MalaeDezeld
 member, 11 posts
Fri 21 Apr 2017
at 23:20
Re: Oddity found.
bigbadron:
The rule in question is not a new one

That's why we are asking that we can find it under Site Policies (and other relevant places).

My personal case it that I discovered it yesterday, by chance, when you mentioned it in that chat thread. And I saw the thread because since last week I peruse more forums to counterbalance the games I follow in the interface.


quote:
Also note that the Adult Game Policy itself applies, in part, to every game.

It doesn't feel that way because of this sentence: "If you are running or participating in an Adult game on this site, you must understand and abide by this policy."
steelsmiter
 member, 1714 posts
 AWE, BESM, Fate, Indies
 NO FREEFORM! NO d20!
Sat 22 Apr 2017
at 05:38
Re: Oddity found.
swordchucks:
You say "explicit", but you probably don't realize that said rule was/is only stated in two somewhat obscure places.  One was a 9 year old post on the second page of the announcements forum, the other is deep in the FAQ about mature games and adult content in PMs.

And you say obscure, but I take reading all the FAQs as practically a given. I now have some understanding of the no less dumbfounding notion that people are so unobservant. That goes into what BBR said on the subject.


quote:
Now, the rule does come up a good deal with regards to adult games... but there's a lot of potential for folks running only general rated games to not feel that they apply to them.

Every rule applies to everyone equally, your games settings don't by necessity eliminate what the players might try out (although your specific statements probably filter a number of those out), and thus you are required to remain vigilant regardless of what you feel on the matter. I was in a AW game recently where the GM had put it on General and ended up changing it because some of us couldn't get the fullest of our posts without a Mature game. It didn't have the right feel. Yet that came up in a game that was General.

quote:
If you don't run adult games, odds are that the thought has never even occurred to you that you have to watch out for Adult Content Policy violations in your player-to-player PM threads.

It has never occurred to me not to be aware of any rules, and by extension, any breaches of rules.

quote:
Having rules which are potentially a big deal be hard to actually find for new users isn't a good thing.

No disagreement there.
bigbadron
 moderator, 15342 posts
 He's big, he's bad,
 but mostly he's Ron.
Sat 22 Apr 2017
at 09:42
Re: Oddity found.
MalaeDezeld:
quote:
Also note that the Adult Game Policy itself applies, in part, to every game.

It doesn't feel that way because of this sentence: "If you are running or participating in an Adult game on this site, you must understand and abide by this policy."
See, that's actually true.  If you are running/participating in an Adult game then you DO need to understand and abide by the policy.  But I don't see that it says anywhere that players and GMs of General and Mature games don't have to abide by it as well.  For example, they need to at least be aware of what content requires an Adult rating (and what content is not permitted on the site at all).

So yes, the Adult Game Policy does, in fact, apply (at least in part) to every game on the site (and to the public forums as well, for that matter).  Specifying that Adult players and GMs have to abide by it does not exclude other players and GMs from that requirement.
Tyr Hawk
 member, 275 posts
 You know that one guy?
 Yeah, that's me.
Sat 22 Apr 2017
at 15:23
Re: Oddity found.
So, just to clear the air, I'm clear on the policies about this and can see both sides as to why some people think it's obvious and others less so. Steelsmiter reads all the rules all the time (just, apparently, not the entirety of my posts before replying to them ;) ), and others don't/didn't for their own reasons (e.g. not enough time to read twelve threads about similar but just-different-enough topics), but I do want to take a moment (a loooooong moment) to dissect this comment...

bigbadron:
If you are running/participating in an Adult game then you DO need to understand and abide by the policy.  But I don't see that it says anywhere that players and GMs of General and Mature games don't have to abide by it as well.

This is one of the biggest problems I face on a day-to-day basis because I like to play rules-heavy systems. Classically, the argument is "Well, it doesn't say you can't attach C4 to a boomerang*," and then things escalate from there. I think we've all been in those discussions before, and there was even a recent thread about it that I'm too lazy to find now. But, for those of you who haven't, or who want to see it broken down, here's how it goes:

For people like MalaeDezald (at least from what I've read), the lack of negation isn't proof of affirmation. It's simply a nebulous void which you need to, as DarkLighthitomi points out, fill in with your own interpretation of the words and intentions, and that common sense can be wrong if you don't think like the people who made the rules, which is what this discussion seems to be about. Reasonable doubt is a term I think most people have heard, and that's what the lack of a phrase like BBR's "the Adult Game Policy does, in fact, apply (at least in part) to every game on the site" at the top, in bold, gave us. It has since been fixed, in my humble opinion, by moving and stickying the thread of GM responsibilities, but my little blurb here isn't about the specific instance anymore.

For people like steelsmiter and BBR (again, from what I've read. I'm no psychic or Quantaco profiler), this absence doesn't create an interpretive void. They don't need a law telling them it would be a bad idea to shout obscenities while committing murder; it seems perfectly obvious because there are other rules about murder already. A lack of permission is, simply, an outright rule against the thing. One does not simply walk into Mordor because, you know, that guy said so once. That means that a cart isn't going to work either, and horses are certainly out of the question.

If the way I describe the two groups seems eerily similar, then it's because they are (heck, sometimes people can fall into one group or the other just based on the day of the week). They may even come to the same conclusion for vastly different reasons, and that can be as much of an issue as them coming to different solutions if they get to talking about it. Neither way is inherently more flawed than the other, they just may become that way when viewed within an arena formed by the other side, or by the same side, or by themselves (if they think like me). Everyone brings their own ideas to the table and, unfortunately, this means that there's no perfect solution. If you explain everything in minute detail, someone will still find a way to misconstrue or misread something. But, if you don't, you open yourself up to the snowstorm that is attaching c4 to a boomerang. I'm not saying the rulemakers were wrong (far from it), but I am saying that, although the flashing sign didn't stop everyone from calling, it certainly stopped enough for me to keep my sanity.

Or (so I have fun making up examples) to put it another way: if the rule were "If you're driving a car, you must obey the following rules of the road" there are going to be people who see that as "What if I'm driving a truck?" or "How about an airplane?" or even "I ride a motorcycle, so this must not apply to me." Others will say "Everything is a car, so these rules always apply (Odd that they mention cars at all, really)," or, perhaps, "I don't know if I'm driving a car or not, so I'd better read and follow these rules just in case." And there are even going to be people who say "Oh, I should know these so I know what to expect from car drivers, even though I drive a motorcycle so they don't apply to me." Which are you? Which am I? Which are the rest of the registered users on this forum? Wouldn't the phrase "If you're on the road" instead of "If you're driving a car" be better? Or maybe a second line stating "All other drivers must know and abide by any rules applicable to them" would leave less to the imagination?

Nothing's going to be perfect, as I said, but that's why I'm glad this all happened; now there's an objectively clear and easier-to-find thread about it. It's still not perfect, but it's better than it was, and that's the best possible outcome. ;) Thanks for reading, if you did, and have a great day.

tl;dr: Nothing is true; everything is permitted.

*See bottom of link for details
bigbadron
 moderator, 15343 posts
 He's big, he's bad,
 but mostly he's Ron.
Sat 22 Apr 2017
at 15:36
Re: Oddity found.
quote:
It's simply a nebulous void which you need to, as DarkLighthitomi points out, fill in with your own interpretation of the words and intentions, and that common sense can be wrong if you don't think like the people who made the rules,
Or, you know, they could just ask the people who created the rules, and then they wouldn't have to worry about making their own interpretations.

Now, if only there was an easy way to contact the Moderators.  Oh, wait...
steelsmiter
 member, 1715 posts
 AWE, BESM, Fate, Indies
 NO FREEFORM! NO d20!
Sat 22 Apr 2017
at 15:41
Re: Oddity found.
I have a habit of weeding out what isn't relevant that requires reading all of it. Not replying to the irrelevant parts is no indicator of not reading them. I don't see an absence of a rule, I see a rule that should be applied universally. "being a member of RPoL" isn't "driving a car", it's "using any device to navigate through traffic" (or even just navigating through traffic) likewise the rules are written to be applicable to those navigating through RPoL, not those who merely use a particular method, or access level.

This message was last edited by the user at 15:45, Sat 22 Apr.

MalaeDezeld
 member, 12 posts
Sat 22 Apr 2017
at 16:40
Re: Oddity found.
bigbadron:
For example, they need to at least be aware of what content requires an Adult rating (and what content is not permitted on the site at all).


Yes we do need to be aware. But the problem is the presentation. At the moment, the adult policy look more like an additional contract applicable only "if you are running or participating in an Adult game" than a movie rating guidelines where "here what can go in general; if you include this and too much of that, you need to be mature; at that level of everything, you need a adult; beyond that, we ban you; and we ban you if your content is at the wrong place."
Tyr Hawk
 member, 276 posts
 You know that one guy?
 Yeah, that's me.
Sat 22 Apr 2017
at 17:10
Re: Oddity found.
bigbadron:
Or, you know, they could just ask the people who created the rules, and then they wouldn't have to worry about making their own interpretations.

Perhaps "nebulous" was the wrong word. My apologies.

What I mean to say is that it creates a blank space where people can fill in their own answer. They may do this instantly, or they may do it slowly, but your response assumes that people will even think they need to ask at the end of that process. Why would they if their interpretation doesn't leave room for questions? "This is the Adult games policy section. I'm not running an Adult game. I'm not in an Adult game. The policy doesn't explicitly say I have to know it if I'm not in an Adult game." There's no question there, so no question gets asked. If people asked about every lack of affirmation for, let's say, the next six months straight, then we'd quickly get into the "We need to explain everything explicitly" territory, which then defeats (in some eyes) the need to ask questions after those six months. Not for nothing, many newcomers, and some old-timers, would assume anything that is then not listed is fine until, surprise, it's not because someone didn't ask about it at an earlier time and so no one thought to add it in (as a ridiculous example: ARGH! Why didn't anyone add in a FAQ about how to properly make change for a dollar?!).

Change is the only constant in the universe, or so they say, so we can never expect all the questions to be/get answered definitively, or even to come up again despite them still being unanswered to someone. You can't expect people to ask about everything, and even if they do you can't expect everyone to see the response. And that's before we take into account people who might not want to bug the mods with "obvious" questions, or who panic at the thought of contacting the mods, or who never question authority for some other reason, or who forget to ask because it slipped their mind, or thought they asked and actually didn't, or did and remember the answer incorrectly, or..., or..., or...

My point is that it's never just that easy and that's the end of the story. It can be easy for most. It can be plain as day to you and to a hundred million others. But no site should assume everyone thinks and acts in the way they want, which is why we have rules in the first place (duh, Tyr). So making those rules clear to everyone in as many avenues as possible (whether that's a single step avenue like reading the rules, or a second step one like doing more research, or even a third like asking the mods after doing the first two) should, in my opinion, be encouraged rather than dismissed (which "they could just ask" is an indicator of, to me). If people have questions that they're voicing and debating, then it's not as clear-cut as it could be, maybe not even as clear-cut as it should be. Then again, and take this as you will, I'm also a big proponent of Universal Design.

Now, as I said, the mods made an excellent move by stickying the thread, and I'm glad it happened. I'm clear on the policy, because I run Adult games (that maybe don't need to be rated that way, but I'm overcautious), and I'm fine with them. But I'm also the type to speak up when I see, what seems to be, a bit of miscommunication/misunderstanding.  Sorry for rambling. I get... passionate about clearing up confusion. I'm, obviously, not perfect at it, but if I were I'd probably have a better-paying job. ;)


steelsmiter:
Not replying to the irrelevant parts is no indicator of not reading them.

That's a perfectly legitimate point. Unfortunately, when I say...
Tyr Hawk:
Even with giant flashing signs on their TV screens that say things like "We are aware of the issue, please don't call. Your programming will resume shortly." I would get calls from people when I worked Tech Support.

And you respond with...
steelsmiter:
I'm not even talking about an ability to read everything, I'm talking about the very narrow topic of some GMs not knowing explicitly stated expectations from the site, and how that is dumbfounding.

That's either you not reading what I said, or you not being as good at explicitly stated phrases as you seem to think. ;)

My example is a very explicit one (in that it's right there for everyone to read) of an explicit expectation (the screen message) that people still somehow come up short on (by calling in). Now, admittedly, I could've also added that some people called who hadn't read their own screens before contacting me (or during their five minutes of wait time) but, like the Adult Game Policy line that was quoted earlier, I sort of assumed that it was clear I was including those people too (which would be the only other type of person you could've been referring to that I can imagine). That would make your response of "I'm not talking about" to be, in your own words, "irrelevant" because your initial negation wouldn't have been a negation at all (since I was talking about those people too and never claimed you weren't). This, then, makes your follow-up a stand-alone point, and that stand-alone is a repeat of something I'd already implied/said. So, you're either addressing irrelevant things, or the things you think aren't relevant are (because you're saying them yourself in a different way).

Do you maybe see how it would seem like there's a double standard here that I was poking fun at? ;)

The rest of your post I already addressed in my larger one (is it still larger at this point?), but, to be clear... my example doesn't actually say "any device" (to continue the metaphor). It says "car." And just because you equate the two in a different way than the many interpretations I gave doesn't mean you're more correct in your reasoning than anyone else. You are right in this case, and may be in others, but the act of assuming what you did doesn't automatically guarantee you are or will be. Just like the "Truck Speed Limit" signs (on American highways. I don't know if they have such things elsewhere) doesn't apply to the Ford F150, though people call it a truck. Yes, "Truck Speed Limit" is defined elsewhere in driving manuals and other laws, but if you only see the sign (or, in this case, the title of the thread and the introductory sentences) there's a possibility you assume otherwise. That possibility is the source of this whole thing, and I'd just like to get you to see that it, perhaps, shouldn't be "dumbofunding" that people think a different, but entirely reasonable, way. Yes. They should have already known that if they passed their driver's test, but some people do drive before passing that test. The metaphor isn't perfect. But if you require the metaphor to be perfect then you might want to brush up on how metaphors are used.

Or, put back into the direct terms of this discussion: If it should be universally applied, why not just say "This is a policy for everyone" instead of "This is the Adult Games Policy"? Do you see how the first one doesn't require "seeing" things differently than they're actually written? And how needing to see things not as they're written might cause problems? I'm not trying to solve the English language here, but... does this make sense?
bigbadron
 moderator, 15344 posts
 He's big, he's bad,
 but mostly he's Ron.
Sat 22 Apr 2017
at 17:24
Re: Oddity found.
quote:
If people have questions that they're voicing and debating, then it's not as clear-cut as it could be, maybe not even as clear-cut as it should be.

And yet this is the first time in about 15 years (ie: since I joined the site) that anybody has said that it doesn't make sense that GMs can find details of what's allowed at different levels listed in the Adult Gaming policy.

quote:
why not just say "This is a policy for everyone" instead of "This is the Adult Games Policy"?

Because we'd then get people saying, "Hey, you don't specifically say that this policy applies to Adult games too, so I just assumed that there are no limits on Adult games, and didn't bother reading any further than the title."

This message was last edited by the user at 17:48, Sat 22 Apr.

Tyr Hawk
 member, 277 posts
 You know that one guy?
 Yeah, that's me.
Sat 22 Apr 2017
at 17:52
Re: Oddity found.
bigbadron:
quote:
If people have questions that they're voicing and debating, then it's not as clear-cut as it could be, maybe not even as clear-cut as it should be.

And yet this is the first time in about 15 years (ie: since I joined the site) that anybody has said that it doesn't make sense that GMs can find details of what's allowed at different levels listed in the Adult Gaming policy.

And that's great, but does it mean it's the first time someone's been confused? Does it mean that it'll be the last? Maybe, for the reasons I listed above about not asking the mods, this is the first time it's come up on a public RPoL forum. This is the first time someone's been in the right frame of mind and situation to ask something that's been on the minds of others. But what if they brought it up elsewhere (because people do that)? Why should it matter that it's only happened once in so long? Someone has to take the first shot in any war, in any battle, in any conflict (for a very liberal interpretation of the word 'shot,' of course). And it might be the only shot there is and that's the perfect war, or it might be the first of many, or it might just be the first one that you could see, or the last one you see. But this kind of response, where you try to negate every reason I give for people being confused? That's only (not only, I'm being a bit dramatic) going to keep people from thinking their problems are legitimately worth bringing up.

As the xkcd comic I linked above points out, there are 10,000 people finding out about something for the first time every day. Some of them are here on RPoL and some of them are going to bring up old things in new ways, and the response of a developing and welcoming community cannot be "How could you not know?" Maybe for the name of the website, sure, but not for the rules that govern it. I'm not asking we overhaul the entire site to cater to everyone's little issues, but the way we respond to these questions and the way we respond to the why they come up matters. The thread bump and sticky was awesome (as I keep saying because I was, honestly, very proud of RPoL in that moment), and I'd like to keep that as the response type we give and get. Because I've walked enough people through how to put the batteries in a remote to know that it's never going to end until batteries are no longer a thing. Someone will always find a new way to not know how to do it.

BBR:
quote:
why not just say "This is a policy for everyone" instead of "This is the Adult Games Policy"?

Because we'd then get people saying, "Hey, you don't specifically say that this policy applies to Adult games too, so I just assumed that there are no limits on Adult games, and didn't bother reading any further than the title."

Then... say both?
DarkLightHitomi
 member, 1126 posts
Sun 23 Apr 2017
at 02:10
Re: Oddity found.
bigbadron:
...
quote:
why not just say "This is a policy for everyone" instead of "This is the Adult Games Policy"?

Because we'd then get people saying, "Hey, you don't specifically say that this policy applies to Adult games too, so I just assumed that there are no limits on Adult games, and didn't bother reading any further than the title."


I agree with Tyr on this, say both.

First, it should be made clear that it applies to everyone (including adult games), and putting it under adult games policy does not make that clear. In fact, adult games policy isn't clear that it involves anything that is needed to know outside adult games.

I also admit to having read the adult games policy only once I applied to an adult game, precisely because I didn't see any reason to bother with something that clearly didn't apply me until getting involved with an adult game.

Second, your long running record is nice but misleading. Perhaps this is the first time it came up publicly to be noticed (which doesn't make it the first occurrence), and perhaps it is more rare because only a few gms have skipped the adult games policy due to not being involved with adult games.

It is an issue that may likely remain rare, but even in the case of being a rare issue doesn't make it any less of a valid issue worth addressing, though arguably with a lesser priority than more common issues.
Skald
 moderator, 770 posts
 Whatever it is,
 I'm against it
Sun 23 Apr 2017
at 05:18
Re: Oddity found.
The same Rules Lawyers who want an exhaustive list of what can and can't go in an Adult game are the ones who will be using that same excuse 'but it wasn't on the list' ... to take MalaeDezeld's example further, I think you'll find that there isn't an absolutely definitive list of what can and can't go into movies at different ratings - that's why moves go through ratings/censorship panels before release.  And every country has different standards anyway.

That's not new/changed - and we've had that discussion many time before.

It's honestly never occurred to me before than anyone wouldn't have a general awareness of the mature/adult rules so they know what's allowed where, whether the game is general, mature or adult.  Is this something that those of us who have been on the site for years take for granted because we've seen the rules evolve over those years ?  Are the rules on every other thread based website out there that much different ?  Are newer users just leaping in and not reading the FAQ at all ?

I'd find it hard to believe that anyone with the mindset (really not pointing fingers at anyone involved in the current discussion here, just picking the lowest common denominator) that "I'm not running an adult game, so I can put whatever I like into my general game without worrying about the adult rules" would actually read the site rules anyway.

When new users sign up, should we be making more of a thing of not only the mature/adult policy, but all the other important stuff that can get you into trouble ?  Perhaps a checkbox approach "I understand that ..." that they have to click through before they can sign up.  Could be done retrospectively for all users just to record those clicks on the system.

Or is that just overkill ? Will all that effort (jase to code, users to complete) really accomplish anything ?  Is it only a problem for a few people which can be sorted out through existing channels.  As BBR says, I haven't seen a systemic problem with the mature/adult policy over the years, and I'm not prepared to assume that just because someone has raised an issue now that there's been a problem all these years that nobody's mentioned/noticed.  Our users aren't that shy and retiring ! ;>

Hey, perhaps if we renamed "FAQ" to "Site Rules" it might help ?   :>
swordchucks
 member, 1383 posts
Sun 23 Apr 2017
at 21:09
Re: Oddity found.
steelsmiter:
I take reading all the FAQs as practically a given.

I, and anyone that's ever worked in tech support, can tell you that this is probably the situation for at most 10% of users of a given thing (and more likely 1% or less).  Even being insanely generous and saying that half the users actively seek out every last bit of documentation, that leaves half of the users that won't go to those lengths.  Rules should be in your face, brief, and clear for that very reason.

To be clear, no one is saying that the rule is unreasonable.  However, since it is an active rule that requires every GM to actively police every game they have open, making it hard to know is... really not going to achieve a high rate of compliance.  Fortunately, the actual incidents where it's important are very few, or a whole lot more people would no doubt have ended up in trouble over it.

At least two users have come forward in this thread and the last and said they were unaware of the specifics of the rule, so it's clear that it could be better.  I'm sure the thread has educated a few people, but I have no idea what percentage of users even look at the forums.
Bumping the post in the Announcements thread is a good thing, but really this should be spelled out in the Help section under Policies.
DarkLightHitomi
 member, 1128 posts
Mon 24 Apr 2017
at 00:33
Re: Oddity found.
Truth be told, other than a quick glance at the announcements forum my first time here, in which I skimmed thread titles noticing things like update schedules/info, donation recognition, etc, I didn't go back for probably a couple years.

Also, as far as rules went, I did a quick skim and about the only thing I saw at the time that wasn't common sense, was the hard line against multiple accounts. So I just moved on to actually participating with the idea that since I never had problems elsewhere, I figured my judgement about what to post must be decent enough to avoid trouble and I never expected to get infractions here. Then I got a couple, at which point I took a closer look for the strange and weird rules that were obviously not common sense (which says nothing against them other than that they are not expected without reading the rules).

Even then though, I still did not read the adult policies (until I applied for an adult game), thinking that since they were adult policies, that obviously means they are additional rules above and beyond the standard site rules that apply only in adult games and therefore they obviously don't affect anything outside adult games. A fact that is incorrect despite how completely obviously correct it is (to anyone that has not been part of the site's evolution at any rate).

Luckily it is not a common issue, but I don't think that is due to widespread knowledge among gms, rather more likely, the community here is decent enough and familiar enough (eventually) with the regular site rules that it just hasn't come up often enough to be noticed by the mods.
MalaeDezeld
 member, 13 posts
Mon 24 Apr 2017
at 05:36
Re: Oddity found.
Skald:
what can and can't go in an Adult game

It is not what I was talking about. I'm talking about what acceptable for general and public area in opposition of what need to be in the private area of an adult game.

Skald:
Are the rules on every other thread based website out there that much different ?

The nature of the restricted or banned contents is similar. Where they differ, it's how they present them. It's a variant of "this content is not acceptable in public, you must go in private/adult for it." In contrast, rpol does "this is the content of an adult game, it mustn't be in the public area."

Emphasis are mine.

http://www.playbyweb.com/tou.html
"to use appropriate language in all publicly viewable posts. While some rough language and/or mild sexual content may be appropriate to the game, we ask that regular use of such language and/or more explicit sexual content be restricted to private threads, and furthermore, if a primary purpose of the game in question, that the game be relocated to the Adult section."

http://www.roleplayerguild.com...-policy-sitewide/ooc
"Smut: No smut in the public forums. Keep it to PMs."

http://whisperingrealmschat.net/Info/BSR.htm
"Rape, graphic sexual rp's are not allowed at all if any user is caught doing such an rp, in a PUBLIC room [...]  If you feel the need, and are an are of the age of 18 we have Private Rooms to do more personal role plays in"

Skald:
Is this something that those of us who have been on the site for years take for granted because we've seen the rules evolve over those years ?

I would say yes. Here why. The "Adult Rules FAQ" starts with "As there seems to be ever-lingering confusion". In this thread, when bigbadron replied "Unless you also count all the times it has been mentioned across the forums over the years since the site was set up." when swordchucks said that the policy (gm having to check breach of tou) was hard to find.
Skald
 moderator, 772 posts
 Whatever it is,
 I'm against it
Mon 24 Apr 2017
at 13:26
Re: Oddity found.
The terms you quote seem similar in intent (but I hope there's a lot more than that in other policy documents, outside their TOU) - though I'd have issue with a) the "ask" in the first, b) the term "smut" in the second - adult content doesn't have to be smut and I suspect many adult gamers would be offended by it being labelled as such, and c) the grammar of the last (though now I've said that, I'll undoubtedly discover that I've made a complete hash of the grammar in this post).

The main difference seems to be on the timing of such warnings.  RPoL covers off on that at the time a user applies for adult access, when it is most relevant, and at that time includes a direct link to the adult games policy:

quote:
Application for Access to the Adult Section of RPoL

[X] I have read and understand RPoL's Terms of Use.

I was born in <MONTH> <YEAR>

[X] I am of the age of majority in my current place of residence.

[X] It is legal for me to view adult content.

[X] I understand that access to the site and also the adult section is a privilege not a right. If I author or do not report inappropriate material, or act in a manner that is detrimental to the community, my adult access will be revoked.

[X] I understand that RPoL does not permit some content even in adult games, including graphic depiction of non-consensual sex between characters, or graphic depiction of sexual activity involving a character under the age of 18, or any other restricted content detailed in RPoL's Adult Games Policy.


Other than that, the thrust of the argument is that we should be making it clearer that adult content must only be in adult games ... but to me "adult content must only be in adult games" is exceedingly obvious.

TOU has "Some areas within this site have adult content and are clearly labelled as such.  Any person viewing the information provided within such an area must be of legal age to view such material according to the laws in their permanent place of residence and in the place in which they are currently residing."   We could add "adult content must only be in adult games", but as I said, I find that now distressingly obvious, years on the site or no.  Not to mention that mindset I fear which can rationalise "there are special areas for adult content ... but that couldn't apply to me".

I think the only way to get to where you're heading is to have the adult rules pop up at every opportunity for all users, whether they have any intention of playing in adult games or not.  On a personal note, I don't play in adult games and have no intention of doing so ... and would find such constant messaging a) not helpful and b) very annoying.   "Are you sure you want to permanently delete this file"  ;>
swordchucks
 member, 1384 posts
Mon 24 Apr 2017
at 15:16
Re: Oddity found.
Skald:
RPoL covers off on that at the time a user applies for adult access, when it is most relevant, and at that time includes a direct link to the adult games policy:

It's slightly missing the point to focus on the adult games policy.  I think users are easily able to tell from the Policy section that the site makes a distinction between General, Mature, and Adult games.  From there, I think all users should expect that some content is going to be divided up into other spots.  That's not the issue.

Things that I think are a little harder to know are:

1. A general game must not contain Adult content at all, including in the PMs.  This is spelled out in the FAQ for Mature games, but that's a somewhat awkward place to stick it.  Have you ever seen someone indicate that they would tell a player "take it to PMs" or the like?  That may not be allowed, depending on what "it" is.

2. All GMs are responsible for actively policing their games to ensure they comply with content rules for the game rating and the site rules.  You see this explicitly spelled out in a few of the adult game sections (specifically regarding adult games), but it is not so plainly stated for general/mature games (save in the previously mentioned Mature FAQ and sticky post on Announcements).

It feels like a streamlining of the Policy section wherein several of the FAQ items and sticky posts were folded in, mentions of "adult games" were lessened (and replaced with "all content must..." and "in adult games, these rules are relaxed on these items" type things), and the rules were made a little easier to know would be good.  Adding to the GMing a game FAQ with links to relevant policy bits, summaries of the rules, etc., would also be helpful.

In no way do I feel like the rules need to be lessened, simply clarified.

If it'd be helpful, I'll volunteer to take a first cut at a rewrite, though I think the full policy should probably get a crowdsourced "hole poking" session to ensure it's not inadvertently causing confusion.
horus
 member, 124 posts
 Wayfarer of the
 Western Wastes
Mon 24 Apr 2017
at 16:09
Re: Oddity found.
swordchucks:
Things that I think are a little harder to know are:

1. A general game must not contain Adult content at all, including in the PMs.  This is spelled out in the FAQ for Mature games, but that's a somewhat awkward place to stick it.  Have you ever seen someone indicate that they would tell a player "take it to PMs" or the like?  That may not be allowed, depending on what "it" is.


You have the right of it here.  I mainly run Adult games because I'm playing with adults.  We all want to be free to say what we please in-game within reason without having to worry whether or not the kiddies will see.

quote:
2. All GMs are responsible for actively policing their games to ensure they comply with content rules for the game rating and the site rules.  You see this explicitly spelled out in a few of the adult game sections (specifically regarding adult games), but it is not so plainly stated for general/mature games (save in the previously mentioned Mature FAQ and sticky post on Announcements).


Let me check for my own understanding:  by "policing" I take it we are responsible for making sure no Adult Content is posted to a public (Group Zero) thread in ANY game for which we are GM.  We are also responsible for somehow knowing exactly how far is too far even for an Adult game private thread or PM. Me?  I tend to err on the side of caution in this - general profanity, blasphemy, or obscenity don't raise my hackles at all (I'm a sailor, gorram-it!), but certain types of situations in-game that portray events I wouldn't want my wife or kids to ever witness might.  That much seems like common sense.

I also remember reading somewhere that, as GM/Referee, I have the final say on what gets published and who gets to continue playing in my games, and the power to enforce that final say.  With great power comes a need for great wisdom and no little discernment.  Where is this going?  We are also, as GMs, responsible for the conduct of our players by extension - we are expected to take action if players do certain things (like posting stuff to the wrong type of thread or trafficking in forbidden content), and if we need help we're supposed to ask for it.

In short:  the tools are in our hands, so we are expected to learn their proper use and be unafraid to use them when necessary, all while maintaining a professional demeanor.

quote:
It feels like a streamlining of the Policy section wherein several of the FAQ items and sticky posts were folded in, mentions of "adult games" were lessened (and replaced with "all content must..." and "in adult games, these rules are relaxed on these items" type things), and the rules were made a little easier to know would be good.  Adding to the GMing a game FAQ with links to relevant policy bits, summaries of the rules, etc., would also be helpful.

In no way do I feel like the rules need to be lessened, simply clarified.

If it'd be helpful, I'll volunteer to take a first cut at a rewrite, though I think the full policy should probably get a crowdsourced "hole poking" session to ensure it's not inadvertently causing confusion.


I'm with you here.  Especially with the new "adaptive site" rewrite in the pipe, right now would be a great time to look at and update policy documents and Help System files to better fit the new site - that means it's also a great time to clarify and clean up dated information, too.

This discussion seems geared to promote thought about all this rather organically.

I'm getting fuzzy headed now, must sleep now (the curse of the nightwalker...).
bigbadron
 moderator, 15346 posts
 He's big, he's bad,
 but mostly he's Ron.
Mon 24 Apr 2017
at 16:26
Re: Oddity found.
quote:
We are also responsible for somehow knowing exactly how far is too far even for an Adult game private thread or PM.

Not "somehow knowing", no.  The Adult Game Policy will help you determine that, and if you're still unclear, you can always rMail the Mods for further clarification.
swordchucks
 member, 1386 posts
Mon 24 Apr 2017
at 17:22
Re: Oddity found.
horus:
Let me check for my own understanding:  by "policing" I take it we are responsible for making sure no Adult Content is posted to a public (Group Zero) thread in ANY game for which we are GM.  We are also responsible for somehow knowing exactly how far is too far even for an Adult game private thread or PM.

My understanding of GM responsibilities are this:

1) No adult content may be posted in a general or mature game.  This includes public groups, private groups, and private messages.  You are responsible for actively monitoring this.

2) No adult content may be posted in Group 0 of an adult game.  This also requires your active monitoring, as spelled out in the Adult Games Policy.

3) No forbidden content (of which there is a good list in the Policy section) may be posted to any game in any group or message.  This also requires your active monitoring, as spelled out in the Adult Games Policy.

4) If you no longer intend to monitor all of the content in any game, for whatever reason, you should delete the game, delete all of the players, or have your GM status removed (in the case of a multi-GM arrangement).  This is spelled out in regards to adult games, but is not spelled out as potentially necessary for general/mature games.

I don't have any issue with the actual rules about adult or forbidden content.  Those are all exactly where I would expect to find them and seem clear to me.  If you have any questions about where the "line" is, as BBR says, you should rMail the mods and they'll give you an answer.
DarkLightHitomi
 member, 1130 posts
Tue 25 Apr 2017
at 05:01
Re: Oddity found.
Skald:
...


Other than that, the thrust of the argument is that we should be making it clearer that adult content must only be in adult games ... but to me "adult content must only be in adult games" is exceedingly obvious.

...


Well, my intended point was not this, but rather that some policies are not mentioned in places where they should be.

Truthfully, if I do not run, nor play in, adult games, then I should not need to read the adult policies (in a practical sense) to know all the rules that apply to me in the places where I do post.

Put another way, I should not have to read the section that is only about adult policies (which only a small subset of games are marked adult) to find rules that apply elsewhere/everywhere.

So I also support effort to redo the presentation of rules, policies, faq, and tou. I also suggest not leaving rules in a thread without including into the actual rules pages.

Might also have a section welcoming new people and telling about rpol's structure of games, discussions, etc. Oh, and things like Fruiting censored words which new folks wouldn't undetstand the first time around.
Skald
 moderator, 773 posts
 Whatever it is,
 I'm against it
Tue 25 Apr 2017
at 06:09
Re: Oddity found.
Well, I think we're going to have to agree to disagree.  With my mod hat on, we don't get much of a problem with adult games (especially since the new Age Statement came in) - what we do have most problems with is duplicate accounts and there's a big bold note on the signup page that "duplicate accounts will be removed", so I'm not confident that moving the wording around will help with the problems that some members perceive anyway.

BUT ... this is the RPoL development forum - you are more than welcome to put up suggestions for changes for the community to vote on and for jase to consider.  :>

A couple of points - suggestions for improvements should not just be "this needs changing", it should also include "needs to say this <blah blah blah> on this screen (and/or this screen)".  The discussion was absolutely heading that way anyway, just belabouring the obvious (ah, not in the same way I meant before) ... and I suggest whoever is first off the mark start a new thread for that, as we've wandered waay off topic on this one and folks'll never find it (which ironically is the crux of the argument, I guess).

Don't worry that the mods might not see the need for the change - jase takes everyone's opinion into account - I've voted for things that didn't get up and voted against things that did get up before now - part of what makes this a benevolent dicatorship and a great place to be.  <grins>
Utsukushi
 member, 1414 posts
 I should really stay out
 of this, I know...but...
Tue 25 Apr 2017
at 16:39
Re: Oddity found.
I do think there's one important point here, which is that things seem to be working pretty well.  I don't really know what happened, of course, but from what's been said here, the sequence looks to have been -

  • Some players in a game wanted to do something Adult, and were doing that in PMs.
  • The GM figured whatever - that's private, their business, and went on with his.
  • One of the mods noticed because... somehow they do that.*
  • They sent the GM a message and either explained or pointed him to the relevant policy.
  • The GM took care of it, and the Mods bumped a post in Announcements to maybe bring it back to other people's minds.


And except for that last bit weirding DarkLightHitomi out a little bit, I gather that was the end of it.  And maybe in another 10-15 years, they'll have to remind someone else, and BBR will have a chance to look up the last time it happened, just to show off.

I've gotten a notice from the Moderators.  It's jarring, I know, but unless someone's a chronic offender, it's really not as big a deal as it feels like at the time.  I mean, they're people - I'm sure sometimes they come across better than others.  And I'm pretty sure they all just adore me** so maybe they were nicer when it was my turn.  But we really are all on the same side here - except maybe those weird Freeform players, don't think we're not on to you - and in my experience (both direct and vicarious) a `correction' from the Mods is exactly and only that.  A quick note to let you know you did (or in this case, didn't do) something and please don't do it again (or start doing it in the future).  It's not even really a warning unless it was something really bad or you've done it before.

What it seems like we really need is a better way to indicate when a message has been bumped but not edited.  Except that that, also, was resolved in one Tweetable message when Gladiusdei just said, "This happened," and DLH said, "Oh."  So... probably... basically OK, I think?

*- I'm not going to ask what their methods are because I have to assume it involves constellations and goat entrails and I can't afford the Sanity points I'd probably lose if they told me.
**- That's not mod specific, of course.  I mean, who wouldn't? blinkblink

This message was last edited by the user at 16:39, Tue 25 Apr.

swordchucks
 member, 1387 posts
Tue 25 Apr 2017
at 19:35
Re: Oddity found.
What actually happened is that a discussion was ongoing about resolving PC to PC friction.  PMs were mentioned as a vehicle and I was under the impression that, in a general game, the GM was not responsible for reading every last bit of player-to-player PM content.  That was incorrect, but the actual rule that said otherwise was... difficult to locate.  The Announcement bump was in direct address of that complaint.

This, in turn, showed a few other people that rule, which they hadn't been aware of and sparked the current discussion.  Following this, some general dissatisfaction was expressed for rules that aren't in the policy section and brought up the subject of revising them so that they are.

Specifically on that topic, I've started to work on a draft revision, but if someone beats me to it, feel free to post it as Skald requests (in a separate thread) and the discussion can go from there.
horus
 member, 127 posts
 Wayfarer of the
 Western Wastes
Wed 26 Apr 2017
at 16:17
Re: Oddity found.
bigbadron:
quote:
We are also responsible for somehow knowing exactly how far is too far even for an Adult game private thread or PM.

Not "somehow knowing", no.  The Adult Game Policy will help you determine that, and if you're still unclear, you can always rMail the Mods for further clarification.


No disrespect intended.  I did say further on "We are also, as GMs, responsible for the conduct of our players by extension - we are expected to take action if players do certain things (like posting stuff to the wrong type of thread or trafficking in forbidden content), and if we need help we're supposed to ask for it."

As for the Adult Content guidelines, I've had to refer to them a few times, and I've sought clarification (which you provided, actually), so yeah, I get it, I think.  When I think I might not be getting it the proper thing to do is ask for guidance.

I think the only reason I phrased it as I did was that the Adult Game stuff covers a lot of ground, and sometimes things will occur (especially if expectations are not properly set) that will require that kind of discernment I mentioned.  Players bear responsibility for their own actions, but GMs bear responsibility for running a respectable establishment.

Peace?