbies who don't post in (or aren't aware of) the GA forum. Even though our boilerplate "your proposal is illegal, here's why" telegram points them to the rules thread and this forum, many of them simply ignore that and keep posting illegal proposals.

Whatever you do has to address that population. I don't have any suggestions offhand, but please do keep that in mind.

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Separatist Peoples
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Postby Separatist Peoples » Thu Feb 16, 2017 1:56 pm

Frisbeeteria wrote:
Separatist Peoples wrote:It would be a lot more helpful to newbies to have a Bright Line rule.

Historically, the vast majority of illegal proposals removed from the Proposal Queue have come from newbies who don't post in (or aren't aware of) the GA forum. Even though our boilerplate "your proposal is illegal, here's why" telegram points them to the rules thread and this forum, many of them simply ignore that and keep posting illegal proposals.

Whatever you do has to address that population. I don't have any suggestions offhand, but please do keep that in mind.

Oh, somebody correct me if I misread this, but is this in regard to proposals, or is this in regard to roleplay in the forum? I read it as the latter. :blink:

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Postby Frisbeeteria » Thu Feb 16, 2017 2:09 pm

Separatist Peoples wrote:is this in regard to proposals, or is this in regard to roleplay in the forum?

I read elements of both. There are IC elements in the proposal rules now, such as the Metagaming, NatSov and Format rules.

Bears Armed wrote:... now that responsibility for such matters is being passed to GenSec it might -- if the GA community also supports this -- be possible to make a change?

You guys are taking over the Proposal Rules (for the most part - you can't take out the Game Mechanics rule), so both forums and Queue are part of it. If that's not what everyone intends, then IC forum rules need to carefully delimited from the Proposal Rules topic. You can have a separate sticky for GA forum rules if you want, but you need to define the differences.

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Postby Auralia » Thu Feb 16, 2017 2:45 pm

I think the way to do this is to draft an IC treaty establishing the World Assembly that mirrors the IC components of the ruleset. Nations could electronically "sign" this treaty when applying to join the World Assembly.
Last edited by Auralia on Thu Feb 16, 2017 2:45 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby Separatist Peoples » Thu Feb 16, 2017 2:46 pm

Auralia wrote:I think the way to do this is to draft an IC treaty establishing the World Assembly that mirrors the IC components of the ruleset. Nations could electronically "sign" this treaty when applying to join the World Assembly.

That is inspired.

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Auralia
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Postby Auralia » Thu Feb 16, 2017 3:01 pm

Separatist Peoples wrote:
Auralia wrote:I think the way to do this is to draft an IC treaty establishing the World Assembly that mirrors the IC components of the ruleset. Nations could electronically "sign" this treaty when applying to join the World Assembly.

That is inspired.

It's not originally my idea, actually. I recall reading it somewhere on these forums.
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Frisbeeteria
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Postby Frisbeeteria » Thu Feb 16, 2017 3:31 pm

Auralia wrote:Nations could electronically "sign" this treaty when applying to join the World Assembly.

Are you talking about something they would actually need to do before getting their acceptance email? A game mechanics change? Because raiders will absolutely HATE that, and admin isn't going to be enthusiastic about 'requiring roleplay compliance' on nations that have no intention of ever writing a proposal.
Separatist Peoples wrote:That is inspired.

I'd agree that as a voluntary forum thing, it's fine. Mandatory, not so much.

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Excidium Planetis
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Postby Excidium Planetis » Thu Feb 16, 2017 4:03 pm

Auralia wrote:I think the way to do this is to draft an IC treaty establishing the World Assembly that mirrors the IC components of the ruleset. Nations could electronically "sign" this treaty when applying to join the World Assembly.


I've seen someone (I think it was BA, I might be wrong) pass around the idea of the Join the WA button having a behind the scenes IC treaty signing, which establishes WA membership and obligations to comply. Having an actual one would be nice.

Frisbeeteria wrote:Are you talking about something they would actually need to do before getting their acceptance email? A game mechanics change? Because raiders will absolutely HATE that, and admin isn't going to be enthusiastic about 'requiring roleplay compliance' on nations that have no intention of ever writing a proposal.

It wouldn't hurt Gameplayers too badly if it was a separate page, with a copy of the treaty and an "I accept" button on the bottom. I don't recall how GPers swap membership quickly, but such a system doesn't seem substantially different from the current one.
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Postby Drasnia » Thu Feb 16, 2017 4:07 pm

SC regular here and not GA, but I do like the idea of this IC treaty that one would have to sign. Perhaps instead you have to sign it before being able to submit proposals instead of getting accepted into the WA? That way it wouldn't inconvenience military gameplayers but would make sure people are served a copy of the rules before submitting.

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Postby Frisbeeteria » Thu Feb 16, 2017 4:14 pm

Drasnia wrote:Perhaps instead you have to sign it before being able to submit proposals instead of getting accepted into the WA? That way it wouldn't inconvenience military gameplayers but would make sure people are served a copy of the rules before submitting.

That works a whole lot better for me ... but isn't there already some sort of checkbox that says "I've read the proposal rules" that people routinely ignore?

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Postby Glen-Rhodes » Thu Feb 16, 2017 5:36 pm

This issue with this is that almost every rule exists due to the game coding. How do you explain in-character that we can't allow amendments because the game coding doesn't allow us to edit previous resolutions? How do you explain the prohibition on proposing new game mechanics? Or the Real World References rule? Metgaming? How do you explain GenSec itself, which interprets these rules with a complete understanding of all the OOC elements of them, and is itself decidedly not an in-character group? None of us are roleplaying when we issue our opinions. One of our very first opinions talked about how [violet] created the Security Council and General Assembly subforums, and used that as a key point in the opinion.

I don't really see Bears providing that explanation, or one being provided here. Trying to fictionalize GenSec is completely unnecessary for the game. Authors have been able to write repeals based on mod interpretation for nearly a decade now.
Last edited by Glen-Rhodes on Thu Feb 16, 2017 5:36 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Excidium Planetis
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Postby Excidium Planetis » Thu Feb 16, 2017 6:08 pm

Glen-Rhodes wrote:This issue with this is that almost every rule exists due to the game coding. How do you explain in-character that we can't allow amendments because the game coding doesn't allow us to edit previous resolutions? How do you explain the prohibition on proposing new game mechanics? Or the Real World References rule? Metgaming?

You conveniently mentioned only the exceptions.

Here are all the rules which can be explained In Character:
Proposal Basics: Proposals must be written as laws, not commentaries, editorials, etc.
Originality: Proposals cannot contradict or duplicate active resolutions. Ideally, proposals will present unique ideas.
Duplication: From the verb 'to duplicate' - to do repeat a specific action or concept over again. Proposals may elaborate in specific areas of policy, where broad legislation exists but may not replicate specific policy. Authors may re-iterate in general terms a minor part of existing policy to provide support to their proposal.
Contradiction: From the verb 'to contradict' - to state opposite or deny a concept or idea. Proposals which conflict with explicit clauses within an active resolution will be removed.
Committees: Committees cannot be the sole purpose of the proposal. It is an addition to the proposal and designed to carry out specific duties related to the proposal.
A proposal cannot define: who can/cannot staff the committee, how members are chosen, and term lengths
Committees continue to exist after its resolution is repealed if it's used in another resolution
Single-use committees that died when its resolution was repealed, may be revived for a relevant new proposal
Ideological Ban: Proposals cannot wholly outlaw, whether through direct or indirect language, religious, political or economic ideologies. However, proposals can target specific practices, such as slavery.
House of Cards: Proposals cannot rely on the existing resolutions to support it; it must be independent. However, repeals may reference other resolutions as an argument to justify the repeal.
National Sovereignty: Theoretically any resolution can be removed with this sole argument. For this reason, repeals require unique arguments tailored to the target resolution. NatSov may be used as an additional unique argument but it cannot take over the repeal. Its variations include cultural and religious sovereignty.
Honest Mistake: Repeals should address the contents of the resolution it's targeting, and not just state the reverse of the arguments given in the resolution. Embellishment, exaggeration, deceptive/weaselly-words do not constitute an 'honest mistake'. An 'honest mistake' is factual inaccuracies, misrepresentation, or content that doesn't address the resolution.
Optionality: Proposals, upon becoming resolutions are mandatory and binding on all nations, thus language used must reflect this. Any language permitting nations to engage in non-compliance or opt-out are disallowed. However, for 'Mild' strength proposals, terminology such as "URGES", "RECOMMENDS" is acceptable.
Format: Other universal standards for all General Assembly proposals.
Operative Clause: Every proposal has to have some recognizable effect on member nations, such as requiring them to take action or encouraging them to support a policy change.
Language: Proposals must use understandable English. Conventional legalese and Latin terms are acceptable within reason. Proposals written in incomprehensible English or a foreign language will be deleted.
Branding: Proposal authors cannot list their names or use acronyms to circumvent this. However, they can and should credit their co-author(s), where contribution is notable or significant. Authors may list up to three co-authors.
Blockers: Proposals cannot be "repeal-proof" or prohibit legislation on broad and specific issues. However, 'Blockers' themselves are not illegal provided there is additional action (eg. GAR#10: Nuclear Arms Possession Act).
Joke/Silly Proposals: Proposals intended solely to be 'humorous' or a 'joke' are removed, however, authors may post these in the [SILLY] GA Joke Proposals Only thread.
Plagiarism: Plagiarism is the theft of another person's work. If a player wishes to submit another's proposal, explicit permission must be obtained and submitted either through the Getting Help page or Moderation so we have a paper trail. If not, the offender is ejected and the proposal is deleted.


If you want to argue that, for some reason, there can't be an IC reason why plagiarism should not be allowed, go ahead. But don't pretend that somehow these rules don't exist.
Last edited by Excidium Planetis on Thu Feb 16, 2017 6:08 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Postby The United Royal Islands of Euramathania » Thu Feb 16, 2017 7:36 pm

Excidium Planetis wrote:If you want to argue that, for some reason, there can't be an IC reason why plagiarism should not be allowed, go ahead. But don't pretend that somehow these rules don't exist.


Typing out "OOC: plagarism is bad and make sure your proposal follows these rules ", is far different from my character saying "The Grand Charter [or other appropriate title] of the World Assembly prohibits members from plagiarizing the works of other Members! For shame sir." in the middle of the debate, or something similar. Right now there is no real functional way to reference that document in character because the name is more Meta-Game than In-Character oriented. The WA HQ can be easily referenced in character because it currently exists as a resolution, and we have established ways of talking about the impacts of it IC, even if there are broader meta-game aspects to it. By that same token GA#1, serves a similar function. Something similar for the GA Proposal rules would make it easier for IC character role-play to include mentions of certain concepts without resorting to OCC.
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Excidium Planetis
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Postby Excidium Planetis » Thu Feb 16, 2017 8:06 pm

The United Royal Islands of Euramathania wrote:Typing out "OOC: plagarism is bad and make sure your proposal follows these rules ", is far different from my character saying "The Grand Charter [or other appropriate title] of the World Assembly prohibits members from plagiarizing the works of other Members! For shame sir." in the middle of the debate, or something similar. Right now there is no real functional way to reference that document in character because the name is more Meta-Game than In-Character oriented. The WA HQ can be easily referenced in character because it currently exists as a resolution, and we have established ways of talking about the impacts of it IC, even if there are broader meta-game aspects to it. By that same token GA#1, serves a similar function. Something similar for the GA Proposal rules would make it easier for IC character role-play to include mentions of certain concepts without resorting to OCC.


I am not sure why exactly you were quoting me, or what message you were trying to convey to me, if any, but for the record I agree with what you just said. There should be an IC way to refer to those rules that can be IC.
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Postby The United Royal Islands of Euramathania » Thu Feb 16, 2017 8:11 pm

It didn't seem exactly clear, and I was hoping my example illustrated exactly the differences you seemed to be talking about. I did not mean to reference you as an argument or to make it seem like I disagreed, more so for clarification. I shall emphasize it better in the future. :)
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Postby Excidium Planetis » Thu Feb 16, 2017 9:38 pm

The United Royal Islands of Euramathania wrote:It didn't seem exactly clear, and I was hoping my example illustrated exactly the differences you seemed to be talking about. I did not mean to reference you as an argument or to make it seem like I disagreed, more so for clarification. I shall emphasize it better in the future. :)


I was contesting Glen-Rhodes assertion that the rules only existed because of OOC constraints and could not be described In Character.
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Postby Sciongrad » Thu Feb 16, 2017 10:32 pm

Frisbeeteria wrote:
Drasnia wrote:Perhaps instead you have to sign it before being able to submit proposals instead of getting accepted into the WA? That way it wouldn't inconvenience military gameplayers but would make sure people are served a copy of the rules before submitting.

That works a whole lot better for me ... but isn't there already some sort of checkbox that says "I've read the proposal rules" that people routinely ignore?

I propose an extensive and grueling examination system. Only after you've demonstrated sufficient understanding of the rules can you write a proposal. ;)
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Postby Glen-Rhodes » Fri Feb 17, 2017 7:24 am

EP, I'm challenging you to come up with a way to talk about GenSec, a body that is entirely OOC and deals mostly with OOC rules, in an IC canon.

GenSec isn't going to start roleplaying and making sure our opinions can be referenced without Metagaming, just because you want to talk about rules in your proposals.

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Postby Auralia » Fri Feb 17, 2017 7:33 am

Glen-Rhodes wrote:EP, I'm challenging you to come up with a way to talk about GenSec, a body that is entirely OOC and deals mostly with OOC rules, in an IC canon.

GenSec isn't going to start roleplaying and making sure our opinions can be referenced without Metagaming, just because you want to talk about rules in your proposals.

I really don't see the difficulty. In character, we say that there exists a treaty establishing the World Assembly. This treaty's provisions coincide with the OOC ruleset to the extent that this is possible. We also say that there exists a body established by this treaty responsible for definitively interpreting World Assembly resolutions. This is done in the context of determining whether a proposal can legally be brought to a vote by the World Assembly under the treaty. This body produces the same rulings as the OOC GenSec, except with reference to the treaty rather than the OOC ruleset.

This won't work for rules with no IC equivalent, but there aren't too many of those anyways, as EP already pointed out somewhere.
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Postby Sierra Lyricalia » Fri Feb 17, 2017 9:32 am

Other than the fact that I don't have the time or energy this month to make a draft for it, I really see no problem with "translating" the OOC rules into an IC WA Charter & Bylaws (or whatever name suits). The one does not rule out the other, and many times in the past "ambassadors" have IC-ly referenced said rules to help the more inquisitive type newbs to understand how to improve their proposals. Even Game Mechanics or Metagaming can be put as something like "Come, sir, surely you don't expect to alter the laws of the universe by standing atop the WA Headquarters building and shouting at the thunder?!? Be reasonable, Ambassador, and remove these nonsensical references to so-called 'Security Councils' and 'regions' - such bogeymen have no place in the Serious BusinessTM of the World Assembly!"
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Postby Separatist Peoples » Fri Feb 17, 2017 9:56 am

Sierra Lyricalia wrote:Other than the fact that I don't have the time or energy this month to make a draft for it, I really see no problem with "translating" the OOC rules into an IC WA Charter & Bylaws (or whatever name suits). The one does not rule out the other, and many times in the past "ambassadors" have IC-ly referenced said rules to help the more inquisitive type newbs to understand how to improve their proposals. Even Game Mechanics or Metagaming can be put as something like "Come, sir, surely you don't expect to alter the laws of the universe by standing atop the WA Headquarters building and shouting at the thunder?!? Be reasonable, Ambassador, and remove these nonsensical references to so-called 'Security Councils' and 'regions' - such bogeymen have no place in the Serious BusinessTM of the World Assembly!"

But as far as those rulings affect how resolutions are interpreted, incorporating GenSec rulings would essentially force roleplay. If we rule that, I dunno, Prevention of Torture prevents waterboarding, but there was a previously justifiable interpretation that it didn't, we'd be undoing otherwise valid roleplay.

Eh, maybe torture isn't the best example, but you see what I mean.

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Postby Christian Democrats » Fri Feb 17, 2017 10:20 am

Separatist Peoples wrote:
Sierra Lyricalia wrote:Other than the fact that I don't have the time or energy this month to make a draft for it, I really see no problem with "translating" the OOC rules into an IC WA Charter & Bylaws (or whatever name suits). The one does not rule out the other, and many times in the past "ambassadors" have IC-ly referenced said rules to help the more inquisitive type newbs to understand how to improve their proposals. Even Game Mechanics or Metagaming can be put as something like "Come, sir, surely you don't expect to alter the laws of the universe by standing atop the WA Headquarters building and shouting at the thunder?!? Be reasonable, Ambassador, and remove these nonsensical references to so-called 'Security Councils' and 'regions' - such bogeymen have no place in the Serious BusinessTM of the World Assembly!"

But as far as those rulings affect how resolutions are interpreted, incorporating GenSec rulings would essentially force roleplay. If we rule that, I dunno, Prevention of Torture prevents waterboarding, but there was a previously justifiable interpretation that it didn't, we'd be undoing otherwise valid roleplay.

If there were a "justifiable interpretation" that Prevention of Torture permits waterboarding, then GenSec would not be justified in ruling that Prevention of Torture prohibits it. We're not here to impose the "best interpretations." We're here only to rule against patently unreasonable interpretations. According to the recent decision that you signed, it's patently unreasonable to say that COCR regulates only relations between member states and their own populations. According to you, foreigners are covered as well.
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Postby Separatist Peoples » Fri Feb 17, 2017 10:33 am

Christian Democrats wrote:If there were a "justifiable interpretation" that Prevention of Torture permits waterboarding, then GenSec would not be justified in ruling that Prevention of Torture prohibits it. We're not here to impose the "best interpretations." We're here only to rule against patently unreasonable interpretations. According to the recent decision that you signed, it's patently unreasonable to say that COCR regulates only relations between member states and their own populations. According to you, foreigners are covered as well.


That ruling was purely OOC, and was not viewed in the context of affecting IC creative compliance. ICly, nothing has changed, near as I can tell. At least, that's what we're here to debate.

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