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Notifications, Suspensions and Bans

When someone violates our Code of Conduct or other policies, they receive a warning or censure in the form of a Notification.

All notifications include:

  • The player receiving the notification
  • Bystanding players who may have been involved or bore witness to the incident
  • Social Department members involved in the incident and/or addressing it after the fact
  • The category of the incident
  • A description of the incident with details on what happened and what recommendations were made to prevent it in the future
  • The result of the incident leading to the notification, such as advice given or a new contract established

Notifications come in three levels of increasing severity: green, yellow and red, and are sometimes referred to as "strikes" in our documentation.

Green Notification
A green notification is light and may not even be linked to negative conduct. Green notifications let the Social Department know things about a given player tied to their behavior in the past, good or bad, which may help guide future decisions.

Green notifications help us track minor incidents or course-corrections so that we can identify troubling patterns of both those violating policy and those targeted by breach of conduct. Green notifications can help us head off larger problems hidden by the relatively minor specific incidents that make them up, as well as helping us identify players who may be carefully towing the line of our conduct policy without crossing over it formally.

Any time a Social department member speaks to you specifically about conduct, you should receive a Green notification. This is nothing to worry about and is as much to track the Social department member's activities as yours. It also lets other Social department members know when you've been informed of certain policies or asked to make small adjustments in your behavior so that you don't get bombarded with similar advice.

Green notifications do not have a limit at which they spill over into the next category up, although the Social department may still use a series of Green notifications about the same type of conduct violation to require a social contract or otherwise take action to remedy a troubling trend of minor infractions.

Yellow Notification
Yellow notifications indicate a player has clearly violated a Social policy or otherwise done harm to another player on the site. Yellow notifications should require immediate corrections in future behavior to avoid the same sort of harm reoccurring. Yellow notifications may also take longer to review and finalize given the severity they carry.

A Yellow notification awarded to a player who already has two Yellow notifications also results in an automatic Red notification and the associated suspension. This Red notification replaces the oldest Yellow notification the player has, so that when they return from suspension they will still potentially have two Yellow notifications and be in danger of further suspensions if they receive another one before the old ones expire.

A Yellow notification must always be approved by at least two members of the Social department before being finalized.

Yellow notifications expire one year after the date they were awarded, even if they were awarded after the incident itself occurred. This includes time spent while a player is suspended.

Red Notification
A Red notification is for grievous infractions of our conduct policies, and results in a temporary ban based on how many Red notifications the player has received in a given timeframe.

The first Red notification results in a 30-day suspension to protect other players from further infractions and to allow the player time to consider their actions and behavior should they wish to return to the site as a respectful player. Red notifications may also result in a mandatory Social contract drawn up upon the player's return specifying additional behaviors above and beyond our conduct policy that they must adhere to to remain on the site.

Red notifications require approval from both Social Leads before becoming finalized. If the department is in Starvation Mode or one of the Social Leads is involved in the incident, the department's non-Lead members should vote and a majority serve as the deciding factor.

Each subsequent Red notification results in a suspension three times as long as the previous one:

  1. 30 days (1 month)
  2. 90 days (3 months)
  3. 270 days (9 months)
  4. 810 days (over 2 years)

Red notifications DO NOT expire.

Instant bans and Perma-bans
In our most extreme cases, we may encounter a player who does significant damage to the site and its players in ways our conduct and harassment policies have not yet adapted to address.

For these outliers, we allow the site Leads to collectively call for a vote to instantly ban the player in question for whatever period of time seems reasonable. This vote must be unanimous among the Leads to carry, and a detailed accounting of the decision must be posted publicly to the forums within 12 hours of the ban being triggered. Other players wishing to levy a Grievance due to the triggering of an instant ban should follow the procedures for doing so.

Perma-bans also live outside the standard notification structure. Notifications are designed to encourage players to correct their behavior, not to punish. We want those who do harm to learn from their mistakes and return to us as players who contribute to the site like everyone else.

However, in some cases, the safety of our site's other members takes precedence over giving the violating player space to learn and grow. In these extreme cases, the Leads can call for a vote to perma-ban, which otherwise follows the same stipulations as an instant ban. It requires a unanimous vote, and a detailed accounting of the decision and what led to it must be posted publicly on the site forums within 12 hours of triggering the ban. Grievances can be levied as normal if anyone on the site feels the Leads acted in bad faith in awarding a perma-ban.


What to expect from RP here

Our format is a bit unique as far as online roleplaying goes.

In online chat RP, posts are generally very short and immediate. Here your average post may be a few paragraphs long and take 5-10 minutes to put together. That gives you space to not just dictate your character's actions, but to describe their motivations, their impressions of other characters in the scene, even delve into their thoughts where appropriate.

Posts are typically third-person, describing what the character is doing or feeling from the point of view of an outside narrator (you). Despite being third-person, our style is much more "act out" than simple narration, with dialog and actions described in full rather than in quick summaries like "I attack the bandit."

Casual RP is much more prevalent than sessions, meaning most of the time the action is on you to create. It might just be a simple chat in a bar, or a chance meeting in the forest, or even solo play as your character works on repairing a broken machine or studying a clue they gained from a session.

Progression is fairly slow even at the start, with many hours required to raise your character's Stats and skills, so expect your starting stats to be roughly where you're at for a while. Thankfully, it's easy for starting characters to succeed in their areas of focus, but if you're expecting to "level up" quickly, we don't want you to be surprised later.

Which is to say, our games require patience, initiative, and a decent amount of typing, so please be aware of that as you dive in. We're very flexible and we want to make this a fun place for you, too, but there's only so much we can do depending on what you're expecting.

Additionally, be aware that our settings are persistent worlds. That means that the sessions and sagas which happen, even just the casual RP can have a lasting and noticeable impact on the larger world. Nothing happens in a vacuum here, so it's good to be mindful of how your RP may impact others.

Lastly, know that the community is small, making us more familiar with one another than on massive message boards. The Leads of the various departments will often poll the site to get input on big changes, and you always have a voice in the overall way things run around here. If you ever feel too familiar with the other players to point out something that's bothering you, we have a number of anonymous methods for speaking up and making your voice heard any time. This site is yours just as much as it is ours.




Player Character to Player Character IC Relationships

The following are the basic rules and guidelines to help players manage their character relationships with other player characters in the game.

Why is this important?
To protect and ensure player boundaries are respected
To ensure a player is not taken advantage of
To help manage expectations

Just like in life there are many kinds of relationships that may develop ICly between characters: child-parent, sibling, romantic, employer-employee, protective, etc, are just some examples. These may put a player character in an authoritative position over another player character. This is a lot of responsibility and work both OOCly and ICly and can easily end up hurting another player if one is not careful.

Player boundaries take precedence above all else when it comes to these kinds of relationships, especially as between some characters it can become quite negative. Some players may not be interested or unable to pursue certain types of rp for any reasons. It doesn’t matter if the character would do it, if the player doesn’t want to do that kind of roleplay, do not force them to. It can be extremely harmful for the player to be put in that kind of situation. Even if they do not share the specifics for their reasons, they are to be respected.

So if a player says no, then do not do it. No comes in many forms, the rule is - unless there is an absolute and clear yes that they are ok with the direction of the relationship rp as is, anything else should be taken as a no - period.

A player wishing to partake of such relationship rp must make regular OOC check ins with the other player(s) to make sure they are ok with the direction and tone of the RP as it progresses, as well as to make they are not blocking the player’s ability to play their character. Never assume that the other player will be ok with any change in the rp, even if it is a type of rp they have done before, always ask!

When a player comes along that is not aware of the relationship and what the players have agreed upon, the players involved in the relationship should make sure that the other player is made aware of what could happen, and why some of the roleplay may go the direction it does. This is to help prevent the unaware player from feeling uncomfortable in the situation, and understand that everything going on in the RP is ICly and agreed upon.

If at any time a player becomes uncomfortable or feeling like their boundaries have not been respected with the relationship or begins to feel like they are being blocked and can’t do anything on their character due to the relationship they are encouraged to start a conversation with the other player(s) involved and let them know. This way the players can work out an alternative way to take the rp to resolve this. If the players on their own can not come to a resolution, then the player is encouraged to bring the situation to the attention of Social. Social can assign them a mediator to help come to a compromise or to help work out an exit strategy from the IC relationship with Setting on hand to advise as needed. Remember at any time a player has the right to opt out of an IC relationship.

  • A player can not control a character that is not theirs.
  • A player can not use an IC relationship to prevent another player from taking the involved character to sessions.
  • A player can not use an IC relationship to prevent another player from rping with other players on the involved character or other rp in general.
  • A player can not use an IC relationship to force another player to give their character items or silver.
  • A player can not use an IC relationship to force another player to do RP topics that they do not want to participate in.
  • A player can not use an IC relationship to harass, abuse, or threaten another player OOCly.

A player is not obligated to play out every single moment of any kind of relationship or employment and can not be force to do so.

Underaged PC relationships

    Underaged is defined as any character that is physically or mentally under the age of 18 or even looks under the age of 18. In these games underaged is flagged as a special condition that requires Setting approval in order to play. This is due to that in that some scenes underage characters are not appropriate for as well as the expectations of many IC interactions from both PCs and NPCs already put older characters in a kind of authoritative position over the underage character.
    Underage characters are not permitted to partake in romantic or erotic RP. It may be implied, but it can not actually be roleplayed out on this site ever.
    Players of underage characters should be prepared for their character to be treated like a child at any time. This can manifest in many ways but usually in the form of being commanded to do something with no explanation, to leave a potentially bad or extremely dangerous scene, physically be dragged away from something perceived as harmful or to get them out of harm's way, or scolded or reprimanded for their actions. Setting will cover these expectations with the player submitting an underage character after reviewing the character and the player’s history. This is to ensure the player understands what may happen in play, and to encourage them to open OOC channels with other players to let them know what is ok to do to exercise authority over their character and that they expect it.

    Players interacting with an underage PC should keep in mind ways to also exercise their character’s authority over the underage in a way to help keep them involved in the session or rp in some way. Checking in with the player of the underage PC with a heads up on what may happen is highly encouraged.

Employment of a PC by a PC

In addition to the above there are some extra rules in regards to IC employment between PCs.

    The hiring process is handled like a recruitment session between a NPC and a player. The players of the characters involved will make a request on the SH forums for a SH to run the numbers and officiate the hiring for them. The PC employer should ask questions related to the position being offered as well as request a demonstration of the potential PC employee’s skills that would apply to the job. At the end the SH may recommend an econ score boost, but the PC employer shall determine what is earned if the potential PC employee was hired. Then the SH will record the recruitment on the forums and make any adjustments to the econ score as needed or available. (This follows the same rules as other econ score bonuses and can not go past the +15 max gain per character.).

    If the PC employer plans to give the employee a raise or promotion, there should be RP to point to that shows the promotion was earned. In cases where there is the possibility of an econ boost it must also be handled like a recruitment session so there is a record. If there is no boost to econ or other character Stats then a scene can be made to help record the RP that proves the promotion was earned. Similarly, to demote or fire someone, there should be an IC reason to point to, and can also be made into a scene to help keep a record.

    The PC employer player can not make one of the terms of employment to have the PC employee give their employer a set amount silver or demand their PC employee make their character items because they work for them. This is in essence forcing another player to give them silver or items. ICly it is already implied that the PC employee is already contributing to the business in some manner, and while it could be said that the employer does take something (especially in regards to commission) no actual exchange of silver or items takes place.

    This policy also helps keep PC employers as a viable option for other PCs for work, as if a PC employer takes away actual silver or items, this will make a PC employer less appealing than a NPC employer - who gets no actual silver or items and still provides all the perks of being employed. The perk of a PC hiring a PC is the opportunity for RP and collaboration for those characters.

Be sure to also review the rules on Transfer of items or money between characters for additional considerations linked to IC relationships.

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Slow-Posting is a phrase used to describe roleplaying that occurs at a much slower pace then 'normal' and cannot happen immediately in one sitting.

In ‘fast-posting’ roleplay, players are able to immediately respond to each other's posts and have set aside a few hours to play out an entire scene, start to finish. In slow-posting roleplay, players don't all have to be on during the same window, which may work better with some players' schedules for work, school, and other activities. Slow-posting allows those people to still be able to keep the roleplaying going, just at a slower pace.

In casual slow-post RP, there are no enforced time limits on when people should respond (just like in fast-posting casual RP). A slow-posting session, on the other hand, is something you should only join if you can commit to posting once daily for 1-2 weeks. In a slow-posting session, even a short post is a good post if it keeps the round moving so that the session doesn't stall out.

If you are in casual slow-posting RP with someone, and they haven’t posted in 2 or more days, drop them a friendly reminder over private messaging to check in and see if they wish to continue the RP. Similarly, if you are in a slow-post RP and know that something is coming up that will make you unlikely to keep up with the once-a-day schedule, let the other players know either via the OOC box with your character in the room or via private messaging so they know what to expect.

For A/SHs running slow-posing sessions, if a player has not posted in over a day, you are not just allowed but encouraged to proceed to the next round, effectively skipping that character in favor of keeping the session moving. Players can try to get caught up in future rounds when their real-life schedule allows. When you run a slow-post session, be careful to consider how this might impact the way you design your challenges.

If you are in a casual slow-posting RP and require A/SH oversight, just like in fast-posting RP, pause the action until you can get a qualified A/SH to rule or address whatever needs oversight. For their consideration, it may be wise to schedule a time to switch to fast-posting until the action that requires A/SH oversight is completed before switching back to slow-posting format, if desired.

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Harassment Policy

Vaxia's players and administration will not tolerate harassment of any of our players by anyone, regardless of their role on the site.

Our site defines harassment as any behavior that is threatening, abusive, or which espouses any racist, sexist or other hate-mongering philosophy. Repeatedly contacting (or "hounding") one of our players can also be considered harassment if you are asked to stop and do not do so.

Refer to the Code of Conduct for additional guidelines on healthy and respectful behavior on vaxia.org. This definition is not exhaustive, and behavior judged by two or more administrators to fall into a similarly abusive pattern whether it's explicitly addressed here or not may also constitute grounds for a Strike.

This definition extends to the in-character world to a degree - while we encourage freedom of character concepts and choices, including those which may veer into the hateful or vindictive, any suggestion that abusive behavior IC is motivated by out-of-character inclinations will be met with similar warnings and punishments as out-of-character harassment. If you are asked by another player or the site's administration to reduce the level of abrasive or offensive roleplay, please do so for the overall health of the site. Failure to respect the request will result in similar warnings and punishments.

While we hope it will never be an issue, we also prohibit any form of sexual harassment or misconduct on the site, in or out of character. That includes stalking, threats and any non-consensual conversations or RP of a sexual nature. It also includes textual accounts of romantic or sexual conduct with a minor, which applies to both players below the age of 18 and characters with an Apparent Age or Effective age less than 18 (depending on the character's race). Vaxia prohibits any such misconduct, and violations will be met with swift repercussions.

If your behavior is considered to constitute harassment, you will be warned by the site's administration or SH corps. You may ask for clarification on the nature of the offense, and we will strive to provide you with alternatives which do not offend or endanger our players. Continued behavior along similar lines will be met with a Strike (which remains on your account record permanently), and three Strikes will result in an immediate ban from the site. Any continued harassment of our players away from vaxia.org may be further met with legal action as necessary.

Anyone who feels they are the subject of harassment on or off the site by one of our players should immediately contact the current World and Academy heads and the site administrator using the Contact link at the top of the page. If you're unsure if the behavior qualifies as harassment, please contact us to be sure - we would much rather deal with an excess of claims which ultimately prove to be benign than risk any genuine harassment going unreported.

We want everyone to feel safe here on vaxia.org, which is why we remain firm in our handling of harassment cases to better protect our players so that they can enjoy their time and roleplay without fear or abuse.

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New Player Probationary Period

When an entirely new account is created on Vaxia, the new player is temporary in a probationary state, a kind of grace period during which any kinks in communication and understanding can be worked out.

During this period, the player is given slightly more IC flexibility. Misunderstandings of the IC world are more easily forgiven, provided they aren't repeated once the player has been notified. This does not mean the new player has unusual influence on the IC world, just that their misconceptions may be ret-conned or set aside without any major fuss as part of the natural process of figuring our the expansive IC worlds.

By contrast, the player's out-of-character behavior is slightly more scrutinized to ensure that they abide by our Code of Conduct and are deemed a good fit for the site. Any OOC infractions during this time may result in the player's account being deactivated depending on their severity. We will endeavor as a site to work with new players to acclimate them to the community, but if a solution cannot be found during this window, the account may be deactivated for the overall health of the site.

The probationary period for new accounts will continue until they have acquired at least 40 XP worth of roleplay across the sum of their characters. At that point, they are a fully-fledged member of the site, able to apply to become an SH and otherwise participate in and serve the community exactly as the rest of us do. Beyond the 40 XP mark, seniority grants no special authority on the site to any of us.

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"Transparency is operating in such a way that it is easy for others to see what actions are performed."

This means for the most part: In public. In writing. Openly.

Why? Because this keeps us honest, it increases the trust of our player base and storyhost base, and generally it keeps us on our toes. A bad idea will get punctured more quickly. A good idea will get support more quickly. Transparency isn't meant to be used as a weapon, it's meant to be used as a sanitizer - sunlight to make it clear and obvious that all those acting are doing so in good faith.

Which isn't to say every single little thing needs to be handled in the open. Personal disputes, SH saga negotiations, inter-player resolution - all of these things can be handled privately as needed. The concerned parties are already in the room after all.

Where things need to be transparent is when the concerned parties are the entire site. Criticism of leadership is a public concern (as is praise!). New rule handling, or modifications of site policy - all are public concerns. While the initial germination of an idea can be handled privately, at some point the work needs to go public, for both public review and public accountability of the decision makers involved.

Public review means: Not on AIM, not on email, not on PM. In Discussion room isn't a public enough location, and chat scroll could effectively erase the conversation from view. Public means, in the forums.

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Conflict of Interest

Because the SHs, Evaluators and Leads of Vaxia are also players and people, there exists the possibility that they will find themselves in a position of having to rule something which relates to them directly, or someone for whom they cannot be objective. For example, if a Setting lead needs a powerful NPC approved, or someone from System has to retake the SH test for certification, there's the potential that their position may lead to accidental or intentional bias for or against them.

Likewise, bias can exist between heads, SHs or evaluators and other players, either because they are close in real life or because there is past bad blood between them.

In all such cases, a separate, neutral party should arbitrate the issue, even if that party does not typically have the authority to do so. Because all head positions are duplicated (two Setting leads, two System leads, two site administrators, two Social leads), there should always be someone other than the individual proposing the change who can rule it objectively. If a situation arises in which that is not the case, either because both leads are involved in the generation of the idea that needs approval, or because one of them is absent from the site when approval is needed, then at least two SHs or evaluators must approve the issue.

If both Setting leads, for instance, want to run a site-wide saga that goes beyond the range of influence of a normal SH, they should get the idea approved by at least two regular SHs before moving forward. Likewise, the answers for an System head retaking the SH test to renew their position should be reviewed by two regular SHs, if the other System lead is not present or easily reachable.

SHs ruling for those close to them in real life (specifically spouses and the like) should ask another SH or evaluator to check their work to ensure a fair ruling. This applies both to sessions (and the associated difficulties, XP and item rewards) and evaluated content (items or characters created by their spouse).

If you suspect someone may be making a decision while under the influence of a Conflict of Interest notify any SH or post your concern on the forums, whichever you feel comfortable doing. Your concern should be stated plainly, without venom, and please be ready to listen to those you've addressed defend themselves and those about whom the ruling was made. Oftentimes, conflict of interest is something people do without realizing it, out of an instinct to be kind. While it can be dangerous, it is often not malicious. Please remember that.

There are enough SHs and other leads that drawing attention to the issue and bringing it under scrutiny from others should suffice to ensure there is no unfair treatment at work, so that we can all get back to enjoying the site and the RP.

SHs, Sessions and Their Own Characters

Because it comes up somewhat often, an SH is allowed to play one of their own characters in a session they are running, under two conditions: their character cannot be awarded XP for participating in the session, and their character cannot serve as the 'star' of the session, similar to our NPC Policy. Any SH doing so should be prepared to provide a record of rulings involving their character (difficulties set, circumstantial modifiers, etc).

NOTE: For many SHs, playing a character while also running a session may prove problematic to the session itself, slowing down the ruling process and the general flow, so it is recommended that SHs abstain from participating in their own sessions unless they feel confident they can RP, rule and narrate at the same time.

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Vacation Mode

Vacation mode!

Sometimes real life gets in the way. We get that - it happens to everyone. All we ask is that if you are in a position of some importance on the site: A storyteller, an evaluator, or the like - please let us know.

We understand. We just need to know so we know not to ask anything of you. When you come back, we'll be glad to have you again.

To help you with this, since news doesn't always travel well or quickly when you're dealing with a personal emergency, there's a simple button available for these users under the "Edit" tab of your account. (The same page you would change your password at.)

If you need to go on vacation, click that button. An email will go out to everyone that needs to know about it - so once you click that button you're set and ready for taking care of whatever you need to. When you log back in - you'll have another button to return from Vacation Mode When you're ready, click that button and your permissions will be returned to you.

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Real Life Harm

By and large, Vaxian RP tends to be emotional and immersive. Normally, this is why we love it, but it does have one major downside: sudden losses in-character can have very real impacts on us out-of-character.

When that impact affects us in a real and noticeable way, we call it Real Life Harm (RLH), which is above and beyond the more minor emotional lows that might come from a bad guy getting away in a session or a streak of bad dice rolls. Real Life Harm can lead to genuine emotional difficult in our real lives, which is something we want to spare our players whenever we can.

For that reason, we have the No Real Live Harm (NRLH) rule. This policy is designed as a safety net to avert an in-character event that would result in Real Life Harm and replace it with one that isn't so damaging out-of-character.

The NRLH rule only applies to in-character circumstances, but it is not limited to anything in particular. It may be Character Death serious injury, loss of a treasured NPC, or a different major turning point. When invoked, the NRLH rule will update the outcome, but it should not be mistaken for an "undo" button - the new outcome will be as close to an equivalent as we can make it without doing harm.

For instance, character death might be replaced by serious injury that takes them out of the session or fight. It might result in stat changes to reflect a loss of limb or other function. Death of a beloved NPC might instead become a kidnapping that requires a great deal of silver to resolve. The exact circumstances are up to the ruling A/SH, who should work with the player invoking NRLH to determine what the next-best outcome would be to avoid the harm.

Invoking RLH
In some instances, A/SHs may prompt a player to ask about RLH, such as when their character just died in a session. Other times, it will be up to the player to invoke the NRLH rule.

In the latter case, use the Private Message system to contact the ruling A/SH. Let them know exactly what incident in the RP caused you RLH and give a rough explanation of what about it caused you harm so that they can adjust the scenario accordingly.

Remember that you may not get exactly what you want - in fact, it's best not to ask for specific alternative outcomes, as most A/SHs still want to help craft a scene rather than just narrate what you've given them. If you explain what about the scene caused you harm, you can trust them to design a new outcome based on those concerns.

If RLH happens in an RP that doesn't have a ruling A/SH, check the current list of A/SH members of the Social Department and reach out to one to invoke RLH. It would be best to pause the RP while your claim is being considered.

When NRLH does NOT apply
There are several situations where the NRLH rule cannot be invoked because of the nature of the RP or session itself.

  • If you willingly consent to PvP, you cannot invoke NRLH if your character is seriously injured or killed in the contest. This includes if you have the "PvP allowed" flag on your character, so be sure to check it if you aren't ready to lose the character. The default setting is "no."
  • If you attend a session with the "Character death possible" flag, you cannot invoke NRLH due to character death in that session. This includes if you have the "character death allowed" flag on your character, so be sure to check it if you aren't ready to lose the character. The default setting is "no."
  • If an A/SH informs you of the potential consequences of an action out-of-character before you take it, and you take it anyway, you cannot then invoke NRLH after the fact to attempt to undo or change those consequences

If character death specifically would cause you RLH, we recommend saving up for a Save Point (explained under the Character Death rules) so that you can participate in character-death-flagged sessions or PvP without worrying about permanently losing the character.

A/SHs handling Real-Life Harm Rulings
If you're an A/SH and a player in a session or scene you're ruling has invoked NRLH, follow the process below

  • If you're in the middle of the session/scene, update your ruling to something vague that removes the character from the remainder of the session/scene. A narrative like "Character A appears to be dead" leaves room for changes later after you've had time to consider the case.

  • Let the player know that you are working with the Social department to review the case and will update them once a final ruling has been reached.

  • Contact the Social Leads to report the claim, and include any details you feel are relevant for them to consider when reviewing it.

    NOTE: All NRLH cases need to be reviewed by at least two members of the Social department, of which the ruling A/SH cannot be one - the ruling A/SH has no influence on the NRLH ruling to protect them from reprisals and possible Conflict of Interest The Social department will rule on the NRLH claim and work with the player on an agreeable alternative outcome.

  • Once the Social department members have approved it, add the ruling to the IC room as a narrative or simply to the Session Report after the fact so that others who attended the session will know the outcome and how to approach the affected character in future RP.

Don't hesitate with RLH
If you think an IC event might trigger RLH for you, even if you're not 100% sure, go ahead and invoke the rule as soon as you think there's good potential for harm. If, a day or two later, you realizing you aren't bothered by the original outcome, you can simply drop the claim.

If instead you find you're still bothered a few days later, you'll already be closer to a less harmful outcome that the ruling A/SH and the Social department have had time to consider and work on. It's far better to invoke the rule can then drop the claim than to think you'll be fine and then have to invoke well after the fact, which can be more difficult for the A/SH to post-date.

Remember: not every claim is going to be valid based on the conditions of the session/scene involved, and you are not guaranteed to get an outcome you love. The goal is to mitigate harm as much as possible without drastically changing the IC outcome, so the end result may still leave you a little bummed, but it should leave you far less hurt than the original and able to get back to RPing and enjoying the site as soon as possible.

So, in summary:

  • The NRLH rule is not intended to cover all IC occurrences we find sad or disappointing.
  • NRLH rule applies when IC occurrences cause us lasting damage to our real lives, that we can not otherwise cope with.
  • The A/SH will do their best to be compassionate and empathetic to your feelings, especially when you feel you may be suffering RLH, but may not be able to give you exactly what you ask for
  • Invoking the NRLH rule is a serious thing, but that should not stop you from invoking it if you believe you are suffering RLH

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