Index ← 3848 CFJ 3849 3850 → text
===============================  CFJ 3849  ===============================

      A contract which has no explicit mechanism for joining may still
      be joined by other parties in some cases.

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Caller:                        R. Lee

Judge:                         G.
Judgement:                     TRUE

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History:

Called by R. Lee:                                 17 Jun 2020 01:00:30
Assigned to G.:                                   20 Jun 2020 00:25:13
Judged TRUE by G.:                                26 Jun 2020 22:12:41

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Caller's Arguments:

A contract which sets out a set of rules that COULD be binding on
any player should be able to be consented to by any player by default,
unless the contract says otherwise. This applies to the plunder
partnership's former text which I include below. It said "any person...
can become a pirate", although this doesn't provide a mechanism like "by
announcement", the contract clearly intended that any player be able to
consent to it, which is enough under the Consent rule for sure.


Caller's Evidence:

Plunder Partnership as of June 15 2020

The Plunder Partnership

🏴‍☠️ WHO WE BE

The Plunder Partnership is also known as the Plundership. A party to this
contract is known as a Pirate. Any person who is not in Davy Jones’ Locker
can become a Pirate. Any Pirate can make themselves cease to be one by
announcement.

🏴‍☠️ NO TATTLE-TALES

Any person who has objected to a transferral of coins from the Lost and
Found Department to the Plundership are in Davy Jones’ Locker. A person in
Davy Jones’ Locker cannot become a Pirate, and they immediately cease to be
a Pirate if they already were one.

🏴‍☠️ DOUBLOONS

Doubloons are a destructible asset that can only belong to Pirates. When an
amount of coins is transferred to the Plundership, each Pirate gains an
amount of Doubloons equal to the amount transferred divided by the amount
of Pirates, rounded down. A Pirate with at least 1 Doubloon can transfer 1
coin to themselves from the Plundership. Doing so destroys 1 Doubloon in
their possession.

🏴‍☠️ PARLEY

Any Pirate can propose a Parley by announcement, which describes amendments
to this contract. If at least 2/3rds (rounded up) of all Pirates consent to
the Parley’s contents, this contract is amended according to the Parley.

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Judge G.'s Arguments:

The rules provide only one method for joining an existing contract, found
in R1742/22:

>      A contract may be modified,
>      including by changing the set of parties, with the consent of all
>      existing parties.

That's literally the only way for a prospective party to join a contract,
even if the contract text implies otherwise.  This is further limited by
R2611/0 that also requires the consent of the prospective party:

>     Rules to the contrary notwithstanding, an instrument other than a
>     statute CANNOT become binding on a person without eir willful
>     consent, however, consent can be given by implication.

Consent need not always be direct - the evidence requirements for
determining consent are covered in R2519/2, and include context and
previously agreed-to contract text.  Importantly, by R2519, a public
statement of consent qualifies.  However, this is further limited by the
fact that the addition is "cancelled" if it is not done in public (R1742/22):

>      Rules to the contrary notwithstanding, any change that would cause
>      the full provisions or parties of a contract to become publicly
>      unavailable is canceled and does not take effect.

Note that this says "cancelled" not "doesn't take effect until made
public".  Therefore, the public posting of party changes is not an
after-the-fact thing: If a group privately agrees, and then a neutral
observer communicates the agreement to the public, it doesn't count
because the change was "cancelled" as soon as it happened and before the
neutral observer communicated. The final "moment of agreement", therefore,
must also be a public "assertion of consent" from the last
party/prospective party who's consent is not already known; e.g., when
it's public that N-1 parties agree, the Nth party publicly asserting eir
agreement makes the change or sets the change in motion (e.g. if it
includes taking effect at a future publicly-known date).

The first question: does this complex set of spread out requirements,
culminating in the Nth party's public consent, constitute a "method to
perform that action" for the purposes of R2125/12?  First, it's important
to note that the recent amendment of R2125 may have invalidated past
precedents:

>      If a body of law regulates an action, then to the extent that
>      doing so is within its scope, that body of law prevents the action
>      from being performed except as described within it, including by
>      limiting the methods to perform that action to those specified
>      within it.

Here, compare:
>      except as described within it, limiting the methods to those
>      specified within it
to R2125/11's:
>      only using the methods explicitly specified in the Rules for
>      performing the given action.

In particular, the word "explicitly...for the given action" has been
dropped, leaving the door open to more generality.  Now, this isn't a
blank check; Judge Alexis, in CFJ 3793, gives some guidelines:

> It may be indirect, occurring
> as a result of another game action, and it may be a wilful natural
> action of a sentient being that starts things, or some other
> occurrence such as the passage of time. But the process cannot be cut
> from whole cloth. Nor can a significant omitted portion of the
> procedure be inferred, because of the requirement that the method be
> explicitly specified. Where only some details are missing, then a good
> litmus test, in line with legal interpretation of contracts that need
> to be explicit, is whether the correct missing details are fairly
> immediately clear. If we have to engage in a detailed interpretive
> exercise to discover the true mechanism, then it is most likely not
> explicit enough to qualify.

By removing the "explicit" this gives us a trifle more room for
"interpretive exercises" but they must not be "cut from whole cloth".  I
believe, as laid out above, that the consent method is sufficiently
interpretable as a set of wilful natural acts, and while a bit spread out
in the rules, the details are reasonably immediately clear and in keeping
with common sense applications of consent and agreement, so that the "last
needed public act of consent" can cause a party to join a contract.

None of this so far considers the text of the contracts, so let's consider
a few cases, each a "message" from a player (OP):

1.  "I consent to the following contract {null}."
Here, OP has not indicated consent for anyone else joining.  No one else
CAN immediately join the contract, but if OP provides further consent,
someone can.  If the OP does so, the method for joining, as discussed
above, would be public consent, even though the contract doesn't say so.

2.  "I consent to the following contract, and consent to Player A joining
{null text}."
Here, Player A can join, as OP has clearly consented.  The method of
joining, as discussed above, would be public consent from Player A.

3.  "I consent to the following contract {null; Player A CAN join this
contract}."
In the third case, Player A can join through public consent, as OP has
clearly consented by agreeing to be bound by the contract.

4.  "I consent to the following contract {null; Player A CAN join this
contract w/o objection}."
In the fourth case, OP is only inferred to consent if the proper method is
followed by Player A.

Finally, if the consent given by the OP actively conflicts with contract
text, then it's uncertain, it may be consent (but a violation of the
contract) and it may be ambiguous whether consent is given (see CFJ 3848,
currently awaiting judgement).  Those would be case-by-case.

As CFJ 3849 is answered by the second example above, I find TRUE for
CFJ 3849.  As CFJ 3850 is answered by the third example, I find TRUE
for CFJ 3850.


Judge G.'s Evidence:

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Rule 2519/2 (Power=3)
Consent

      A person is deemed to have consented to an action if and only if,
      at the time the action took place:

      1. e, acting as emself, has publicly stated that e agrees to the
         action and not subsequently publicly withdrawn eir statement;
      2. e is party to a contract whose body explicitly and
          unambiguously indicates eir consent;
      3. the action is taken as part of a promise which e created; or
      4. it is reasonably clear from context that e wanted the action to
         take place or assented to it taking place.
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Rule 1742/22 (Power=2.5)
Contracts

      Any group of one or more consenting persons (the parties) may
      publicly make an agreement among themselves with the intention
      that it be binding upon them and be governed by the rules. Such
      an agreement is known as a contract. A contract may be modified,
      including by changing the set of parties, with the consent of all
      existing parties. A contract may also be terminated with the
      consent of all parties. A contract automatically terminates if the
      number of parties to it falls below one. It is IMPOSSIBLE for a
      person to become a party to a contract without eir consent.

      Parties to a contract governed by the rules SHALL act in
      accordance with that contract. This obligation is not impaired
      by contradiction between the contract and any other contract, or
      between the contract and the rules.

      Rules to the contrary notwithstanding, any change that would cause
      the full provisions or parties of a contract to become publicly
      unavailable is canceled and does not take effect.

      The portion of a contract's provisions that can be interpreted
      with reference only to information that is either publicly or
      generally available are known as its body; the remainder of the
      provisions are known as the annex.

      A party to a contract CAN perform any of the following actions as
      explicitly and unambiguously permitted by the contract's body:

      * Act on behalf of another party to the contract.

      * By announcement, revoke destructible assets from the contract.

      * By announcement, transfer liquid assets from the contract to a
        specified recipient.

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Rule 2611/0 (Power=3.0)
Instruments

      An instrument is a type of document, either ephemeral or enduring,
      that is defined as such by a body of law. An instrument's text,
      where otherwise permitted, can be amended from time to time.

      Rules to the contrary notwithstanding, an instrument other than a
      statute CANNOT become binding on a person without eir willful
      consent, however, consent can be given by implication. In
      particular, consenting to be bound to an instrument can imply
      consent to be bound by amendments to it and consent to be bound by
      other instruments.

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