World of Darkness: Aeon

World of Darkness: Aeon / Site Information / Code of Conduct

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Stories are compasses and architecture, we navigate by them, we build our sanctuaries and our prisons out of them, and to be without a story is to be lost in the vastness of a world that spreads in all directions like arctic tundra or sea ice.

Code of Conduct


Code of Conduct

Creating a safe environment is extremely important when it comes to online roleplaying. Always respect the comfort levels and boundaries of other players. If someone expresses discomfort or concern over the content of a scene, work with them to resolve the issue. This might include backing off from the content within the scene, having the content take place “off-camera,” allowing the PC to exit the scene, or even ending the scene entirely. If you think you’re going to introduce particularly extreme content, try to warn people in advance so they have the option to bow out. Player comfort levels must always trump in-game concerns. The feelings, safety and general well-being of real people is much more important than the goings-on of a fictional universe.

On a similar note, if real-life circumstances get in the way of someone’s ability to participate (in a scene, an SL, etc.) that situation needs to be respected. This holds true regardless of the specifics. Struggling with mental and/or physical health issues, caring for children, prioritizing work or school responsibilities, dealing with random emergencies, etc., are all equally valid reasons for needing to step away. If you’re running or playing in a scene where this situation comes up, do not punish, hassle or argue with that person. These circumstances can be frustrating, but there are many work-arounds.

Additionally, remember that Admins and Storytellers are players too. The considerations listed above apply just as much to them as to anyone else. Do not harass Admins and STs (or for that matter, the Director) if they are busy or taking time for themselves. Don’t make unreasonable demands of them, and don’t get impatient if they don’t respond to you immediately. Individual Admins and STs will have their own guidelines for how they’d like players to interact with them. Some will ask that you stick to e-mail for anything that isn’t an emergency. Others may be open to fielding questions on the fly. Whatever their guidelines, respect them.

Be courteous, mature and respectful in your interactions with each other. This goes towards fostering trust and creating a safe, fun and cooperative environment. Bullying, harassment (particularly sexual harassment) and abusive language will not be tolerated under any circumstances. Neither will racism, sexism, homophobia, xenophobia, transphobia, ableism, religious intolerance or any other form of discrimination or hate speech.

To put it simply: take care of yourselves, and take care of each other.

Roleplaying Etiquette

In roleplaying, it’s important to maintain a clear line between what is in-character (fiction) and what is out-of-character (reality.) Try not to take the things that happen in the game personally, and try not to let your personal feelings influence the events of the game (particularly if you’re ST-ing.)

Before attempting to join a scene, check out the character tags. (To view tags, hover the mouse over a character’s name.) If a scene is labeled “private,” do not attempt to join. If it’s labeled “open,” jump in! If there isn’t a label, ask if there’s room for another player. More often than not, people are happy to have more characters in their scene, but there are reasons why it might not be feasible or appropriate, so it’s important to check first. These guidelines go for lurking as well. If it’s open, feel free to watch. If private, stay away. If unclear, ask. We encourage everyone to use these tags when appropriate, especially during open scenes. It can be hard sometimes for folks to jump in, and labeling something as open will make people feel more welcome.

As a general rule, most SL scenes require advance sign-up. If an ST decides to recruit on the fly, they will either approach players directly or list it in their tag. So unless an SL scene clearly states that there is open space, don’t try to join after it’s started. If you want to lurk in the scene, ask the ST. Just remember to be patient when waiting for a reply, as they will likely be quite busy.

After you join a scene, in general, you should try to follow an established posting order. Not everyone types at the same speed, and it’s important to give everyone a chance to react before moving on. Some players are more relaxed about this, so it’s not always a hard-and-fast rule. Additionally, large open scenes might get broken into groups, in which case you really only need to pay attention to the order of the people you’re interacting with. However, posting in order is a good rule of thumb in most scenes. It shows consideration to other players and helps avoid timeline inconsistencies.

Finally, to those who like to compose lengthy narrative posts: this kind of writing is awesome and totally encouraged, but please do be careful not to deny other characters the chance to react to things you've written. If anyone gets skipped over, you will need to change your post to accommodate them.

In-Game Conflict

Characters don’t always get along. Sometimes these conflicts escalate to the point where dice come into play. If a conflict breaks out between two or more PCs, it is strongly recommended that you bring in a third-party moderator. The moderator can be an Admin, an ST, or even another player. The important thing is that, whoever you choose, everyone directly involved in the conflict must give their consent. Once a moderator is brought in, they have the final say on what is and is not allowed (following site and system guidelines to the best of their judgment.) If the players are all comfortable finishing the scene without a moderator, you may choose not to use one. However, having a moderator is helpful in keeping things fair and impartial, which is particularly important if the scene has the potential for character death. It’s also good to have a witness, in case something goes awry or personal feelings come into play.

In addition, we strongly recommend that players save all of their scene transcripts, in the event that anyone may need to look them over after the fact.

Resolving Disputes

On this site, OOC interpersonal disputes are handled by the Counselor. If you have a conflict with anyone else on the site (including STs, Admins or the Director) that you are unable to resolve on your own, or if you have an issue with someone that needs to be addressed (for example, if you feel that one of the Admins is making biased rulings, or if you witness another player being bullied) you should contact the Counselor. Communication with the Counselor is safe and private, and only that information that is necessary to resolve the conflict will be shared. If you wish to remain anonymous, your identity will not be revealed.

Sometimes all someone really needs is to be able to vent to a sympathetic ear. In those cases, the Counselor will not take things outside the conversation. In cases where mediation between players is needed, they will handle the mediation process. If the conflict involves system rules, game mechanics, or something that might fall into the purview of a specific ST, applicable authorities will be brought in to help resolve the dispute. In cases where disciplinary action is required, the Director will take over. The Counselor does not administer rulings – their job is to impartially counsel and mediate.

In the absence of a suitable Counselor, the Director will perform these duties. If this is the case, contact the Director. If your conflict or concern involves the Counselor, or the Director if they are acting as Counselor, you may choose an impartial mediator who you trust to help resolve the issue. If this person agrees to take on this role, they will then bring your issue to the Director.

If you experience or witness harassment, discrimination or any other serious violation of the code of conduct, please inform the Counselor or the Director as soon as possible. It’s important that people feel safe here. We take these issues very seriously.

As with in-game conflict, we recommend that you save transcripts when possible.

Disciplinary Actions

Typically on this site, if disciplinary action is required, it will follow the “three strikes” rule. Players who violate the code of conduct will receive a warning. After two warnings, the next violation will result in that player being banned from the site. This ban will last for at least 6 months, or may remain in place permanently – at the Director’s discretion. (If you receive a temporary ban, you will be informed that you may return after a certain date.) Players who are allowed to return will have their warning slate wiped clean, but if the offending behavior continues their next ban will likely be permanent.

Serious infractions may result in an immediate ban. The Director reserves the right to make judgment calls as to what constitutes a “serious infraction,” but as a general guideline, this action will be employed in circumstances where the removal of the offending player is necessary to protect one or more people on the site, or to protect the security of the site itself.

In addition to the above, players who violate the code of conduct may be removed from official roles and/or denied special characters or privileges. As mentioned, trust is important in roleplaying. Once that trust is broken, you need to rebuild it.

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