Founded January 15, 2016 - United December 25, 2016
Full Name: Moderation & Roleplay Amendment
Brief Purpose: An Act to bring accountability to the OOC Moderators of the Free Nations Region.
MRA, Moderation & Roleplay Amendment
ACKNOWLEDGING: that two vital laws necessary to solve the longstanding issues between the FNR moderators and the roleplay community were struck down as unconstitutional;
UNDERSTANDING: that those laws were unconstitutional due to the alterations to moderation which conflicted with what was stated in the Constitution;
AWARE: that this law may be required in order to prevent a secession of the roleplay community;
ATTEMPTING: to rectify the issues with the previous laws into a new constitutional amendment.
This piece of legislation hereby amends/establishes/ratifies the following:
Party: A citizen, non-citizen, or group of citizens and/or non-citizens.
(1) Creates Clause VII.5.1 of the Constitution, stating “The OOC moderation team of the main FNR Discord server, Regional Message Board, and moderators of other official FNR communication platforms, excluding The Roleplay Paradise and its associated Discord server shall be seperate from the OOC moderation team of The Roleplay Paradise and its associated Discord server. Overlaps are permitted but two may not be considered one and the same.”
(2) Creates Clause VII.5.1.1 of the Constitution, stating “Moderators of both the main FNR Discord server, Regional Message Board, and moderators of other official FNR communication platforms and of the Roleplay Paradise and its associated Discord server may be sued in a court of law for their actions as a moderator. The actions they may be sued for are defined in Title II of the Moderation & Roleplay Amendment.”
(3) Grievances are a formal process by which to complain about the actions of a moderator or group of moderators. Grievances are illegal actions taken by a moderator or moderators against one person, while class grievances are illegal actions taken by a moderator or moderators against a group of people.
(4) The grievance process is available only for a specific set of grounds: unjustified ban, discrimination, a breach of the Bill of Rights, retaliation against someone because of past disputes, unfair punishment.
(5) A grievance is raised by making a moderator or the moderation team, aware that a citizen or a non-citizen believes they have a grievance and that they want the moderation team to address it. For example, this could be by approaching the moderator in DM (in the discord server) or by writing them a telegram.
(6) A party must raise the grievance with the moderation team within 15 days after the action that led to the grievance, or within 15 days after the citizen became aware of the action, whichever is later.
(7) A party can raise a grievance after the 15-day period only if the moderation team agrees to this or if the Court allows it. The Court will only allow this if there are exceptional circumstances and it would be “just” to allow it.
(8) If a party raised a grievance with the moderator and they’re not satisfied with their response, a mediation service is to be made available to help resolve the problem. If mediation doesn’t work, they can take a case to the Supreme Court.
(9) If a party decides to take action against a moderator or a moderation team in the Court, they must do this within 30 days after they raise the personal grievance with the moderators.
(10) Every party will be allowed unrestricted access to an attorney of the Free Nations Region or other adequate legal counsel, in order to consult, represent or take the case to court.
If a party takes a personal grievance to the Court they can ask the Authority to take one or more of the types of action described below.
(11) The Court can order moderators to put the plaintiff back in their previous position.
(12) If a plaintiff takes a case to the Supreme Court, they can request for their former position to be temporarily reinstated until the case has concluded.
(13) Whatever the ground for a plaintiff’s personal grievance, if a moderator’s conduct or practices were a significant factor the Court can make recommendations to moderators about what should be done to prevent similar problems happening.
(14) If a plaintiff has suffered racial, ethnic, or gender-based harassment, the Court can make recommendations to the moderators on what to do about the harasser. This may include dismissing them, taking disciplinary action, or taking rehabilitative action to prevent them harassing again.
(15) If a plaintiff brings a grievance for unjustified action, the Court will decide the case objectively, by looking at whether the moderator’s actions were what a fair and reasonable moderator could have done in the situation. This includes looking at whether:
The moderators had a good reason for dismissing the plaintiff (this is called “substantive fairness”),
The moderators followed a fair process in dismissing you (“procedural fairness”).
(16) There can be many valid reasons for moderators taking actions against someone. Whether or not a reason is substantively fair will depend on the particular circumstances. Reasons for dismissal can generally be grouped into two categories:
Serious Misconduct – this will justify immediate ban
Less Serious Misconduct – in these cases a moderator will usually have to give the plaintiff warnings and an opportunity to change their conduct before an action can be take which is deemed justifiably dismissed
(17) The valid reason will have to include the violation of the Criminal Code of Free Nations Region or any violations of rules for the Discord Server.
(18) The extent of seriousness of the misconduct will be determined by the court.
(19) Whether a moderator followed a fair process in dismissing a plaintiff will depend on the particular circumstances. The Court will consider:
Whether a moderator adequately investigated the allegations against the plaintiff (but the Authority will take into account the resources available to the moderators)
Whether the moderator’s concerns were properly communicated to the plaintiff
Whether the plaintiff had a reasonable opportunity to respond to any concerns the moderators raised
Whether the moderators considered the plaintiffs explanation with an open mind before making a decision.
(20) The Court won’t assess a moderator’s processes in a technical or pedantic way. Actions against a plaintiff won’t be found to be unjustified if there were only minor defects in the process and these didn’t result in the plaintiff being treated unfairly.
(21) If an action is taken against a party, they can, within 10 days, ask the moderators to give the reasons, and the moderators must give them reasons in writing within 7 days.
(22) The trial will be classed as “Plaintiff v. Free Nations Region”, substitute plaintiff for submitter of the grievance.
(23) A Plaintiff v. Free Nations Region is a case intended for a person who sues the Free Nations Region Government or Moderation Team, for a cause set out in the Legal Code, for unfair treatment, or for a Moderation Notice.
(24) This trial is designed for complicated situations where the evidence against the Government or Moderation Team needs to be analyzed and assessed correctly during the court proceedings.
(25) The Attorney General is to represent the Government and the Head Moderator is to represent the Moderation Team in these kinds of trials, while the suing citizens or non-citizens may exercise their right to representation.
(26) The Judicial Procedures Act shall be used as guidance in regards to trial procedures under this law.
To ensure that any secession by The Roleplay Paradise is as frictionless as possible, the mechanism of deciding whether to secede shall be laid out below.
(27) A petition of secession shall be submitted to the Supreme Court. This petition will require the acknowledgement of at least 25% of players who are at the time on the Roleplay Map.
(28) After the petition is submitted to the Supreme Court and deemed valid, a public vote will be held among all active roleplayers. If at least 75% of players on the Roleplay Map turn out to the vote, and if at least 2/3 of the voters agree, the secession vote shall pass, and the secession process will begin.
(29) The process of secession will not be defined in this law, and will instead be decided at the time that the secession process needs to begin.
Proposed & Signed,