Issue 2, April 11th 1995



Well, as this second issue of Thring Weekly goes to press, we are witnessing the beginning of a new game of Thring, with the first set of new Rules and new Proposals in Game 2 sent out yesterday. The absence of any real scoring system for Proposals has seen Sam Bushell (sic) and Anarchy leap into the lead with 3 points each!

We've also seen, in a possibly related development, the number of subscribers to the Thring mailing list increase. We now have 11 Players (including the Speaker) and 11 observers (including two ex-players)! Incidentally, if any new observers (that is, subscribers to the mailing list who have not become Players) have not received information when they subscribed about the Thring Game of Nomic, and would like to do so, could they please contact me at .

With the change in Speakership, the volume of mail on the Thring mailing list increased substantially; this was not because there were a lot of people posting, but rather, I am reliably informed, because "well, Adrian can seem like a lot of people all by himself" (or should that be emself?).

Indeed, there are two (fairly short) articles by the current Speaker in this edition. This edition, the biggest and most entertaining ever, also features an exclusive interview with the First Speaker, David Wilson, conducted - naturally - by email, in what is believed to be a first for a Nomic newsletter (but that claim could just be hype by our zealous reporter). Thanks especially to Debbie Schultz for her help in composing questions. This issue also features regular columns: Forgotten Proposals, Letters to the Editor and (unfortunately) Errata. Unfortunately, the introductory article on Bartok has not been received at the time of printing, but I have hopes of one being included in the next issue.

Share and enjoy,

Luke Schubert ((the Surreptitious))


There have been two mistakes reported in the article, "A Brief History of Game 1", featured in the last issue.

The Rule which invalidated Rule 303 is in fact Rule 307, not Rule 309 as was stated in the last issue.

Also, it was stated that all Players except Adrian Corston finished on 15 points or less; however, Don the Yank actually finished on 20 points. My humble apologies to Don.

Finally, in the Editorial last issue, the URL for the Thring Weekly index was quoted as "" when it should be "" The old link should still work, but the new one is preferable.

Speaker's Pedant Corner

(by Adrian Corston (Thring Speaker the Second))

Rule 338 explicitly states that any Proposals intended to fall within it's jurisdiction must have the word "Joker" appended. Submitting a Proposal with the word "Joker" appended to the Name of the Proposal is insufficient, as the entire rule must have that word appended. Also, it must be the word "Joker" that is appended, not <Joker> or any other strange combination of characters.

Please, no Judgements about the validity of this, because the only inappropriately assessed "Joker" Proposal to date received 4 votes FOR and 4 AGAINST, and hence there would have been no difference had the Proposal not been submitted as a Joker.

Interview - The First Speaker

(by Luke Schubert ((the Surreptitious)))

The subject of our interview needs no introduction. He is David Wilson, the First Speaker of Thring Nomic. He was initially known as Zarasthusra, and later Astroboy. He is doing a PhD in Pure Maths at the University of Adelaide (as his home page mentions) and is married to Sonia Brandner. They moved here from Canberra at the beginning of 1994.

[Note: I could have said "e", not "he", but I didn't think Sonia would appreciate that in this case.]

TW: Good afternoon, and thanks for agreeing to answer these questions.

You were Speaker for more than four months. How would you describe the role of the Speaker?

DW:It's a motherly role. You have to look after the game but you can't take part in it yourself. In the first three months I had tried to get people to sign up and then they wouldn't get involved. It was somewhat discouraging and what made it worse was that I couldn't take an active role in the game at all. People became interested when the summer holidays finished and suddenly I had 50 nomic messages per week and it would take me one to two hours on Monday morning to count all the votes and sort out the points.

There were some benefits though. You should see how impressed people are when you are introduced as "The Speaker". The invite to the Academy Awards was nice as well but I couldn't make it as I had a cocktail party at Government House.

TW:What Proposals would you have liked to see get in?

DW:I was always keen on 303. It's sick, twisted, and has that feeling of a rifle shot when it operates.

TW:What criteria did you use for selecting sentences for the Nomic (later Thring) Story?

DW:The one that sounded best to me. There was always one that stood out. When I thought some action was needed I submitted my own sentences.

TW:Briefly, what problems do you think need to be addressed in the current rule set?

DW:Obviously we can't let Adrian win again. As he is the Speaker this is not usually a problem but have you seen Proposal 387? Guess who sent that one in? I think there is some general unhappiness with the current Proposal process and that needs changing.

TW:I understand that you used to live in Canberra. Did living in such a hotbed of political debate help you in your sometimes controversial role as Speaker?

DW:Oh yes, I have taken guidance from my heroes: Ironbar Tuckey, Paul Keating, and Graham Richardson. Complaints anyone?

TW:The card game Bartok has many similarities to Nomic. There have been rumours that overindulgence in Bartok can cause health problems. Would you care to comment?

DW:Oop Ack! Thhpppt!

TW:Given the chance, would you be Speaker again?

DW:Yes. There will come a time when the Astroboy shall once again rule the fair land of Thring, and all will be well with the world. I'LL BE BACK.

TW:What advice would you give to budding new Players and Speakers?

DW:Watch out for ^'s in Proposals and GET A LIFE!!

Innocuous Rules

(by Adrian Corston (Thring Speaker the Second))

Here's an interesting observation - consider the following Rule:

"Rule 374 (MUTABLE). Rule 201 be named 'Quorum for Rule Changes'."

Now, if someone wants to rename Rule 201, not only must they rename it, but first they must repeal Rule 374 above. If they don't, then it takes precedence by Rule 212.

A better wording for Rule 374 would have been:

"Apon enactment of this Proposal, Rule 201 be named 'Quorum for Rule Changes'."

There are a number of suprisingly important rules in Thring, which, while appearing fairly innocuous at first glance (Rule 212 in this case), can have wide-reaching implications. Other such rules include 116, and the former 335.

Forgotten Proposals

(by Luke Schubert ((the Surreptitious)))

Unfortunately for this column, the Proposals made in Week 2 (beginning on Monday 12th of December) were all voted in by the beginning of Week 3. They were Proposals 303, 304 and 305.

However, Proposal 304 was a proposal to amend Rule 202; the original text of Rule 202 is reproduced below.

"Rule 202:

All Players begin with 0 points. Points may not be gained, lost, or traded except as explicitly stated in the Rules."

Proposal 303 was submitted by Ian Wanless, and passed with a vote of two FOR and one AGAINST.

Proposal 304 was submitted by Luke Schubert, and passed with a vote of two FOR.

Proposal 305 was also submitted by Luke Schubert, and passed with a vote of two FOR and one AGAINST.

Letters to the Editor

Well, no letters to the Editor as such have yet been received. Which is fair enough, seeing as how the Thring Mailing List is an easier method of communication about current issues in the game.

Maybe if I start including more controversial articles ... hmmm. Anyway, here's something else to think about (and write in about, if you feel sufficiently motivated):

Click here to return to the index of Thring Weekly.