Who are we // Who we are

HEM

,,,,,,,,
Forum Administrator
Honoured Citizen
I wanted to start this little thread as a discussion, based partially on some events on Discord over the last few days, but also just because I think it's a good discussion to have.

We have official Discord rules, and while they are good rules, they don't fully give context on what the rules are trying to achieve with them.

Let's start with the obvious: the internet has a lot of different communities with different norms and cultures. At least in the United States, thanks to the first amendment these communities, largely, get to govern themselves and set what kind of culture they want.

That means we get to decide what behavior is allowed, or not allowed, in our community. It's our choice. Just like it's the choice of other internet communities how they police their own culture and behaviors. It's not anti-free speech or anti 1st amendment to set boundaries and parameters on behavior in our community, it's actually a living embodiment of our first amendment rights to set up a community with the standards we want.

There are many communities on the internet who choose to have a very different culture from Europeia, where almost anything can go, no matter how offensive or tasteless. While occasionally these communities promote blatant biases (sexism, homophobia, transphobia, anti-semitic, xenophobia, racism, etc.), it's become increasingly in-vogue to embrace these biases and -isms "ironically".

There are many internet communities who embrace this offensive "humor", and consider it "edgy" to share memes, images, and comments that promote biases and -isms. This has naturally begun to seep into Nationstates, and the various regions of our game. Too often I join the Discord server of a newer region and am confronted with anti-semitic or racist memes/images.

"But all the images are just a joke"
"Only a few people participate in some dark humor"


— are some of the responses I often hear.

What we believe in Europeia is that behaving in bigoted ways and deeming it "humor" or "ironic" does not erase the bigotry itself. At least half of the Nazis who showed up to Charlottesville in August 2017 claimed that their chants of "blood and soil!" were just irony. It's all "irony".

It's our choice how we govern our community, and we choose to prioritize the comfort and safety of all people over the ability to express "edgy" (i.e. sexism, homophobia, transphobia, xenophobia, racism, anti-semitic, etc. humor). We chose to prioritize the comfort and safety of people above being able to "sarcastically" hold absurd and offensive beliefs for the lulz. Essentially, we are saying that we'd rather a member leave because they aren't allowed to express their brand of offensive humor than a member leave because they feel their identity is not welcomed. Personally, I don't think that's unreasonable. I actually think it's kinda common sense.

If you disagree with our prioritization—and I say this with absolutely no malice—you are probably a better fit for other communities on the internet. There are many communities on the internet who do not prioritize the same way. That's ok, in the sense that that is their right. Just as it is our right to govern ourselves the way we see fit.

On the other hand, I think as a region we should also be expected to assume good intent and explain our standards and values rather than just shame and ridicule people for not immediately meeting them. Nationstates attracts a very young demographic, and there are surely players who haven't thought as deeply about these things, and may "come in hot" saying things that are perfectly acceptable in their other RL and internet communities and have never had reason to question before. I hope we can give people that space to question and consider before throwing the book at them. We can all do a better job of this, in my opinion.

This topic got a lot longer than I initially anticipated, but I thought it might be worthwhile for us to work collaboratively to craft a community mission statement that sits on top of our formal rules. This mission statement wouldn't be a rule itself, but simply express the culture we aim to create in the region. I think this might help new members immediately have an understanding of our expectations, which would help ensure that the execution of our rules doesn't come to any surprise.
 

Drecq

Vice Chancellor
Honoured Citizen
Citizen
Discord Moderator
I think there are some worthwhile resources out there we can draw from already. For one, I think Article 2 of our Charter of Rights already encapsulates some of it very well.

(2) Every person shall have the right to freedom of thought and expression; this shall include the freedom of faith and of conscience, freedom to profess a religious or philosophical creed, and the right to freely express and disseminate their opinion in any manner or medium. Notwithstanding the foregoing, this section shall not be construed as providing any protection for speech or conduct that a reasonable person would infer is intended to offend, threaten or insult an individual or group on the basis of that individual's or group's sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, race, color, language, religion, or national or social origin.
 

HEM

,,,,,,,,
Forum Administrator
Honoured Citizen
I think that's a great start, but I'd love to make it a little more informal and emotive.
 

Drecq

Vice Chancellor
Honoured Citizen
Citizen
Discord Moderator
We could go the classic google way: "Don't be evil."
It is short and sweet but perhaps not expressive enough.

We could go a little more like this:
"We are a community. We are open and honest with each other. We all speak truth as we know it. But our right to speak our truth stops where other people's rights begin. We do not insult each other. We do not threaten each other. And we try hard not to offend each other. Some of us are members of groups that, due to their disadvantaged position in the real world, require a little more protection. Persons of Color, Members of the LGBTQ community, women, and others. In Europeia we seek to give these groups an equality they might lack elsewhere."

You could even extend that by including an admonition for the members of our community to walk softly when making statements that touch upon these matters and that thinking twice about whether a statement is liable to offend, threaten, or insult a member of a disadvantaged group prior to posting it is of benefit.
 
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Paul

New member
I can feel it coming in the air tonight, oh Lord
And I've been waiting for this moment for all my life, oh Lord
Can you feel it coming in the air tonight, oh Lord, oh Lord
Well if you told me you were drowning, I would not lend a hand
I've seen your face before my friend, but I don't know if you know who I am
Well I was there and I saw what you did, I saw it with my own two eyes
So you can wipe off that grin, I know where you've been
It's all been a pack of lies
And I can feel it coming in the air tonight, oh Lord
Well I've been waiting for this moment for all my life, oh Lord
I can feel it coming in the air tonight, oh Lord
Well I've been waiting for this moment for all my life, oh Lord, oh Lord
Well I remember, I remember, don't worry, how could I ever forget
It's the first time, the last time we ever met
But I know the reason why you keep your silence up, oh no you don't fool me
Well the hurt doesn't show, but the pain still grows
It's no stranger to you and me
I can feel it coming in the air tonight, oh Lord
Well been waiting for this moment for all my life, oh Lord
I can feel it in the air tonight, oh Lord, oh Lord
Well I've been waiting for this moment for all my life, oh Lord
I can feel it coming in the air tonight, oh Lord
And I've been waiting for this moment for all my life, oh Lord
I can feel it in the air tonight, oh Lord, oh Lord, oh Lord
Well I've been waiting for this moment for all my life, oh Lord, oh Lord
I can feel it in the air tonight, oh Lord, oh Lord, oh Lord, oh Lord
Well I've been waiting for this moment for all my life, oh Lord, oh Lord, oh Lord

Honestly, if you read the lyrics to that song I applaud you for doing so.
 

HEM

,,,,,,,,
Forum Administrator
Honoured Citizen
I can feel it coming in the air tonight, oh Lord
And I've been waiting for this moment for all my life, oh Lord
Can you feel it coming in the air tonight, oh Lord, oh Lord
Well if you told me you were drowning, I would not lend a hand
I've seen your face before my friend, but I don't know if you know who I am
Well I was there and I saw what you did, I saw it with my own two eyes
So you can wipe off that grin, I know where you've been
It's all been a pack of lies
And I can feel it coming in the air tonight, oh Lord
Well I've been waiting for this moment for all my life, oh Lord
I can feel it coming in the air tonight, oh Lord
Well I've been waiting for this moment for all my life, oh Lord, oh Lord
Well I remember, I remember, don't worry, how could I ever forget
It's the first time, the last time we ever met
But I know the reason why you keep your silence up, oh no you don't fool me
Well the hurt doesn't show, but the pain still grows
It's no stranger to you and me
I can feel it coming in the air tonight, oh Lord
Well been waiting for this moment for all my life, oh Lord
I can feel it in the air tonight, oh Lord, oh Lord
Well I've been waiting for this moment for all my life, oh Lord
I can feel it coming in the air tonight, oh Lord
And I've been waiting for this moment for all my life, oh Lord
I can feel it in the air tonight, oh Lord, oh Lord, oh Lord
Well I've been waiting for this moment for all my life, oh Lord, oh Lord
I can feel it in the air tonight, oh Lord, oh Lord, oh Lord, oh Lord
Well I've been waiting for this moment for all my life, oh Lord, oh Lord, oh Lord

Honestly, if you read the lyrics to that song I applaud you for doing so.

Dude, you're not funny.
 

Paul

New member
Then learn to deal with that and move on instead of being "salty" about the consequences, about which you were warned, of your own actions.
I tried to make it as inoffensive as possible. Hence the quotation marks. It was not directed towards anyone other than my friend (Luna). The fact that I am being banned for calling someone my friend with slang is honestly depressing.
 

HEM

,,,,,,,,
Forum Administrator
Honoured Citizen
I tried to make it as inoffensive as possible. Hence the quotation marks. It was not directed towards anyone other than my friend (Luna). The fact that I am being banned for calling someone my friend with slang is honestly depressing.

None of us know this.

It's not rational to expect us to have to twist and turn to make exceptions to rules based on stories users tell. We have to have rules, for reasons you can read above.

Understanding that, there have been no real consequences to you. You are more than free to rejoin the Discord, you were only kicked. It's basically a big warning, and I think it was reasonable.
 

Izzy

ECP Founder
Deputy Minister
Citizen
I tried to make it as inoffensive as possible. Hence the quotation marks. It was not directed towards anyone other than my friend (Luna). The fact that I am being banned for calling someone my friend with slang is honestly depressing.
You weren't banned. You were just kicked from the server and you can rejoin.
 

Drecq

Vice Chancellor
Honoured Citizen
Citizen
Discord Moderator
This is not the right thread for this, Paul. You have been asked not to. If you do not care to add to the conversation started by HEMs initial post then please refrain from posting here. Do so again and I will look to prosecute under the Unlawfull Spamming statute of the Criminal Code. If you wish to continue whatever this is then please create a separate thread for that purpose.
 

Paul

New member
This is not the right thread for this, Paul. You have been asked not to. If you do not care to add to the conversation started by HEMs initial post then please refrain from posting here. Do so again and I will look to prosecute under the Unlawfull Spamming statute of the Criminal Code. If you wish to continue whatever this is then please create a separate thread for that purpose.
THIS IS A CRUSADE!! (Joking don't prosecute me)
I'm done now.

I would also like to add that in the event of these rules being broken the perpetrator should receive a DM warning from a moderator to clarify the rules and to make sure there are no miscommunications about punishment for continually breaking said rules.
 

Winged Bear

Grizzli, Grizzbus, Airbus
I would also like to add that in the event of these rules being broken the perpetrator should receive a DM warning from a moderator to clarify the rules and to make sure there are no miscommunications about punishment for continually breaking said rules.

Is this not already the case?

GUIDE TO STANDARD PUNISHMENT
I. The member in question receives a private warning from a Moderator.
II. The member in question receives a public warning from a Moderator.
III. The post in question is removed by a Moderator.
IV. The member in question is kicked from the server.
V. The member in question is kicked and banned from the server for a period of time not in excess of 24 hours.
VI. The member in question is kicked and banned from the server for a period of time not in excess of one week.
VII. The member in question is kicked and banned indefinitely.
VIII. Punishment may be started at any point of the guide in accordance with the severity of the infraction.
IX. Punishment may deviate from the standard guide if the moderator believes the alternate punishment to be better suited to the situation at hand. X. Any punishment (from 3., including 3., on) must be accompanied by a message to the member explaining the punishment, including length of the ban if there is one and their legal remedies.
XI. Violation, punishment, message accompanying the punishment, and any other pertinent information must be recorded by the moderator on the Europeian forum.

Emphasis mine.
 

Paul

New member
Is this not already the case?

GUIDE TO STANDARD PUNISHMENT
I. The member in question receives a private warning from a Moderator.
II. The member in question receives a public warning from a Moderator.
III. The post in question is removed by a Moderator.
IV. The member in question is kicked from the server.
V. The member in question is kicked and banned from the server for a period of time not in excess of 24 hours.
VI. The member in question is kicked and banned from the server for a period of time not in excess of one week.
VII. The member in question is kicked and banned indefinitely.
VIII. Punishment may be started at any point of the guide in accordance with the severity of the infraction.
IX. Punishment may deviate from the standard guide if the moderator believes the alternate punishment to be better suited to the situation at hand. X. Any punishment (from 3., including 3., on) must be accompanied by a message to the member explaining the punishment, including length of the ban if there is one and their legal remedies.
XI. Violation, punishment, message accompanying the punishment, and any other pertinent information must be recorded by the moderator on the Europeian forum.

Emphasis mine.
It appears to be that way. But in my case I received no such private warning.
 

Vinage Vinage

2018's Christmas Gift
Honoured Citizen
Citizen
*gets this back on track*

Some excellent points made there Drecq and be great to see it pinned in Eurochat - perhaps incorporated even within our game-side region's factbook.
 

Izzy

ECP Founder
Deputy Minister
Citizen
VIII. Punishment may be started at any point of the guide in accordance with the severity of the infraction.
IX. Punishment may deviate from the standard guide if the moderator believes the alternate punishment to be better suited to the situation at hand.

I gave you a public warning and removed your transphobic "joke" due to the severity. Your continued offending behavior garnered an increased escalation, which was being kicked. After you were kicked, you received DMs from both Sopo and Drecq explaining why you were kicked. I would recommend you not deny this and drop the subject from this thread, as you have already been directed, if you want to have any kind of decent future in this region.
 

Sopo

simp for hem
Forum Administrator
Deputy Minister
Honoured Citizen
Citizen
I believe Drecq offered a very good suggestion that I would be happy with, though I want to be sure that everyone feels the same.
 
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