Rights -  Responsibilities -  Rules -  Mod policies
 Tournaments -  Forum moderation -  Contacting a mod/admin

 Rights:

  • Mods & admins take a relaxed approach to rule enforcement based on mutual respect for other players.
  • Mods & admins keep an objective view when they have to enforce rules.
  • Mods & admins give the benefit of the doubt to a reasonable degree.
  • Mod & admin actions are logged, and can be checked over if requested.

 Responsibilities:

  • Use common sense and respect other players.
  • Help the mods & admins keep our server fun.
  • Don't abuse the software to gain an edge in online games that isn't possible in a real-life.
  • Keep up to date with the rules and FAQ to make things easier for us.
  • Protect your account with a strong password and a secure account e-mail address.

 Rules:

1. No Multi-Accounting

You may only have one account, second accounts are not allowed under any circumstances, and will be banned. This may also lead to your first account also being banned.  If you forget your password, use the lost password finder here. If you are still unable to log in, contact the mods.

2. No Meta-gaming

You cannot play a public game with players that you know outside of the site. In doing so, you create an unfair environment for other players by giving yourself the opportunity to form alliances for reasons outside the game. This includes playing public games with family, friends, relatives, coworkers, or even joining a game with any player of a previous game with a predetermined intent to ally with or attack certain players. Additionally, you cannot make deals based on any factors outside of the game.

Because Diplomacy is a social game, we always encourage playing with friends. However, you should always do so in a private, password-protected game and make sure that every player knows about any real life connections before the game begins.

3. Don't work around game messaging/press rules.

If you enter a game with limited press/messaging (such as global-only) then you can't use other methods such as the forum, email, or PM to bypass this.

If you are playing in a gunboat (no press/anon game) do not post anything about your game in the forum and refrain from posting in any threads you feel might be referencing your game.

Using the Pause or Cancel buttons as signals to other players is violating the press rules. For example, voting pause to signal the desire for a smaller draw is not allowed. If you need a pause in a gunboat game contact the moderators (see below for the contact details) and explain why.

Posting in the forum about an ongoing gunboat (no press) game or a limited press game is not allowed for anyone. This includes offering advice to game participants or predicting the outcome of a game. All questions about a gunboat game must wait until the game is completed.

4. Do not use the software or moderators as a diplomacy tactic

Lying is fine in Diplomacy except when it gives mods/admins unnecessary work to do!

Falsely accusing someone of being a multi-accounter/meta-gaming to rally others against them in a game, or claiming that your orders didn't come out the way you entered them to cover up your motives, means mods/admins spend time looking for cheaters/bugs which were made up.

All accusations against other players must be made directly to the mod/admin team directly as specified below, in private, for this reason, and software bug claims must be genuine, even if only told to another player. Avoid making cheating accusations in game, via pm, or on the forum.

5. The Pause/Unpause feature is not a diplomatic tool

The pause is there to stop players from missing their orders, but is not part of the game.  As such pausing or unpausing should not be used for diplomatic gain, such as refusing to unpause unless other players will draw the game.  If it is being abused staff may step in to sort it out.

The pause button cannot be used as a diplomatic tool and should not be used for anything other than indicating the need for a pause. If you need a pause in a gunboat game that was not agreed upon before the game, email the moderators before voting to pause. The moderators will post in the global press asking for a pause. The other players are not obligated to pause in this situation, and force pauses will not be granted except in emergency situations until the moderators can find someone to watch your account. Please try to plan ahead and avoid the need for pauses if possible.

6. You may not access another player's account without permission

In general, account sitting (getting someone you trust to log on as you and issue orders when you are unable to) is encouraged.  However, you must not get a sitter or sit for somebody you share games with. Also, anything done by the sitter whilst on your account is your responsibility, so make sure you're happy with that before you give them your password.
It is also your responsibility to change your password after allowing someone to use your account.

7. Do not spam the forum or private messaging system

You are welcome and indeed encouraged to join in with the community but be sensible.  Try to keep replies relevant to the conversation and don't start too many threads at once. Before posting a question relating to the software please read the FAQ.

8. You must answer communication from site staff

You must answer any warnings or other messages sent to you by the moderators, because if you don't reply it will be assumed you have something to hide, and your account may be closed.  As part of this, you must make sure that the email address provided is one you still check, because this normally how staff will communicate with you.

9. Follow common sense

The rules above are mainly ones which might not be obvious; just because a specific rule isn't given here doesn't mean moderators can't stop people ruining the server for others!

 Mod Policies:

Cancelling games

We will consider cancelling games when there are 2 or more multis in the same game and they had a considerable effect on the game as a whole. We will encourage the remaining players to cancel on their own. If they do not, we will ask for an explanation. We will determine if the explanation is warranted and either leave it alone or force cancel with an explanation. If no players have been eliminated the remaining players may choose to draw the game before it is cancelled.

Pausing/Unpausing

The players should take care of this themselves as much as they can. If they have agreed to pause, then they should have agreed when to unpause. If the unpause doesn't happen by said date, then they can email us and we will look into it.

Cheating Accusations/Repercussions

If you make cheating accusations in the forum, we will give you a stern warning and/or "small" point dock (10% of your total points or 20 to 100 D, whichever is smaller) for the first offense depending on the severity of the accusation and how well-acquainted you are with the site. For the second offence, we will levy a heavier fine, which will be at least 10% of your total points, and we will consider more serious actions depending on the specifics of the offence.

Moderator Responsibilities and Appealing decisions

As users have their own set of responsibilities, so does the moderator staff. As representatives of the WebDiplomacy users, the moderators will be held accountable for disciplinary decisions. While judgement regarding forum rule violations remains at the sole discretion of the moderator staff, users will be provided with a clear warning regarding rules violations in either a forum post or private message. Users can appeal any moderator's decision by sending an email to diplomacy@speedycomputing.com specifying the grounds for the appeal. The appeal will be dealt with by one of the admins who was not involved in the original decision or by the site owner. Appeals made on behalf of other members will not be considered. The outcome of an appeal is final.

Please keep all appeals to email. When multiple forum threads are made about a moderation decision the resulting confusion becomes a frustration for members and moderators alike. There may be a formal explanation and discussion on moderator decisions in the forum, but the moderator staff will never disclose information that may contain personal information about members or about the methods used to enforce the rules. In situations where multiple threads are opened on a specific topic the site administrators may close the duplicate threads and open an official thread to explain the issue and give the final determination on the appeal.

See below for more on mod and admin contact details.

 Tournaments & Feature games:

There are two types of special games on the site. If you're interested in starting or running either type please email the mod team (see the contact details below) and explain your idea to the moderator team.

1. Feature Games

These are special rule games like Chainsaw diplomacy, Pacifist diplomacy, or School of War games. They may involve violating some site rules so a predefined set of rules must be agreed upon by every participant.

  • No more than 14 players (exception being a world game)
  • May require shuffling players by the moderator team
  • Must email webdipmod@gmail.com for quick approval, this email should include participants, pause agreements (if any), end game requirements (if any), and alteration to press rules (if any).

2. Tournaments

These are larger series of games with unique scoring rules to determine a winner. These games will have a Tournament Director (TD), who will oversee all aspects of the tournament. This person will be responsible for making decisions relating to the scoring, pauses, and anything affecting game play.

  • Must request approval *before* advertising. The moderator team reserves the right to deny tournaments or tournament directors.
  • Must include a set of rules for potential participants to agree upon, that all participants must agree too.
  • In the case of cheating less severe than multi accounting the Tournament Director will be informed and given the choice of removing this player from the tournament. Participants agree to honor the TD's decision in these matters and send all complaints privately to the TD or moderator team.
  • The moderator team will enforce site-wide rules in tournaments as they do other games.
  • Players within tournaments have to accept that the TD moderates their own tournament decisions. Please choose which tournaments to join carefully!
  • TD's may request the list and position of players in their tournament even in anonymous games expect for games they are participating in.
  • TD's may request the moderator team pm or email any player with questions or warnings regarding the tournament.
  • TD's may request a message be posted in every games public messaging, including anon games, to remind participants of tournament rules or for tournament scoring updates.
  • If a TD is given control of country assignments, force pause, draw, and so forth, he/she cannot moderate their own game. Either a second designated TD or a mod may moderate the game instead, but the TD will still have final say on any decisions.
  • As with all mod / admin decisions if you disagree with a decision you can appeal it. See below for the mod / admin contact details.

Please e-mail the mod / admin team if you want to start a tournament (see the contact details below), and you will be asked some queries that will help us set the tournament up.

 Forum moderation:

 Self-moderation:

A user-driven approach is generally taken to forum moderation;

  • You can mute any other user which you don't want to see in the forum or get PMs from.
  • You can mute any forum thread you aren't interested in.
  • You can mute any country playing in a game with you.

This allows you to block out anyone or any discussion you find offensive, and be as open or restrictive in what you see as you like!

 Site-moderation:

In order to maintain a positive user experience please follow the forum rules below!

  1. Do not make personal threats toward members or their families. This is a Diplomacy site and no members should have to worry about actions taken against them in real life.
  2. Do not post or make reference to personal information about another member without their specific consent.
  3. Do not make targeted threads that are abusive or degrading toward another member, group of members, or social group. This includes but is not limited to posts regarding sexuality, race, and religion.
  4. Creating an account for the sole purpose of advertising goods or services is not allowed, but a member can post an advertisement as long as he/she does not spam the forum by posting the same message repeatedly.
  5. Punishment for infractions may range from a warning, a temporary silence of 48 hours each time to a ban at the discretion of the site owner. The moderator staff retains sole discretion in taking punitive measures. Silences will prevent forum posts as well as private messages. Bans are an instrument of last resort and the moderator staff will seek to avoid issuing them where reasonably possible.

Additionally, threads which share information on a private / anonymous / gunboat game, or threads about suspected multi-accounters / meta-gamers / bugs have a negative impact on games which self-moderation can't prevent, so the mod team can lock/silence these threads:

  • Silences can apply to a user or a thread.
  • The details can be viewed on the forum page, when the "New thread" button is pressed.
  • Thread silences last indefinitely, but user silences expire after a brief cool-off period.
  • Silenced threads / users can still be viewed, however no more messages may be posted.
  • Silenced users can still play in games; a silence only affects the forum and pm's.

Don't create new accounts to work around user silences, or post threads to continue on from ones which have been silenced! Do not post messages on the forum for users who have been silenced. This may result in bans etc, which would be worse than simply keeping off the forum for a few days.

When in doubt about whether posting something is allowed, remember your first responsibility: use common sense and respect other players!"

 Contacting a mod/admin:

Why contact a mod/admin:

Mods can:

  • Pause/Unpause/Draw games when a player is unavailable to vote.
  • Access months of server logs and the software to detect/analyze possible multi-accounters based on a range of criteria.
  • Ban/unban users, reset user/game passwords, give/take points, change game settings like phase length, etc.

For these issues use the info below to send reports. For other issues such as bug reports, general questions, etc, you should go elsewhere (e.g. the built-in forum or the developer forum).

Where to send

What to send

Always try to have some clear reasons when contacting and do not mention it on the forum. In your report/email text you should include:

  • If making a general request (e.g for an unpause):
    • Ensure that you make the subject line useful (e.g. "Unpausing help" or "Phaselength change") so we know we can quickly deal with it in a spare moment - if you don't it might not be solved for some time.
    • In cases such as drawing/pausing a game standard practice is to check the global chat of the game before acting, so please get other players to post their agreement.
      You don't necessarily need everyone to agree, and we will post back into the global chat when we change these settings letting you know.
  • If reporting a multi-accounter:
    • Links to the accounts of the players who you suspect. (If reporting via email)
    • Link(s) to any specific game(s) that raised your suspicions.
    • Any relevant information that you have noticed.
    • You do not have to tell us who you are, but it can be helpful. (If reporting via email)
    • If reporting via email please make the subject line more useful than "multis?" Something like "Multis: Username1 and Username2?" is more helpful for the moderators!

We will try to reply to you quickly, but be patient: investigations can take quite some time. If a week or two after we still haven't got back to you then feel free to follow it up.

Thanks for reading,
- The mod/admin team