Call For Judgement 356 - Fri, 21 Mar 1997 21:23:35 -0500
Subject: Keys II
Initiator: Malenkai
Judge: Calvin N Hobbes (selected Mar 18, 1997, 1:33h EST)
Judgement: TRUE at Tue, 18 Mar 1997 09:09:33 -0500
Appealed by ThinMan at Tue, 18 Mar 1997 19:33:15 -0500
Supreme Court's Judgement: FALSE


When a Key defined in rule 222 is buried in a Treasure, it is transferred to the Chartreuse Goose instead.
Initiator's Comments:
Always pressed for time, I cannot research this, but the reasoning of CFJ 354 asserts the truth of the statement here. Lets ask the justice system to be sure, in keeping with not establishing game custom in CFJ reasonings.
Judge's Comments:
In accord with CFJ354, to bury a Key is not a crime, that much is certain. Given the request for some reasoning behind this, I will attempt to provide enough.

R1217 states:

>Upon a player (who is not a map custodian with respect to the map in question)
>achieving the conditions for finding buried Treasure as specified by a Treasure
>Map, it is a duty of the map writer or a map custodian (if any exist)tomake this
>fact, and the map, public (once they become aware of the condition being
>achieved, and final act that lead to the condition being achieved is publically
>knowable). This action destroys the map, and the player who achieved the
>conditions receives the Treasure, and thus becomes the owner of its
>constituent entities (which are no longer considered "Treasure").
This means that *all* players (voting and non-voting) are eligible to find a treasure and thus take possession of it as allowed by R1217. Only the map custodian may not get the treasure.

It should be noted that the following is true, from R222, paragraph 4, line 5: "Non-voting players are never eligible to receive Keys".

But as was pointed out, they are eligible to find treasures. There is an inconsistency right there which makes the case for CFJ354 and would point to a ruling of TRUE for this CFJ right here.

For the sake of being thorough, let us review the cases for each of the five keys on by one though. As though this judge had nothing else to do. : )

(1) The Gold Key may be given to any Player whose monetary account has a positive number of A$.

R511, first line, clearly ascertains the fact that players can have a negative balance, if for a short time (until the treasure enslaves them). R510 is even more specific, allowing players to have a negative amount of A$. Many people would also argue a case for zero being neither a positive nor a negative number.

Therefore, it would be possible for a non eligible player to get the Golden Key from a treasure.

(2) The Silver Key may only be given to a Player possessing one or more Gadgets.

Some players do not, or may not own gadgets. Yet they may still find treasures. Hence it would be possible for a non eligible player to get the Silver Key from a treasure.

(3) The Bronze Key may only be given to a Player possessing one or more Processing Chips.

Some players do not, or may not own processing chips. Yet they may still find treasures. Hence it would be possible for a non eligible player to get the Bronze Key from a treasure.

(4) The Chartreuse Key may only be given to a Player possessing one or more of the following Acka Entities: Amber Bananas, the Great Trombone, the little Lamb, and/or the Gumball.

Some players do not, or may not own any of these entities. Yet they may still find treasures. Hence it would be possible for a non eligible player to get the Chartreuse Key from a treasure.

(5) The Purple Key may be initially given to any Player. Once initially distributed, the Purple Key may not be given away, but may be traded for any tradable Acka-Entity.

Non-voting players are not allowed to get a key (from above in the rule so precedence exists also to define "player" as meaning "voting player" in this context right here). Yet they may still find treasures. Hence it would be possible for a non eligible player to get the Purple Key from a treasure.

I also note that the map custodian is disallowed to get it by R1117 while R222 may allow him to get it, meaning the sets are not equal. But that's just a side note and curiosity.

As CFJ354 pointed out, R222 states:

>Any Player possessing one or more Keys may attempt to give a Key to >a non-eligible Player, but that Key shall be immediately returned to the >Goose, and that Player shall no longer be eligible to receive any Keys >for the duration of the Cycle.

Given that we can show that burying a Key is an act which may lead to that Key being given to a player this is ineligible to receive it in all cases, it must be considered an attempt to give the Key to such a player. Hence, it does not take place, but rather is returned immediately to the Goose and the player that tried to bury the key may no longer receive a key for the duration of the Cycle, as per R222.

Appealer's Comments:
I claim that CnH has applied an incorrect test to the legal issues pertaining to CFJ 356. His comments in the CFJ 354 reasoning also utilize the invalid test, although it also happens to lead to the correct (IMO) verdict there.

CnH's opinions on CFJ 354 and CFJ 356 hinged on the concept that burying one of the Keys as a treasure constitutes an attempt to give it to an ineligible player. In the general case, I find CnH's argument unsatisfactory -- the fact that an ineligible player _may_ find the treasure is shaky grounds for making the burying of it constitute an attempt to give it to such a player.

Moreover, and of particular relevance to this case, is the _particular_ instance at issue. snowgod published the following text, purported to be the map to his Silver Key treasure: "The silver key will be found by the first players wit two or more entities who wants to possess, and wants to love it, and hug it, and call it george." Suppose that this is, indeed, the correct map to the treasure. The conditions established therein specifically attempt to prevent an ineligible player from finding the treasure. (They miss the non-voting exception, though.) It is clearly possible to write a map to a treasure containing a Key such that no ineligible player can find it, and burying a Key as part of a treasure with such a map cannot be construed as an attempt to give it to an ineligible player.

It is impossible to make a general, true statement about whether burying a Key as treasure causes it to be transferred to the Chartreuse Goose, because it depends on the map. Some conceivable treasure maps could be construed as specific attempts to put a Key into the hands of an ineligible player; some could not possibly be construed as attempts to put a Key in the hands of an ineligible player; most, IMO, cannot clearly be construed as such an attempt, even though they leave open the possibility of an ineligible player coming into possession of a Key.

Supreme Court's Comments:
The Court upholds ThinMan's reasoning.
Penalty to original judge:
At Mon, 24 Mar 1997 08:54:31 -0500 the Justices agreed to a 1 point penalty.

Call For Judgement 357 - Wed, 26 Mar 1997 09:26:17 -0500
Subject: Keys III
Initiator: Malenkai
Judge: Red Barn (selected Mar 18, 1997, 1:44h EST) (failed to respond)
2nd Judge: ThinMan (selected Mar 25, 1997, 14:50h EST)
Judgement: FALSE


The Silver Key (defined in rule 222), was transferred to /dev/joe on March 8th, 1997.
Initiator's Comments:
snowgod posted the following public message on that date:
> I am giving the Silver Key to /dev/joe.
I believe there is a reading of R 222 that would allow this transfer without /dev/joe's ack (he never acked the transfer), and this should be cleared up. If this is true, it would have eaten a Gadget on March 15th.
Judge's Comments:
I can see the reading of R 222 to which Malenkai refers, but I do not think it is the best reading. According to R 222, the Silver Key is tradeable. Also according to R 222, "The Silver Key may only be given to a Player possessing one or more Gadgets." R 222 thus places a restriction on to whom the Silver Key may be transferred -- but it does not provide for that Key to be transferred in any way other than that established elsewhere in the Rules. The Silver Key is not a gift entity, so its transfer requires an acknowledgement. /dev/joe did not acknowledge the transfer, so it did not occur.

The case might well have been decided the other way if it had involved the Gold Key, because R 222 also says, "The Gold Key may be given to any player whose monetary account has a positive number of A$." This is a fundamentally different provision than the one for the Silver Key, as this one seeks to make positive provision for the transfer instead of to place a restriction. I am at a loss to explain why the Silver and Gold Keys are handled differently, but we must obey the rules as they are written. Game Custom is silent on this issue, and I do not think that the spirit of the game indicates a preference for any particular reading of this rule.

Call For Judgement 358 - Thu, 20 Mar 1997 09:12:44 -0500
Subject: Crazy French-Scotsman and the End of the Cycle
Initiator: Vynd
Judge: Red Barn (selected Mar 19, 1997, 9:02h EST)
Judgement: TRUE


Vynd's complaint on 3/17/97, 1:30 am EST, about having his points set to zero at the end of the last cycle, was a legitimate exercise of the public complaining ability for the purpose of having point losses counteracted described in Rule 1129/1: Crazy French-Scotsmen.
Initiator's Comments:
The crucial question here, in my opinion, is whether or not having my score set to zero at the end of the cycle constitutes a loss of points, but I'll go over some of the technicalities here as well. Rule 1129/1 states that any new player who has never played Ackanomic before may "publicly complain when they lose any points or currency. When they exercise this option, the penalty will immediately be counteracted." The definition of a new player who has never played before put forth in this rule clearly covers me, so I have the ability "exercise the option" to complain. There is a little ambiguity in the wording I quoted when it comes to "penalty," but it seems it seems reasonably clear that it must refer to the loss of "any points or currency" mentioned in the previous sentence, even if it does not use that exact term.

So, we come to the real dilemma: Is having my score reset to my eggplant weight, as described in rule 666, a loss of points. I believe that it is. Rule 1129/1 does not specificaly define what constitutes a loss of points for the purposes of Crazy French Scotsman-type complaining. An admitedly less than exhaustive (although rahter exhausting) review of the rules and CFJs does not reveal any general rules or customs defining what constitutes a loss of points. I am therefore forced to assume that common sense and logic plays some sort of a role here. Logicaly, anytime my collection of points, or "score" as some people call it, changes from one number to a lower number, then I have lost some points. My score at the end of the last cycle was 3. After my score was reset according to rule 666, my score was 0. 0 is, to the best of my knowledge, less than 3. By this reasoning, I lost some points when my score was reset, and according to rule 1129/1 I have the right to complain about it and have the "penalty" counteracted. In my message of 3/17/97, at 01:30 EST, I exercised this right to complain, using the the terms and manner called for by rule 1129/1. This being the case, my complaint should be considered valid, and all the effects described in rule 1129/1 as occuring upon the public posting of a valid complaint should take place.

Judge's Comments:
I'm probably not the best person to judge this, since, were I to render a judgement of TRUE, as I am strongly tempted to do, my own Crazy French-Scotsmanhood would have to be reconsidered (I used a similar argument). Nonetheless I will do so to the best of my ability.
The second paragraph of Vynd's statement seems to be concerned entirely with establishing that a change in score from three points to zero constitutes a "loss of points". I have no problem with this; had the applicable wording been "penalty", the matter would have been open to debate, but with it as it is it is not. (Sorry, fewer short words in future.)
Now, the question arises: was it otherwise valid? I assume so; I'm not about to download the entire mailing-list archive to validate Vynd's claim to having never played before, etc.
The statement said, however "... for the purpose of having point losses counteracted described in ...". This grammar could be quibbled with; read it as "the purpose which was described in rule ...". I suppose this could be counted as a purpose, yes. Fine here.
I see no problems with this, and therefore render a verdict of TRUE.

Call For Judgement 359 - Thu, 20 Mar 1997 01:56:00 -0500
Subject: Modesty Paradox
Initiator: Narf
Judge: breadbox (selected Mar 19, 1997, 9:07h EST)
Judgement: FALSE


Due to conflicts in rules 207 and 209, further game play is impossible.
Initiator's Comments:
Rule 207 states that If a non-Modest proposal is accepted, the player who proposed it receives 10 points, and every player who voted NO on it receives 3 points. If a Modest proposal is accepted, the player who proposed it receives half as many points as he or she would have received otherwise, and no points are awarded for voting NO.

While Rule 209 states Whenever a Modest Proposal is adopted, the number of points scored by its author as a direct result of authoring an adopted proposal shall be half the number of points they would otherwise have scored (rounded down).

I assert that it is impossible to determine the correct number of points to award a player who authors an accepted modest proposal. Rule 207 clearly has precedence in case of conflict, but the two rules do not in fact conflict with one another. Here is my take on the string of events following the acceptance of a modest proposal: According to rule 207, the author receives half the number of points that e would have otherwise, or 5. Rule 209 states that e shall receive half the number of points they would otherwise have scored (rounded down) or... 2. Since 2 is half of 5, rounded down. Of course, no where in the rules does it specify the order of rule application, merely the order of precedence. So... perhaps what REALLY happens is that rule 209 is applied first, giving the author 5 points, then rule 207 kicks in... and because rule 207 does not specify whether or not to round down, the player receives 2 or 3 points. Of course, this is further complicated since we may not even be done at this point. After all, neither rule says that the score should only be haved once. Having halved it to 5 (by application of either rule), in order to fully obey the rule, we would have to halve it again. Now whether or not this generates a score of 2 or 3 again depends on which rule you are following and your interpretattion of it.

What this all leads to, in my opinion, is a situation where it is impossible to determine how many points the author of a modest proposal should receive, and if you disagree with that statement, the only number of points possible is 0.

Judge's Comments:
Though it may not be obvious at first, I believe what this comes down to is the interpretation of the word "otherwise" in the quoted section of Rules 207 and 209. "... half as many points as he or she would have received otherwise" and "half the number of points they would otherwise have scored (rounded down)." While perhaps a case might be made for this being ambiguous, I do not think so: the understood completion in both cases is "had this rule not been applicable." Or, more to the point, "had the proposal not been Modest." That is, the proposal earns half as many points as it would have if it was not Modest and everything else was equal.

Narf's assertion, however, seems to hinge on an implied completion of each clause of "had this rule not been applied", or perhaps "had this rule not existed". With such an interpretation, I might agree that the rules are referring to the current "running total" of penalties and bonuses applied so far. Perhaps the Scorekeeper is expected to start with the base 10 points and then run down the ruleset, applying each penalty/bonus as required, and that a Modest proposal requires the halving to occur twice, once for each rule that mentions it. Given all of the above I could agree that there is no implied order to the application of each penalty, and thus the rounding issue would be a problem. However, this is not the case.

To put the distinction as succinctly as I can: The rules do not say "the player receives half as many points as they were about to be given before applying this rule"; instead they say "the player receives half as many points as they would have received *if* the proposal had not been Modest." Or, if you like: The rules do not each supply one step in the process of determining the points to award; instead they require a number to be calculated first - in both cases the same number - and then halved.

I note that given this interpretation (which, I reiterate, I do not find to be ambiguous when taken in their contexts), the rules would yield to numerical precedence if it were an issue, and thus there would still be no paradox.

Call For Judgement 360 - Mon, 24 Mar 1997 19:55:14 -0500
Subject: *** ***'* *** **** *** ** ** ****
Initiator: Narf
Judge: Techno (selected Mar 20, 1997, 2:50h EST) (filed to respond)
2nd Judge: ThinMan (selected Mar 23, 1997, 10:34h EST)
Judgement: FALSE


CFJ 359 is invalid
Initiator's Comments:
I submitted CFJ 359 to the Clerk of the Court under the email address

According to Rule 211, "Any player who has a question or complaint about any matter concerning the rules, the facts, or their interpretation may email their statement to the Clerk of the Court, who will then distribute it publically. A call for judgement is then incurred on that statement."

Ok, so what constitutes a player? It seems obvious, but there is a slight technicality here.

according to rule 250, "A player is any person who is registered as a player. Players are named, unownable entities. No person may register as a player more than once concurrently. Anyone is allowed to observe the game and participate in discussion of any issue, but no person who is not a player may make a proposal, or vote on any proposal, or call for judgement, or judge, or score points, or win a cycle. "

And according to Rule 252, "A person wishing to join the game, and who cannot do so as a Returning player, should notify the Registrar, providing a valid email address, their real name, and the legal Ackanomic name they wish to play under. Upon them providing this information, should the requested name indeed be a legal Ackanomic name, the Registrar shall post a public message announcing the new player and providing their Ackanomic name, real name, and email address, and if the prospective player provided it, how they discovered the game. Upon the posting of such an announcement, the person becomes registered as a player."

My chain of reasoning goes something like this: I registered as a player giving the email address I never registered under the email address, nor has anyone else. Even though I identified myself to Malenkai at the time of submission, he had no way to verify that that was in fact me.

Should this CFJ be judged false, I could theoreticaly create an email address "" , identify myself as Malenkai and post a message offering to buy 1 pfNarf for A$1000, and then log on as myself and accept the deal. Obviously this CFJ must be judged true.

Supreme Court Justice Mohammed's added Comments:
A player is a person, not an email address. If you offer to buy 1 pfNarf for A$1000, regardless of whose name is in your e-mail address, it is Narf that is offering the deal (and if someone accepted it, you'd be out a thousand bucks.) The statement is False.
Judge's Comments:
I concur with Mohammed that a player is a person, and not an e-mail address. I think that the rules spell that out pretty clearly. The point of confusion is that the rules also say that a player must give his e-mail address to the Registrar. I do not think, however, that that requirement gives any special favor to that particular address. It just lets us know where we should initially send stuff. Indeed, I believe that requirement dates to the days when we all used distribution lists instead of wilma. In a situation like the one Narf described, or like the "Joan of Arkansas" case, it may be difficult or impossible for the players of Ackanomic to determine what exactly is going on, but the Rules just aren't written to protect us from that. Nor should they be, IMO. That doesn't mean that the forged actions would be valid -- they wouldn't. But it might be hard to tell what was forged and what wasn't.

Being a player of Ackanomic, or of any game, involves entering into an implicit social contract, and the kind of deception Narf describes is a violation of the contract. Is it punishable? Not according to our rules. It is essentially an out-of-game action, however, and out-of-game responses, including, but not limited to, complaints to access providers or refusal to continue participation in a game with the violater may be appropriate.

Call For Judgement 361 - Sun, 23 Mar 1997 09:10:51 -0500
Subject: Public Action
Initiator: breadbox
Judge: Vynd (selected Mar 22, 1997, 12:46h EST)
Judgement: FALSE


An attempt to perform a public action announced on the acka-discuss mailing list succeeds.
Initiator's Comments:
Rule 260, "Public Actions", states:
The rules may specify that certain possible courses of play are public actions. Any active player may attempt any public action available to him or her simply by sending a public message specifying the action to be taken. However, if any information that is necessary to specify the action fully and unambiguously is left out of that message, then the attempt fails. [An attempt may also fail for other reasons.]
The only mention of acka-discuss in the postal code is:
acka-research@wilma and acka-discuss@wilma may only be used for trades and gifts of entities, but it is preferred to perform these on acka-finance. acka-research-digest@wilma and acka-discuss-digest@wilma are the digest versions of these lists and are subject to the same restrictions.
So does an announcement of a public action on acka-discuss actually occur, or is it just so much talk?
Judge's Comments:
breadbox's statement is unfortunately very broad, much broader than he intended, from the looks of his reasoning. If I were to judge his statement true, this would imply that any attempt at a public action taken on acka-discuss is automaticaly sucessful, regardless of other considerations. This is clearly not the case, as there are many situations where an attempted action would fail even if it was posted publicly, such as an attempted trade that was refused by the other player. I am therefore rendering a judgement of FALSE.

Call For Judgement 362 - Mon, 31 Mar 1997 18:54:43 -0500
Subject: Treasure Maps
Initiator: Red Barn
Judge: IdiotBoy (selected Mar 22, 1997, 12:49h EST)
Judgement: FALSE at Sat, 22 Mar 1997 16:56:21 -0500
Appealed by Red Barn at Sat, 22 Mar 1997 22:44:57 -0500
Supreme Court's Judgement: FALSE

If a treasure map states that a player shall find its treasure only by fullfilling certain conditions and, after finding the treasure, adhering to certain other conditions, then if e fulfills the initial conditions, is considered to have found the treasure, and subsequently breaks the conditions then applicable, e has not found the treasure.
Initiator's Comments:
Rule 1217 states "The player must write a treasure map that describes, at a minimum, the conditions necessary for a player to find the treasure". It does not state that these conditions need apply only before the treasure has been found, therefore they do not.
[This is my attempt at using existing rules to create a contract-like system, whereby a player must do certain things or they lose the treasure. If this doesn't work, I'll have to go through proposals and nobody will see what I have in mind for a couple of weeks. :) - the treasure map system is actually quite powerful, though it takes some effort to word this sort of thing comprehensibly.]
Judge's Comments:
From Rule 1217, Paragraph 5:

Upon a player (who is not a map custodian with respect to the map in question) achieving the conditions for finding buried Treasure as specified by a Treasure Map, it is a duty of the map writer or a map custodian (if any exist) to make this fact, and the map, public (once they become aware of the condition being achieved, and final act that lead to the condition being achieved is publically knowable). This action destroys the map, and the player who achieved the conditions receives the Treasure, and thus becomes the owner of its constituent entities (which are no longer considered "Treasure").

This section makes it clear that once the conditions of the Treasure Map have been fulfilled, the Map is revealed. Once this occurs, the Map is detroyed and the entities which once made up the Treasure become the possessions of the "finder".

The Map holds no sway over any entities once it's "finding" conditions have been fulfilled. In fact, the Map is destroyed.
The Treasure is no longer Treasure, but merely entities which are subject only to such rules as apply to any other entities of their type.

Appealer's Comments:
However, there's nothing keeping the map from having requirements about the future. The map no longer exists once the treasure has been found, but if the Map could have "looked ahead", the treasure wouldn't have been found in the first place - but we, not having similar foresight, just didn't realize it yet :). I don't see that the conditions need to be only regarding the present and the past - in fact, the treasure hunt rule specifically states:


While that doesn't mean that the conditions can regard the future, there is, I believe, precedent for the game state being undetermined in certain respects. Thus a verdict of TRUE is mandated.

Supreme Court's Comments:
The Court rules that one cannot "achieve" a condition that depends on future events which may or may not take place. At the time the condition is checked, the outcome is uncertain; therefore the condition is not achieved at that time. To apply knowledge gathered at a later time to the condition check would be a retroactive effect.

Call For Judgement 363 - Wed, 26 Mar 1997 19:50:41 -0500
Subject: Contempt
Initiator: snowgod
Judge: Strider (selected Mar 25, 1997, 11:46h EST)
Judgement: TRUE


Each senator is in Contempt.
Initiator's Comments:
Cycle eleven ended on Mar 13 at 17:13 EST. It was longer than thirty days in length and a Commission d'Arts at the beginning of the next cycle by R670:
>1) Upon the end of a cycle which exceeded 30 days in length, or as
>otherwise directed by the rules, The "Commission d'Arts" (Commission)
>shall begin session, which shall last for 7 days. The Senators shall be
>the Commissioners, thus composing this body. Exception: No Commission
>shall be started if it has been less than 60 days since any previous one
>has been started.
The Commission lasted 7 days (until March 20th) at which time a report was due from the senate listing the nominees for the Silver Moon award.
>2) At the end of the session, the Commission shall produce, and publically
>post, a report listing 4 Nominees for the Silver Moon award. A Nominee
>must be a work of art from Acka's past, such as a Silly Vacation Hat
>description, Phoebe post, Gaoler poem, Prosthetic Forehead, etc. Rules,
>Proposals, and other written works are also permissible, but are
>discouraged as Nominees, unless they are truly meritorious. One constraint
>is that the Nominee must be publically accessible from a web page
>maintained by the Web-Harfer. Material created by non-active players is
>discouraged as a Nominee.
No nominees were produced until Mon, 24 Mar 1997 at 07:46:24 (PST). Thus the senators are held in Contempt in accordance with section 4 of R670.
>4) If the Commission fails to produce the report in within the constraints
>of this rule, each Senator is placed in Contempt.
Judge's Comments:

Call For Judgement 364 -
Subject: Farmyard Animals
Initiator: snowgod
Judge: Techno (selected Mar 25, 1997, 11:48h EST) (did not respond)
2nd Judge: ThinMan (assigned Mar 28, 1997, 18:01h EST) (deferred to Supreme Court)
3rd Judge: Supreme Court (assigned Apr 01, 1997, 10:51 EST)
Judgement: UNDECIDED
4th Judge: Jury (preceedings initiated Apr 14, 1997, 13:16h EDT)
Jury's Judgement: INVALID (by default)


ThinMan grabbed breadbox's donkey.
Initiator's Comments:
I am agreeable to either a verdict of TRUE or FALSE. I just wanted to get this cleared up. I suppose it is a timing issue. Breadbox grabbed Malenkai's Little Lamb and ThinMan attempted to grab breadbox's donkey. If the events happen simultaniously, does that mean the breadbox already has the lamb at the time thinman makes his grab attempt?

I honestly don't know and will leave it up to a judge to decide.

Supreme Court's Comments:
The Court finds R1213 (Grab-A-Donkey) silent on the question of whether the Little Lamb is grabbed before, after, or simultaneously with, the grabbing of Donkeys. It turns, then, to Game Custom, whereupon it finds none, as might be expected with a relatively narrow issue (such as this) which has never before arisen. Finally, and in Desperation, it looks to the Spirit of the Game, which is a modicum of help, in that it finds grabbing the Little Lamb simultaneously with Donkeys to Violate the Spirit of the Game by making Grab-A-Donkey unplayable. However it finds Grab-A-Donkey to be an equally good game whether the Little Lamb is grabbed before or after Donkeys are grabbed. Thus, the Court has no legal basis on which to choose one procedure over the other, and (refusing, of course, to choose on an illegal basis) must return a decision of UNDECIDED.
Neither the Prosecutor snowgod nor the Consecutor Red Barn submitted reasoning to mr cwm within the week as prescribed in that rule.

Call For Judgement 365 - Mon, 07 Apr 1997 18:35:51 -0500
Subject: Ad Hoc
Initiator: Malenkai
Judge: Red Barn (selected Mar 25, 1997, 22:43h EST) (failed to deliver verdict)
2nd Judge: ThinMan (assigned Apr 3, 1997, 19:31h EST)
Judgement: FALSE


Rule 1843 calls and Ad Hoc Committee.
Initiator's Comments:
First one must consider whether rule 1843 (or proposal 1843) successfully satisfies section 1a of rule 1803 (as rule 1843 does not have precedence over rule 1803).

More importantly, does rule 1843 "empower" the Ad Hoc committee, per rule 1803, section 2? I do not think so, and believe FALSE is indicated.

Judge's Comments:
I am invoking R340 and interpreting the "and" in the CFJ statement as "an."

After consideration of the provisions of R1080 (R1803 at the time of this CFJ being called), I think it relatively clear that rules are not empowered by that rule to call Ad Hoc committees. In particular, a rule is _not_ an accepted proposal; rather, it is _created by_ an accepted proposal (in general). However, the rules nowhere forbid rules from calling Ad Hoc committees, and in such cases rules generally have whatever authority they claim for themselves.

I also remark that although the passage of P1843 causes its text to be put into a new rule, one could interpret R1080 to have both the proposal and the rule call Ad Hoc committees. I will not issue an opinion on that matter here, however.

I interpret the entire rule, rather than just the first sentence, to constitute the call. Under this reading, R1843 did specify the matter and the specific case on which the Ad Hoc committee was to be called. The question is then, as Malenkai astutely claims, whether any rule empowers the particular Ad Hoc committee that was supposedly called.

The relevant provision of R1080 is this: "If a call to an ad hoc calls specifies a matter, and there exists no rules that empowers an ad hoc committee for such a matter, then the call is void and is ignored."

I interpret "rules that empower [...]" to mean rules that provide some use, interpretation, or response based on the decision of an Ad Hoc committee on some particular matter. I can find no rules rules of that category among those in effect at the time of this Call for Judgement.

Finally, then, what does it mean that the call "is void and is ignored"? Did R1843 actually call an Ad Hoc committee (so that this CFJ would be TRUE) with that call being nonetheless ignored? Or did R1843 in fact, not call an Ad Hoc committee at all? The CFJ statement conveniently goes right to the heart of that question, and it is my judgement that R1843 did _not_ call an Ad Hoc committee.

Call For Judgement 366 - Mon, 07 Apr 1997 18:37:57 -0500
Subject: Voting on the Web
Initiator: Mohammed
Judge: snowgod (selected Mar 30, 1997, 01:46h EST) (failed to deliver verdict)
2nd Judge: ThinMan (selected Apr 06, 1997, 19:38h EDT)
Judgement: TRUE


If the Tabulator were to set up a WWW page that would allow voting players to send votes to him via CGI, and the page had some sort of authorization feature that would help ensure that players could only cast votes on their own behalf, then votes cast through the web page would be as valid as those cast via private e-mail.
Initiator's Comments:
Rule 106 (Voting on Proposals):
> Voting Players may vote either YES, NO, or PRESENT on each proposal, by
> sending their vote to the Tabulator.
It doesn't specify a medium, therefore CGI looks legal to me. The reason I bring this up is that this is very feasible. I just want to make sure it's 100% legal before I put it out there.

(Actually, since it is the sending and not the receiving of the vote that matters, it looks like a player could vote through snail mail, and as long as it reached me before the unretractable-error deadline, we'd have to unwind the game state fifteen times a week.)

Judge's Comments:
Rule 106, by intent, does not specifiy the medium by which votes may be sent to the Tabulator. I concur with Mohammed that CGI would be perfectly legal. I also remark that the authorization feature is not required by the rules, although not including such would expose the Tabulator to a much greater risk of breaking the rules by not correctly attributing votes. Furthermore, I note that the Tabulator is required to accept votes sent to him by any medium. Smoke signals and telepathy are not excluded, for instance. However, I urge players to be nice to our hardworking and dedicated Tabulator, and to restrict themselves to those media that he specifies.

Call For Judgement 367 - Sun, 30 Mar 1997 10:53:44 -0500
Subject: Summoning Demons
Initiator: Niccolo Flychuck
Judge: snowgod (selected Mar 30, 1997, 02:12h EST) (declined)
2nd Judge: breadbox (selected Mar 30, 1997, 02:41h EST)


Mohammed purchased a Demon
Initiator's Comments:
This is one of those 'need to know' CFJs.

Here is the original message:

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From: Jason Orendorff <>
Subject: Acka:  chess:  my move
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In the thread in which I am the (None Yet) Swinger, I am purchasing a new
Party Chess Piece of type Demon.  Demons cost A$15, I believe.  My move is:

Place Demon at r18

Judge's Comments:
On March 9, the Postmaster made the following change to the Postal Code (as part of Postal Code Change 101):
Before the period at the end of the sentence beginning with acka-chess@wilma, insert ", purchases of party chess pieces, and trades involving only Party Chess Pieces and Ackadollars."
thus the sentence in question became:
acka-chess@wilma may only be used for actions in Party Chess, purchases of party chess pieces, and trades involving only Party Chess Pieces and Ackadollars..
which is how it read on March 19. Therefore the transaction quoted above did in fact adhere to proper procedure. In absence of further evidence to the contrary, I conclude that it was completed successfully, and that the statement of this CFJ is true.

Call For Judgement 368 - Mon, 14 Apr 1997 13:29:46 -0400
Subject: Single Nouns
Initiator: IdiotBoy
Judge: Ackers (selected Mar 31, 1997, 19:14h EST) (failed to deliver verdict)
2nd Judge: ThinMan (assigned Apr 09, 1997, 20:42h EDT)
Judgement: INVALID


For the purposes of Rule 596 (Mad Scientist), a capitalized entity is a "single noun."
Initiator's Comments:
This hasn't quite come up yet, but I want some clarification before it potentially does.

If someone brings the Mad Scientist a part from the rules related to the Fat Lady, can they claim that they wish to replace "Fat Lady" with <monster-name>?

I personally, believe they can, but I'd like something definitive.

Judge's Comments:
Rule 596 makes no mention of "single noun[s]." IB presumably meant Rule 597 (Frankenstein Monsters), but given that he specified the rule title as well, no rule allows me second guess him. Even if I could interpret the statement as pertaining to R 597, I know of no rule-based, or even customary, interpretation of a "capitalized entity." I assume that I know what IB was trying to say, but you all know what that makes out of u and me. It seems most reasonable, given these circumstances, to judge INVALID.

Rule 597 really is pretty unclear on the matter anyway; I think a better approach would be to amend that rule to say that proper nouns are considered to be "single nouns" for the purpose of that rule. In the past I have been careful to select parts that do not fall into this fuzzy area.

Call For Judgement 369 - Wed, 09 Apr 1997 20:34:27 -0400
Subject: Dealing with the Paranormal
Initiator: Malenkai
Judge: breadbox (selected Apr 02, 1997, 23:11h EST)
Judgement: FALSE


Proposal 1866 was not accepted.
Initiator's Comments:
Niccolo Flychuck used a paranormal power in casting a Bonus Vote on that proposal. From R 261, which has precedence over the Bonus Vote rule (317):
> If a player has made use of a Paranormal Power then that player
> (also called Krykec for the purposes of this rule) is taken in for
> questioning. Krykec will be injected with an alien sedative which 
> destroys one of her doses of psi-enhancer if she has at least one,
> and which otherwise removes whichever Paranoral Power that player has
> most recently used.
The key here is the rendering of 'removes whichever Paranormal Power [...]'. Certainly the BV is the power in question. So what happens when it is 'removed'? Is it removed from the game, without counting on the proposal, or after it is counted on the proposal? Given rule 261's precedence over the BV rule, perhaps a prickly problem for the judge.

That reading seems more questionable; it is reasonable that Mold and Scold destroy the vote after it has its effect, but a reading where the bonus vote is destroyed before it counts on the proposal is there too. According to rule 317, the BV has an effect when it is e-mailed to the Tabulator; its only a problem if R 261 is construed to be in conflict with that (ie, Mold & Scold's destruction of it has precedence over its effect, or comes *before* its effect is recorded).

If the bonus vote did not count on the proposal, the results were 9 in favor, 5 against, resulting in failure and a verdict of true.

Vynd pointed this whole thing out on IRC. I also note, that from the time Niccolo Flychuck submitted that bonus vote to the Tabulator, he was abducted by the W-File pair for 48 hours, and is subject to the restrictions and provisions in rule 261. Since only he and the Tabulator know when that was, they should make sure the rule is complied with.

Judge's Comments:
This is indeed a bit sticky. For this judge, the question comes down to whether a Bonus Vote is viewed as: a) something that changes from a Bonus Vote into a vote (i.e., a vote on a proposal), or: b) something that allows a player to have a second vote (i.e., the ability to vote). Treating Bonus Votes as the former would seem to imply that the W-File's actions would destroy the vote on the proposal as well, while the latter interpretation would favor the vote surviving the removal of the Bonus Vote.

After reading the rules in question several times, I find that they lean towards the interpretation of a Bonus Vote being a "right to two votes" (though not obviously so). One example: Rule 317 states that, under more normal circumstances, a Bonus Vote that has been used to cast a vote is not destroyed until the Tabulator has released the voting results. Such a clause is unnecessary and redundant when Bonus Votes are viewed as in (a), but makes perfect sense under interpretation (b).

This is the interpretation that I find most favored by the spirit of the game as well.

Thus, Niccolo Flychuck's Bonus Vote, though destroyed before the voting results were released, did in fact submit a vote in favor of Proposal 1866.

Call For Judgement 370 - Sat, 12 Apr 1997 15:51:45 -0400
Subject: Paradoxical Existentialism
Initiator: Narf
Judge: fnord (selected Apr 06, 1997, 15:08h EST)
Judgement: FALSE


Further game play is impossible.
Initiator's Comments:
I am not required to submit my reasoning, and according to R211, the judge is required to make eir judgment based solely on my statement -- my reasoning is merely decorative. I could give examples of possible paradoxes, but since my CFJ has to be judged on its original statement, not my reasoning, merely proving my reasoning to be false would not automaticaly prove my statement false. Therefore, in the absence of proof that our ruleset does NOT contain a heretofore undiscovered paradox, I maintain that there are paradoxes which, were they discovered, would make the game unplayable. I challenge the judge to prove that in fact no paradoxes exist.
Judge's Comments:
I am not required to submit my reasoning, and according to R211, Acka is required to use the Judgement based solely on the Judgement I return. I am glad that I only have to Judge the statement, and that I do not have to take on the challenge of proving, in fact, that no paradoxes exist in the Ruleset.