Index ← 3872 CFJ 3873 3874 → text
===============================  CFJ 3873  ===============================

      It is Shelvacu's birthday.


Caller:                        Falsifian

Judge:                         R. Lee
Judgement:                     TRUE



Called by Falsifian:                              08 Aug 2020 15:07:48
Assigned to R. Lee:                               09 Aug 2020 21:55:34
Judged TRUE by R. Lee:                            10 Aug 2020 07:52:16


Caller's Evidence:

On 8 Aug 2020 15:06:00 +0000, shelvacu via agora-business wrote:
> I wish to register to become a player. If my registration is successful,
> I cause myself to receive one Welcome Package and announce that it is my
> Agoran Birthday! How exciting.

Caller's Arguments:

I'm not sure about the birthday, though. R2585 says

       It is considered to be a player's Agoran Birthday on the
       anniversary of the day e first registered.

and after quickly checking a few definitions of anniversary, most of 
them seem to say something about "previous year". E.g. Wikipedia: "An 
anniversary is the date on which an event took place or an institution 
was founded in a previous year, ...".


Gratuitous Arguments (multiple contributors in thread):


Judge R. Lee's Arguments:

CFJ 3873 presents a fun question: is it the "anniversary" of something
happening on the very day that it happens, instead of beginning a year
thereafter. This matters because shelvacu tried to declare eir agoran
birthday on the first day of eir registration, which e may not do if a
birthday, defined as an "anniversary", commemorates only an event that
happened a year or more in the past.

Dictionary meanings are split both ways.

Merriam Webster: the yearly recurrence of the date of a past event (yes
birthday, as shelvacu claimed eir birthday on the date of a "past event",
which was eir registration.)

Collins: An anniversary is a date which is remembered
a special 
 event happened
 on that date
in a previous year.  (no birthday)

Yourdictionary: the annually recurring date on which some event took place
(yes birthday, because the purported birthday was indeed the date on which
shelvacu registered)

Cambridge: the day  on
which an important
 in a previous
 (no birthday)

As dictionaries are split, the first inclination is to go to the game
factors analysis. But not so fast. "In settling on a fair reading of a
statute, it is not unusual to consider the ordinary meaning of a defined
Bond v. United States, 572 U.S. 844 (2014). The ordinary meaning of
"anniversary" is not so clear, but the ordinary meaning of the word it is
defining, in this case "birthday", is crystal. It is a baby's birthday when
they are born. A birthday is, after all, the day of birth. It's in the
word.  By analogy, it was shelvacu's birthday the day he registered.
Although we must respect definitions, even when they diverge most strongly
with the terms they are defining, in a case where the defined word's
ordinary meaning is clear and the definition is itself ambiguous, it is
proper to resolve the ambiguity with the common-sense proposition that the
ambiguous definition probably comports with the ordinary meaning of the
defined term  unless there is a clear indication of intent otherwise. For
example, this principle would not apply if BOTH readings of a definitional
ambiguity had nothing to do with the ordinary meaning of the defined term.

In this case, the clear and obvious meaning that it was shelvacu's birthday
when he was born into agora means that the ambiguity in the definition of
"birthday" is resolved in eir favour. It was eir birthday immediately after
e registered. CFJ 3878 is judged TRUE.