============================= CFJ 3467 =============================
天火狐 is a player.
Called by ais523: 10 Nov 2016
Assigned to G.: 5 Jan 2017
Judged FALSE by G.: 06 Jan 2017
There are two separate questions here. The first is whether the
person that sent a message from Josh T's email address is registered
as a player, and the second is whether that player's Agoran nickname
is 天火狐. (note: the CFJ is timed so that the judgement does not
consider self-ratification of the Registrar's report).
By the excellently-written precedent set by Judge Maud in CFJ 1460
(https://cfj.qoid.us/1460), by-announcement actions taken in non-
English languages generally fail. The relevant part of the judgement
is clear and subsequent rule changes have not altered its
"...submitting a purported communication to an officer in a
language one has no reason to believe that officer understands,
and which, as it turns out, the officer does not understand,
violates the Gricean maxims
(4) Avoid obscurity of expression. and
(5) Avoid ambiguity.
Such a purported communication does not communicate, and so it
would not be unreasonable to hold that the purported
communication is no communication at all.
I therefore hold that an Agoran player need not regard, nor be
required to act upon, a message written in a language e does not
understand, whether or not it is sent to a public forum."
However, registration is a special case for communication. An intent
to register must be "reasonably" clear (R869). CFJ 1263 explored this
issue (https://cfj.qoid.us/1263). At the time of CFJ 1263, the rules
required a potential new player to publicly "request" registration
(though the request was automatically successful upon publication).
CFJ 1263 found that saying "I hereby register" was close enough to a
request, even though, by all grammatical considerations, it wasn't a
request. For standard by-announcement actions, "requesting" to do
something would be very different than saying "I do something", but
the difference was considered worth overlooking with the specific aim
of not alienating new players.
Interpretations of the registration clause over time (there have been
many CFJs) have very much kept this "less nit-picky" tradition alive.
In the context of modern translation engines, grammatical or other
translation quirks are likely to be less confusing than the very real
difference between a "request" and an "action" in English, and that
was allowed by CFJ 1263.
The translation given by Google Translate, as of the time of this
judgement, is as follows: "ladies and gentlemen, In order to think
that it will be one of the players of this game, I try to register
using the following nickname. The sky fox". This, I find, is
"reasonably clear" for registration standards, so the person with the
email address name Josh T did in fact register.
However, does this mean eir appropriate Agoran nickname is 天火狐?
Maybe not. The important question for the English-dominated Agora is
clarity; as a non-Japanese speaker, I'm likely, at a glance, to assume
any three Japanese characters probably refer to that person, even if
substitutions are made, therefore an Latin alphabet character set is
necessary, I believe, for clarity.
Also, by sending a message to this board, e would likely expect us to
translate it. It seems strange to translate the content, but not the
signature. Therefore, "the sky fox" is a more likely claim for a
nickname than 天火狐. On the other hand "天" may have other
connotations ("heaven" is one given), therefore 天火狐 will always be
the most accurate rendition of eir signature. Also, there is a
problem with 天火狐; these characters on their own, when plugged into a
translator, detect as Chinese, and are apparently the symbols used for
the software package Firefox.
In choosing between these when interpreting the registration message,
I would suggest a middle ground - a transliteration, as this allows
clarity in English, and allows us to assert the Japanese context of
the original message, without changing the precise meaning of the name.
The Japanese transliteration of the name gives "ten higitsune", which
seems clear. Therefore I find that, by the registration message,
"ten higitsune" registered, but it is inappropriate to say that 天火狐
did so. If e lets us know that e really wants eir nickname to be
天火狐 (or "the sky fox") going forward, we should honor that, but only
as long as there is no unclarity as to the sender, in individual
I find FALSE.
Message sent to PF by Josh T :