Donald Whytock on 31 Jan 2002 10:09:45 -0000

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spoon-discuss: RE: spoon-business: Game Action

On 1/30/02 at 5:11 PM Jonathan Van Matre wrote:

>Well, I was only doing it to present a particularly engrossing case to
>CFJ what Glotmorf has been on about.  E has a point, however ill-chosen
>and/or misunderstood eir examples may have been.  Either permissibility of
>the unprohibited exists or it doesn't, and we've seen at least one major
>CFJ judgement that contradicts that principle.  Judgements can contradict
>each other, but they shouldn't be contradicting the rules just to prevent
>something we don't want to see happen.
>Anyway, your unrecognizing ignore of my action raises another equally
>CFJ-worthy issue:  Can the Administrator legally ignore actions?  For
>example, if someone you intensely dislike posts eir intent to be a player,
>can you ignore it?  If I post a proposal you're not fond of, can you
>ignore that?  Starting to sound a lot like Imperial Nomic all of a
>Herewith, my CFJ, Administrator as Defendant:
>STATEMENT:  The Administrator can not refuse to recognize any action
>posted to a public forum, except where such non-recognition is explicitly
>permitted by the rules.
>ANALYSIS:  It's not a rule, but it certainly should be.  The alternative
>gives *way* too much power of discretion to the Administrator.  If eir
>least-favorite player posts a Grid move to a square that has a Shiny
>thing, can e ignore the move to prevent said player receiving points?
>This whole ignoring-an-action thing sets up an unwelcome precedent.

I hate to say it, especially in terms of disagreeing with someone who actually has managed to see the sort of point I've been trying to make...but if I were judging this one I'd probably rule it false.

Logical rationale:

The rules talk a lot about recognizing.  Proposals are recognized, CFJs are recognized, kicks in the ass are recognized...but aside from assigning serial numbers to proposals, the actual recognition process isn't discussed.  All the abovediscussed things are results of recognition, not part of the act of recognition.  Meaning...recognition isn't regulated.  It's heavily depended-upon, but it isn't regulated.  So if the Administrator decides to recognize, say, CFJs by setting an incoming mail alert sound on his machine, sleeping at the keyboard, and, every time an email with a CFJ in it comes in, blinking his eyes and scratching his butt and pointing to the screen and saying, "Oh yeah...that's a CFJ" and going back to sleep...that's probably permitted.  There's nothing that says he absolutely has to recognize anything.  Therefore there's nothing that says he can't refuse to recognize something.

Touchy-feely (Rob's "common sense") rationale:

I didn't really buy into the whole "mass illusion" thang.  And I wasn't any too happy with Uncle Psy's idea that things didn't really happen until two weeks after they did.  Despite this, I do see the Administrator as a good prospect for a first-blow fuse that keeps things from getting too out of hand.  If the Administrator's action is against the overall wishes of the player base ("We really *do* want to see Wonko marry the Witch Gremlin!"), a CFJ protesting the Administrator's action is the most likely remedy.

Besides which, I assume the Administrator is in the job out of a sort of labor of love...he likes the game, he likes seeing it happen, it's his idea of fun and civic magnanimity.  Make the job sufficiently unpleasant for him, though, and he may well take his ball and bat and go home, which would pretty much end the game.  So, yes, he does vote in a sense in the game...he just uses his feet.

But hey, that's just me, and I don't count.