Index ← 2792 CFJ 2793 2794 → text
==============================  CFJ 2793  ==============================

    The message quoted in evidence began a coup.


Caller:                                 Murphy
Barred:                                 scshunt

Judge:                                  Machiavelli

Judge:                                  G.
Judgement:                              TRUE



Called by Murphy:                       04 May 2010 05:58:00 GMT
Assigned to Machiavelli:                08 May 2010 17:47:14 GMT
Machiavelli recused:                    08 May 2010 21:53:36 GMT
Assigned to G.:                         09 May 2010 16:28:39 GMT
Judged TRUE by G.:                      10 May 2010 17:32:25 GMT


Caller's Arguments:

Given the original context of discussing recent mistakes, I
also thought coppro was being intentionally ambiguous, which arguably
means e /was/ being ambiguous (even if it was accidental).  Oh, and
trivially FALSE if coppro isn't Admiral of the Navy for some reason.


Caller's Evidence:

coppro wrote:

> On 05/03/2010 08:44 AM, Geoffrey Spear wrote:
>> On Mon, May 3, 2010 at 10:17 AM, Sean Hunt  wrote:
>>> Since I started a coup last week.
>> Care to provide a message-ID?

the body of which is as follows:

> On 04/26/2010 03:54 PM, Ed Murphy wrote:
>> coppro wrote:
>>> On 04/26/2010 08:34 AM, Ed Murphy wrote:
>>>> coppro wrote:
>>>>>> 6713 0 3.0 Murphy Green Eliminate past repetitive wins
>>>>> FORx12
>>>> I have you at 2 rests, giving you a voting limit of 0 here
>>>> (and 4 ->   6 on the others due to Chief Whip).
>>> Hrm. I have me at 1 Rest (which I gave myself), and I am certainly not
>>> Chief Whip.
>> Oh dear, when did that change?  I'll fix the DB later today.
> My last Formation of the Government when the Clout scam failed
> accidentally ended up giving comex the Chief Whip and myself the Admiral
> of the Navy by accident; and by the time I noticed I'd lost the power to
> fix it.
> In other news, I announce the ceremonial shilling of the palace.
> -coppro

comex's conversation with coppro regarding the above:

> On Mon, May 3, 2010 at 6:45 PM, Sean Hunt  wrote:
>>> I'm still curious: what were you announcing about the Palace's official
>>> coin?
>> Oops, typo. Not fatal.
> Wait, really?  I thought you were being intentionally ambiguous.


Judge G.'s Arguments:

On one hand, we don't want to discard actions for trivial typos.  On
the other hand, we should allow players to be able to claim an altered
after the fact, or allow players to disguise certain public actions as
others (e.g. AGAINT) - public should generally mean publicly transparent.
What tests should we use on this?

In no particular order:

1.  Intent.  Did the actor, at time of posting, have intent to claim a
deception based on the typo?  In the example of AGAINT, there was an
intent to create a deliberate error for deception.  In this case, I take
the actor's word, and the fact that e was surprised that no one had
followed up on the coup, as evidence that eir intent was straightforward
(nonwithstanding things like keyboard distance: things like auto-correct
make that sort of proof hard to support).  Intent is not the most
important test, as it only arises after ambiguity is raised, but it is
worthy of consideration.

2.  Rules Meaning.  Does the typo have its own meaning in the rules?  In
the case of AGAINT, there were two potential rules-based meanings (AGAINST
versus the private AGAINT=FOR deal).  In this case, "shilling" has not
only no rules meaning, but no particular synonym for a rules meaning,
especially in context of the palace.

3.  Importance.  Do the rules place very specific extra requirements for
clarity on this particular type of action (e.g. requiring "clear
specification" etc.).  Not in this case.

3.  Common meaning.  Does the typo have its own meaning outside of the
rules, in common parlance?  "Shilling", in fact, does.  As a noun for a
coin the sentence is nonsense, but as a verb it has a meaning in terms of
a deliberate deception.  This could easily indicate that the actor was
trying to make a rather obscure joke with the intent of it being non-
effective.  Additionally, the context of the whole message (talking about
correcting other errors) might support the joke idea. Several players
clearly interpreted it this way.

So, this action attempt passes the first three tests (the ambiguity was
not intended, nor did it create an obvious ambiguity between two rules-
based actions, nor does the action in question require extra certainty).
It's meaning in common parlance is semi-nonsense, but not complete
nonsense - sufficient enough that some other players, including relevant
officers, thought it was intentional nonsense.  Should this accidental
meaning be sufficient to invalidate the attempt?

This is very, very much an edge case.  But in this judge's opinion, if we
judge this to have failed, we are in fact, in this judge's opinion, acting
against the best interests of the game.  It would in fact make it easier
for players to introduce ambiguity through future AGAINT-type scams ("hey,
that failed because I made a typo!")  Rather, I think it is better to accept
actions that generally say what they mean, in order to limit ambiguity
as to what game actions are actually performed.  This would force would-be
scammers to be more ambiguous than this (e.g. "obviously" ambiguous) in
order for their actions to be claimed to fail.

Therefore I judge TRUE.  Semi-ironically, this likely means that "shilling"
will enter Agoran vocabulary in a similar manner to AGAINT, thereby making
it ambiguous enough to fail in future actions due to this clarifying