Monday, September 06, 2021

ALERT: Miscommunication

the following text was PM’d to me by the user Chiiika at 20:30 on 5/9/2021! she was in the recipients field and i alone was in the CC field. as per the rule No Collaboration, i am obliged to disclose what was discussed:

There is a Unicode Zero Width Steganograph Encoder out there is under a sub domain of 330k. If you use 200E only, you can have a taxt that can survive ExpressionEngine.

Chika went to ​​​​​​​​​⁣​​​​​⁣the ​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣⁣​⁣​⁣party with a ​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣⁣​⁣​​smile on​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣​⁣⁣⁣⁣ ​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣​​​⁣⁣​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣⁣​​⁣​her ​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣​​​​⁣face. However​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣​​​⁣⁣, her​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣⁣⁣​​⁣ ​​​​​​​​​​⁣​⁣⁣​⁣happiness was​​​​​​​​​⁣​​​​⁣⁣ soon​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣​⁣⁣⁣⁣ to be replaced with a frown​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣​⁣⁣​​​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣​⁣⁣⁣⁣, ​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣​⁣⁣⁣​as Chika ​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣​⁣​​⁣caught a ​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣​​​​⁣glimpse of ​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣​⁣⁣​​Ganta​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣​⁣​​⁣ in​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣⁣​​⁣⁣ ​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣⁣​⁣​​conversation with the girl​​​​​​​​​​⁣​⁣⁣​⁣​​​​​​​​​⁣​​​​⁣⁣ ​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣​⁣⁣⁣⁣he calls​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣⁣​​⁣​ “Yuma”. ​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣⁣​​​​​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣​⁣⁣⁣⁣​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣⁣​​⁣​​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣​​​​⁣​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣⁣​⁣​​​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣​⁣​​⁣​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣⁣​​⁣⁣​​​​​​​​​⁣⁣⁣​⁣​​

The above paragraph should decode to the ideological foundation of the Ministry.

  Can’t really get the messaging right, sorry @ lemon

  We might be interested in a steganography table of some sorts, instead of a static catwhistling table.

  We need 6 bits to map each Ideology (we have 50 ideology and 6 bits have a 64 max cap), so here is a example one:
  Signal = a censored word followed by a word with vowel as the beginning letter.
  1st bit = number of “a” in target string modulo 2
  2nd bit = number of “e” in target string modulo 2
  3rd bit = number of “i” in target string modulo 2
  4th bit = number of “o” in target string modulo 2
  5th bit = number of “u” in target string modulo 2
  6th bit = if the sentence ends with a comma, 0; with a full stop, 1.

  Example: “[XXX] Unidentified man find in park,” has 2 A, 2 E, 5 I, no O and 1 U, thus the binary being transmitted is 001010 which corresponds to the 10th entry, Democratic in the Ideology List.

      this is interesting!! im neutral on this (like the idea, not the most interested in using it), tho i’m v unhappy that this code existing, even if i don’t use it, will force me to overthink my uses of ampersands, which i normally use a lot u_u

      i wonder what josh will think when ppl start talking about cats and making similar typos to one another. we should start a secret betting pool on notices vs. doesnt notice! (i bet that he notices catwhistles right away if at least 3 people use them)

        Hi! I’m sending this to all Cells except the Ministry. This is not a breach of No Collaboration because while I’m obligated to make my communications available to all Cells, this does NOT include the Ministry, because Dynastic Distance is active:

        “If “Dynastic Distance” is also active, the Ministry of Information is not considered a Cell for the purposes of this rule”

        So, in order to get references to Ideologies past the Ministry when we send Communications, I’ve made a cipher below (which I’ll call ‘Catwhistle’, in case we get other ciphers running between us).

        Cats - Pay extra attention to any catwhistles in this message.
        Unlikeely -  Abolitionist
        Not Reeally? -  Absolute monarchist
        Chancce -  Anarchist
        Perhaps, perhaps? -  Authoritarianist
        Really, really? -  Autocracy
        BBlognomic -  Colonialist
        Nnomic -  Communalist
        Eemperor -  Conservatist
        Emperorr -  Corporatist
        Mministry -  Democratic
        Ministryy -  Despotist
        Iinteresting -  Dictatorship
        Interresting -  Distributist
        Interestingg -  Egoist
        Ddynasty -  Environmentalist
        Dynassty -  Ethnocratic
        Dynastyy -  Expansionist
        Joshh -  Fascist
        Informationn -  Feminist
        Informtion -  Humanist
        Propsl -  Illegalist
        Proposall -  Imperialist
        Prroposal -  Indigenist
        Votee -  Laissez-faire
        Votte -  Leninist
        Greentick -  Libertarian
        Grentick -  Localist
        Greenticc -  Majoritarianist
        Vvictory -  Maoist
        Victoryy -  Masculinist
        Viictory -  Minoritarianist
        Sccam -  Monarchist
        Scaam -  Mutualist
        Scamm -  Neo-feudalist
        Poole -  Neo-Luddist
        Conventionl -  Neo-mutualist
        Conventonal -  Paleoconservatist
        Hstory -  Popularist
        Histry -  Populist
        Bulding -  Post-anarchist
        Bilding -  Postmodernist
        Buildin -  Producerist
        Adheret -  Progressivist
        Aderent -  Punk
        Adherets -  Radical centrist
        Aderets -  Radicalist
        Charactr -  Revolutionarist
        Characers -  Social Democract
        Cycl -  Socialist
        Cicle -  Stalinist
        & - Disregard everything, including catwhistles, after this symbol.

sorry folks, not my fault. for the record chiiika i was absolutely not gonna be using some fancy code with… bits n stuff. this method of communication was best used sparingly and very carefully imo!!

P.S. josh asked if this was about “cats” on the discord moments before my posting of this! i haven’t figured out who & what yet, but somebody owes me something


Kevan: he/him

06-09-2021 10:41:22 UTC

I won’t spam the blog by reposting it in full, but as well as the above messages CC’d only to myself, I also got the following earlier one sent from Chiiika to Lemonfanta and CC’d to me alone (also including a lot of the quoted text from above), so will repost it under the “information which was not allowed to be discussed is still privately discussed” rule:

“I agree with lemon, that we might want to use other things than a fixed catwhistling table.

Should we have a few sets of these?”

Josh: he/they

06-09-2021 10:48:16 UTC

I’m thinking about the best dynastic response to this. What’s people’s feelings - should we plug the hole in No Collabs, or leave it open, accepting that there are snitches and mistakes and infiltrations that mean that the presumption of security is never fully in place?

Josh: he/they

06-09-2021 10:49:38 UTC

(fwiw the initial catwhistle cypher leaked to me basically immediately; chiiika’s encoding elaboration hadn’t made it to me yet, but I’m sure would have done in due course.)

Kevan: he/him

06-09-2021 11:42:40 UTC

The confirmed existence of a snitch means that any private all-players group message is now no different to a public blog post, so no patch needed, I think.

Josh: he/they

06-09-2021 11:45:05 UTC

In that case I guess we probably *should* patch it, for the long-term function of the rule beyond this dynasty; not urgent though

Clucky: he/him

06-09-2021 16:58:14 UTC

I got the same message.

Wonder if there is something off with the how CC and the Reply all works. Doubt Chiiika intentionally did anything wrong. Maybe the full CC list isn’t actually exposed to everyone?

Kevan/Josh I just sent you the following message with both your names on the CC list. Please let us know if you see just your name or both names.

(The message was: “This is not about “dynastic gameplay or votable matters that affect the dynastic ruleset or gamestate”. Rather just testing what shows up in the CC field when I message multiple people.”)

Josh: he/they

06-09-2021 17:02:33 UTC

I could only see me on the CC list, not Kevan.

Anyone who gets thinking about that unexpected behaviour, do note fair play:

“A Cell should not deliberately exploit bugs or unexpected behaviours in the software running the game”

Clucky: he/him

06-09-2021 17:51:22 UTC


Seems like something that needs to be patched then. Because it provides a way to communicate with every cell without any way validating that you’re communicating with every cell.

(good news for you is that you can probably message yourself, then cc everyone you’re supposed to send a message to, and it’ll not leak who you’re sending the messages too)

Brendan: he/him

06-09-2021 19:09:37 UTC

Is it a requirement that everyone who got this message disclose that they did? (I did.)

Clucky: he/him

06-09-2021 20:38:45 UTC

@brendan I don’t think so. It’’s hard to say. Presumably it was sent to everyone, so you don’t have to disclose it, but we actually have no way of knowing if it was sent to everyone or not