Administrator Rules

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6. Administrators

The administration of CyberSphere are responsible for the upkeep and development of Cybersphere's themed game world, its coded game mechanics, and the mediation of playerbase issues. Administrators must always act in the best interests of the game as a whole, which includes player opinions and desires as a critical element. However, final authority on game issues will always rest with the administrators, and major decisions shall always be put to a vote that includes the maximum practical amount of admin participation.

6A. Player Confidentiality

When a player comes to an administrator for help or advice, the conversation is considered private within the administration, not necessarily with the specific administrator spoken to. Discussion will be had, information will often be shared within the administration as required in most circumstances. Unless the player specifically allows it, information from the conversation cannot be passed to other players and information gained indirectly through the conversation (like a player's intention to betray a gang) must be kept confidential to avoid contaminating the game world.

6B. Administrator and Game Engine Confidentiality

Information about administrators, their characters, or OOC identities is confidential and shall not be disclosed to players unless disclosed directly by the subject and shall not be disseminated by players or other administrators at any point. This includes assumptions of 'common knowledge' or 'everyone knows' reasoning. Just do not do it. Information passed on any administrative net is to be considered confidential and shall not be disclosed to the player base unless permission is explicitly given by the administration.

Specific details on the game system's mechanics that go beyond reasonable IC knowledge (e.g. "How many damage points does shotgun X do per hit?") shall not be divulged to players, nor should it be requested.

6C. Neutrality

When two players or organisations are having a conflict, an administrator might be called in to settle the dispute OOCly. Despite working in the past with a player, or being OOC friends with a player, administrators are required to be fair and impartial. If an administrator has feelings or issues that would cloud their judgement in a matter, they should call in another administrator to judge the issue.

6D. Activity.

All administrators must be active on Cybersphere, at some level, to retain their bit. If unable to log in, provisions can be made for email forwarding of game issues so that a minimum level of participation can be maintained. If RL circumstances prevent an admin from participating in the game at all, or if an admin needs a "break" from the game or adminning, this needs to be communicated to the rest of the team so allowances can be made, rather than simply disappearing for weeks at a time.

6E. Favoritism is not allowed

Administrators must give one and only one reasonably standard and appropriate level of support to all players. Favouring individuals, groups of players, or your personal character with additional support, items, or resources will not be tolerated. By the same token, administrators are not permitted to be prejudiced against groups or players.

The appearance of favouritism / prejudice must be avoided if possible, while not letting this hinder or negatively impact with the IC worlds theme progression or OOC code progression.

6F. Interfacing with the game world

Administrators must maintain at least one degree of separation from the game world. DO NOT VISIBLY INTERACT WITH THE GAME WORLD DIRECTLY. For example, if an object must be given to a player as part of a plot, a GM must not appear and hand it over-- this breaks the game world's continuity and immersion. IC interaction with players must be through a game system, AHaB, NPC or the like. Admins should avoid appearing in the game world unless extreme circumstances require it. Work behind the curtain, not on the stage.

6G. Documentation is not optional

Any major interaction with a player (warning, punishment, or a commitment for support) must be documented and fully explained. Plots must be fully documented and explained, with updates and progress reports, especially when plot events cause a player or group to suffer or benefit.

Code must be at least minimally documented so another programmer knows where to find your additions for maintenance or bug fixes. Documentation in all cases should be sufficient such that another admin could pick up your project, figure it out, and continue it without interruption.

6H. Interacting with your personal character

Admins are encouraged to continue playing CS with their original character slot. However, any perceived or actual favouritism towards this character must be vigilantly avoided. An admin should keep at least one degree of separation from their personal character, should not sponsor a group, gang, or plot of which their character is a member, and unless absolutely necessary, recuse themselves from code works directly involving their characters, groups or known close associates.

Programmers shall not test code or troubleshoot game systems using their personal characters. Instead, an NPC should be used where required. The admin team is held together by trust, and so these interaction guidelines are not absolute rules. However, in all cases, the administrator should openly and frankly explain or document situations where the admin bit affects or influences the personal character's in-game status.

Where practical, is it preferred that administrators do not actively operate their character while performing administrative duties and vice versa.