Thursday, February 21, 2013

Story Post: POINT OF ORDER: Correction

I think that the comment thread makes it rather clear that this Point of Order is Well Taken.

The heart of this issue is whether or not it is possible to Support or Oppose a coup more than once in a single comment. The rules are silent on this matter, which leaves considerable room for interpretation.

The reasoning submitted to argue that it is not hinges on the notion that the Support or Opposition requires the posting of a comment, and it is impossible to post multiple comments simultaneously. The Honourable Member submitting these arguments draws a parallel to Tabloid Headlines, arguing that one could not make a single post accusing multiple members of contradictory Commitments. The member appears to implicitly submit, as an alternate hypothesis, that the components of the action underlying a Support or Opposition must be taken sequentially.

However, there is a critical distinction between these two situations. In the case of a Tabloid Headline, the action required is the making a *post* (the rules are in fact silent on whether or not multiple headlines must be in distinct posts, but the chair will not rule on this matter unless it arises). In the case of a Support or Oppose attempt, the action required is the posting of a *voting icon*. As such, even if we subscribe to the interpretation that multiple Tabloid Headlines require different posts, the corresponding interpretation for Support or Oppose comments is that multiple Support or Oppose attempts require different *voting icons*, not different comments. One can liken the situation to a municipality required by law to circulate notices of public hearings in a newspaper. The municipality will often do so by publishing multiple notices in a single edition of the newspaper, rather than requiring that each notice occur in a separate newspaper. This is accomplished because the requirement is not that the municipality publish the newspaper, but merely the notice.

There is no rule in BlogNomic against the taking of concurrent actions. While it is true that rule 3.2 provides that simultaneous or broken-up actions may be taken in the GNDT, it has certainly never been the position of BlogNomic that this restricts such from being done on other forms of the game state. Actions affecting the wiki, in particular, are often split (across multiple pages or with the GNDT) or merged (multiple actions in a single edit). There is no reason that this should not also apply to comments, within the constraints required of the action—-for instance, that most actions involving comments cannot, due to their nature, be split across multiple comments.

As such, I cannot find any reason that one cannot Support or Oppose a coup more than once in a comment, and hence I rule that it is indeed allowed to Support or Oppose a coup more than once in a comment.

Accordingly, Josh’s commentary when he resolved the coup was incorrect, and the coup in fact had more Supports then Opposes. Since there are no requirements as to how to resolve a coup, the coup was validly resolved, and RaichuKFM has achieved victory.

I invite the Honourable RaichuKFM to take the chair.

Adminned at 25 Feb 2013 06:29:43 UTC

I argue that my Coup was not Supported 5 times, it was supported 25 times. The Rule states: “Any Honourable Member other than the Speaker may Support or Oppose this attempt by spending 1 Political Capital and posting a FOR or AGAINST voting icon, respectively, in a comment to the Coup” which implies a comment can contain multiple Supports or Oppositions. Josh disagrees, and resolved my Coup as if this was untrue. I ask our Speaker for Judgement.

Comments

Josh:

02-21-2013 18:07:48 UTC

It doesn’t imply anything - it actively states that an individual comment is a requirement of supporting or opposing.

To support or oppose is to “[spend] 1 Political Capital and [post] a FOR or AGAINST voting icon, respectively, in a comment to the Coup.” That is the direction in its entirety; unless every aspect of the direction has been performed it it doesn’t count as Support or Opposition, so unless a vote is in a separate comment to the coup, that requirement hasn’t been met. It later says that “An Honourable Member may Support and/or Oppose a Coup more than once.” In order to do so they must go through the entire action of Supporting or Opposing again, not just a section of it.

Let us draw an analogy. Say I wanted to bombard every player with a Tabloid Headline. Would it be permissible for me to roll them all into a single blogpost? It would not, as they are separate actions. The act of posting is itself intrinsic to the action. It is as such with this.

RaichuKFM:

02-21-2013 18:32:12 UTC

I argue that while it does state that the icon must be in a Comment to the Coup, the action doesn’t explicitly include posting the comment, merely that it must be in a comment to the Coup to count. Therefore, the action may be repeated in the same comment multiple times, and then posting the comment merely validates all of the actions. So while your conclusion makes sense, you have a false premise.

Josh:

02-21-2013 18:35:22 UTC

The rule literally uses the verb “to post” in the same way that you do.

RaichuKFM:

02-21-2013 18:36:35 UTC

Posting the icon, not the comment.

Larrytheturtle:

02-21-2013 20:03:17 UTC

I agree with Raichu on this but i think people take out of something what you want to find. I think a desire to win may be clouding judgments even if unintentionally. That is the whole point of the point of order though, to bring in an unbiased view.

Josh:

02-21-2013 21:19:53 UTC

Raichu - I think that publishing is kind of fundamental to the concept of “posting”. If I click on the “for” icon in the comment box of a proposal, but don’t hit submit, can I be said to have voted for it?

RaichuKFM:

02-21-2013 22:24:35 UTC

You’re missing my argument: the icons must be in a comment to the Coup, but nothing explicitly states that the act of posting the comment is part of one Support/Opposition. So yes, you must publish the comment to support or oppose a Coup, but nothing in the Rule “actively states that an individual comment is a requirement of supporting or opposing.” It states a comment is required, but not an individual comment. As such, one comment can contain multiple Supports or Oppositions.

You made the argument that posting the comment is an explicit part of the action, and as such one comment can only contain one Support or Opposition. I’m not arguing that posting a comment isn’t necessary, I’m arguing that it isn’t an explicit part of the action of Supporting or Opposing. It is, rather, that BEING in a post to a Coup is an explicit requirement of a Support or Opposition.

Being in the comment is a necessary requirement, but not explicitly stated as part of the action. As such, multiple actions can be taken, and they all fit the requirement of being “in a comment to the Coup” once the comment is posted. They can be repeated in one comment as posting the comment isn’t part of the action; Yes, it is necessary to post the comment, but it validates the actions, not concludes them. If one doesn’t post the comment, the action was taken but made illegal as the comment was not to the Coup.

The way “Votable Matters” is written, posting the comment is an explicitly stated action. In “La Revolucion”, posting the icon is the explicitly stated action. It must be posted in a comment to the Coup, but one can post multiple icons in one comment. “La Revolucion” is worded differently than “Votable Matters”, and should be treated as such.

Josh:

02-22-2013 08:08:47 UTC

We’ve reached the point, I think, where we’re just restating our positions with greater verbiage but no new insight, so I’ll finalise my argument for the sake of the record and leave it at that.

I understand your argument perfectly, but I think it relies on a strained reading of the rule, which is very straightforwardly worded. To recap, the rule is:

Any Honourable Member other than the Speaker may Support or Oppose this attempt by spending 1 Political Capital and posting a FOR or AGAINST voting icon, respectively, in a comment to the Coup.

Your argument appears to be that the bolded section above is contextual rather than integral, and that it is merely descriptive of the process rather than being a binding part of it. I cannot accept that on the simple basis that the ruleset doesn’t have a concept for “empty description”. Every word in the ruleset is meaningful, and if it occasionally doesn’t do what we expect it to, well, that’s Nomic.

Your basis for excluding one section of this rule is opaque. This single sentence describes the action in the following way:

* Description of action: Any Honourable Member other than the Speaker may Support or Oppose this attempt
* Passive voice preposition: by
* Action Element #1: spending 1 Political Capital
* Action Element #2: and posting a FOR or AGAINST voting icon, respectively, in a comment to the Coup.

The last section, “in a comment to the coup”, can’t belong to any part of the sentence other than Action Element #2. So when you say “being in the comment is a necessary requirement, but not explicitly stated as part of the action” I find it impossible to understand. It is a single sentence that contains those words and that meaning quite explicitly. Why does that element of the rule get treated differently? On what basis can it be excluded from the action in its totality? The rule describes an element as a coherent linked whole, but you seem to want to make an element of it flexible. There is no basis for that in the ruleset or in lived precedent.

My second point is that the rule used the verb “posted” when referring to the voting icon; as discussed at length, the verb “to post” has a common English usage that includes the concept of publishing, and as such a voting icon cannot be said to be posted unless it has appeared in some form on the blog. This is to some extent substantiated by the glossary, which defines “post” in its noun form as “A blog post published to the BlogNomic weblog”. The dictionary has the verb form as “To display in a place of public view.” I believe that even without the explicit section requiring that a comment be posted, the inclusion of this verb alone would be enough to require that the voting icon be published as part of the single action of casting it.

There; that’s my case. I look forward to the Speaker’s judgement.

RaichuKFM:

02-22-2013 10:28:31 UTC

With my arguments, I was attempting to refute your points, and I think my point may have been lost. So I’ll state it here clearly:

My point really is that if you put 11 FOR icons, pay 11 Political Capital, and post them all in a comment, you have done 11 separate actions concurrently. The entire point of calling the “in a comment to the Coup” bit not an “explicit” action was to refute your argument that one must post the comment to complete the action of Supporting/Opposing. It says you must post the icon in a comment, which is still fulfilled by posting multiple icons in the same comment.

I also await arbitration.

Josh:

02-22-2013 11:00:46 UTC

The ruleset doesn’t allow for concurrence except in the case of GNDT updates.


(last word last word)

Purplebeard:

02-22-2013 11:56:55 UTC

It baffles me that both sides of this argument have failed to even mention the most obvious solution to this problem: instigating a nationwide proletarian revolution.

RaichuKFM:

02-22-2013 12:14:40 UTC

One does them separately, and they resolve concurrently. I don’t know what portion of the Ruleset you refer to; could you link it? And if you can’t do actions concurrently in one comment, how can you vote and attach Political Capital to it, as if Supporting 11 times is illegally concurrent, then voting and attaching weight is illegally concurrent.

Josh:

02-22-2013 12:47:49 UTC

I SAID LAST WORDSIES.

(The answers to those questions are obvious and obviously disputable - voting and attaching weight is specified as a single action in the ruleset, while Supporting and then Supporting again are specified as separate ones, which sends its right back up to the top of the page again - but I really think scshunt has enough to go on here.)

scshunt:

02-25-2013 14:20:02 UTC

I think that the comment thread makes it rather clear that this Point of Order is Well Taken.

The heart of this issue is whether or not it is possible to Support or Oppose a coup more than once in a single comment. The rules are silent on this matter, which leaves considerable room for interpretation.

The reasoning submitted to argue that it is not hinges on the notion that the Support or Opposition requires the posting of a comment, and it is impossible to post multiple comments simultaneously. The Honourable Member submitting these arguments draws a parallel to Tabloid Headlines, arguing that one could not make a single post accusing multiple members of contradictory Commitments. The member appears to implicitly submit, as an alternate hypothesis, that the components of the action underlying a Support or Opposition must be taken sequentially.

However, there is a critical distinction between these two situations. In the case of a Tabloid Headline, the action required is the making a *post* (the rules are in fact silent on whether or not multiple headlines must be in distinct posts, but the chair will not rule on this matter unless it arises). In the case of a Support or Oppose attempt, the action required is the posting of a *voting icon*. As such, even if we subscribe to the interpretation that multiple Tabloid Headlines require different posts, the corresponding interpretation for Support or Oppose comments is that multiple Support or Oppose attempts require different *voting icons*, not different comments. One can liken the situation to a municipality required by law to circulate notices of public hearings in a newspaper. The municipality will often do so by publishing multiple notices in a single edition of the newspaper, rather than requiring that each notice occur in a separate newspaper. This is accomplished because the requirement is not that the municipality publish the newspaper, but merely the notice.

There is no rule in BlogNomic against the taking of concurrent actions. While it is true that rule 3.2 provides that simultaneous or broken-up actions may be taken in the GNDT, it has certainly never been the position of BlogNomic that this restricts such from being done on other forms of the game state. Actions affecting the wiki, in particular, are often split (across multiple pages or with the GNDT) or merged (multiple actions in a single edit). There is no reason that this should not also apply to comments, within the constraints required of the action—-for instance, that most actions involving comments cannot, due to their nature, be split across multiple comments.

As such, I cannot find any reason that one cannot Support or Oppose a coup more than once in a comment, and hence I rule that it is indeed allowed to Support or Oppose a coup more than once in a comment.

Accordingly, Josh’s commentary when he resolved the coup was incorrect, and the coup in fact had more Supports then Opposes. Since there are no requirements as to how to resolve a coup, the coup was validly resolved, and RaichuKFM has achieved victory.

I invite the Honourable RaichuKFM to take the chair.